As the Oregon men’s basketball team continues its impressive season, beating two undefeated Pac-12 teams, the Ducks 2017 recruiting class is starting to take shape. So far, it looks promising.
The biggest news has been the signing of Troy Brown Jr., a 5-star small forward recruit from Centennial High School in Las Vegas, NV. Brown is the 17th-ranked player in the country, according to ESPN.com. Listed at 6’7″, 215 lbs., he has a similar body type and playing style to Dylan Brooks. Head Coach Dana Altman scored big time by landing Brown: he is the highest rated recruit Altman has signed in his seven years, according to Duck Territory. Watch him announce his decision to go to Oregon, while staying true to his Las Vegas roots. He chose Oregon over Oregon State, Georgetown and ever-present basketball powerhouse Kansas.
What makes Brown a very special player is his ability to score in varying ways and guard different positions. He can handle the ball in a half-court set or post up defenders, and has a smooth jump shot. As an elite recruit, Brown’s decision will have reverberations around the country. Now, other big time recruits will consider Oregon a serious possibility. Not that they didn’t already, but Oregon has never had a recruit who generated this much excitement. The addition of Tyler Dorsey was a major one, but landing Brown tops even that.
Brown’s abilities make him a probable one-and-done collegiate player, a likely first-round NBA draft pick in 2018. His impact next season will be crucial, as Brooks and Dorsey could leave early for the NBA, and center Chris Boucher and point guard Dylan Ennis will no longer be eligible to play. Jerry Meyer, the director of 247Sports‘ Basketball Scouting, said Brown is “capable of playing all three perimeter positions and possibly even as a four man in a small ball line up. Brown has no real weakness to his game.”
Take a look at Brown’s junior year highlight reel, and prepare to be amazed.
Because Brown will take up minutes and be a primary force on the court, some big time recruits have looked elsewhere to make a larger impact. Daejon Davis, a 4-star guard from Seattle, WA, was high on the Ducks’ list of potential recruits, but chose to sign with University of Washington, where his contribution will have more of an impact.
Fortunately, Davis’s reasoning is not shared by another top-tier recruit. Altman is looking to get 5-star power forward Brandon McCoy of Cathedral Catholic High School in San Diego, CA. At 6’11” 200 lbs, McCoy is the No. 12 power forward in the nation. His other top offers are Arizona, Michigan State, UNLV, and San Diego State.
McCoy has stated that he wants to attend a school that not only advances his basketball skills, but also his humanity. “Somewhere I know that I’m going to get better as a person and as a player, ” McCoy told 247sports. McCoy’s highlights are already impressive, so having access to elite collegiate coaching will do wonders for him.
In an interview with Rivals.com, McCoy discussed his official visits to his top-choice schools. McCoy was born in Chicago, so Michigan State head coach Tom Izzo could have a strong pull towards him. Of Oregon, McCoy said, “I met the players, and they’re really good people. I fit in with them.” McCoy’s brother also went to Oregon. The good character of the Oregon players might be exactly what McCoy is looking for, quality players and quality people.
In looking for a suitable replacement for Boucher, Oregon can’t do much better than McCoy. As a junior, McCoy was averaging 21.2 points, 10.8 rebounds and 3.6 blocks per game, according to The Oregonian.
The Ducks also have hard commits from two 4-star recruits: point guard Victor Bailey, from Austin, TX, and Abu Kigab, a small forward from Napa, CA. More analysis on them will be coming soon.
McCoy was able to witness the packed and thrilling atmosphere of Matthew Knight Arena on Nov. 11th vs Army. If the signing of Brown can help sway McCoy to Oregon, then the Ducks will have easily landed one of the best recruiting classes in the country.
Eugene, OR (From Half Moon Bay, CA)
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Top Photo by Jon Lopez for Nike