For the University of Virginia basketball team and its fans, there have definitely been better times in the past. With the new coaching staff under head coach Tony “I kind of look like Papa John” Bennett, there were some signs of revitalization from the Dave Leitao era (we miss you Sean Singletary!) with a nice eight-game winning streak including the wins over three ranked teams. But all good things come to an end. We haven’t won a damn game in awhile, including heartbreaking losses to Tech and embarrassing defeats from Duke and other not-as-good teams.
But hey! There’s promise in the future, right? Tony Bennett has put together a pretty impressive recruiting class with 5 excellent players with lots of potential talent. However, who’s to say that he’ll put them to good use? I mean, after all, Tristan Spurlock was a four-star recruit and the promise of UVA basketball when he was recruited to play under Leitao. Tony Bennett has him averaging less than like 4 minutes a game (cue Sedale’s C’MON SON!).
Now let’s take a look at our “promising future”, the five players who carry the key to success at JPJ.
1. Our top prospect is unanimously this fellow out of Montgomery, Alabama by the name of K.T. Harrell. He’s a 6’3″ shooting guard who can attack and create at the shooting guard position. Who’s to say he won’t change the UVA program around?
2. The next player on the list is a 6’9″ California boy, James Johnson. Scout.com has him as a four-star recruit (that’s good) who can do everything a big man can do as well as consistently drop the perimeter shot. To be honest, this kid reminds me of Will Sherrill, a tough rebounding and fundamental kid who can sink threes, but I need to see the leadership and killer instinct from Johnson, because a lot of angry UVA fans dislike Sherrill.
3. The third recruit is a kid from Buffalo, New York (the trend seems to be that Bennett is all against domestic talent) named Will Regan, a 6’8″ center who loves to rebound and shoot.
4. The fourth recruit Tony Bennett has lined up is Joe Harris, a 6’5″ guard from Washington (where Bennett used to coach) who can drain.
5. Lastly, the fifth recruit is a 6’7″ guard from North Carolina by the name of Akil Mitchell. He reminds me of a Jerome Meyinsse/Mike Scott type of player, so it’s definitely good to have him on board.
That’s it, those are the five players Tony Bennett has received signed letters of intent from to play at the University of Virginia. Some sites have Bennett’s recruiting class as the 15th best in the nation. But numbers mean nothing, we’ll see how those numbers translate into production and hopefully wins next season at JPJ.