Chat with Dave Telep
Welcome to SportsNation! On Thursday, ESPN.com senior basketball recruiting analyst Dave Telep stops by to chat about the news from the recruiting trail.
Telep's college basketball scouting service is used by more than 225 colleges and numerous NBA teams and he helps with ESPN.com's class rankings, as well as the ESPNU 100. He can be found on Twitter: @DaveTelep.
Send your questions now and join Telep Thursday at 3 p.m. ET!
Moderator (2:59 PM)
Thanks for all your questions. I am just getting Dave on the phone right now.
Dave Telep (3:00 PM)
Thanks for sharing time with us on a busy Thursday. Today we updated our class rankings and rolled out conference grades. Please, spend a few minutes on our site reading those after our chat.
Who are some guys you think might make a jump in the 2013 rankings when they are updated? Are Stanford Robinson, Semi Ojeleye, or Marcus Lee among them?
Dave Telep (3:01 PM)
On May 24, we're going to re-rank the Class of 2013. I don't think you'll see a change in the few top spots but after that it'll be the wild west of recruiting lists. Love Bobby Portis and he's moving on up. Guys like Semi Ojeleye we have ranked highly already so movement will be light. Marcus Lee is more prospect than player right now and Top 50 suits him well. Big Demetrius Jackson fan here as well.
Do you see the Hoosiers making any more of a splash in 2013 recruiting?
Dave Telep (3:02 PM)
Kenny Johnson is a standard, good, old-fashioned American name. To Hoosiers fans, he represents a connection between Team Takeover and Bloomington. He's the new IU assistant and within 2 weeks of his hiring, IU beat Villanova for Takeover guard Stanford Robinson. The center for said Takeover team is BeeJay Anya. IU has had 3 Takeover players. Anya is a priority.
Ramses (Chapel Hill)
Any inside scoop on 2013 wing Sindarius Thornwell? He seems to be generating a lot of buzz on the EYBL circuit. Any idea on where he's leaning or at least a Top 5, thanks?
Dave Telep (3:04 PM)
Sindarius Thornwell deserves a good amount of credit. Last summer I wasn't sure where his game and his attitude were headed. Well, he's turned it around and both are in super shape as it stands. In talking to him last week, he said South Carolina, Miami, FSU, NC State, Wake Forest, Georgia, Ohio State, Cincinnati, Providence and Marquette were on him hard.
Cooper Kaplan (Hudson, OH)
Do you think Illinois will have a good 2013 recruiting class, with Jabrari Parker on the list from Chicago even though Illinois missed Derrick Rose and Anthony Davis?
Dave Telep (3:06 PM)
Let's not revise history. Derrick Rose probably wasn't going to Illinois. Tough to call him a miss when NO ONE thought they would get him. Anthony Davis' explosion happened so quickly and Illinois was never in that line. Technically, they "missed" but I'd argue they were never heavy players to begin with. Jabari Parker. Obviously Illinois has a new coach. There's a relationship that must be formed there. My apprehension is that it will take too much time to bridge that gap given the fact that teams and coaches have a 2+ year head start and the competition is ridiculous. John Groce won't give up easily but to get him will take a Herculean effort and a lot of good fortune.
Will (Raleigh, NC)
With Va Tech dragging their feet with releasing Montrezl Harrell and the signing period ending yesterday. Does that mean he is essentially tied to Va Tech if he wants to play next year at all?
Dave Telep (3:09 PM)
The Montrezl Harrell situation is unfortunate. If I was Czar of College Basketball (I'm alredy Czar of the Touchscreen), I'd make it so immediately following a coaching change the player is released. That's the right thing to do. Harrell will have options but he won't be able to play in the ACC and he can't sign a national letter of intent. Technically, schools can't talk to him but I'm sure they're talking to his coaches. Frankly, I don't blame schools in this instance if they talk to the kid. He no longer wants to go there, he should have been released by now and it doesn't seem fair to him.
Cameron Morris (Manteo, North Carolina)
with amile jefferson, rasheed saulimon, with an addition to what they have coming back. do you think duke can be a final 4 team?
John Coleman (Lansing, Michigan)
Good morning, David. I am sure I am not the only one asking this question. Coach Grant received a nice verbal from Jimmie Taylor for the 2013 clas. But what is going on with Devonta Pollard? Is the kid going to commit or does he really have a problem with decision making or likes all of the attention he is getting? Any PG rumors I should watch for the 2013 class or is Jared Sina going to re-commit to the Crimson Tide?
