Gonzaga Basketball Recruiting: Few's Tireless Recruiting Pays Off

The latest updates on Gonzaga basketball recruiting. For everything Gonzaga basketball, head over to SB Nation's The Slipper Still Fits.

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Gonzaga Basketball Recruiting: 'Mark Few Hit This One Out Of The Park'


As expected, Gary Bell, Kevin Pangos, Ryan Spangler, and Kyle Dranginis all signed National Letters of Intent today committing to Gonzaga University.

Zach Bell of the Slipper Still Fits provides a breakdown.

Gonzaga expected to ink major 2011 class on Wednesday - The Slipper Still Fits
Mark Few has been building momentum with this class since nearly a year ago when he snagged the verbal commitment of Kyle Dranginis, an under the radar guard from Idaho. Few and the staff continued their momentum all the way through last month when they seemingly capped off the class with Kevin Pangos, a pure point guard with big expectations from Canada.

While Gonzaga's class is loaded with talent, the guy that has created the most buzz is Gary Bell Jr. Bell, aside from being an elite guard prospect with numerous BCS offers, chose Gonzaga over a number of Pac-10 suitors.

Head over to the Slipper Still Fits for continued updates and insights on Gonzaga's recruiting class.


Ryan Spangler Commits To Gonzaga

Gonzaga head coach Mark Few picked up his third commit for the class of 2011 this weekend when Oklahoma forward Ryan Spangler picked the Zags while on his official visit. Spangler joins Kentridge’s Gary Bell and Idaho’s Kyle Dranginis in the Zags recruiting class.

The 6’8 power forward chose Gonzaga over offers from Colorado and Tulsa. While he’s under the radar, Gonzaga SB Nation blog The Slipper Still Fits thinks he fits the “classic Gonzaga mold”.

From what we have gathered about Ryan, he seems to be made in that “classic Zag” mold. He might not always be the best player on the court but he is rarely outworked by his opposition. Averaging somewhere around 26 points and 18 boards a game, it is obvious that Ryan has a tremendous skill set and we have heard that his athletic ability is seriously underrated. Not only can he hit the mid-range jumper in space, but he can also put it on the deck and get to the rim.

The Zags are at the scholarship limit for the class of 2011 but may still add another player due to the expected departure of Elias Harris. Harris, who had a standout season, will likely head for the NBA draft following the season.

For more on Spangler, check out The Slipper Still Fits’ interview with him.

For more on Gonzaga basketball, check out SB Nation’s The Slipper Still Fits.


Kyle Wiltjer Reaction: John Calipari Snags Another Northwest Recruit

The Northwest has long been a hotbed for up-and-coming talent on the AAU circuit. Players such as Jamal Crawford, Nate Robinson, Jason Terry and more all came up through the local systems before moving on to the NBA. With the Sonics moving to Oklahoma City, the young talent in the Northwest is in focus, and the nation is taking notice.

Kyle Wiltjer became the latest recruit to make it big on the national scene, and because of it, Kentucky head coach John Calipari came calling. Wiltjer, ranked as the 32nd-best prospect in the class of 2011, had a who’s who of national and local programs on his recruitment list. In the end, Calipari came through with an offer and lured the Portland star to Lexington.

Kentucky SB Nation blog A Sea Of Blue breaks it down.

Needless to say, Fans of schools in the states of Washington and Oregon have been dismayed at the sudden movement of their talent to Lexington. With Tony Wroten still out there uncommitted, there is at least a technical possibility of yet another highly-ranked Great Northwest recruit playing for the Blue and White. That would be a staggeringly successful invasion of an under appreciated and talent-rich region of America.

With Calipari luring Enes Kanter for Washington’s grasp, the ire of the Washington faithful was aimed directly at the Kentucky coach. On the heels of that, Kentucky snagged Terrence Jones after a public commitment to Washington. You could even go back to Terrence Williams (Rainier Beach H.S.) and Peyton Siva (Franklin H.S.), who each left Seattle to play for Rick Pitino at Louisville.

With the talent in the Northwest high, national programs continue to swoop in and pick through the top-ranked recruits the Seattle and Portland areas have to offer. Keeping the homegrown players close to home has become a tougher task, as the rest of the country catches up to what we already know: the Northwest is a hotbed for recruits.

