Karl Towns

Top recruit Karl Towns commits to Kentucky, reclassifies to 2014


New Jersey native Karl Towns, one of the brightest young talents in the country, has committed to Kentucky and reclassified to the Class of 2014, he announced Tuesday.

Towns’ commitment to Kentucky comes as little surprise, as he had developed a strong relationship with coach John Calipari and even played for Calipari this past summer on the Dominican Republic’s National Olympic Team in London.

“Kentucky is such a great school,” Towns told MSG Varsity after his decision. “I felt like Kentucky was just the right school at the end of the day.”

At 6-11, 235 pounds, Towns can extend out to the perimeter on the offensive end and pull defenses away from the basket. He also considered Duke and Florida heavily, along with Michigan State, North Carolina, Seton Hall, and Rutgers.

He attends St. Joseph High School (N.J.), the same school that Philadelphia 76ers center Andrew Bynum attended for much of his prep career. Because of their size and position similarities, as well as ties to the state of New Jersey, the two have often been mentioned together.

Towns becomes the first commit for Calipari in the Class of 2014, after what is expected to be a monstrous 2013 class for Kentucky.

In 2013, Calipari has already secured signatures from three Top-10 players (Andrew and Aaron Harrison, James Young), plus Top-30 prospect Marcus Lee and forward Derek Willis.

With the reclassification of Andrew Wiggins, perhaps the best prospect in the country and a Kentucky target, and the possibility of nabbing Julius Randle, another Top-5 player, the Wildcats’ 2013 recruiting class could end up being historically talented.

Daniel Martin is a writer and editor at JohnnyJungle.com, covering St. John’s. You can find him on Twitter:@DanielJMartin_

PHOTO: Ohio State’s new LeBron James shoe display

during the College Football Playoff National Championship Game at AT&T Stadium on January 12, 2015 in Arlington, Texas.
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Ohio State has capitalized on its close relationship with NBA superstar LeBron James over the years and now has a new shoe display that should come in handy during recruiting.

The Buckeyes put out a tweet late this week with the display, calling themselves “THE LeBron school.” While this is something small, recruits like that the Buckeyes are tied into the best player in the world and it’s cool to them that Ohio State gets some exclusive gear.

Rutgers hoping new duo can bring a spark

of the Ohio State Buckeyes against the Rutgers Scarlet Knights during their Big Ten conference game at Rutgers Athletic Center on February 8, 2015 in Piscataway, New Jersey.
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Rutgers has struggled to achieve success on the floor the last few years and head coach Eddie Jordan is hoping that some talented newcomers can help start a turnaround. With the start of practice, local media saw some of the Scarlet Knights’ early practice and Jerry Carino of the Asbury Park Press noted that the duo of freshman point guard Corey Sanders and junior college forward Deshawn Freeman were getting a lot of burn together.

With both incoming players being four-star prospects, it’s hardly a surprise that Jordan would see what the two were capable of. According to Carino, it meant a lot of Sanders driving and forcing the defense to collapse before finding Freeman.

“It seems like coach always has us on the same team,” Freeman said to Carino. “Ever since we’ve gotten here, he’s trying to get us to play together.”

Carino also notes that since Rutgers is deeper, longer and more athletic in general this season, the team could do more with a pressing defense to help create turnovers.

While Rutgers still faces an uphill climb in the Big Ten, they at least have some exciting pieces that will be in place for a few seasons.