Chat with Paul Biancardi
Welcome to SportsNation! On Thursday, Scouts Inc.'s basketball recruiting expert Paul Biancardi will stop by to talk about college basketball's future stars.
Biancardi, who spent 2007-08 as an assistant coach on Rick Majerus' staff at Saint Louis University, is the national recruiting director for ESPN Scouts Inc. He has 18 years of coaching experience at the Division I level. He was an assistant at Boston University, Boston College and Ohio State before becoming the head coach at Wright State, where he earned Horizon League Coach of the Year honors in the 2003-04 season.
Send your questions now and join Biancardi Thursday at 1 p.m. ET!
Moderator (12:59 PM)
Thanks for all your questions. I am just about to get Paul on the phone.
Paul Biancardi (1:00 PM)
Welcome to the chat. There is a lot for us to talk about as we wrap up the 2010 recruiting class discussion.
Larry Vaught (Danville, Ky.)
What does Terrence Jones add to Kentucky's recruiting class and how do you compare this class to the one Calipari had last year?
Paul Biancardi (1:03 PM)
Hi Larry, obviously this is the talk of the day with Terrence Jones choosing KY. Jones is has tremendous talent, size and versatility. Jones is the big with perimeter skills that KY needed. These classes are similar in talent, depth and filling needs. I will give the slight nod to last year's class because they have already proved themselves.
ahmed ali (england)
how does kentuky's class of 2010 compare to 2009
Paul Biancardi (1:04 PM)
In comparison, both have great PG play and size, but this year's class is deeper on the perimeter and more versatile overall. When you watch the 2009 class together, you could tell they wanted to play together, so chemistry is going to be huge.
Does Rice have any chance of salvaging this years class at Rutgers?
Paul Biancardi (1:06 PM)
Knish, I know Rice pretty well, he is going to turn this program around sooner than later. What he has done in a short time has been terric. He has kept Gil Baruta and Austin Carroll and added Mike Poole, while trying to put a staff together. He is also going hard at the 2011 class.
Inus (Amherst, MA)
Paul, Have you seen Daryl Traynam play? Looks like UMass has a good one there, and with Jesse Morgan on board, Kellogg has the Minutemen on the right track, no?
Paul Biancardi (1:08 PM)
Hey Inus, I would agree and yes I have seen Trynam. He is a tough, feisty little PG and Jesse Morgan can score the ball. Both should contribute last year and don't forget about Terrell Vincent, who UMass got last year. Kellogg and his staff have put together quality back to back recruiting classes.
don (bardstown kentucky)
#1 recruiting class for UK?? we got Knight, Jones, Lamb and Kanter. Some top players in the country, who could top us?
Paul Biancardi (1:09 PM)
Dear don, KY is the talk of recruiting today and it should be. Yes they earned the No. 1 class. Coach Cal made a huge surge down the stretch.
Brent (BIG BLUE NATION)
with the commitment from terrence jones, UK has to be the frontrunner again for the top recruiting class correct? and what are your expectations for another talent loaded but young team?
Paul Biancardi (1:10 PM)
Dear Brent and all of Big Blue Nation, yes they are No. 1 again. Terrific job by Coach Cal and his staff. Expectations are for the incoming recruitins to blend in with returning players (Miller, Dotson, Liggins) and develop a chemistry, so they have a chance to achieve what last year's team did.
Tom S. (NYC)
Is anyone outside of Anthony Davis turning more heads over the last month than SU commit Michael Carter-Williams? Where do you think he'll end up when the new ESPN rankings for 2011 are released?
Paul Biancardi (1:14 PM)
Anthony Davis for sure is turning heads with his stellar play. Also Ben McLemore and BJ Young from St. Louis are making some noise. Carter-Williams should be top 40 player. 2011 Rankings will be released in June.
Do you think Terrence Jones is more of a one-and-done or could he be a player like Patrick Patterson and stays awhile?Thankx
Paul Biancardi (1:16 PM)
If he has a good season and there is no reason he shouldn't, he should be a one-and-done player. If he plays to his potential, he will be gone.
Hi,What are the ups and downs of offering scholarships to HS players while they are freshman and sophomores? It seems Purdue might turnoff a lot of top prospects because the depth of average prospects that have already accepted scholarships at the same positions. What is your take?
Paul Biancardi (1:19 PM)
The upside is that you evaluated well and beat your competition to the punch and hopefully the young man will want to accept that. The downside could be that the player doesn't turn out as godd as you thought. The best thing to do is to offer the ones that you really believe love your school and the one you love.Purdue is doing a sensational job identifying and evaluating talent. Painter has put the program back on the national scene.
Taylor S (Hazard Ky)
I am a big UK fan and I love Calipari but can he win a championship with the recruits he gets that are one and done players?
