Instant Analysis: Ridley Commitment

Friday, the Longhorns landed one of their top targets in the class of 2012 in huge center Cameron Ridley.

Of course, Ridley's commitment for one reason was obvious: he's a tremendous talent. A junior from George Bush High School in Richmond, Texas, Ridley is Scout.com's No. 3 center in the class of 2012 and a five-star talent. According to the early Scout 2012 Top 75, Ridley is the class's No. 4 player regardless of position, behind fellow centers Andre Drummond and Isaiah Austin and talented wing Shabazz Muhammad.

With 260 pounds spread over his 6-foot-10 frame, Ridley has the body to become a force right away in Austin. He has soft touch around the rim, is a strong rebounder, can protect the rim on defense and even has an OK mid-range jumper. He's an active defender, the kind that will make coach Rick Barnes smile.

For that talent, Ridley drew offers from basketball blue bloods like North Carolina and Kansas, other big-time basketball schools like Georgetown and Arizona and half of the Big 12. But he chose Texas, where he should factor in immediately.

Landing post players was a major need for Texas in the 2012 class — as only Tristan Thompson and 2011 signee Jonathan Holmes were scheduled to be on campus for the 2012-2013 season. That situation could become even more muddled if Thompson decides to leave early, either after his freshman (this year, or 2010-2011) or sophomore (2011-2012) seasons.

Because of those numbers, the Longhorns are still looking for a big in the 2011 class, and they're recruiting other talented bigs like Shaquille Cleare in the 2012 class. But a fantastic first step was landing Ridley, one of the top players nationally and an immediate impact player.


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