seen a number of players from the state of Florida put their signature on the National Letter of Intent. Forty-one to be exact. With that many players headed off to hoop at the next level, there's a lot to talk about.
Which class do you love in the Florida for the class of 2021?
How can you not love Florida State’s class? I mean, seriously. It’s one of the five best in the country for the class of 2021. Paced by Matthew Cleveland out of Atlanta, the Seminoles have another class that features a potential NBA Draft pick (or two) and size that can be developed.
That’s how FSU recruits lately.
Cleveland is a potential McDonald’s All-American who should thrive in the style of play that has seen wings like Patrick Williams, Devin Vassell, Terance Mann, Jonathan Isaac, Dwayne Bacon and Malik Beasley all make their way to the NBA.
Same goes for Jalen Wharley, a talented combo guard from Westtown (PA). He’s a future starter and all-conference level player.
John Butler and Naheem McLeod are the latest big men to join FSU. Since 2015, the Noles have inked Quincy Ballard, Balsa Koprivica, Ike Obiagu (transffered out) and Christ Koumadje.
Which Florida players will help their future teams right away?
Devin Carter, a South Florida kid now at the New Hampshire powerhouse Brewster Academy, is headed to South Carolina. He’s been committed to Frank Martin now for over a year and finally signed to join the Gamecocks next season. Carter is a major score for Martin and his program. With a year under his belt at a place like Brewster, Carter should come in and be battle-tested for the SEC school. Carter is a winner, first and foremost, and he’s wired to get buckets.
I feel so strongly about this that I ranked Carter No. 47 in the class of 2021 nationally. That’s higher than any national prognosticator anywhere. Guards shine for Martin and Carter has as good of a skill set as any guard he’s signed during his time in Columbia. I’d be very excited if I was a USC fan. Very excited.
Dallan Coleman to Georgia Tech. I mentioned his value in my state of Georgia burning questions article. I feel strongly about his value for the Yellow Jackets. He could be a 1,500-point scorer in college because of the skill set paired with opportunity.
Are there any sleeper signees in the state of Florida that you really like?
I like Trey Moss to South Florida.
I like Jalen Smith to SMU.
I like Jace Carter to UIC.
I like Javian McCollum to Siena.
I like Kanye Jones to Charleston.
I think all five of these guys picked programs where they can play right away and play important roles on teams that are surging upward. We see guys from Florida thrive on NCAA tournament teams and each of these programs are building rosters that could continue that trend.
Moss just got better every time I saw him play and South Florida does a great job of developing players like Moss. He can log minutes at both guard positions.
Smith is a hot-shooting guard who was lured away from regional schools for a shot to play in Texas and in the American Conference.
UIC is putting a really good class together with Luke Yelich now at the helm, Carter gives the Flames a big guard with big upside. Building a program requires talent that you can grow with. Carter fits that bill perfectly.
McCollum is a good ball-handler with good speed and a rising skill set. Siena isn’t afraid to look nationwide for players and found a good one in Fort Myers.
Jones was one of the most sought after mid-major prospects in the country. No surprise that Earl Grant and staff landed him. They always land the sought after mid-majors. Jones falls in line with the great guards they seem to always have.
Are there any anecdotes with this class that jump out to you on the first day of the early signing period?
Yep, lots of them. For one, don’t be surprised to see Michigan head coach Juwan Howard in Florida on the recruiting trail. Let’s rewind it back for a second. He was a pretty familiar face in Florida prep hoops before he took over the Michigan program as the head coach of his alma mater. The former Miami Heat player was in the gym to watch his sons Jace and Jett when they played at the University School and in travel hoops. He was a regular at major hoops events and you have seen him quite a bit at places like Montverde and IMG.
So, it doesn’t come as a big surprise that the anchors of his top-rated class hail from the Florida powerhouse programs. Caleb Houstan (Montverde) and Moussa Diabate (IMG) make for a dangerous 1-2 punch.
In the 2022 class, Michigan has already offered Jaden Bradley (IMG), Jett Howard (IMG), Justice Williams (Montverde), Jarace Walker (IMG), Gregg Glenn (Calvary Christian), Eric Dailey (IMG) and Jalen Duren (Montverde).
Florida is no stranger to college recruiters. Coaches from across the country converge on the Sunshine State looking for talent. However, only nine of the 41 players on our college bound list are staying in-state and all of these in-state signings are homegrown players. Nine players in this list go to IMG and Montverde.