Paul Biancardi (1:21 PM)
Hey Taylor, he can absolutely win a national championship. He made it to the Elite 8 this year with a young, inexperienced team. But I do think you need some experience to go along with the freshmen, so the returning players will have to step up.
Chris Fiegler (Latham,NY)
Who do you think will be a great College Basketball player for Syracuse?
Paul Biancardi (1:22 PM)
Dear Chris, this one is easy. Dion Waiters. He's tough talented and productive. His game has improved over the years and he's already physically ready for the rigors of the Big East.
Marie (San Francisco)
Where do you ultimately see Austin Rivers going? And do you see him as more of a shooting guard or a point guard at the collegiate level?
Paul Biancardi (1:24 PM)
Hello Marie, ultimately since he reopend it its too early to tell. He is now talking and visiting more schools. But I see him leaning towards Duke right now. He came back raving about his unofficial there last month. He will be a SG in college and a PG in the pros.
denver (hartford, ct)
Can Ohio state's incoming freshman class come in and make up for the loss of Evan Turner?
Paul Biancardi (1:26 PM)
Denver, Ohio State's class by committee only can make up for the loss of Turner. Sullinger and Thomas will ease the pain, but there's no one on the perimeter who comes close to Turner's ability. I love this class going to Columbus.
bernard (syracuse ny)
if tobias harris had chosen su would they have the top class this year or would it still be kentucky?
Paul Biancardi (1:27 PM)
No if Tobias ended up at Syracuse, they would be 2. Great question. I love Tobias' game.
Jeremiah (Phoenix, AZ)
A lot has been said about Terrence Jones' very public committment and waffling before signing with Kentucky last night. Yet few media members have said anything critical of Calipari for stealing two 5-star recruits from Washington. As a UW fan, am I overreacting or is Calipari making a mockery of the recruiting process?
Paul Biancardi (1:31 PM)
Jeremiah, the way to look at it is that Kanter and Jones oibviously wanted to be recruited. This happens all the time, where someone will commit and then sound out signals that they want to be recruited. Anytime a recruit listens, a coach will talk. That's why there are so many different decommittments.
C.D.B (Berea, Ky)
What are our chances of securing Kadeem Jack this year now that Jones has signed?
Paul Biancardi (1:32 PM)
Jack will not be looking at KY. He's at South Kent prep school in CT, but theres still a chance he could look at UNC, Oregon and St. John's, among others at this late stage.
Ben Morrison (Lancaster, PA)
I feel that Enes Kanter will be the key player of this class. Do you agree?
Paul Biancardi (1:33 PM)
Yes, because he is physically mature and mentally advanced. He could be the x-factor for this team but its crucial that Knight plays well as the PG in the dribble-drive.
D. Charles (Seattle)
Do you think TJ is selfish? I mean he dragged it out till the very last minute, essential not allowing UW to fill their last scholarship spot. While UK still had 3 scholarship, so they were in less of a bind during the 3 weeks of TJ drama.
Paul Biancardi (1:37 PM)
D., I know your upset like a lot of UW fans. Jones is looking for the best fit for himself, which is how the modern recruit thinks. It is unfortunate that Jones wavered on his recruitment, which put coach Romar in a difficult situation, but he handled it with class. This is the part of recruiting that no one likes because theres no definite answers until the end. It obviously hurt UW, because they probably held off other recruits thinking they had Jones in the fold. That's the unfortunate part.
Max (Seattle, WA.)
What's your opinion about the way the Terrence Jones saga ended? Has there ever been this big of a recruiting fiasco?
Paul Biancardi (1:39 PM)
He ultimately went where he wanted to go. Its unfortunate he couldn't make the decision earlier, but there have been a lot of players to decommit -- Selby, Rivers, Eric Gordon. Can't explain why its happening so much, but this is going to happen year in and year out on a limited basis because theres so much at stake.
Tommy Yu (Chicago, IL)
Who'll be the most ready rookie from this draft?
Paul Biancardi (1:41 PM)
That one's easy. John Wall is freakishly athletic and has gotten stronger. what he cant do on the floor right now, he can make up for with his athletic ability. People need to talk about what a great passer he is more often.
Paul, doesn't seem like Cal's recruiting at UK is more of a quick fix than it is building a foundation? How many of these kids do you predict being a one and done?
Paul Biancardi (1:43 PM)
Calipari has clearly indicated that he wants to coach great players, and while it creates a void each year, it creates a lot excitement and a winnign culture. I would say three are one-and-done players: Kanter, Jones and Knight if they all play to their potential.
How about some love for Rick Majerus's class at SLU. What do you think of that haul?
Paul Biancardi (1:44 PM)
Tom, I couldn't agree with you more about Majerus' class at St. Louis. Having worked for the future Hall of Fame class, I can tell you first hand he is great at evaluating talent. This is an excellent class with Loe and McCall.