Dave Telep (3:12 PM)
Duke landing Amile Jefferson was critical. They needed a rally and didn't want Jefferson in the hands of the enemy (ie NC State). Are they a Final Four team? I think until their PG play steadies itself, making a statement like that would be very aggressive.
Dave Telep (3:13 PM)
First of all, Devonta Pollard is not an attention hound. I'm sure you noticed zero quotes recently by he or any family members. For him, the indecision is just that and not a ploy to gain attention. Remember, he's had a tumultuous last 2 years from a personal standpoint in losing his home and family members then the basketball injury and missing the McDonald's game with a concussion. Having said that, I think Georgetown, Alabama and Texas remain for him; Missouri has a big class and I've been told they are no longer much of a factor. Complicating the recruitment was when then Hoyas assistant Robert Kirby (who recruited Pollard when he was at Miss. State) bolted for LSU. I think they were not concerned or well informed about the deadline to sign and will do things on their own time.Add to Bama. A name to look out for with Bama PGs is Kendall Harris from Dallas. I don't see Sina and Bama rolling in 2013.
George (Tucson AZ Wildcats Nation)
Hi Dave, couple of questions well maybe a few. What is your opinion on Mark Lyons transfer to Arizona? With his addition, do you see the team being rank in the top ten? and are they National title contenders? thanks for you insight and keep up the great work.
Dave Telep (3:14 PM)
George, Arizona's incoming class is amazing. Mark Lyons will work for Arizona, if ,and only if, he meshes with their squad. There's a risk involved here but Sean Miller knows the kid well, recruited him to Xavier and should be able to make the pieces fit.
is nino jackson going to prep or jc?
Dave Telep (3:15 PM)
Matt, we simply can't find Nino Jackson. This story has not had a lot of positives the last 12 months. Don't see him being able to do anything but junior college at this point.
Is anyone from the SF Bay Area actually going to stay local in the '13 class?
Dave Telep (3:16 PM)
Calen, if I had to make one prediction about a Bay Area kid staying local in 2013 I'd go with Cal and Jabari Bird at this moment.
Leon (East Meadow, NY)
Why isn't St. John's class rated higher? I think Jakarr Sampson will easily replace Harkless. Also any chance of them adding another big like Michael Chandler or Jordan Dickerson
Dave Telep (3:17 PM)
St. John's class is appropriately ranked IMO. Sampson is a good player but not sure he can carry the load the way Harkless did. Harkless had a bigger offensive game. Chandler and Dickerson aren't impact guys. In the case of Chandler, he's bounced around too much to be able to count on him until he proves himself as a player and shows some stability.
Michael V. (Toronto, Ontario, Canada)
Who do you feel has more NBA potential between Jabari Parker and Andrew Wiggins? Is Nerlens Noel ranked #1 due to his potential next season as opposed to Shabazz Muhammad, or at the NBA level?
Dave Telep (3:19 PM)
This is a question that we're discussing at AAU events on the regular. As it stands, at this moment, Wiggins would be the top overall prospect in HS basketball and most interesting from an NBA standpoint. Having said that, I think Jabari's been banged up this spring. He's not done yet. Plus, Parker is a winning machine with his HS team and USA Basketball. To answer your question, Wiggins has gone out and assumed the role of top prospect. He earned it with his play and believe me, the ability to maximize his potential is there. However, do not fall into the trap that has Parker on the descent. He's got a rally in him and I think it's coming up once he gets healthier.
Master of the touchscreen, What are your thoughts on the Missouri Tigers 2012 recruiting class? Negus Webster Chan, Stefan Jankovic, Domonique Bull, Ryan Rosburg. I assume these guys will be buried on the bench behind all the transfers.. but how do you see them playing out in the future?
Dave Telep (3:21 PM)
I appreciate the respect however it's "Czar of the Touchscreen." Attention to detail, my man. As for Missouri, they do have a plethora of good looking transfer options mixed in with a variety of unproven HS signees. Haith loves guards. Negus Webster Chan struggled last summer I'm thinking his style of play allows for a rebound and fits well with the Tigers.
When will Christopher Obekpa commit? Is PC still in the mix? Ed Cooley's squad is looking good, but could certainly use some help in the front court.
