Tiger Trail Talk

Football is just around the corner, but it's also prime recruiting time in basketball. After coaches got a chance to spend July following players, there's lots of talk about various Tiger prospects.

If it seems like Mike Anderson and his staff like to do their recruiting under the radar, well it's because they do. While some staffs leak rumors about kids or have scouts check in on kids for them, the Missouri staff is tight lipped about who they are after.

That's not to say that they don't do their homework, though, and Anderson and his crew have been busy. But early August is rumor time, and now seems like as good a time as any to talk some recruiting and discuss a few potential targets from 2010 and 2011.

By now, it's no secret that Phil Pressey has emerged as the primary Tiger target and the 5-foot-9 point guard from Dallas is a good one. He snuck in a late June visit and has known Mike Anderson his entire life. Phil has been notoriously tight lipped about his recruitment. However, behind the scenes the Tigers look to be doing very well with him and they were a fixture at his July games with Team Texas. Connecticut will be in the picture, but the Huskies could be favoring Josh Selby from Baltimore at this point because Jim Calhoun prefers bigger guards.

Truth be told, Ricky Kreklow was a bit up and down this summer and it may have an unintended benefit for the Tigers. A back injury really limited the 6-foot-6 wing meaning other programs had less of a chance to see him and that he had a lot more time to think about his recruitment. It's likely that Kreklow would have ended up at Mizzou regardless, but him making an early decision allows the Tigers staff a little more flexibility to chase others with their three remaining scholarships.

Exactly who is the priority after Phil Pressey depends. Most likely, the Tigers would like to land at least a couple of insiders. Tarik Black was an early target but looks to be more of a long shot at this point. Justin Jackson is definitely on the radar and his high energy style fits Mike Anderson well. It's likely that he visits and he's going to seriously consider headed to Columbia for college.

Also receiving some interest from the Tigers is junior college star Ricardo Ratliffe. The native of Virginia is a hard playing and athletic 6-foot-7 insider who puts up numbers. He'll be among the most heavily recruited juco players and is starting to draw offers from SEC and ACC schools. Another guy that the Tigers watched a lot was super athletic Tony Mitchell who recently de-committed from Kansas State. His recruitment, though, could go a while and it's going to be a tough one to get a good read on.

Moving on to 2011, Brad Beal continues to delay his decision. The talk has always been that he'll make an early decision and that Florida is the team to beat. However, it seems like the timeline for his decision keeps getting pushed back. Florida still seems to be the school that most see as the leader, but there's been more and more talk about him taking his time and giving local schools more of a look. Florida's stud 2011 guard commit Austin Rivers has said that he's still committed. But, he's going to visit some other schools so one has to wonder if the uncertainty with Rivers is having any impact on Beal and the way he's looking at his recruitment. It would appear that the longer he takes to make up his mind, the better chance a school like Mizzou, Kansas or Illinois has of landing him.

Finally, Rickey Scott's name seems to come up a lot. He likes the Tigers and will probably want to visit. He's certainly got a Big 12 body and he's a natural scorer. However, at 6-foot-2 he is a little undersized for a two and there are some mixed opinions on him. He did play well at the tail end of the summer and is certainly a guy that has to be on the radar of most Big 12 teams.


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