SIGNING DAY: The Class of 2016’s best recruiting classes

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(The post has been contributed to by Corey Evans, Managing Editor of HoopSeen.com.)

Duke: Coach K hasn’t stopped bringing in the top talent to Durham and this class only solidifies the Blue Devils’ case as potential NCAA Champions for years to come. First off, Harry Giles and Jayson Tatum, two of the best prospects in all of high school ball, are headed to the ACC blueblood next year. Throw in versatile combo guard Frank Jackson and hard-playing and super improving forward Javin DeLaurier, and what you have is a four-person class that stands out amongst the elite throughout the land. (CE)

Michigan State: The class that Tom Izzo brought in at Michigan State this season could be the backbone to a potential national title team. Five-star wing Miles Bridges and five-star shooting guard Josh Langford are the headliners of the four-man class while in-state, four-star point guard Cassius Winston and bruising four-star big man Nick Ward are also tremendous pieces. With this class, the Spartans are making a major push to stay with the nation’s elite. (SP)

Kentucky: Another year, another top-five ranking for the Wildcats within the recruiting spectrum as UK welcomes in two of the more skilled big men in America with Sacha Killeya-Jones and Wenyen Gabriel. However, the SEC frontrunner isn’t done just yet as they are favorites for Malik Monk and De’Aaron Fox, the latter committing on Thursday. They are also involved for elite bigs Bam Adebayo, Marques Bolden, and Jarrett Allen where all signs point to Calipari and his staff finishing with another top-three recruiting class come the late signing period in April. (CE)

RELATED: HoopSeen.com’s National Signing Day coverage

UCLA: The future is looking bright at UCLA as this class has a lot to like about it. Five-star point guard Lonzo Ball has unbelievable court vision and scores the ball with deep range while four-star 6-foot-10 big man Ike Anigbogu has a lot of long-term upside on both ends of the floor. Kobe Paras, a 6-foot-5 shooting guard, has some positive attributes as an athlete and can also hit deep jumpers. The best part for the Bruins? They might not be done with this class yet. (SP)

UConn: Kevin Ollie and his staff traversed all throughout the nation and put together a class full of four, top-125 recruits from Georgia, New York, California, and Florida. The gems of the class are Juwan Durham and Alterique Gilbert, while Vance Jackson, a 6-foot-7 forward from California, is the capable back-up for his former high school teammate and now sophomore forward at UConn in Daniel Hamilton. Throw in super productive and elite rebounder Mamadou Diarra and the class headed to Storrs fills any and every hole the Huskies might have during the 2016 campaign. (CE)

Mississippi State: Since taking over the job this spring, head coach Ben Howland has quickly made the Bulldogs a credible threat in the SEC. This four-man class takes advantage of local recruiting as in-state guard Tyson Carter is one of three guards in the class. Carter is joined by New Orleans native Lamar Peters and Kentucky native Eli Wright to form a talented perimeter trio while center Schnider Herard is a physical big man who should be able to immediately defend and rebound. (SP)

Virginia: The ACC has been led by the Cavaliers these past few years during the regular season but the 2016 class is the revelation of all that built up success on the hardwood. Tony Bennett welcomes in two hard playing and competitive guards with Ty Jerome and Kyle Guy, along with an immediate glue forward with DeAndre Hunter. However, the hidden stud within the class is Jay Huff, a 7-foot sharpshooter with innate toughness who will take a redshirt year and can been perceived as an elite recruit within the 2017 crop of prospects. (CE)

Florida State: Even more perimeter talent is coming to Tallahassee in the Class of 2016 after the Seminoles brought in a loaded group for 2015. The main addition is 6-foot-10 wing Jonathan Isaac, a Durant-esque tall wing who should be a McDonald’s All-American while four-star guard Trent Forrest is a two-way guard who is versatile enough to play multiple spots. Hard-nosed point guard C.J. Walker gives Florida State an additional ball handler who can set up their bevy of talented wings. (SP)

Oklahoma: While the Sooners won’t get a ton of buzz with their 2016 class, Lon Kruger has put together a sneaky good class led by 6-foot-5 wing Kameron McGusty. The Texas native is a fine shot-maker from deep and could be the long-term replacement for current All-American senior guard Buddy Hield. Matt Freeman joins the fray at the 5-spot along with 6-foot-7 versatile forward and productive 15-feet and in guy with Kristian Doolittle, which adds up to be a quality, three-man class headed to Norman. (CE)

Alabama: Avery Johnson deserves a ton of credit for putting in the work to secure a top class. Five-star wing Terrance Ferguson was a major coup for the Crimson Tide and the electric athlete is joined by versatile wing Braxton Key and talented junior college guard Ar’Mond Davis. The trio immediately gives Alabama the kind of perimeter talent needed to reach the NCAA tournament and compete in the SEC. (SP)

Five more groups that will help right away 

  • Harvard: This seven-man class has a little bit of everything and a lot of talented players who could have committed to player at higher levels. Point guard Bryce Aiken will eventually replace Siyani Chambers while a good crop of big men like Chris Lewis, Robert Baker and Henry Welsh should keep Harvard among the Ivy League’s best for years. The key could be Seth Towns, a 6-foot-8 wing with the shooting ability and size to be a matchup problem in the Ivy League. (SP)
  • UMass: The Minutemen enter the 2015 season as a middle-class team in the A10 but the 2016 class is a group of individuals that could put the program atop of the conference pecking order. They obtained the services of top-125 recruits DeJon Jarreau and Brison Gresham, two guys that turned down a bevy of high-major programs. Add in hard playing and tough big man Chris Baldwin, along with highly athletic and a defensive stopper with Unique McLean and what this class gives the Minutemen is…well, a unique and impressive future moving down the road. (CE)
  • Penn State: Patrick Chambers is building Penn State into a credible Big Ten threat and this four-man class is one of the best groups to ever come to Happy Valley. Point guard Tony Carr and power forward Lamar Stevens should be immediate impact players while forward Joe Hampton and wing Nazeer Bostick should add quality depth. (SP)
  • George Washington: VCU, Rhode Island, Davidson, and Dayton have been the talk surrounding the A10 in recent months but what Mike Lonergan and his staff have put together these past few months within the 2016 class is nothing short of impressive. They welcome two quality guards that can play either spot with Darnell Rogers and Jair Bolden, along with long-term shot blocker Collin Smith. However, where the star power comes into play is in volume rebounder Kevin Marfo and tough and intimidating big man Arnaldo Toro; good luck scoring in the paint on this A10 bunch in the years ahead. (CE)
  • Butler: The interim tag is gone from head coach Chris Holtmann and he took full advantage by reeling in four talented pieces in a versatile class. Keeping four-star center Joey Brunk at home was a big key for the Bulldogs and the backcourt of point guard Howard Washington and Kamar Baldwin should give Butler some immediate threats. Small forward Henry Baddley is a solid perimeter shooter who should compliment this group well. (SP)

(You can read Corey’s work at HoopSeen.com and you can follow him on twitter @CoreyEvans_10)