Click on the link below to view and discuss those developments. After the link is Matt McCurdy's breakdown of the latest movements in LSU recruiting and predictions of who the Tigers land.
Updated 2014 LSU Basketball Big Board
LSU is tapping into assistant coach David Patrick's Australian roots once again in pursuing 2014 small forward Jonah Bolden. The 6-foot-8 Australian, who plans to transfer to Findlay Prep in Henderson, Nev., for his senior year, impressed scouts at the adidas Nations tournament last week in Los Angeles.
He is the son of Bruce Bolden, who played collegiately at Boise State and later had a 17-year career in Australia's NBL. The elder Bolden is an icon of the Australian hoops scene and a close friend with Patrick, who has reportedly known Jonah Bolden since his birth.
While he is a new name to many in the United States, LSU has been recruiting Bolden for some time and has offered. His father is from Michigan and he is getting heavy interest from the Wolverines, along with LSU, UCLA, Boise State, Arizona and New Mexico.
Expect his recruitment to heat up as he is potentially a 5-star player.
Other recent offers include in-state power forward Aaron Epps of Tioga, junior college combo-guard Gerry Blakes and Atlanta-area prospects Jakeenan Gant, a power forward, and Jayln Patterson, a point guard.
LSU has also extended an offer to Bogalusa power forward LaDamion Keys, contingent on his academic situation. Keys is considering playing his senior year at a prep school out of state. Keys had a strong summer on the travel circuit.
Blakes is a former Hawaii signee who averaged 16.5 points as a freshman at San Bernadino Valley Junior College. He is also being recruited by Arizona State, Arkansas and San Diego State. His list could expand as his recruitment has picked up after a recent stellar performance at a junior college showcase.
Epps is a Louisiana player that LSU has been monitoring during the summer, when he played in the EYBL with the Jackson Tigers. Epps is full of potential and could grow to the 7-foot range. He has been compared to another late-bloomer, former LSU star Tyrus Thomas.
Gant is among the top power forwards in the country and is being recruited by Patrick, while Patterson is being recruited by new assistant Korey McCray. Patterson attends Montverde Academy in Florida, but plays with the Atlanta Celtics AAU program, where McCray is a former coach.
With the early-signing period just a few months away, the following is my current analysis:
At this point, I believe that LSU's top six prospects, based on talent and signability, are Craig Victor, Dominic Magee, Jonah Bolden, Miles Reynolds, Jerry Blakes and Jeff Newberry. LSU should have 3-5 scholarships available for 2014.
It has boiled down to an LSU-Arizona battle for Victor. He is expected to announce his decision within the next two weeks and sign during the early period in November. While his move to Findlay Prep has clouded things a bit, I predict he will sign with LSU. Until Johnny Jones loses an elite Louisiana player, I will give him the benefit of the doubt.
After Bolden and Victor, the other four players are guards. I expect LSU to sign two guards, including one from high school and one from junior college. I will predict Magee and Blakes. Oklahoma State is the top competition for Magee and Arizona State is recruiting Blakes hard. Newberry is probably a lean to West Virginia at this time, but LSU is trying to get him in for a visit in September. Iowa is the top competition for Reynolds currently, but if he gets a Stanford offer, I expect him to commit immediately.
So, if my predictions are correct, that would be a four-man class of: Victor, Bolden, Magee and Blakes.