No one had any idea where Andrew Wiggins was going to play his one year of college basketball. He chose Kansas, which will obviously give the Jayhawks class a huge boost. But this is the time of year when I like to begin looking at recruiting by conference.
To begin, I focus on the consensus top 100 recruits, rather than any one service. RSCI hoops is the best site for this but they won't update their rankings until everyone's final lists come out. In the interim I make my own. I take every player's ranking from several recruiting services, and then apply some formulas, and boom, there's the top 100 list. It's the crowd sourcing approach to recruiting, rather than trying to pick your favorite person out of that crowd.
The immediate impact of Wiggins was on the upper end of that scale – the can't miss, 5*, top 25 kids. And looking at just those top 25, the SEC is killing everybody. Imagine if Kentucky would have gotten Wiggins.
The initial reaction is that of course the SEC is killing everybody because of Kentucky. But even if you remove all of Kentucky's recruits from the equation, the SEC still has more top 25 recruits than any other conference.
Broadening things to the top 50 – the 5*s combined with the high 4*s - the ACC begins to close the gap. Most notable on the wrong side of things is the Big Ten, who only landed three top 50 recruits. Since the ACC cleaned up last year, added Syracuse, Notre Dame and Pitt, the Big Ten's unofficial title as the premier basketball conference is coming to an end.
In the overall top 100, the gap closes some more. Now, at the wrong end (at least for the power conferences) is the Pac 12. They had a nice little bump last year, but it takes more than a single season to regain a solid foothold among the best basketball conferences.
In the coming weeks, I'll get into this in more detail.