Last night was one of the weirder recruiting nights in college hoops. Joshua Christopher - a top-10 recruit according to 247 - decided to pick Arizona State over Michigan. That alone is a bit crazy, because no one outside of James Harden decides to go to Arizona State for basketball that's this high of a recruit. But for Christopher, Michigan was the HEAVY favorite. Hell, it was reported that he was going there all along, people had articles, people had videos made, etc. It was a done deal.
Well, that was until 8:24pm last night. That's the other twist here. Christopher was going to make his decision at 9pm. That got pushed back and everyone started freaking out. This was where you could see Michigan fans getting nervous that there was a late change of heart - Christopher's brother plays at ASU too. But it was more than that. This from The Athletic, explains more about Christopher:
“I asked every college that we’ve spoken to, ‘OK, you guys have a platform. We have a brand,’ ” Laron Christopher recounted by phone on Sunday. “I told them, ‘We’re not going to stay (in college) forever, so we want to know how you’re gonna roll this out. How can we use your platform to increase our brand, as well as your brand? Both are important. They’re important to you, they’re important to us.’ A college shouldn’t be above a kid coming in and changing the direction of the school. I see that happening, wherever he chooses to play. I see that place being electric, and I see that place being exactly what he wants it to be.
I don't blame this line of thinking at all. This is where we are with college hoops right now - especially when someone like Christopher who has 691,000 followers on Instagram. He has his own clothing line whenever the NCAA lets him roll it out. This isn't a regular random commitment, ESPECIALLY for Arizona State. It also shows what we've been seeing in college hoops. These top recruits are going wherever now. On Sunday, top-5 recruit Zairie Williams picked Stanford because he wants a Stanford degree to his name. Last year we saw Anthony Edwards at Georgia, etc.
Now as for Arizona State? They have a chance to be real good if Romello White and Remy Martin come back to college. They have one of the best bucket getters in the country in Allonzo Verge. They have Marvin Bagley's brother (a top-50 recruit). They have Christopher.
I do love that he called out the crazies too. I can't stress this enough. Don't tweet at recruits. That's by far the weirdest thing on social media and there's plenty of weird shit out there.
Oh and congrats to Biz, one of the best Curtain of Distraction guests ever