There is no doubt that conference realignment has greatly changed the scope of college basketball. Some schools are in a better position than ever, some are in a worse position than ever, and some have stayed the same. It is clear that one school making the most of their new found position in the college basketball landscape is Creighton.
Head Coach Greg McDermott and his staff are some of the most organized and hardest workers on the recruiting trail. Being located in Omaha, Nebraska means that Creighton doesn’t have a ton of prospects in their backyard to choose from and has to go out and recruit nationally to make an impact.
In the 2017 class they have done that in a big way locking up two quality wings before the spring AAU season has even started. First the Bluejays landed TyShon Alexander, a good athlete who can really make shots. Then on Super Bowl Sunday, they landed a huge coup by pulling in Kansas wing Mitchell Ballock.
Alexander and Ballock are two wings who held numerous high-major offers, and could have had their pick of 20 or so schools depending on how long they wanted to wait. However the job the Creighton staff did to prioritize them and get them on campus is impressive.
Now in the Big East, Creighton has a bit more cache with recruits than they have had at any point in time during their history. In the past in the Missouri Valley Conference, Creighton had to rely on evaluation and development (and at times in the son of the head coach being really, really good) to make an impact on the national level.
With the Bluejays now in a power conference, and combined with the fact that have had recent success, a national player of the year, great facilities, and a very loyal fan base, all that has combined to make Creighton a team with a lot to offer, and they are taking advantage of it.
In 2015 they landed five-star prospect Justin Patton, then in the off-season highly regarded transfer Marcus Foster transferred in from Kansas State, and now they have two highly regarded wings in the 2017 class.
With the system that Creighton runs and the proven coaching of McDermott, the Bluejays appear on the rise as a team, and they are definitely one of the schools taking full advantage of their move within the scope of conference realignment.