With point guard Kasey Hill and power forward Chris Walker already verbally committed to Florida, Billy Donovan’s program is seen by many to be the early leader in the 2013 recruiting rankings.
And with Orlando forward Schuyler Rimmer committing to the school on Sunday, the Gators are now up to three verbal commitments in the 2013 class.
Rimmer, a 6-9, 233-pound forward who led his Boone High team to a title at Florida’s team camp in June, averaged 16.4 points and 13.1 rebounds per game last season per the Orlando Sentinel.
With Erik Murphy being a senior this season and Patric Young a junior, adding another body to the front court is a positive for Florida even with transfers Dorian Finney-Smith (Virginia Tech) and Damontre Harris (South Carolina) being eligible next season.
Rimmer’s academic credentials (4.2 GPA) made him a target of high-major programs such as Stanford and Vanderbilt, but he ultimately decided to remain in-state after taking an unofficial visit to Florida on Wednesday.
“Stanford and Vanderbilt are some of the top universities in the country. But I know that a degree from Florida is highly regarded,” Rimmer said. “They’re still a really good academic school as well, one of the best public schools in the nation.”
Rimmer’s commitment comes one day after another power forward considering Florida, Mike Young, verbally committed to Pittsburgh.
Raphielle is also the assistant editor at CollegeHoops.net and can be followed on Twitter at @raphiellej.
CHAPEL HILL, N.C. — He’s back.
For the first time this season — and for the first time in more than a year that he hasn’t been hampered with some kind of foot or ankle injury — Marcus Paige donned a North Carolina jersey, and it didn’t take him long to find the form that made him the NBCSports.com Preseason National Player of the Year.
On the first Tar Heel possession, Paige came off of a ball-screen, drove the lane and found Kennedy Meeks at the rim for a layup. Not 30 seconds later, he came off of a down screen and buried a three. Paige would finish with 20 points and five assists as No. 9 North Carolina put together a fairly resounding win over No. 2 Maryland in the Dean Dome on Tuesday night, winning 89-81.
Paige finished 7-for-12 from the floor and 4-for-5 from beyond the arc, hitting a number of threes in the second half that helped hold off a Maryland push sparked by their own all-american point guard, Melo Trimble.
Trimble was erratic early on, committing three turnovers in the first six minutes and eight on the night, but it was his play at the end of the first half and early second half that kept North Carolina from blowing their doors. At one point, Maryland was down 32-19 and in danger of getting run out of Tobacco Road.
In total, Trimble finished with 23 points and 12 assists, hitting four big threes during that stretch. He either scored or assisted on 11 of Maryland’s first 12 second half field goals.
As good as Paige was, the bigger story may actually be Joel Berry II. He took two dumb threes in the first half — which played a role in Maryland being able to make this a game — and he missed a few free throws late, but overall he was terrific. He finished with 14 points and five assists, making 3-of-5 threes and turning the ball over just twice. He’s clearly beat Nate Britt out at the point guard spot, and his ability to take pressure off of Paige as a secondary ball-handler and playmaker is huge.
(More to come from Chapel Hill…)
North Carolina is hosting No. 2 Maryland in a heated contest in the ACC/Big Ten Challenge. Terps sophomore guard Melo Trimble is playing very well and part of his performance was dropping North Carolina’s Nate Britt with a crossover in the second half.
(H/T: The Cauldron)