Georgia and Georgia Tech are in the running for about half of the top basketball recruits in the state, but it’s no slam dunk that either will sign a top in-state prospect.
Here is a look at 10 of the most heavily recruited high school seniors in the state. Only two has made college commitments, both to out-of-state schools.
Georgia has five of the Top 100 prospects in the nation, according to 247Sports. They are Jakeenan Gant, Ahmed Hill, Tadric Jackson, Devin Mitchell and Trayvon Reed.
F Phil Cofer, Whitewater – A 6-foot-8 forward, Cofer averaged 16.7 points and 8.9 rebounds. That was on an 18-12 team that averaged only 46 points. Cofer is committed to Tennessee.
C Jabari Craig, Tucker – Craig is a 6-foot-10 center with offers from Georgia, Georgia Tech, Auburn, Purdue, Clemson, Maryland and others. It is reported that Purdue leads. Expect him to improve on his junior numbers – 8.5 points, 6.9 rebounds, 3.1 blocks – as Tucker seeks to replace all-state forward Davonte Fitzgerald, who signed with Texas A&M.
F Jakeenan Gant, Effingham County – The AAAAA player of the year last season, when he led Effingham to the semifinals, Gant averaged 18.5 points, 9.2 rebounds and 4 blocks. He scored 30 points in the semifinal loss to Gainesville. He’s a 6-8 forward who made 37 percent of his 3-pointers. He has offers from Georgia, Georgia Tech, Florida State, Indiana, N.C. State and others. Justin Young of HoopSeen.com predicts he’ll sign with FSU.
G Ahmed Hill, Aquinas – Hill was the Class A player of the year. A 6-foot-5 guard, he averaged nearly 30 points per game and 12.6 rebounds. He has offers from Georgia, Georgia Tech, UConn, Indiana, Kansas and others. Many see him headed out of state, possibly to Kansas.
G Tadric Jackson, Tit County – Jackson, a 6-foot-2 guard, averaged 20 points, 5 rebounds and 3 assists for a team that lost in the AAAAAA quarterfinals but was ranked No. 1 most of the season. That team had all-class player of the year Brannen Greene, who signed with Kansas. Jackson has offers from Georgia, Georgia Tech, Alabama, Florida State, Ohio State, Florida and others.
G Devin Mitchell, Collins Hill – Mitchell was Gwinnett County’s second-leading scorer at 20.2 points per game on an 18-11 team. He also averaged 5.1 rebounds and 3.3 assists. He has offers from Georgia, Alabama, Cincinnati, Virginia and others.
G Keith Pinckney, Miller Grove – Pinckney is the top returning player for the AAAAA champion Wolverines. He averaged 16 points, five rebounds and five assists. Pinckney and rising sophomore Alterique Gilbert should provide one of the best guard combos in the state, especially from a ball-handling standpoint. Pinckney has at least seven offers, including those from Miami and Harvard.
C Trayvon Reed, South Gwinnett – A 7-footer, Reed averged 10.9 points, 9.5 rebounds and 4.9 blocked shots per game last season. He has been erratic as a high school player. His top choices are Auburn, Georgia and Maryland, according to 247Sports.
F Elijah Staley, Wheeler – Staley, a 6-foot-6 forward and football quarterback, averaged 18 points and 10 rebounds and was all-state last season. He has committed to Mississippi State, where he plans to play football and basketball. Note that Wheeler also features two of the Top 10 junior recruits in Georgia in Daniel Giddens and Jaylen Brown and could be the favorite to win Class AAAAAA in 2013-14.
F Isaiah Wilkins, Greater Atlanta Christian – A stepson of Dominique Wilkins, this 6-7 forward averaged 16.2 points, 11.1 rebounds and 4.9 blocked shots for a Class AA championship team last season. He was the AA player of the year. He has offers from Auburn, George Mason, Georgia State and Georgia Southern.
Others: F TeMarcus Blanton, Luella; G Nate Mason, Shiloh; C C.J. Turman, Morgan County; G Andre Chatfield, Norcross; F Eric Lockett, Whitefield Acacdemy.