Intel Report 6/05/22

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What I’m hearing about where things stand with UVA’s recent visitors. And more in the latest intel report.

Chess Match

Worcester (MA) forward TJ Power was the first visitor of the week. UVA is being very aggressive with him, and the feeling is they’ve separated themselves from the pack after his visit. The question right now is can they close the deal with him in the coming weeks. That seems to be more of a realistic possibility than we thought going in.

Interestingly, Power canceled his upcoming visit to Indiana. He says it’ll be rescheduled in the fall, but that’s tenuous at this point. His only other scheduled visit is for Notre Dame next weekend. Right now it looks like a Hoos vs Irish race.

Pewaukee (WI) forward Milan Momcilovic is on grounds this weekend as I type. I’ve heard things have gone really well with him. He told 247Sports that he plans to make his college choice before July. Iowa State has done a great job recruiting him from the start, and that seems to be the leader that everybody is aiming to knock off. He’ll visit UCLA in a couple weeks, then presumably go into decision mode.

There’s only one spot available or those two recruits. As I laid out last week, Power is the player they’re most determined to get. But Momcilovic may decide first, and they’re taking a full swing at him too. That’s part of the reason UVA is trying to speed Power up. They want to make sure he has every opportunity to say yes while he can in case Momcilovic claims the spot.

Battle for Kaiser

In-state guard Jamie Kaiser visited in the middle of the week. He’s the only serious target at shooting guard right now. While everything went well and there’s a really good relationship building between him and the UVA staff, this looks like a battle that could go on for a while yet.

He’s already taken visits to Wisconsin and Harvard. There’s a report that Maryland may get one soon, and Indiana is trying to set one up. Wisconsin is a major factor. They went all-in for him before he became quite so popular, and that seems to have meant a lot to him.

Someone who knows his situation well put the odds at 60/40 UVA ahead of Wisconsin. While that’s good, it’s not the blowout our side may have hoped for after his visit. And he’s been clear that he doesn’t expect to decide soon.

Gertrude Rising

They’re working to set up a visit later this month with Hudson Catholic (NJ) guard Elijah Gertrude. He’s had a really good spring, and was especially great during last weekend’s Nike EYBL session in Louisville. While coaches couldn’t attend that event, they do watch online. Bennett may wait to see more of him in-person during the upcoming scholastic live periods, but UVA is planning to offer him a scholarship.

Gertrude is a tough player to categorize. He can play the point, but isn’t the primary point guard for either his high school or AAU team. It’s unclear if UVA would be willing to take both him and Jamie Kaiser. I suspect they wouldn’t. Pitt and Rutgers are among his offers so far in a list that will surely expand this summer.

Trending Away

Recent visitor Jaydon Young struggled on last weekend’s EYBL stop. UVA coaches will certainly see the Greensboro Day (NC) guard later this month too, but he’ll need to really impress to earn an offer.

It sounds like we can officially write off South Kent (CT) forward Tafara Gapare. The New Zealand native is planning to reclassify to 2022 with a commitment coming soon. Although UVA never offered a scholarship, they were clearly very interested. It just wasn’t a good fit. They see him more as a developmental player, while he wants an opportunity to play right away.

Summer Search

There’s enough signs and whispers that I feel sure that the search for a point guard in the 2023 class is setting up to be the main story of the summer. There’s no one that stands out or anything. It’s just from what I’ve heard, they’re paying close attention to players at that position that could be summer blow-up candidates. Collecting names to evaluate, trying to get ahead of the crowd in July. .

Freddie Dilione is the top target in that spot right now. And while he’ll be hard to get, UVA is very much in the race. But he’s the only player they would consider a point guard, and it’s possible even if they were to get Dilione they’d still consider another pure point guard in the class.

They’re still in contact with Combine (NC) guard Silas DeMary. He’ll get another look for sure. Ty-Laur Johnson from New Jersey has had a great spring. They’ve recently gotten into contact with Trey Green, a Charlotte native who attends Link Academy (MO). And Brandon Rechsteiner out of Georgia will be a popular attraction for coaches. There are certainly others. Expect them to be aggressive as point guards emerge this summer.

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LMAO Carson Edwards Trauma intensifies

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Dilione Kaiser would be a huge back court that could physically dominate other teams…

But man a Rechsteiner Gertrude backcourt would be insanely fun to watch.

The clear solution is start Taine at the 3 this year, win the natty and then have the available scholarships from the mass exodus to the pros to get all of them

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100% wanted to mention him now for exactly that reason in case he doesn’t pan out. I watched entirely too much 90s wrestling.

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Question for me is which of Power or MM pairs best w Traudt on both ends in the out years, if we assume Traudt will eventually be our ‘5’ in 24. Seems Power has more of an all around offensive game and better handle, while MM is the better shooter and more able to post up smaller 4s. I guess both could pair to run a true 5 out.

I don’t know why, but I get the sense if Kaiser goes past August we won’t hang around for it like we will for Dillione and obv guard targets we find in July. He just truly seems like a bird in hand recruit that fits the system, culture, profile, etc but not really a true fit roster construction wise in 23 with McKneely, Dunn, Taine for 4/4/3 more years. More of a luxury imo

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Some of these first scholastic weekend schedules are starting to trickle out.

Kaiser at DMV Live
Power at the NE event
Buchanan at Section 7 in AZ
Gertrude at Philly Live
Not sure on Dilione yet
Momcilovic plays the 2nd week

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I would be super happy with power or MM. I think I will be happiest with whichever one commits sooner so we can full court press a point guard. I don’t want to see the staff get caught trying to close MM or Power all summer and miss out on a PG. on that topic I think I am sold on Gertrude. If he isn’t totally a true point yet, a year under Reece!! should help get him there

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Can the public attend these? I’m down the road from Dematha so might try to check out DMV live

The one at DeMatha is open the public. It’s case by case

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I kinda want things to work out with Rechsteiner so the JPJ can break out into “Holla, if you hear me!” when he enters the game.

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Rechsteiner is like if you combined the DNA of Carsen Edwards and the stereotypical Villanova guard. Some of those passes are elite elite. Also saw where he was offered by Xavier and Wofford so the recruitment is picking up a little. Excited to see the new names for the pg spot with clips of actual pgs making plays with big time passes and not just combo scoring guards.

Could Tony Bennett be a player comp for Rechsteiner?

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Love the idea of going after a guy like Rechsteiner especially if we could get him to jump on an offer. He’s probably got some obvious flaws - a bit short and doesn’t have elite athleticism. But with his range and IQ he could overcome and be a great college player, but with lack of offers probably knows he needs to be patient if he goes to a top P5 school. Worst case he doesn’t play and transfers a la Billy Baron, base case he’s a change of pace backup guard that brings instant offense, and best case he becomes a multi year starter. This day and age you know 25-50% of your recruits will transfer so why not over-recruit and lock up a flyer or two early as an insurance policy while you wait on the big fish.

Hard not to like his tape…

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https://hoopseen.com/national/news/event/202205/top-overall-performers-2022-bob-gibbons-tournament-champions

Some of you probably won’t like this comparison, but he reminds me of Storm Murphy.

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I prefer London as an analog. Undersized PG with moxie who can dish and shoot the lights out.

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60% 3 point shooter. I can live with that

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One thing I would bet on, especially with from his dad and uncle, is Rechsteiner is probably tough as nails. Sure, the Steiner Brothers played tough guys on TV, but they are legit bad asses. I think he has a brother playing football at Jacksonville State.

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