Collins plans early decision

Don't expect a long, drawn out recruiting process from 2016 post Zach Collins. The Las Vegas Bishop Gorman four-star prospect plans an early decision.

It's been a successful year of development for 6-foot-10, 215-pound Las Vegas Bishop Gorman post Zach Collins.

The 2016 prospect has improved his body and become much more mobile, allowing him to play in the high and low post. Collins has good feet and improved footwork, while he's a really impressive passer and quick decision maker.

Collins' touch has improved, he's added to his scoring ability around the basket and he's capable of hitting jumpers from midrange and three.

As Collins has evolved as a prospect, his recruitment has steadily grown as well.

Amongst the schools which have been by Bishop Gorman to see Collins since the Recruiting Period began are San Diego State, Oregon, Arizona State, Oklahoma, New Mexico, UNLV, North Carolina, California, Arizona, UTEP, Gonzaga, Virginia and Indiana.

While Zach's father, Mike Collins, said that his son does not have a top 10 at this point, there have been a handful of schools that are recruiting him the hardest.

"The hardest workers have been Gonzaga, Arizona, Cal, UNLV and Arizona State," Collins said. "Those aren't the top five, but those are probably the schools working the hardest."

Mike Collins broke down what the family likes about those five schools.

Gonzaga: "It certainly doesn't get any better than Gonzaga as far as how they do things and what exactly they do. Coach (Mark) Few and company couldn't be more sincere and more gracious. They exemplify class and we couldn't be more impressed by them."

Arizona State: "They have taken a real family approach to the recruitment, meaning they really come off as genuine and sincere. They have made it clear that they need Zach and that he's a priority. We really like ASU and they're very good folks."

Arizona: "On the West Coast they're viewed as the top dog and one of the best in the nation. Coach (Sean) Miller has been extremely candid about his need for Zach and how he would fit in and how important he is to Arizona. It's very humbling."

Cal: "Coach (Jon) Harris and coach (Cuonzo) Martin are in touch with Zach all the time; them and Gonzaga are probably in touch the most. They take a real family approach, similar to Gonzaga and ASU. They're very good people and we really like coach Martin. He's very impressive."

UNLV: "It's the hometown school and we have a real spot for UNLV in our heart. Sometimes you can take it for granted because it's home; Zach grew up watching UNLV games so how do you not keep them towards the top? They do a good job and we are in touch with them a lot."

The message from Mike Collins to college coaches has been clear - "We're telling people the recruitment is open," he said - and schools are still offering scholarships, the latest coming from UCLA.

"They have to be up there towards the top of the country when it comes to tradition," the elder Collins said. "Talking to the UCLA staff, it's really impressive and it's an honor to talk to a staff like that. They're great guys."

As the family goes through the recruiting process, the goal will be to find a program that fits Collins' strengths as a player.

"Style of play will be most important when it comes down to it," Mike Collins said. "Zach is a power forward; he's not only a back to the basket type of center. He likes to drive and shoot from the arc. He's a power forward and how he's used and how they would play him is of the utmost importance.

"If the school is just using its big to pick up trash and clean the boards then it's probably not going to be a good fit. If he's being used as a bigger part of the offense, that's going to be something that Zach will be more inclined to look at."

According to Mike, the family will unofficially visit UCLA on Nov. 1 and Cal towards the end of that month, when Bishop Gorman is in the Bay Area to kick off its season on Nov. 29.

"After (those visits), we probably won't do much until January but Zach will try to get three officials in around then," Mike said. "He'll commit sometime after that.

"We're not going to play it out and make the coaches jump through a bunch of hoops; we're not those kind of people. Whatever school he chooses, he wants them to be able to focus on going out and getting pieces around him. He also doesn't want a bunch of coaches wasting their time."

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