Can you imagine if LeBron James had to choose a college to play for coming out of high school? This is like that.
Andrew Wiggins has already been tabbed as the #1 pick in the 2014 NBA Draft. If that isn’t hype, I don’t know what is. Tuesday Wiggins will choose where he’ll play college basketball. He’ll do it with one local reporter named Grant Traylor of the Herald Dispatch in Huntington, West Virginia in attendance. That is certainly unusual, and probably tells us something about this young man. What that is, I am not sure of yet. He’s different, and certainly special. At 6’8″, 197 pounds, he can play 3 positions, and how much he’ll play at each probably depends on his college choice.
So where will he go? The choices are Florida State, Kentucky, Kansas, and North Carolina.
Both of Wiggins parents were athletes at FSU. This is the reason many consider the Seminoles the favorite. It would be intriguing to say the least if the best recruit since LeBron James elected to go to a school that finished 18-16 last year and it’s best player, Michael Snaer, graduated. It would be an opportunity for Wiggins to carry a team with no restrictions on his individual game. How good could he make them?
Kentucky, some consider to be the co-favorite to land Wiggins. The Wildcats have already pulled in the #1 ranked recruiting class this spring, and with Wiggins there will be plenty of Fab 5 talk and an unbeaten season. In fact, some people think UK already has the greatest recruiting class ever having signed 6 McDonald’s All-Americans and 4 players who were ranked #1 at their position. Choosing Kentucky could be complicated, but would be fascinating to follow.
Kansas is losing it’s starting five. Four players graduating and freshman guard Ben McLemore headed to the NBA lottery. Don’t cry alligator tears for Bill Self however. The Jayhawks haven’t won 9 straight Big XII titles by accident. They have a top 5 recruiting class and 3 bench contributors returning. If Wiggins wants the big-time college environment with big-time responsibility this is the choice. He’d be the man, with some expectations, but not necessarily title or bust.
North Carolina would be the team whose expectations would be altered the most I think. Carolina looks like a good team next year, potentially very good, but not quite top ten. With Wiggins, the Tar Heels would become one of the favorites to cut down the nets. He’d be surrounded by NBA talent, but would still get to be the star on Roy Williams’ team.
Andrew Wiggins will decide Tuesday at 12:15pm. The fate of the 2013-14 college basketball season may hang in the balance. I don’t know how great Wiggins will be, but I can appreciate the hype.