ESPN's high school basketball recruiting analysts check in today with their takes on the biggest surprises of the Class of 2011. And perhaps to nobody's surprise, St. John's Prep's Pat Connaughton was among the names mentioned.
Adam Finkelstein writes the following of the Notre Dame commit, who cannonballed into the ESPNU100 after a lights-out showing at AAU Nationals last summer:
Pat Connaughton's breakout performance at the 2010 AAU Nationals was an incredible story. The small forward from Saint John's Prep in [sic Danvers], Mass., went from a low-major prospect to a high-major priority in a matter of days. While his rise up recruiting boards was a shock to those who hadn't heard his name, it was even more surprising to people like myself, who had watched him for years and saw no warning signs of such an explosion. Ultimately, his story should be an example for young players about the importance of hard work (his daily eight-hour training sessions are the stuff of legend) and believing in yourself.