While Brewster Academy guard Donovan Mitchell entered the summer with high-major offers, it can be said that he was being overlooked in some circles. Mitchell changed that by putting together an outstanding summer, making him the biggest riser of the season with regards to recruiting boards.
Thursday night Mitchell tweeted that he has verbally committed to attend Louisville, adding to a 2015 recruiting haul that ranks as one of the nation’s best to date.
Mitchell joins wing Deng Adel and power forward Raymond Spalding as players who have verbally committed to play for Rick Pitino, and his skill set fits well with the Cardinals’ style of play. Mitchell’s a high-level scorer but he isn’t selfish offensively, as he’s a solid distributor of the basketball as well. And as a solid defender, he’ll fit in well with Louisville’s pressure defense.
Louisville loses two guards at the end of the 2014-15 season, with Chris Jones and Wayne Blackshear both entering the campaign as seniors. Among the perimeter players who will have eligibility remaining when this trio arrives on campus are Terry Rozier, Anton Gill and Quentin Snider.
Among the other programs considered by Mitchell were Boston College, Florida State, Providence and Villanova. Mitchell, who committed to Louisville while on his official visit, took an unofficial to Villanova on Monday.
Illinois suffered another blow in what has already turned out to be a brutal season.
Mike Thorne is expected to miss the rest of the season after tearing his meniscus. He reportedly underwent surgery on Monday to repair the injury.
Thorne, a transfer from Charlotte, was starting at center for the Illini and doing a good job of it as well. He was averaging 13.4 points and 8.4 boards, although Illinois has started off the season 3-4.
The reason for that slow start has mainly been those injuries. Tracy Abrams is already out for the season after tearing his achilles, and the Illini training room looked like a M.A.S.H. unit. Kendrick Nunn just returned two games ago from surgery to repair a torn thumb ligament. LeRon Black is still getting back to speed after offseason knee surgery. Jaylon Tate is back after dislocating a finger. Jalen Coleman-Lands was slowed by a stress fracture.
John Groce entered this season on the hot seat, and dealing with all of these injuries certainly isn’t helping his cause.
We talk about a lot of stuff of the podcast today, mainly because a lot of stuff happened since we last spoke with you all.
For starters, we need to discuss the ‘realness’ of Syracuse and Xavier. Are they both truly top 15 teams, or do they just have top 15 resumes? We also dive into Chris Mack’s epic troll-job of Dayton at the Advocare Invitational final.
Other topics we touched on: Whether or not Scott is ever going to apologize to Wayne Selden, Wichita State’s tournament hopes, Texas A&M and whether we’d take Ben Simmons, Kris Dunn or Denzel Valentine today.
As always, you can subscribe to the podcast in iTunes right here. It’s the quickest way to get access on your cell phone or tablet.