Recruiting Q&A: Dave Telep

With the recruiting picture beginning to clear up on a national level, subscribers to <i></i> have posed several questions to our team of experts. While our local staff answered several questions last week [<a href=>link</a>], National Recruiting Analyst Dave Telep was questioned on some other issues.

Based on your rankings, you prefer Andrew Bynum over Eric Boateng. What separates them as players? How do you see them fairing in the collegiate game?

I think Bynum‚s size is a clear advantage in this one. Plus, he‚s just beginning to come out of his shell and play with some confidence. We‚re talking about the 1 and 2 centers in the country.

Does Duke have a realistic shot with Andrew Bynum?

They will quietly withdraw from the Bynum sweepstakes after achieving the commitment from Big Boateng.

Same question Re: Hansbrough vs. McRoberts

McRoberts has a little more a live and slightly more explosive body than Tyler. He's got him height wise and he's done a nice job against good players all summer long. He's also an accomplished shot blocker.

Again, we‚re comparing two of the best in the country here and I'm quite sure every school in America would love to have one of them.

Who from 2005 is NBA bound? With such a weak high school class, is there any reason to think anyone can make the jump with any kind of success?

The strength of the class or even the ability of the best players matters little in regards to the NBA. We KNOW for a fact that someone is going from this class. It's going to happen, always does. Plus, the NBA will surely fall in love with at least one kid from this group. I think Louis Williams, Andray Blatche and Brandon Rush see themselves as candidates. Don't count out Monta Ellis either.

What are your thoughts on Jon Brockman‚s recruitment?

I've been trying to get in contact with him to ask this same question of him. All the cards are on the table. This guy can legitimately go to any school in America that he chooses. He‚s just got to decide whether or not he'll leave his comfort zone out west and head east.

Who has the inside track for the top class in the country at this point?

You have to look at the contenders being UNC, Duke, Kansas and maybe even Oklahoma State should they land Byron Eaton. Each of the first three schools still have All-American players on their wish list and in some cases are recruiting against each other. What about if Georgia could get Bynum to go with Williams and Mercer too?

Some rank Jamal Boykin in the top 30, yet with he's borderline top 75. What gives? Can he contribute at Duke?

I think he certainly can and will contribute at Duke. Top 30 spots are generally reserved for guys who have a chance to be big time impact guys. I just don't see Boykin in this regard. To me, he's a piece of the puzzle and not a guy who carries a program the likes of Duke. I'd love to have him and he's a big time chemistry guy and all the things you read about his work ethic are true. But, in my opinion, he's not one of the 30 best PROSPECTS in the country. Others have much larger upsides (a dangerous, but important word).

What have you learned about the Internet recruiting business in terms of how it works and how it has become a part of the recruiting process?

Information is the key in any business and the Internet brings info and immediacy to the recruiting world. If coaches are honest with you, they'll tell you they check multiple sites on a daily, weekly and in some cases, hourly basis. It's a huge part of the process because it acts as an arbitrator. College coaches make their pitch, kids listen. We talk to the kids, find out what they are really thinking and bring it to light. It's a great tool for coaches to find out if they are being successful in their tactics. As for the fans, it can be an addiction because the season never ends.

What are your evaluations on Lewis Clinch and Uche Echefu? Could they fit in with Duke? Why is Duke trying to get involved with them late?

Lewis Clinch might wind up being one of the greatest players to never receive an invite to a major shoe camp. He's a borderline McDonalds candidate. Big time scorer, excellent athlete and he hasn't even remotely gotten close to peaking.

Echefu hails from a program that traditionally has late deciders. The bottom line with him is that if you want to be involved then you have to go see him in September. We'll know if Duke likes him on Oct. 1.

Let‚s say Duke landed either Boateng or Bynum along with one of Brockman, Clinch, or that the number one class in the nation?

That would be tough to knock off. In reality it matters little because if you land a class like that, you don't need a guy like me forming an opinion to know that is a big time bunch of players!!!!!

Who do the Blue Devils have the inside track on at this point with the underclassmen?

Great question but tough to answer. They spent a lot of time watching Jon Scheyer in the summer and he looks like a priority. In reality, some decisions are going to have to be made about the Brandan Wright's of the world. How much time do you spend recruiting a kid like that who has more NBA potential maybe than college potential. Guys like Lance Thomas look to be more attractive. A player like Gerald Henderson has said he really wants to play in the ACC and Duke is on his list. It's still early and with a class laced with potential NBA players, there are tough decisions to be made.

If you had to rank the top five most powerful recruiting programs in the country who would they be?

Duke, North Carolina, Kansas, Kentucky and UConn. Right now, these guys have the ability to catch up in recruiting races very quickly. Folks sleep on Connecticut but those guys get big time players and are getting more formidable with each title.

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