The July evaluation period is important for any Division-I coach in college basketball, but it’s especially crucial this year for Chris Mack, who is hoping to load up on high-level class of 2019 recruits to begin the process of getting Louisville back in the national title hunt in the near future.
The most action-packed weekend of the summer just took place with the Peach Jam, Peach Invitational, Adidas Gauntlet and Under Armour Challenge all going down, so naturally we’ve got some updates.
This is not an extensive list of the 2019 prospects that Mack and company are recruiting, it’s just a collection of recent updates on some of the names you need to know now that there is Louisville basketball recruiting news again.
Watts could be having an awful summer and he would still be my must-have recruit for 2019 because of his name alone. The fact that he is having anything but an awful summer only adds to my pining.
In seven games at the Peach Invitational, Watts scored 184 points. Included in that total is a 43-point performance in the tournament’s quarterfinal round. Louisville assistants Luke Murray and Dino Gaudio were both in Augusta to watch his final game on Sunday.
On Sunday, Watts trimmed his list of schools to eight: Louisville, Michigan State, Michigan, Connecticut, Xavier, Florida State, Oregon and Missouri. The 4-star combo guard later deleted the tweet where he made the announcement, but the safe assumption at the moment is that U of L and FSU are the two schools at the front of the pack for Watts.
Plus, we’ve got the Terry Rozier advantage.
It’s not often anymore that the state of Kentucky has three players from the same class ranked among the nation’s top 100. It appears that will be the case in 2019.
David Johnson (Trinity) is a former U of L commit who many believe could be brought back into the fold by Chris Mack. Mack also has a good relationship with University Heights standout KyKy Tandy (who was reportedly sensational at The Under Armour Challenge) after recruiting him heavily while he was at Xavier.
The third member of that trio is Pendleton County star Dontaie Allen, who was among the biggest breakout stars of the weekend. His monster week at the Under Armour Challenge — he led all scorers are the event at 26.4 ppg while shooting 54.5 percent from the floor — helped him pick up a bevy of high-profile scholarship offers, including one from the University of Louisville.
“It feels good because growing up I watched both (Louisville and Kentucky),” Allen said. “It’s very humbling and I am very honored. It feels good for me.”
A top 50 prospect from the 2019 class, Timme’s big week at the Peach Jam led to a number of offers, including one from Louisville. A native of Michigan who has lived in Texas for the past several years, Timme is the star of an AAU team coached by Jermaine O’Neal. He also has offers from Arizona, Virginia, Gonzaga and 23 other schools.
A top 20 player in the 2019 class, Whitney had Mack, Gaudio and Murray all watching him at the same time when he took the court for the Mac Irvin Fire at the Peach Jam. One of the best players in the EYBL this summer, Whitney stated on Twitter that he plans on announcing his final list of eight schools at some point this week. Most believe Illinois is his current favorite, with Louisville, Georgetown and Syracuse not far behind.
Hall led his his MOKAN Elite squad to the Peach Jam semifinals with Louisville staff members following his progress along the way. The top 50 small forward currently has 23 high-profile scholarship offers.
Withers is a four-star wing from North Carolina who is close with current U of L commit Josh Nickelberry. He took an unofficial visit to Louisville at the beginning of last month, and he had Chris Mack watching him play on Friday.
Kid can get up.
Two years ago, a current Division-I head coach told me that Hurt would be “the best white college basketball player since Christian Laettner.” While we can unpack that statement in a dozen different ways, the fact of the matter is Hurt is pretty awesome at basketball, and Chris Mack would love to see him suit up for the Cardinals.
Hurt has ties to the area — his father grew up in Murray and his uncle lives in Louisville — but it appears at the moment as though most have Kansas as the early favorite in the 5-star’s recruitment. He also has offers from Duke, North Carolina, Kentucky and just about any other school you can imagine.
In the Adidas Gauntlet finale, Hurt scored 29 points on 10 of 14 shooting to go with six rebounds and six assists. He also held class of 2020 5-star big man Isaiah Todd to 2-of-14 from the field.
The 4-star combo guard is one of Mack’s top targets at the moment. He took an unofficial visit to U of L last month and spoke recently about wanting to “speed up” his recruiting process. Ramsey plays on the same travel team as Drew Timme, who as mentioned above, picked up an offer from Louisville over the weekend.
Ramsey averaged 15.6 points, 2.6 rebounds, 2.4 steals and 1.8 assists over five games for Drive Nation of the EYBL.
The super athletic 6’7 forward is a travel teammate of Josh Nickelberry’s and told the CJ’s Jeff Greer over the weekend that he plans on narrowing his list of schools soon and that he will “most likely” take an official visit to U of L. Williams seems to have a good relationship with Mack, who was recruiting him when he was at Xavier.