May flowers budded in the form of a deluge of commitments, a big basketball hire and two AAU scouting road trips. Here's a breakdown of Purple Wildcats' biggest moments of the month.
Class of 2014 doubles in size
On April 30th, Northwestern's next football recruiting class stood five men strong. By May 31st, six more commits joined the Class of 2014, filling 11 of the 15 available spots for future Wildcats.
Purple Wildcats reported on May 3rd that three-star offensive lineman Tommy Doles had committed, which led to an impressive surge. Then came four-star wide receiver Dareian Watkins on May 6th. Running backs Auston Anderson and Justin Jackson committed shortly after that.
It's said that slow and steady wins the race, but the quality of these recruits—both on the field and off of it—stands as testament to the success of "The Wildcat Way," as Steven Goldstein explained shortly after Watkins committed. If that wasn't enough to woo any future players, Nick Medline broke down the successful strategy Pat Fitzgerald and company employed to seal the collective deal.
Big moves in basketball
In the midst of the football commitments, Chris Lauten was officially announced as the new Director of Basketball Operations—as reported by PW.
Lauten's path to Evanston started in Durham as a student-manager with Duke and brought him through the NBA Development League (D-League). Shortly after Lauten's official introduction to Northwestern, the newest addition to the Chris Collins regime sat down with Nick Medline, who profiled his journey.
Meanwhile, Medline sandwiched the profile with two road trips to AAU shindigs across the Midwest. In both places, he found immediate evidence of how much impact Collins and crew have made in recruiting already.
First was the Spiece Run N Slam in lovely Ft. Wayne, Ind., where Medline spoke to Northwestern targets Marcus Bartley, Trevon Bluiett, Aaron Jordan, and Joseph Toye. Afterwards, yours truly described the new ideal Wildcat in the eyes of Collins, and what that might mean for the future of the program.
Steven Goldstein also checked in with Evan Boudreaux, a target from the Bill Carmody era the team is still very much pursuing, and Medline capped off the month with an in-depth look into just how powerful Collins' early moves have been.