Over the weekend, CatsIllustrated.com published an interview with Andrew Wiggins, the No. 1 player in the Class of 2014, in which Wiggins gives a top five: Kentucky, Florida State, North Carolina, Duke and Syracuse.
Adam Zagoria followed that up on Monday after he spoke with Wiggins’ high school coach Rob Fulford. Fulford told Zagoria that Kentucky and Florida State were probably the leaders. Both of Wiggins’ parents went to FSU — including his father, who played in the NBA — while Kentucky is, well, Kentucky.
The other three schools may have significantly less time chasing the guy that many believe is the best high school player in the country.
In that same story from Zagoria, the potential for Wiggins reclassifying to 2013 is raised:
Right now he’s 2014 but that could change to 2013, which would enable him to be eligible for the 2014 NBA Draft.
Wiggins told CatsPause.com that he was “not going to do it,” but left the door open that he could change his mind during the school year.
“If we could get him to college early which would then get him to the NBA earlier, as a coach and a mentor to him, then we have to tell him, ‘Hey, this is probably the direction for your development that you will probably want to go,’” Fulford said.
“But also if he’s not ready we’re not going to push him because he’s still young. He wants to experience high school. It’s not like coming back here for a year is not going to help him. He’s gotten bigger, stronger. He’s gotta develop.”
Wiggins is old enough (he’s currently 17) but he would need to take care of some extra coursework to make the move possible.
This move is far from unheard of. Andre Drummond was originally in the Class of 2012, but he reclassified in late August of 2011, spending a year a UConn before entering this June’s NBA Draft. Nerlens Noel, the top prospect in the Class of 2012, reclassified from the Class of 2013 and is getting ready for his freshman year at Kentucky.
One of the problems with our nation’s basketball culture is the rush; players want to make the jump to the next step without putting in the work required to have success at that level. But for guys like Drummond and Noel and Wiggins, waiting for the next level doesn’t always make complete sense.
If they are good enough to dominate at the collegiate level, why not challenge themselves to do it?