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Dickie V breaks down the incoming 2001 recruiting class.
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Recruits should think hard before making jump


There's absolute chaos going on now, not only in the coaching world with coaches moving from one job to another, but also with young players leaving for the NBA draft. It really blows my mind.

As I said during Sonny Vaccaro's Roundball Classic on Monday night, it's time for the big three to get together. NBA commissioner David Stern, NCAA president Cedric Dempsey and NBA players union chief Billy Hunter need to sit down to bring some sanity to this absolute chaos.

I'm really amazed at the decisions of some of the collegians leaving early when they have so many holes in their games and haven't been able to dominate on the college level.
Everybody's getting hurt by college kids leaving school early. People who don't belong in NBA uniforms are sitting on the pine taking away jobs from those who belong there. The NBA quality of play suffers immeasurably, as does the collegiate game. But most of all, the young athletes themselves really suffer in the long run.

Take a look at Eddy Curry, who is obviously a big body at 6-foot-11 and 295 pounds and has a soft pair of hands. He certainly has plenty of upside, but he's a long, long way from being able to contribute on an NBA level.

If he decides to go pro, as has been reported, some team will draft him based on his upside, based on that magic word -- POTENTIAL, baby, potential. And that usually means the youngster has to endure sitting on the bench night in and night out until he gets a chance several years down the road. I'm really amazed at the decisions of some of the collegians leaving early when they have so many holes in their games and haven't been able to dominate on the college level.

Yes, it's really wacky out there, with players running for the instant cash, the instant gratification, rather than thinking long-term.

Getting back to the Roundball Classic: In 1988, 17 of the 20 players at the Classic made it to the NBA.

People like Alonzo Mourning, Billy Owens, LaPhonso Ellis and a host of others. This year's Classic featured more talented players, with quality big guys. Word is circulating that 7-foot-2 DeSagana Diop of Senegal and 6-foot-9 Qusmane Cisse, who played for the West in the Classic, are both entering the NBA draft.

Let's hope that these kids really study all their options and think about the problems that go along with the cash when they make their decisions.

The Super Six recruiting classes that jump out at me are:
Michigan State
North Carolina State

Several players from these schools' classes were impressive at the Classic, including Florida's big three recruits -- Kwame Brown, James White and David Lee. Brown, at 6-foot-11, has versatile skills and can play the inside-outside game; in Billy Donovan's system he will be a major factor. And White is perfect for the Gators' pressing style of play.

If Duke loses Jason Williams or Carlos Boozer to the draft, Florida would become my preseason No. 1 team.

Then there was the play of Michigan State recruit Kelvin Torbert. This Flintstone is a big-time wing player, can shoot the J from deep and take it to the basket with great elevation and explosiveness. Torbert will have the Izzone going bananas at the Breslin Center.

Coatesville (Pa.) High School sensation John Allen also impressed big-time. Allen will play for Louis Orr at Seton Hall, and the Pirates should be ecstatic. Allen can put points on the board, as he scored 29 and earned co-MVP honors for the East in the Classic.

The beat goes on -- I just hope these kids don't make the quick jump but recognize the value of college, just as Grant Hill, David Robinson, Tim Duncan and Shane Battier all did.

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