Wolfpack Expected to Ink Three on Signing Day

November 10 is the first day college basketball prospects can sign their national letters of intent and the NC State Wolfpack is expected to ink three consensus top 100 prospects today.

Wolfpack Class of 2005 verbals Brandon Costner, Courtney Fells, and Ben McCauley can make their pledges official today and are expected to do so. All three players are ranked in Scout.com's latest Top 100 rankings, with Costner coming in at #26, Fells at #48, and McCauley at #82. The three verbals give NC State a consensus top 20 recruiting class, placing the Wolfpack at #16 in Scout.com's Top 25 Recruiting Classes.

Brandon Costner, the last prospect to commit to NC State, is considered the most heralded Wolfpack commitment since current senior Julius Hodge. A consensus top 30 national prospect, the 6'8 combo forward from West Orange, New Jersey chose NC State over more than twenty scholarship offers. His final decision came down to NC State, Kansas, UCLA, and Seton Hall with the Wolfpack securing the verbal following an official visit in early September.

"My decision (to pick NC State) wasn't tough. I felt very comfortable with the players especially after my visit. I am also very comfortable with the coaches there. It's also the ACC. I have family only a couple of hours away in Maryland. My family and I are very happy about the decision." -- Brandon Costner

"[NC State runs] a lot of Princeton stuff. Brandon can play away from the basket, he'll be perfect in the high post, he's a great passer, you lay off and he can shoot and he can post up. There's nothing that wouldn't fit him perfectly. When I first saw them on TV two years ago, even before I knew Brandon would consider N.C. State I figured it would be a good offense that he would fit in." -- Seton Hall Prep Head Coach Robert Farrell

Swingman Courtney Fells was actually the first NC State commitment in the 2005 class, verbaling to the Wolfpack earlier this summer. Fells, a 6'6 wiry, scorer from Shannon, Mississippi, is a terrific run-jump athlete who adds length and athleticism on the perimeter. He has one of the best three-point shooting strokes in the class and will give NC State even more offensive firepower. It took just one official visit for Fells to realize NC State was where he wanted to go. He chose the Wolfpack over Mississippi, Mississippi State, Texas, Oklahoma, and LSU among several others.

"I knew what I wanted to do the whole time. I didn't want to waste other schools' time. I just wanted to get it done so that other schools could fill their spots. I love how the coaches are at N.C. State with the players every day," he added. They check on you and make sure you go to class. The education is good and I like the coaching staff." -- Courtney Fells

Yough (Pa.) power forward/center Ben McCauley committed to NC State just before fellow frontcourt verbal Brandon Costner did so in September. A talented prospect, McCauley is a system player who should excel in the positionless offense that NC State utilizes. He has the skill set to play three positions, and will add depth to the Wolfpack frontcourt as a true freshman. McCauley picked NC State over a host of programs, including Cincinnati, Xavier, Virginia, UCLA, and Pittsburgh among others.

"I developed a really good relationship with Coach Sendek, and some of the deciding factors were the style of play, and I like the type of guys that he recruits. I haven't met the other two commitments, but I'm sure they are great guys. I look forward to having a good four years down there." -- Ben McCauley

With the Class of 2005 complete, NC State now can turn its attention to the rising juniors and already have targeted several major prospects. Combo guard Wayne Ellington, point guard Scott Reynolds, and shooting guard Aaron Holmes have offers and are giving the Wolfpack heavy consideration. Reynolds and Holmes could decide early while some gurus think Ellington is the nation's top shooting guard prospect in the Class of 2006.

Projected 2005-06 NC State Men's Basketball Roster

No Name Pos Ht Wt DOB Yr City (High School) 

13 Cameron Bennerman G 6-4 198   SR Chatham, VA  
22 Tony Bethel SG 6-2 178   SR* Rockville, MD 
3 Ilian Evtimov F 6-7 232   SR* Winston Salem, NC 
14 Engin Atsur SG 6-3 200   JR Istanbul, Turkey 
34 Adam Simons C 6-10 242   JR* Burlington, NC  
40 Andrew Brackman PF 6-10 205   SO Cincinnati, OH 
11 Gavin Grant F 6-7 190   SO Bronx, NY 
33 Cedric Simmons C 6-9 216   SO Shallotte, NC 
N/A Brandon Costner F 6-8 230 FR West Orange, NJ
N/A Courtney Fells G 6-6 190 FR Shannon, MS 
N/A Ben McCauley F 6-8 235   FR Yough, Pa.  

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