College coaches have been scouring the country to evaluate their top targets, pursue top talents, and try to find diamonds in the rough. The AAU bonanza will wrap up for most players at the end of the month, and as these players prepare for their upcoming High School seasons, they will also have to think about their college decision, and start to narrow their lists. Here is how the Huskies stand with some of the recruits they are targeting for the class of 2016 and 2017.
Class of 2016:
JaQuori McLaughlin: McLaughlin seems to be garnering quite a bit of Pac-12 interest this summer, as former Huskies commit and Peninsula High school standout has received scholarship offers from California and Utah, according to Scout.com's Josh Gershon. McLaughlin did list the Huskies as one of the teams that are recruiting him the hardest, along with Stanford, Wisconsin, Arizona, and Gonzaga. The prospective senior says he plans on taking only two official visits, to Arizona and Gonzaga, as of now. Mclaughlin is intrigued with Gonzaga because - among other reasons- of the fact that they routinely make the NCAA tournament, and because of the fact that he could learn from ex-Huskies point guard Nigel Williams-Goss, per Gershon's report. While it is nice to hear that the Huskies are still pushing hard for McLaughlin, and that McLaughlin is still interested, I'm not holding my breath. Players rarely re-commit after de-committing, and it sounds like he is seriously intrigued by Arizona and Wisconsin. That being said, he has already backed out of two verbal commitments - he was once an Oregon State commit - so I think it is wise to assume his decision is not set in stone until he signs, no matter where he ends up.
DeJon Jarreau: Husky fans were disappointed Saturday night when DeJon Jarreau - the younger cousin of former Huskies Forward Jernard Jarreau - announced his top 11 and the Dawgs were not on the list. To add insult to injury, Jarreau tweeted on Friday night that he would be announcing his top 10, only to release a top 11 list and still leave the Huskies off. In fairness, it does seem that Jarreau is interested in staying close to home, as USC was the only team west of the Mississippi to make his Top 11.
ESPN 100 prospect DeJon Jarreau is down to 11 schools: pic.twitter.com/hF7mFsnuso— Jeff Borzello (@jeffborzello) July 19, 2015
Markelle Fultz: As Kyle Tucker of the Courier Journal points out, Futlz's rise is remarkable. Two years ago, Fultz was playing on DeMatha's Junior Varsity team. Now he is entering his senior season ranked as the fourth best shooting guard in the country and one of the most highly coveted recruits in the country. The Huskies were one of the first power five schools to recruit Fultz, and will hopefully make the cut when he trims his list to 10 later this week. The idea of Fultz's ever donning the Purple and Gold is likely a pipe dream at this point as he recently pulled in offers from North Carolina and Kentucky. Fultz seems particularly enamored with The Wildcats from Lexington, as he told the Sporting News that Kentucky was his dream school in February (though he has recently walked that statement back). Many national pundits still believe that Kentucky is the front runner at this point despite his clarification, as five of the seven national contributors at 24/7 sports currently predict that Fultz will choose Kentucky. As I said, hopefully the Huskies make Fultz's top ten, and crack his top five, and if Romar is able to pry Fultz from some of the top schools in the country and land the DeMatha star, it would be nothing short of an absolute coup d'etat.
Mamadi Diakite: Diakite is an explosive athlete who plays well above the rim. Last spring Diakite made the trip up from Virginia to visit Montlake. However it has long been assumed that Virginia is in lead, and it has also been rumored that the Huskies have cooled on Diakite, possibly because they signed three freshman big men last season, and already have 7'0" Sam Timmins signed for the class of 2016. Still, it sounds like the Huskies are amongst the three schools that the 6'8" 190 pound forward is considering, along with the aforementioned Virginia and USC. It is important to note that Diakite told Chris Horne of the Sabre that he has not ruled out visiting some of the other schools that are recruiting him. He announced in June at the NBPA Top 100 Camp that he would be making his decision before summer's end, so Huskies fans should know whether or not Diakite will be donning the purple and gold around the same time the football team hosts Sacramento State in the home opener.
Class of 2017:
Corey Kispert: While Kispert may not be the most highly rated recruit in the country - I have yet to find a recruiting website that has given him any stars - he is an impressive player. I was able to catch one of Kispert's game a few months back, and he the first thing that struck me was how built he was. Kispert is incredibly developed for his age and looks physically ready to contribute at the college level tomorrow. The most impressive part of Kispert's game is his ability to shoot the ball: he can knock down high school threes with ease, and should be able to transition to the deeper college line with no problem. At 6'6" he has good height and length to play the wing position, and he told Josh Gershon of Socut.com that he loves to play defense. He currently holds offers from Washington, Washington State and Gonzaga. While Virginia and Stanford both have interest in the wing from Kings High School, it seems like this may end up being a recruiting battle between the state's three most prominent basketball schools.
Daejon Davis: Davis is an immensely talented shooting guard from Lakeside High School, and is widely considered by many national pundits as one of the top guards on the West Coast for his class, if not the entire country. It seems like Davis's offer sheet is lagging behind his praise, as he currently only holds offers from Washington, Washington State, and California. I, like many, expect that it is only a matter of time until he starts to rack up the offers. The Huskies have been rumored to be far ahead in the race for his services, but it is early. The real test for the Huskies will come when teams like Arizona, UCLA, or blue bloods like Kansas take serious interest in Davis.
Jaylen Nowell: Like Davis, Nowell is one of the top guards in the class of 2017 who plays his High School basketball in Seattle (Nowell won a state title with Garfield last season). Also like Davis, Nowell currently holds an offer from Washington, and the Huskies are considered the front runner to land him. Nowell also holds offers from Oregon and Seattle University, and it would be very surprising if he didn't hold offers from at least half of the Pac-12, if not more by the end of his senior season. While it is certainly exciting that the Huskies are considered front runners Nowell and Davis, Huskies fans should approach with caution; it is relatively early in each players' recruiting process, and a lot will certainly change by the time each player actually signs the dotted line two years from now.