North Carolina coach Roy Williams has three elite players already committed. Louisville’s Rick Pitino also has secured verbal pledges from three highly ranked guys. Ohio State’s Thad Matta also was able to breathe easy this past July, having three players already in the fold. And Mark Turgeon is all smiles with four Top 100 kids who have pledged to Maryland.
They are sitting pretty, able to put it on cruise control as official visits kick into gear. They aren’t overly concerned as Top 100 players are snapped up daily this time of year.
But then there are those coaches who are sweating it out, crisscrossing the country in an effort to try to land players. These are the coaches -- and the programs -- who still have work to do in the Class of 2014.
Tom Izzo, Michigan State Spartans
While it’s assumed that Kansas and Kentucky will wind up with McDonald’s All Americans, the same can’t be said for the Spartans, who lost out on their top point guard target -- Tyus Jones -- and are expected to lose Tyler Ulis, who is supposed to make an announcement Friday, to Kentucky. Izzo is desperately trying to find a replacement for Keith Appling at the position, but he also needs to load up beyond just the point guard spot. The Spartans also will lose Adriean Payne, and also could watch Gary Harris and Branden Dawson head to the NBA draft. Right now Sparty still is searching for their first commit in the Class of 2014 -- and have identified Lourawls “Tum Tum” Nairn as their next point guard target. Sources told ESPN Nairns, ESPN’s 24th-rated point guard -- is visiting this weekend. Nairn also is looking at Minnesota, Oklahoma and Indiana.