Tony Wroten Jr. declared for the NBA draft just 48 hours after Terrence Ross decided to opt for the NBA. This comes as no surprise to anyone. There were some that held out faith that one or both would return but no one was completely shocked by their decision.
Lorenzo Romar was even expecting it, as he has been recruiting guards the majority of the year. He knew that one or both players would leave for the NBA and even though Scott Suggs, Andrew Andrews, and Jernard Jarreau will all be active next year the need for another impact guard is important for Romar.
The Huskies now have three scholarships available for 2012; Darnell Gant, Wroten, and Ross. Two being guards and one being more of a hybrid forward. Yet many Husky fans are hoping that UW lands a big man.
Big Men that the Huskies are Recruiting:
- Anthony Bennett- As of now, Bennett is the only one of two big men that I can say for sure that UW is recruiting. However, while he has Washington in his final 5, they have an uphill battle against Kentucky and Florida. UNLV and Oregon are also fighting for Bennett’s services. He has still yet to take any visits but his season did just complete last week. He will now look to visit schools. Bennett isn’t a proto-typical big man, he wants to play the 3 and can shoot from outside at 6’8.
- William Howard- is 6’8 but is more of a hybrid type forward too. He is more in the Desmond Simmons type frame. The NBA has been enamored with him for years due to his ability to score and run the court. There is nothing new on Howard, supposedly he is a lean to UW as they placed him in America.
Rumored Big Men Out There
- Robert Upshaw- The Huskies recruited him early in the process. Upshaw narrowed his list to nine and the Huskies were not on it. He eventually decided to go to Kansas State. However, when Frank Martin left to coach South Carolina, Upshaw de-committed. He is ready to compete at the D1 level. He is listed at 7’0. The Huskies may be able to get back into the mix due to their need and his need to find a new school that still has room/need for him.
- Chris Obekpa- He is out there, Huskies have been in on him in the past. He has gone back in forth with his list. He recently allowed Oregon in the mix. Could the Huskies get back in on him? He is a 6’9 Center.
- Majok Majok- I don’t know what the report on Majok is but his name is out there. The rumor is that Gonzaga also wants him. He is a JC 6’9 power forward that originally committed to Fairfield out of high school but ended up at a Junior College in Midland, Texas. Rivals reports that Washington is on his list.
Transfer Big Men Possibilities
When it comes to transfers, most can’t play right away because of NCAA transfer rules. While Romar and his staff may go that route, I intentionally only listed players that can play right away.
- Alex Oriakhi- Is the big name that is thrown around with Washington. There are contradictory reports from two major recruiting sources. Jeff Goodman of CBS does not include UW on the list for Oriakhi but Adam Zagoria listed Washington as one of just a handful. However, it looks like a long shot either way. Oriakhi is 6’9 and has already proved himself at the D1 level at UCONN.
- Renaldo Woolridge- A transfer out of Tennessee has been granted a medical redshirt and will only have one year to play but can come in and play right away. He is a big man that can shoot outside but also can go inside. He is listed at 6’8 and has had some inconsistent success at Tennessee but his injury derailed him. As far as I know the Huskies and him aren’t in any communication but he would be a fit- can play right away, can play up-tempo, and plays inside and out. USC is one school that has been known to be in contact with him. He is originally from the Los Angeles area.
Guards that UW is recruiting:
- Mark McLaughlin- He is about as close to committing to Washington as you can be without actually committing. He could be doning purple and gold by the end of the week. He is an impressive scorer, averaged 27 points a game for Tacoma Community College. One basketball analyst I spoke with about him said that he will compete for a starting spot immediately. He can score from outside (38%) and from inside. While missing Demarquise Johnson wasn’t fun for Husky fans, McLaughlin is better right now. Johnson should grow into it, but McLaughlin can play huge minutes almost immediately according to many recruiting analysts. He has 2 years left of eligibility. 6’6 wing. UPDATE: McLaughlin has committed to the University of Washington.
- Darrick Wood- I spoke with Wood over the phone tonight and he has been biding his time waiting to see who goes to the NBA and who doesn’t. He said next week he will begin setting up visits and figuring out which school he wants to attend. Washington, Maryland, Texas, Oklahoma State, Memphis are the main ones recruiting him. He is a 6’4 wing.
- Victor Robbins- Robbins is more of a small forward but at 6’5 would fit the 2 on this Huskies team. He is focused on getting his schooling finished but is a very talented basketball player. 4-star recruit out of California.
- Quentin Judd- Another east coast guard that Raphael Chillious is recruiting. He is a 6’4 wing.
- Jordan Tebbutt- A 6’5 guard from Oak Hill Academy.
There are no rumored guards out there that aren’t listed above (that I know of). Washington usually does not pursue transfer guards so I will leave that off of this post. There are no rumors to indicate such this year.