Dave Telep (3:23 PM)
No one pursued Obekpa as vigorously as Cincinnati's Mick Cronin. He chased that kid around all spring even when, as a graduating senior, he was playing in 17-and-under events. To your point, PC needs a center. Obekpa would be the best on the board. Do they get him? I have no clue.
Rob (Cville, VA)
Have you heard anything recently about what DaJuan Coleman is working on this summer, and do you think he'll be able to contribute right away? Same question for Jerami Grant - is it reasonable to expect he can be as producted his freshman year as his brother at Notre Dame was last year?
Dave Telep (3:25 PM)
I haven't heard what Coleman is working on but I'm sure Syracuse's plan centers around one thing: condititoning. To get to where he wants to be as a player, it's the single most important element in his game. He's about to find out how many steps there are in each aisle at the Carrier Dome.
Evan (new York)
Do you believe that Jabari Parker is the best high school player in the country?
Dave Telep (3:27 PM)
Evan, I believe that Jabari Parker is the best "player." By that I mean most cerebral, gives you the best chance to win one game if needed. Having said that, the most naturally talented, augmented by a big dose of athleticism is Andrew Wiggins. he's played the best this spring and needs to be in the conversation. One game, I'll take Jabari but looking ahead to the future it would be hard to pass on Wiggins.
What's your honest take on the Kentucky IU fall out? As a kentucky fan I don't like it. Especially with the resurgance of IU. As nerve wrecking as last years game was there is potential for many more epic finishes.
Dave Telep (3:29 PM)
I think the UK-IU non-game is silly. It's a major disservice to the people who fill the stands and help pay for athletics at both schools. It should be a home and home because that's what's good for the game not the bottom line. Play the game on each other's turf, celebrate the wins, lament the losses and keep the tradition alive.
Who wins in a fight: a bear or a touchscreen?
Dave Telep (3:29 PM)
Bears aren't as tough as touchscreens. Fact.
If the CATS pick up Montrezl Harrell giving them 5 top 100 players do the take back #1 in the class?
Dave Telep (3:30 PM)
Brandon, why is everyone assuming UK gets Montrezl Harrell? Are we forgetting a former Hargrave head coach is on Louisville's staff? I'm just saying. Never assume.
Is Theo Pinson leaning toward Duke?
Dave Telep (3:33 PM)
I think Theo Pinson has always liked Duke. I don't think Duke has put the press on him to commit as of yet. If and when they do, they'll have a great shot.
Gregg Rosenberg (Chandler, AZ)
Name your top 5 players in HS regardless of class from 2013-15
Dave Telep (3:35 PM)
Gregg, I'm not ready to go 2015 yet. In no order, Wiggins, Parker, Randle, Okafor and Tyus Jones; off the top of my head. BTW, I really like Kasey Hill and can't wait to compare him -- in my mind -- with Andrew Harrison next weekend.
Wade (Seattle by way of Las Vegas)
Gentlemen, UNLV. 2nd year coach Dave Rice, making a splash with his new recrits Bennett, Reinhardt, Morant, Cook and transfers Birch, Dajean-Jones and a great nucleus of returners Marshall, Hawkins, Moser, Lopez, Thomas. Where's the ceiling at?
Dave Telep (3:38 PM)
Wade, great question. The ceiling or bar is high. Here's the deal. The pieces are there and now the hard part comes. All of these guys have to come in and take to coaching and mesh as a team. With so many guys, history tells us they won't all buy in. The trick is getting as many of them on the same page as possible. The ceiling is set by the players. The talent is there. Time to put away their agendas and play for the name on the front of the jersey and not the back.
Caleb Young (Charlotte, NC)
What 2013 has made the biggest impression on you this AAU spring?
Dave Telep (3:42 PM)
Caleb, I think Kasey Hill has made the biggest impression. Honestly, I wasn't sure if he could run while scoring as he's been accustomed to. Through the HS and AAU seasons, he's been sensational and he's blown me away.
How good can Steven Adams be at Pitt? Will he be a one and done or be a panther for two to three years?
Dave Telep (3:45 PM)
Nerlens Noel called Steven Adams the best big man he played against all season. Here's the deal. Adams is a talent and here comes the but. He's not familiar with how we roll over here in the US. He's going to need time. He's a bit of an introvert and at this moment isn't ready to be the No. 1 option and just carry a team. Talent wise, give him time, he'll get there. The good news is he has a great tour guide in fellow freshman PG James Robinson.
