Lukas Harkins | @hardwiredsports | 06/19/20
Welcome to another entry of the recruiting roundup!
Over the past week, the biggest recruiting story has been the beginning of the open contact period for the 2022 class as coaches have been active on their phones since Monday. Additionally, though, Villanova and Ole Miss both landed four-star commits from the 2021 class while Harvard appears to have secured a steal with their newest addition. Recruiting season is starting to seriously heat up as we enter the summer.
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Open contact period opens for 2022
The open contact period for the 2020 recruiting class began during this past week on Monday, June 15th. Naturally, coaches around the country immediately started making contact with their potential targets in the class as soon as the clock struck midnight. Obviously, it is still extremely early in most recruitments of these rising high school juniors, but there are many that have already emerged as potential superstars at the collegiate level.
We will just have to wait and find out to determine where they eventually end up, though, as the player rankings for this class will surely change over the next two seasons. There will be prospects that drop significantly from their current status, but also those that just need to have their breakout summer to emerge as nationwide priorities. This open contact period is just the start for the players in this class.
Jalen Hood-Schifino (Pittsburgh), Sonny Johnson Jr. (Penn State), Dior Johnson (Syracuse), and Bowen Hardman (Ohio State) are the early 2022 commits so far across the country.
Ole Miss, Villanova land four-star prospects from the 2021 class
Ole Miss experienced a bit of an up-and-down week in terms of news surrounding their basketball program. First, the Rebels saw Blake Hinson enter the transfer portal with intentions of playing elsewhere. This was certainly a blow to the team considering he played quite well as a sophomore during this past campaign. Yet, head coach Kermit Davis also shored up the future by landing highly-touted 2021 recruit Daeshun Ruffin.
A 5-foot-9 point guard ranked at No. 53 in the class by Rivals, Ruffin represents a major part of the future backcourt for Ole Miss. He brings superb quickness to the court and knows how to create space for himself despite being undersized. He is deadly with the ball in his hands and has the ability to score at all three levels thanks to a great pull-up jumper off the bounce. Ruffin is one of the best scorers in the entire 2021 class.
In addition to Ruffin joining Ole Miss, Villanova was also able to secure a four-star commitment during this past week in the form of Trey Patterson. Ranked at No. 28 in the class by Rivals, the 6-foot-8 forward is a valuable addition that also fits a major need for the ‘Cats heading into the 2021-22 season. Villanova will likely have a few pieces to replace, potentially including Jeremiah Robinson-Earl if he chooses to turn pro after his sophomore year, and Patterson can help fill that void in the frontcourt.
Perhaps most notably, Patterson brings versatility to the court. He can cover multiple positions on the defensive end and boasts a well-rounded offensive toolbox that will allow head coach Jay Wright to use him in a variety of ways. Patterson is a high-energy player that has a nice jumper, an excellent post game, and the ability to beat his man off the dribble.
Harvard secures another 2021 commitment
2021 wing Louis Lesmond announced his intention to play his collegiate career at Harvard during this past week and that is huge news for the Ivy League program. A 6-foot-5 shooting guard prospect with a great reputation as a perimeter threat, Lesmond is currently ranked as the No. 73 overall player in the class by 247Sports (unranked by Rivals). Considering the likes of Marquette and Wisconsin were also interested in adding him to their future rosters, the Crimson have to be happy with landing his commitment early in the year.
Lesmond fits the mold of a high-impact shooter that could help keep Harvard near the top of the Ivy League standings for the next few seasons. Head coach Tommy Amaker has done excellent work on the recruiting trail for this program in recent years and that is showing in the 2021 class as well. In addition to landing Lesmond during this past week, Harvard also already holds two other commitments in the forms of Denham Wojcik and Bennett Pitcher.
This has the makings of a very solid, and potentially nationally underrated, recruiting class heading to Cambridge.
Lukas Harkins is a college basketball writer for HeatCheckCBB.com and covers the nation with rankings, bracketology, analysis, and recruiting breakdowns. He is currently a Rockin’ 25 voter and is credentialed media for Butler. He previously worked as one of the site experts at Busting Brackets. Harkins graduated from Butler University in 2019 and majored in Healthcare and Business.