Northwestern has a second four-star recruit in its 2018 class.
The Wildcats received a commitment from Miller Kopp, a 6-foot-6 forward, on Thursday, he announced via social media.
“I built a really strong relationship with (coach) Chris Collins and I fell in love with the campus,” Kopp told Scout. “I knew it would be a nice campus and have that stuff, but I think me and him are wired the same way. II think that his personality fits mine and I think we complement each other. I’m definitely excited to be able to go to a program on the rise and be able to make some history.”
Kopp picked the Wildcats over offers from Georgetown, Butler, Texas A&M and Vanderbilt. The Houston native is ranked in the top-100 of his class by most recruiting services.
He gives Collins and the Wildcats an exceedingly strong 2018 class, which already featured four-star guard Pete Nance of Ohio along with three-star recruits Jordan Lathon and Ryan Young. It represents a major leap forward for Northwestern. It would appear that the program’s first-ever NCAA tournament appearance last March has brought momentum to the recruiting trail.
For the second time in as many days, Chris Collins and his staff at Northwestern landed a prospect in the Class of 2018.
Pete Nance, a top-40 overall prospect according to Rivals, verbally committed to the Wildcats on Thursday evening during an official visit. The 6-foot-8 small forward is the son of former NBA All-Star Larry Nance, Sr. His brother, Larry Nance, Jr. starred at Wyoming and is currently a member of the Los Angeles Lakers.
On Wednesday, 2018 point guard Jordan Lathon pledged to Northwestern.
Northwestern won the services of Nance over Michigan and Ohio State. Nance was scheduled to take an official visit in Ann Arbor this weekend.
Chris Collins and Northwestern have reportedly agreed to a lengthy contract extension on Monday morning.
According to Teddy Greenstein of the Chicago Tribune, Collins, 43, and the university have come to terms on a deal that will run through the 2024-25 season.
The news shouldn’t come as a surprise. Collins, in his fourth year in Evanston, took Northwestern to the first NCAA Tournament in school history. The Wildcats defeated Vanderbilt in the first round and had eventual national finalist Gonzaga on the ropes in the second round before a controversial call swung all the momentum they had.
In four seasons, Collins has a 73-60 (30-42 Big Ten) record, with back-to-back 20-win seasons.
Northwestern football coach Pat Fitzgerald is also reportedly in line for an extension, according to the Tribune.
Northwestern won its first NCAA Tournament game in dramatic fashion on Thursday evening.
The No. 8 seed in the West Region nearly blew a sizable lead against No. 9 seed Vanderbilt. But a wild finish led to the Wildcats escaping with a 68-66 victory.
After rollercoaster two hours — on top of the seven decades Northwestern has waited for its One Shining Moment — it was time to celebrate.
Northwestern advances to face top-seeded Gonzaga in the second round on Saturday in Salt Lake City.
With an NCAA tournament berth potentially in the balance, Northwestern’s prayers were answered.
The Wildcats’ Nathan Taphorn threw the ball the length of the floor with 1.3 seconds left to Dererk Pardon, whose layup at the buzzer broke a tie with Michigan and gave Northwestern a 67-65 victory Wednesday.
Northwestern’s frontcourt is set to add reinforcements.
Dererk Pardon, who has missed the last eight games due to a hand injury, is expected to return to the court for the Wildcats on Wednesday, according to ESPN’s Jeff Goodman.
The 6-foot-8 center underwent surgery to his right (non-shooting) hand early last month. Northwestern went 7-1 in his absence, with the lone loss coming Friday against Michigan State. The Wildcats have Minnesota at home Thursday.
Pardon was averaging 6.9 points and 7 rebounds per game while shooting 57.6 percent from the floor for Northwestern. While the Wildcats were successful without Pardon, his return helps bolster a lineup that is currently enjoying a 12-3 start to the season in an attempt to secure the school’s first-ever NCAA tournament appearance.