Dave Telep (There)
When I asked myself if UK would be #1 class with addition of Harrell my answer was?
Dave Telep (3:47 PM)
Yes, Dave. Yes. This was awkward.
Demon (W/S NC)
What's with this Kameron Williams Class of 2013 Shooting Guard? Can the kid real score at will? Is it true he's tearing up the NIKE EYBL League (leading scorer after 3 sessions ? Why have we not heard about him before the NIKE EYBL Sessions? Is it true at Hampton Session he scored 23 points after halftime and did not miss a single shot along with collecting 7 rebounds? What program does he fit?
Dave Telep (3:49 PM)
Kameron Williams. A favorite subject of mine. Physically he does not pass the test. Neither did Eric Maynor, the Currys, CJ McCollum or Juan Dixon. I like this kid as a player and value that he's been coached and wins. Now, if I were him this is what I'd do. I know he can play at the highest level. I don't know that physically he'll be ready to play at the highest level as a freshman and I don't know that's in his best interest. Would the aforementioned guys -- minus Dixon -- have turned into the confident players they were had they sat on the bench their first year at bigger schools? Legit question and in some cases, I feel the answer is no. For a guy like Kameron, playing is essential. He's not going to be comfortable watching someone else play after the four year career he's had. Therefore, no matter what he's rated or who is on him, I believe in the end the ultimate decision he makes regarding college choice will go very far in his development and career path.
Does Malcolm Hill have enough game/upside to reach McDonalds All-American level?
Dave Telep (3:51 PM)
Malcolm Hill is a good player. His McDonald's resume is light, very light at this moment. See me after the summer.
I heard Jahlil Okafor is now near 7 feet? so he went from a potential Sullinger type to possibly a great center good to hear the game needs more great big men
Dave Telep (3:53 PM)
Jahlil Okafor is hard to miss at 6-10, 260. He's not 7-feet tall. I love him. He does sample from Sullinger in many ways as a basketball player. He's an inside guy, blocks what comes to him and has great hands. Now he has to evolve into the winning machine that Sullinger was/is to complete the package.
Adam Neuman (Wash Heights)
Maryland Coach Mark Turgeon has been following the Harrison Twins everywhere. Initially, I thought this was a pipe dream. I mean, the top prospects usually are UK bound. With that said, do you think Maryland stands a chance here?
Dave Telep (3:56 PM)
Maryland is in good hands with Mark Turgeon. We told you that the day he was hired. Regarding the Harrison Twins, I use my new fangled Kentucky theory that says until further notice they lead on guys they want and they want the Twins. The MD angle stemmed from Turg's days in College Station and his ties to Texas. This isn't a huge deal, but on some level it'll come into play and that's the fact they play for an Under Armour AAU team and Protecting the House would mean a lot to MD, a UA program. In the end, they make a basketball decison and like I said, UK is in there.
Is it me or does Tyus Jones have a lot of Chris Paul in him?
Dave Telep (3:58 PM)
Another favorite subject of mine: Chris Paul. Yes, I see some CP3 in Tyus Jones' game. They both played for HS teams that were never built to win state titles. They both act like coaches. CP talked more, was faster with the ball. Tyus has a great head on his shoulders and the comparison stems from their ability to control the flow and pace of a game. Jones is more advanced than CP was from the perimeter, CP was better taking it off the glass, going to coast to coast and finishing. Tyus isn't CP but he's watched him enough and samples enough of him that there's merit in the comparison. I bet Tyus enjoys spending time with him at CP's camp next month.
As a Georgetown fan, I am very excited about the potential of Porter and Whittington (from what I saw this year). As far as Trawick, Hopkins, and Smith-Rivera, how do you rate them (top to bottom) as far as upside potential is concerned?
Dave Telep (3:59 PM)
I'll rate them in terms of the impact I think they'll have on the Hoyas team: 1) Trawick (I'm still a believer) 2) DSR 3) Hopkins.
Dave Telep (4:00 PM)
Folks, we had a Recruiting Summit in Bristol this week. The big bosses are happy, the intermediate bosses are happy and we hope you, the consumers and readers are happy. Until next time, thanks for stopping by!