The impressive Loyola-Marymount transfer averaged 11.1 points and 7.1 rebounds in his freshman season. Levin left after Max Good and his entire LMU coaching staff were dismissed. Looking for stability, he was drawn to three schools building around its coaches.
Levin visited Northwestern from Sunday through Tuesday, and worked out with senior Jershon Cobb. He told PurpleWildcats.com "it exceeded his expectations." With a lingering need at power forward (Dererk Pardon will play center), NU could use an impressive, proven player during its rebuild.
"I just got to know them on a personal level," Levin said. "They have a real family atmosphere. It's a great staff just like the other schools… Great strength and conditioning program."
The Northwestern strategy appears obvious: Levin admired his assistants at LMU, so the entire staff is showing its dedication to the recruitment. Chris Collins, Steve Wojciechowski and Mike Brey are all highly touted head coaches. The guys after that will prove important, with Armon Gates leading Gabe's recruitment.
Levin will have to compare visits from Marquette, his first, and then Northwestern and Notre Dame. No shortcuts: Levin figures to take all three official visits and then weigh his options.
"I'm blessed to be in this position," he said.
After his trip to Marquette, Levin told PW that he was impressed with the available facilities and the "plan" that Wojciechowski had in place. He travels to Notre Dame on June 14.
Still, this could be another great test for Chris Collins. Against two more prestigious programs, he will fight for a player most interested in an intriguing coaching staff. If they lose, fine. If they win, it might be a program changer.