Kevin Samuel

New rankings show unusual depth of 2017 class

Putting together a Top 100 is usually difficult due to sorting out the high end talent at the top. In 2017 the most difficult part has been the fact there are way more deserving Top 100 prospects than slots available.

With every recruiting class there seems to be a theme. The 2015 class was always considered extremely light at the top and we saw that play out in this summer’s NBA Draft, with things being considered a crapshoot after the first two picks.

In 2016 the story of the class was the fact that was so much high end talent. We fully expect that to be the talk of the 2017 draft as well, given there will be so many good options in the lottery.

In 2018 there isn’t a ton of high end talent at the top and so far, there isn’t much depth either. In 2019, the talent at the top makes a major comeback.

When it comes to the 2017 class, there is no doubt that the story is the ridiculous depth. When working on these set of rankings, we got to about 15 available spots in the Top 100 for a group of roughly 50 qualified candidates.

Of course, that’s an impossible task and there was a great argument for every single one of the players who got left off the Top 100.

The Scout staff awarded those left out with four stars and ranked them on the positional list, but there’s no doubt that there will be a large group of players who aren’t ranked in the Top 100 who we expect to have very successful college careers, many of which at the high major level.

Prospects such as Aamir Simms, Elias Harden, Mayan Kiir, Lance Thomas, Galen Alexander and Kevin Samuel are just a handful of the group of over 30 prospects who had claims to be Top 100 guys but in such a deep class, difficult decisions have to be made.

What’s most impressive about the depth in this class is that there are still roughly nine months to go before final rankings, meaning the pool of legitimate Top 100 candidates will very likely only increase before it shrinks.

Ultimately, the 2017 class being somewhat light at the top but extremely deep will only help college basketball in the short term. There aren’t a ton of one and done type prospects and several players who should have a big impact at the college level for multiple years.

With 2018 struggling for a whole lot of talent at the top as well as depth, coaches will have to load up in 2017 and thanks to an unusually deep class, that’s very much possible.

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