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Weekly Recruiting Beat (4-15-2012) – Four Top-25 holdouts remain undecided

When the top two prospects in the 2012 class, Nerlens Noel and Shabazz Muhammad announced their commitments to Kentucky and UCLA on Wednesday evening, it left only a few top-25 prospects left before the entirety of the class has sorted itself out.

This upcoming week should hopefully shine some light on the decisions on the remaining blue chippers, which includes forwards Devonta Pollard, Amile Jefferson and Anthony Bennett, and center Tony Parker. Rumors swirled in the past week, connecting Parker to UCLA and Bennett to Florida, but it remains to be seen when announcements will be finalized.

Parker, in particular, is expected to make his decision on Friday, while Pollard would seemingly be close to a decision after a weekend trip to Georgetown. Bennett isn’t far along in official trips, but his recruitment has been non-traditional. Jefferson is also of interest, as he would seem to near a decision having taken his trips awhile ago.

The above-listed four decisions will be necessary to put the recruiting class rankings from 2012 in the books, and turn attention to the top-heavy 2013 class. As of now, it seems as if Kentucky will finalize overtaking Arizona as the top recruiting class in the land, with a dandy four prospect group headed in, and a legitimate shot and landing three of the four remaining top -25 players.

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Quick Notes

  • With the coaching carousel in full swing, an expected number of decommits have happened. Some of the more interesting decommits to track have been Michael Orris (Illinois), Willie Moore (Duquesne), and Cameron Golden (UAB). All will be sought after at the mid-major level at a minimum, if not higher. Orris is a good bet to re-up with coach Bruce Weber, who was recently hired at Kansas State following several years at Illinois.
  • It wasn’t the most eventful opening to the regular signing period, but all the news and notes from the day were categorized in a live blog we updated throughout the day on Wednesday. Many verbal commitments converted into signed letter’s of intent, with only a few holdouts.
  • Baylor escaped their recent text message controversy with only self-imposed sanctions, it was reported during the week. Bayou big man Ricardo Gathers has not signed a letter of intent to officially join the Bears’ roster, but he is expected to shortly.
  • As if being lauded by virtually every recruiting analyst as the top prospect in the 2013 class wasn’t enough, 6′-7″ forward Jabari Parker of Simeon (IL) has added another award to his increasingly building resume. Parker was selected as the 2011-12 Gatorade National Boys Basketball Player of the Year, and he is only one of a few handful underclassmen in history to win the prestigious award.
  • The next two weekends will feature the first two “live” April weekends for NCAA coaches to evaluate talent in several years. To separate the pretenders from the officially sanctioned events, hit the NCAA website for their list of currently approved events. Several notable events that advertised as being sanctioned are not on the list, as of yet.

Commitment Tracker

  • Robert Upshaw, 7′-0″, C, 2012, Fresno State
  • Deverell Biggs, 6′-0″, PG, JC, Nebraska
  • DJ Bennett, 6′-8″, PF, JC, Oklahoma
  • Adeleke Solanke, 6′-6″, SF, 2012, Stetson
  • Terry Brutus, 6′-6″, SF, 2012, Mississippi
  • Mark Blackmon, 5′-10″, PG, Maryland-Eastern Shore
  • Devon Walker, 6′-5″, SG, 2012, Florida
  • Kahlil Johnson, 6′-6″, SF, 2012, California
  • Tariq Carey, 6′-2″, SG, 2012,  Quinnipiac
  • Ryan Oliver, 6′-5″, G, 2012, Siena
  • DJ Richardson, 6′-2″, G, 2012, Central Michigan
  • Spencer Gales, 6′-7″, F, 2012, Houston Baptist
  • Justin Jenkins, 6′-2″, G, 2012, Fairfield
  • Patrick Agho, 6′-6″, F, 2012, Prairie View A&M
  • Jermaine Myers, 6′-0″, G, 2012, Fordham
  • Nerlens Noel, 6′-11″, C, 2012, Kentucky
  • Ivan Benkovic, 6′-5″, G, 2012, Charlotte
  • Lincoln Davis, 6′-2″, G, 2012, Fairfield
  • Nigel Sydnor, 6′-2″, G, 2012, NJIT
  • Kyle Quintana, 6′-2″, G, 2012, Navy
  • Shabazz Muhammad, 6′-6″, SF, 2012, UCLA

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About K.J. Hassenstab

K.J. Hassenstab is the publisher of the College Basketball Newcomers Guide book and He founded in 2009, and has contributed to SlamOnline, Dime Magazine's, and, along with other publications in the past. Hassenstab has covered grassroots, high school and basketball recruiting for over a decade. Follow on Twitter, @Hoopniks.

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