{{ timeAgo('2020-01-29 07:16:54 -0600') }} basketball Edit

Wednesday's Leftovers: Jalen Green, Cliff Omoruyi, Pitt, more

Jalen Green
Jalen Green (Rick Monahan/Prolific Prep)

Another round of Wednesday’s Leftovers brings us more questions pertaining to Jalen Green and where Memphis sits with the five-star phenom. Cliff Omoruyi is another senior target that has become a priority for his suitors, while we give an update on Jaden Hardy and Will Jeffress, two talented prospects from the 2021 class.

MORE: Josh Christopher, more in Twitter Tuesday mailbag

I don’t think Memphis’ poor week on the hardwood has any type of impact on Jalen Green and what he ultimately does with his college decision. Down to a final group that consists of Auburn, Fresno State, Memphis, Oregon and USC, Green will decide on a school that can afford him the biggest chance to not only win, but also maximize his abilities during his likely lone year.

Do I believe Memphis sits as the team to beat for Green? I do, but don’t underestimate Auburn’s chances. The Tigers have already signed his good friend and five-star lead guard Sharife Cooper, which could intrigue Green enough to pick Auburn. There could also be a dilemma with Memphis and its backcourt if everyone were to return next year. While Green would be the best guard on its roster, its perimeter group would be a bit crowded with Alex Lomax, Boogie Ellis, Tyler Harris and Damion Baugh all set to return.

Also, while Green did his best to deny their being a chance of choosing the professional realm instead of college for next season, if the right offer were to be given, don’t think Green wouldn’t give it a hard look.

For now, though, Auburn and Memphis sit in the best position, regardless of how the rest of the season plays out.

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I will give it a 25% chance. Cliff Omoruyi, a top-50 center in the 2020 class and arguably the most prioritized frontline prospect available, is down to a final five of Auburn, Arizona State, Kentucky, Rutgers and UConn. Much of the talk has centered around ASU and UK in recent months but I would not write off the Scarlet Knights just yet.

Kentucky desperately needs someone like Omoruyi, especially with the likely departure of Nick Richards to the NBA after this season, while ASU hired Rasheen Davis before the season, who has a great relationship with Omoruyi. However, no one has invested more into his recruitment and has a longer lasting connection with him than Rutgers.

The Scarlet Knights did a great job of pin-pointing Omoruyi before the oodles of high-major offers came in. The fact that it is the in-state program and has shown that it is on the upward trajectory should only enhance its chances in landing the four-star prospect.

Do I believe that Rutgers will secure the commitment from Omoruyi? No, but I also believe that they have a better chance with him than many others believe.

Will Jeffress
Will Jeffress

While nothing has been solidified yet, I do believe that Will Jeffress will reclassify and enroll in the 2020 class later this summer. The four-star forward has been a heavily coveted and recruited prospect and has developed quite the pedigree having played at a number of USA Basketball events.

Jeffress remains in the middle of his high school season and I don’t expect for him to give that great of a look into his recruitment until it is over. Whenever the time does come, look for a group that includes Alabama, Baylor, Memphis, Penn State, Pitt and Stanford to be involved whenever it comes to his commitment. Each has laid the proper groundwork with him but, if I had to pick one landing spot for him right now, Pitt would be it. The Panthers have made him their priority since Jeff Capel was hired two years ago and their need in the frontcourt and close proximity to his Erie, Pa., locale works in their favor.

While the four-star forward sits a top target for Pitt, the Panthers have remained active in the 2020 class, while also prioritizing a select few in the 2021 class. Those include Khristian Lander and Carter Whitt, who could also reclassify, along with Jalen Warley, Bryce McGowens, Adama Sanogo, and Nnanna Njoku.

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A commitment is not imminent with Jaden Hardy but there sure is a powerful list of programs chasing after him. Close to completing a tremendous junior season, Hardy, who is a top guard prospect in the 2021 class, has a variety of suitors to choose from and I expect that, before his travel season begins, he takes a greater look into his recruitment.

In the fall, Kentucky offered Hardy. Immediately, the Wildcats became the favorite and remain in the pole position for the five-star. However, the competition for Hardy is not in short supply. UCLA has made great in-roads to Las Vegas and is one of the west coast programs to keep an eye on. The same could be said for Arizona, Oregon and UNLV, where his brother, Amauri Hardy, plays.

A native of Michigan, he is also coveted by the in-state programs back home, Michigan and Michigan State, while Memphis is also in the picture. Kansas has offered but for now, everyone else is playing catch-up as Kentucky remains the team to beat for the nation’s top junior scoring guard.

It has the chance to be a very, very good one. There is still some time before we really dig into the 2023 class, but from the early looks of it, there is major talent at the top. I have been able to see both Mickey Williams and Elijah Fisher within the past month and each look the part of five-star, next-level type of prospects that bring a variety of tools to the floor.

Williams has already become a YouTube sensation thanks to his dunking exploits while Fisher is a 6-foot-6, long-armed and tough-minded freshman that comes in the mold of a combo forward that can create his own offense and that for others, but also defend various positions.

It doesn’t stop there. I don’t know if there is a better 14-year old walking the planet than DJ Wagner. The son of DaJuan Wagner, the Camden High standout will have a say for who is the best in the 2023 class. Others that you will be hearing much about in the coming years include Omaha Biliew, Matt Bewley and Ryan Bewley, Kanaan Carlyle, Isaiah Collier, Darius Carr, Simeon Wilcher, and oh, a kid by the name of Bronny James.