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October 8, 2011

Ask the experts: What coaches want

MORE EXPERTS: Sept. 18 | Sept. 10 | Sept. 2 | Aug. 26

Rivals.com basketball recruiting analysts Jerry Meyer and Eric Bossi weigh in on four current topics.

What player are you most interested in seeing his progress through his high school season?

Bossi: Probably the No. 1 guy that I'm curious to follow is Rysheed Jordan. We've already got the physical, 6-foot-4 point guard from Philadelphia (Pa.) Vaux Roberts ranked No. 25 nationally in the class of 2013 so it's clear we think highly of him. However, I've been hearing from some college coaches and people that have seen him recently that the ranking could possibly even be a little on the low side for him. He certainly caught our attention last summer with his physical style of point guard play. Another guy that I'd like to see is one that I haven't really seen yet - outside of some video. That's 6-foot-3 point guard Amedeo Della Velle of Henderson (Nev.) Findlay Prep. An import from Italy, Della Valle has been a hot name as of late and could be one of the top remaining available point guards.

Meyer: Steven Adams has to be the most intriguing prospect in the 2012 class. The New Zealand big man has only played against American competition at the adidas Nations event, and this past year he was dominant. The plan is for Adams to play prep school ball during the second semester. The expectation is that he will dominate in that situation as he did at adidas Nations. It is looking like Pittsburgh has snagged the ultimate steal out of the 2012 class, and we should find out if that is true this winter. .

What's the biggest push right now from coaches in terms of a recruiting rule they'd like to see changed?

Bossi: It has to be opening up some weekends during the spring for them to be able to go out and evaluate kids at grassroots events. I also think they'd like to see some changes to the July recruiting period where there are currently two 10-day periods. Some popular changes I've heard being thrown around are opening up at least two weekends in April for coaches to go evaluate and changing July to a series of three four-day weekends where coaches can watch players.

Meyer: The opening of a couple weekends in April for coaches to evaluate prospects is a major priority for coaches. Going into July basically blind is detrimental to the whole recruiting process. It hurts the coaches and the prospects, and ironically empowers the middlemen that the NCAA is supposedly trying to depower.

Do you think the trend of outlandish uniforms, in an effort to catch the eyes of top recruits, will overtake college hoops as it has started to do in college football?

Bossi: I hope not, but I'm sure that it will to some extent. We're getting to a point, though, where what more can a uniform really do for somebody?

Meyer: Outlandish uniforms in college basketball will definitely get trendier and trendier. College basketball is a great marketing platform for the shoe companies and the uniforms are a big part of their branding effort. Whatever it takes to catch people's eyes.

While we're on that topic, are there any uniforms out there that are wildly popular with recruits as Oregon's have been in football?

Bossi: Not really that I can think of. Honestly, it's not something that I've ever thought of to ask a kid and I can't recall a kid seriously bringing up uniforms as something that made him take notice of a school.

Meyer: I've never heard a basketball recruit mention uniforms. They might care about them but are probably, and hopefully, too embarrassed to publicly make it known that uniforms have something to do with their school choice.



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