Geo Baker is already committed to Rutgers, but he still needed to see the right picture on campus. After 48 hours on campus, one theme took over.
The first member of Steve Pikiell's 2017 recruiting class picked Rutgers completely aware of the rebuilding stage. The Andover (N.H.) Proctor Academy guard is not afraid of a challenge but this weekend's official visit was still an important one for his family.
Baker, now pushing 6-foot-4, saw the one thing he needed.
“It's clear that I fit in really well,” Baker said. “They definitely need someone who can come in and distribute the ball to all of their scorers. They have a lot of athletes and scorers but they just need somebody to get them the ball.”
Baker attended the visit with his mother, who also enjoyed the Rutgers experience.
“My mom is loving it,” Baker said. “She loves that we met with so many people and that it's beyond basketball with Rutgers. She likes the coaching staff. She's been loving them.”
Baker sat front and center in a packed group of recruits Friday for Midknight Madness.
As a leader at guard, Baker devoted most of his recruiting attention on the other official visitor – forward Makhtar Gueye. Baker also spent time with the coaching staff and a handful of 2018 targets.
“I'm just telling them that it's obviously going to be a bumpy road when we first start,” Baker said. “It's not going to be perfect when we get there. Watching their practice, you can see how intense coach Pikiell is and how those guys are improving in the gym. You can see improvement already.”
Like the other 1,500 fans in attendance, Baker's jaw dropped after a Corey Sanders dunk over the Scarlet Knight mascot capped off the evening.
“He was amazing,” Baker said. “He got the crowd going crazy. … Alley-oops are coming.”