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Friday, May 20, 2011
Top unsigned recruit still waiting it out

By Eamonn Brennan

It's strange, the kinds of questions that pop up most frequently in the mail inbox and the SportsNation chats. This offseason, one such question has been a surprising constant for the past month or so: "Do you know where DeAndre Daniels is going to sign?"

No, friend, I do not. Apparently, neither does DeAndre Daniels.

Daniels, a native of Woodland Hills, Calif., is the top unsigned player in the class of 2011. According to our own recruiting analysts, he's a four-star talent with great length and shooting ability, solid rebounding skills, and loads of promise as a wing player (or a stretch power forward) who should only improve with college-level weight training and instruction.

He is also a somewhat indecisive lad. Daniels reportedly narrowed his college choices to Duke, Texas and Kansas months ago, but he hasn't come any closer to signing with any of the three. On May 12, our own Dave Telep wrote on his Insider blog that unlike most players, Telep couldn't get any feel for where Daniels was in his decision process.
After speaking with a few people, I've settled on the phrase "paralysis by analysis." To be clear, I have no hard hitting inside knowledge. Frankly, I can't even tell who is really in the mix. Could it be Texas? Duke? Kansas? Someone we've never heard of? All of the above are possibilities. Since no one knows where he's going to go, I asked a simpler question: will he sign?

An assistant coach recruiting Daniels told Telep the answer to that question was probably "no." That was perceptive: On May 18 -- two days ago -- Daniels was supposed to announce his decision, but decided to put it off a day. Then, on Thursday, he decided to put it off again. That put him past the spring signing deadline. It won't affect his college eligibility, but it does mean that he's formally unable to lock himself into a scholarship agreement before he arrives on campus this fall.

The schools interested are likely, as Telep wrote, to "wait him out." Duke fans have been hoping Daniels would agree to come to Duke despite the commitment of small forward Alex Murphy. Kansas fans are hoping Daniels will want to team with two high school teammates who are already Jayhawks. Texas fans are just hoping the loss of forwards Tristan Thompson and Jordan Hamilton sway him toward Austin, Texas. But no one, not even the schools involved, seem to have a ready on where he'll end up.

Meanwhile, Daniels' post-deadline indecision creeps along for yet another day. Will we find out today? Then again, when you've waited this long, why rush the choice now?