Basketball Recruiting Roundup
In this week's Basketball Recruiting Roundup, we continue our 10-part series breaking down the nation's Top 10 hoop recruiting classes.
In the previous weeks, we tackled No. 1 Kansas, No. 2 Duke, No. 3 North Carolina and No. 4 Oklahoma State. Now it's time to move on to No. 5:
It's been a very good year for the University of Washington basketball program.
Not only are the Huskies ranked in the Top 10 in the nation and a legit Final Four contender this season, but UW coach Lorenzo Romar was busy this past fall stocking the cupboard for next season with an outstanding recruiting class that is both deep and talented.
The Huskies capitalized on the fact that this year might be the best class of prep hoop players in the history of Washington state to land three Top 100 recruits: Seattle Prep (Wash.) swingman Martell Webster, Snohomish (Wash.) power forward Jon Brockman and Toledo (Wash.) power forward Artem Wallace.
But Washington didn't stop with the local kids, as Romar went the prep school route to complete the Huskies' seven-player recruiting class with Winchendon School (Mass.) point guard Justin Dentmon, Brewster Academy (N.H.) shooting guard Harvey Perry, Northfield Mount Hermon (Mass.) center Joe Wolfinger and Laurinburg Prep (N.C.) shooting guard Roburt Sallie.
The top recruit for the Huskies is Webster, a 6-foot-6, 236-pounder who is rated the No. 7 recruit in the Class of 2005 by SchoolSports.com. And if not for foot and ankle injuries that derailed almost his entire junior season, Webster might be rated even higher.
He has bounced back this year with a monster senior season, which should be good news for the Huskies. But the downside to that news is that Webster is now seen as one of the top NBA prospects in this year's senior class and could possibly skip college altogether.
If that happens, UW's class won't be nearly as strong. But it also won't be the end of the world for the Huskies. Which is why despite Webster being rated higher, Brockman's signing might be the most important for Washington.
Brockman, a hard-working 6-foot-8, 245-pound bruiser, is rated the No. 24 recruit in the Class of 2005 by SchoolSports.com. While Webster's ready-made talent makes him a threat to bolt for the NBA, Brockman should become a lynchpin for the Huskies for years to come.
Brockman is a beast, plain and simple, and his AAU coach, Jim Marsh, says he "plays every possession like a maniac." That's the kind of attitude that will make him a fan favorite and an immediate impact player at UW.
Wallace, Washington's third and final Top 100 recruit, is cut from a similar mold as Brockman. A 6-foot-8, 235-pound power forward and native of Russia, Wallace is a physical big man who can also step away from the basket and nail the midrange jumper. He's rated the No. 86 recruit in the country by SchoolSports.com.
Of the Huskies' remaining four recruits, Dentmon is a heady floor leader with a chance to get minutes as a freshman; Perry is an excellent athlete who should excel in an up-tempo style; Wolfinger is a 7-footer with great range on his shot; and Sallie is a solid two guard who can fill up the scoring column when called upon. All four should benefit greatly from a year of prep school this season.
Of course, all of those guys will look better if they're playing next to Webster, who is as talented as any recruit in the country.
But with guys like Brockman on board, Washington's recruiting class will still be among the nation's best even if Webster bolts for the NBA.
Check back next week for our breakdown of the No. 6 recruiting class from Louisville.