Another first for WSU basketball
Posted by Jeff Nusser on April 26, 2008
It’s been nothing but a series of firsts for the WSU basketball program thanks to Dick and Tony Bennett.
Ready for another one?
Rivals.com recently released its final Top 150 list, and guess what? Two future Cougs are on it: Klay Thompson and Michael Harthun. That’s never happened before.
We keep talking about just how great this 2008 recruiting class is, and to be fair, it’s all just speculation at this point — ask any UW fan who has watched Lorenzo Romar rake in top 20 classes year after year, or ask any Coug fan what they think of that 2004 class these days. But it’s fun to talk about, nonetheless.
When the first portion of that class was announced, it was a widely held belief that Michael Harthun was the jewel, WSU’s first top 100 recruit since recruiting services such as Scout.com, Rivals.com and Scouts, Inc. started putting lists together. He’s currently ranked No. 96 by Scout.com, No. 100 by Scouts, Inc. and No. 118 on that Rivals.com list.
Harthun might well still turn out to be the best of this impressive class, but a huge senior season has propelled Thompson (above) right past him in nearly everyone’s eyes — a “late bloomer” in recruiting speak. Thompson now is ranked as high as No. 45 by Scouts, Inc. and No. 51 by Rivals.com. (He’s still unranked by Scout.com, but they have not updated their list since before the early signing period.)
Thompson led his team to the California Div. III title with an almost-mythical performance in the championship game: 37 points, including 7-of-11 from 3-point range and three blocked shots. For the season, he averaged 21 points, 4.3 rebounds and 3.1 assists. From this report, offensively he sounds like Kyle Weaver with a better outside shot:
Thompson has the skill and savvy to play all three perimeter positions at the next level. He has solid speed and quickness and he’s a very crafty ball handler. He has excellent court vision and could have easily had a couple of triple-doubles if teammates could have converted.
Don’t trust the “experts”? Take a look with your own eyes. This kid is silky smooth:
Now, before you go all crazy drooling on your keyboard, here are Rivals.com’s No. 51 recruits from the last few years:
- 2007: Justin Burrell, St. John’s
- 2006: Marreese Speights, Florida
- 2005: Bobby Frasor, North Carolina
- 2004: Dayshawn Wright, Syracuse
- 2003: Dwight Brewington, Providence
Of those five, chances are you only recognize two of them: Speights and Frasor. Speights had a good sophomore season for the Gators and is testing the draft waters, while Frasor was a nice reserve point guard for the Heels before going down with a knee injury. Both are good players.
But consider the other three. The jury is still out on Burrell, who had a decent freshman year for a terrible St. John’s team. Wright and Brewington? Wright flamed out of Syracuse thanks to poor academics, while Brewington played one season at Providence before transferring to Liberty, playing one season there, declaring early for the draft and going undrafted.
The moral of the story? All ostensibly have/had talent, but a lot can happen on the road to greatness. So keep it in perspective.
If you’re curious, the Cougars have had only one other Rivals.com Top 150 recruit: Derrick Low, No. 138 in 2004. That one turned out OK. There was another guy in that glass, some dude named Weaver who didn’t even sniff anyone’s top 150. I think he turned out all right, too.
6 Responses to “Another first for WSU basketball”
Sorry, the comment form is closed at this time.