Jonathan (Murray, KY)
Paul, With the late signings of T. Jones and Eloy Vargas, do you see this as an indication that Coach Cal isn't going anywhere anytime soon. Sorry Lebron.
Paul Biancardi (1:45 PM)
I would think it looks that way. It would have to be a ridicuously good offer of money and control.
Adam (O'boro Kentucky)
Well we know that Cal's new kids are talented, but do you think they'll be able to mesh like last years team? and also do any of these kids have any character issues?
Paul Biancardi (1:46 PM)
That will be the question. How quick will they mesh with the returning players and with each other. There are no character issues I'm aware of. These kids love to compete and win.
timmy c. (lancaster, pa)
The fab five couldn't win it all. Do you ever think a team loaded with freshmen talent will win the title?
Paul Biancardi (1:47 PM)
Only if there is some experienced players in the program that have been there before. It will be essential for the returning players to have a big role.
How soon will the incoming class at Syracuse be able to contribute?
Paul Biancardi (1:49 PM)
This class has great size and talent. This is an impact class.
What are your expectations for the 5 man class at Wake Forest? Which players do you think can earn significant playing time next season?
Paul Biancardi (1:50 PM)
This Wake class is talented and will grow in time to keep Wake in the upper half of the ACC. Terrell and McKie will earn significant time next season.
Ian (Atlanta, GA)
With Terrence Jones now added to Kentuckys roster, where do you see them as far as preseaon rankings, ESPN recently had them at thirteenth
Paul Biancardi (1:50 PM)
With Jones, bumps them into the top 10 in my opinion.
Nick Knieling (Frankenmuth)
With Jon Scheyer leaving Duke due to graduation, Kyrie Irving will more than likely take over the role as PG for the Blue Devils, how do you see that transition being?
Paul Biancardi (1:51 PM)
Scheyer is a big loss for Duke, but Irving is the best PG in the class. So the transition should be smooth.
BRad (MArion, In)
Paul, What do you think the chances are that Terone Johnson steps in and makes a big time immediate impact at Purdue possibly taking over Kramers starting role?. . . HE comes from a great high schoool program that has produced big time college gaurds JAson Garnder (Arizona) and Eric Gordon
Paul Biancardi (1:52 PM)
Johnson will step in and challenge for immediate playing time at Purdue. Not sure about taking over the whole show, though.
If Duke lands Quincy Miller and Austin Rivers could they derail UK's chances at having three straight #1 recruiting classes?
Paul Biancardi (1:53 PM)
With '09 class looking solid in their freshman year at illinois along with this years highly rated class plus some solid '11 committed class, is this the best 3 years recruiting class for the illini history?
Paul Biancardi (1:54 PM)
Bruce Weber and staff have picked up their recruiting recently and its been great. But Bill Self had some phenomenal years recruiting there.
Willie (Dayton, Ohio)
What do you think of the Flyers class? Has there been a noticeable bump after the NIT win?
Paul Biancardi (1:55 PM)
The Flyers class is tough on the perimeter. you will love Juwan Statan at the point. I think Dayton has done an outstanding job.
Tomcat (Lexington, KY)
Enes Kanter has rocketed up the recruiting rankings the last month or so. Do you think he would have been a Top 20 pick in this year's NBA draft?
Paul Biancardi (1:55 PM)
Yes. He would have been a top 20 pick easy.
Whats your final four for next year
Paul Biancardi (1:57 PM)
Duke, Kansas, Kentucky and Butler.
Tough break for UW losing Jones. They have everyone but Pondexter (big loss for sure) coming back from last year's sweet 16 team. Jones seemed like a perfect fit.
Paul Biancardi (1:59 PM)
Romar has done an oustanding job and have the best perimeter coming back next year in the Pac-10. Don't forget about Terrence Ross, who will be an immediate impact player thanks to his shooting touch.
mike in MN (MN)
If Tubby can't recruit, is it worth paying him all this money? What's going on here?
Paul Biancardi (2:00 PM)
Mike, Tubby can recruit. He's won at a high level everywhere he's been. Be patient and know he will get them to the top of the Big Ten.
Is Fab Melo a project, or can he be an immediate contributor for Syracuse? My concern is that he's not ready to contribute this year, and then takes his massive size and potential to the NBA after one season without really doing much as a college player.
Paul Biancardi (2:00 PM)
He'll contribute as a freshman and work hard to get better every year. You can't do anything about the NBA part.
victor caudill (hudson,florida)
mr biancardi do you feel that the addition of terrence jones to kentucky now makes the wildcats a serious contender and who do you feel is the other prospect cal is talking of signing could that be k jack that is also being chased by north carolina?
Paul Biancardi (2:02 PM)
Victor, they are in position to make another title run. They are probably done signing, but you never know. I don't see Jack going to KY.
Paul Biancardi (2:02 PM)
It's been an awesome afternoon of recruiting questions. I appreciate your passion and thanks for following us on ESPN.