NC State's search for their Point Guard of the future may be resolved in the next twelve days. It is known they are going after some of the best PGs in the nation. While they may find their dream PG, an early commitment could be another matter as the competition begins to heat up.
When the calendar page turned to April 9th, Coach Herb Sendek and the NC State Basketball Staff hit the road to shore up some needs from the Class of 2003. Recent recruiting trends have seen the highest rated players commit by July and sign during the early signing period. That makes the April contact period crucial for College Coaches and the NC State coaches are proceeding accordingly.
A high priority looks to be signing a Point Guard. The Wolfpack is being considered by 3 of the top 4 Point Guards in the country. #1 Mustafa Shakur, #2 Taureen Minor, and #4 Chris Paul are all guards currently considering the Pack. Instant playing time has to be appealing considering Clifford Crawford's eligibility will be up after the 2002-03 season and his departure will leave only Dom Mejia to run the point. Dom is a combo guard who is best known as a shooting guard. Julius Hodge may see some time at the PG spot as well. All three prospects have the ability to step in and contribute immediately.
NC State is also looking to add some depth to the wings or possibly the forward positions. With only two scholarships open for the class of 2003, the second award may well go to the best available athlete. The Pack will be looking at Rayshawn Terry, Corey Gibbs, Linas Kleiza, and Jeremy Ingram. Any of these athletes would be a fine addition to the talent that now exists in Raleigh.
We put a quick summary of players together that NC State, in all probability, will visit before the contact period ends April 30, 2002.
PG Mustafa Shakur (6'3 170): Quickly becoming the consensus #1 PG prospect in the nation. Has a drive and step back jumper that is nothing short of a big time move. Has good range. Is entertaining all offers to this point. NC State has offered and are scheduled to visit April 19.
PG Taurean Minor (5'11 175): Explosive Point Guard who knows how to take it to the rim. He was Big Time at Nike 2001 and was ranked accordingly. FSU and Cincinnati have offered.
PG Chris Paul (6'0" 150): Arguably the #1 target of the Pack from the Class of 2003. He has an incredible feel for the game. He is a great leader and hard nosed contributor. He and his parents made an unofficial visit to Raleigh last weekend (April12). He was formally offered at that time.
SF Reyshawn Terry (6'6" 210): How good is Terry? Dave Telep from The Insiders thinks he may be the best player in North Carolina from the Class of 2003, which says a lot. He is a terrific athlete blessed with range on his jumper. He's a tremendous defensive player who guards on the wing and challenges shots. It is rumored that NC State has offered and is in good shape to land this phenom. UNC is pushing equally as hard.
SF/PF Corey Gibbs (6'7" 225): Gibbs is a player working on expanding his game. He is known to be a worker on the inside but at 6'7" he sees the need to extend his game to the wing. NC State has offered. Look for a visit to come from the coaching staff this month.
SG Jeremy Ingram (6'2" 185): May well be the sleeper of the Class of 2003. He was listed as a top 15 talent after the summer of 2001 with his spectacular performance at Nike. His numbers slipped last season when he was asked to run the team as a Point Guard. Recent reports say he has been offered by NC State.
PF Linas Kleiza (6'8"): A big bruising Lithuanian forward who plays at Montrose Christian. He does all the dirty work in the post, rebound, block shots and just plays hard.
Other players to keep your eyes on for the remaining of April are PG Troy Aaron (6'1" 170), PG Vern Hamilton (5'11" 170), PG Jay Jackson (6'1" 180) and PF Anthony King (6'8" 220).