The battles for Northwest recruits aren't over with Wiltjer. Highly touted Seattle prepster Tony Wroten Jr. is all over the national radar, holding offers from nearly every major school in the country. It may come down to Washington and Kentucky again, with Lorenzo Romar and John Calipari squaring off again. There's no doubt Calipari will be keeping a close eye on the Northwest, looking to snatch some of the top talent away from the area colleges.


Kyle Wiltjer Picks Kentucky

It's official: Class of 2011 power forward Kyle Wiltjer announced at halftime of tonight's Boost Mobile Elite 24 game on ESPN U that he will commit to the University of Kentucky and head coach John Calipari. "I just wanna let Coach Calipari know I'm gonna play for the Wildcats," Wiltjer said. 

The news comes as a surprise because Wiltjer had reportedly not visited Kentucky's campus and had been seen as a Gonzaga target. 

SB Nation's The Slipper Still Fits first linked Wiltjer to Kentucky earlier Saturday.

Sources tell The Slipper Still Fits that prized 2011 power forward Kyle Wiltjer has made his decision and he will take his game to Lexington and play for John Calipari and the Kentucky Wildcats

That was tough to write.

Wiltjer's commitment to Kentucky was first confirmed by Matt Jones of Kentucky Sports Radio on Twitter.

Source tells me Kyle Wiltjer will commit to Kentucky in just a few minutesless than a minute ago via Echofon


Wiltjer's commitment to Kentucky was further confirmed by CBS's Gary Parrish on Twitter.

Kyle Wiltjer just announced for Kentucky. That's four top 20 prospects for UK, which is assured of the nation's top class again.less than a minute ago via TweetDeck


Wiltjer is the state of Oregon's top class of 2011 high school basketball player and has won back-to-back 6A state titles with Portland's Jesuit High School. He has been called the most skilled power forward in the country and is a versatile offensive player who should make a serious impact on the next level.

Wiltjer joins a loaded class of 2011 Kentucky group that already included Anthony Davis, Marquis Teague and Mike Gilchrist. It is widely regarded as the nation's top recruiting class.

For a full rundown of Kyle Wiltjer's recruitment decision, click here.

For everything Gonzaga basketball, head over to SB Nation's The Slipper Still Fits.


Report: Kyle Wiltjer Expected To Pick Kentucky

Gonzaga recruit, and Northwest high school star, Kyle Wiltjer is expected to choose Kentucky tonight in a live announcement on ESPNU. The talented Portland power forward had narrowed his list to five, with Gonzaga among the favorites to land him.

ESPNU, the network hosting his announcement, broke the news on Twitter.

2011 power forward Kyle Wiltjer expected to announce for Kentucky - http://es.pn/bk9bakless than a minute ago via API


As usual, anything can happen until he actually announces tonight. If true, it's a tough loss for Gonzaga, who considered Wiltjer the prize of the 2011 class.

For more on Gonzaga basketball, check out SBNation blog The Slipper Still Fits.


Kyle Wiltjer Watch: Where Will He Commit?

Kyle Wiltjer is, without question, the state of Oregon's top Class of 2011 basketball prospect.  A power forward at the high school level, Wiltjer excels facing the basket and sports a crafty offensive game.  He can put the ball on the back to get his own shot, step out and shoot from the mid-range and find open teammates with excellent vision and passing skills for a big man.  Blessed with great basketball intelligence and court awareness, Wiltjer stands to be an impact player on the next level.

Wiltjer is a proven level on the high school level, having won back-to-back state OSAA 6A state championships, and on the AAU level, where he played for the Drew Gooden Soldiers.  Wiltjer has also played for Canada during various international youth tournaments owing to his father Greg's Canadian citizenship.

Currently, Scout.com ranks Kyle Wiltjer as a 5 star prospect, the country's fifth-best power forward. Wiltjer is Scout.com's No. 19 overall prospect in the Class of 2011.

When it comes to Oregon preps basketball, nobody does it better than Oregonlive.com's Tim Brown.  Here's an interview Brown did with Wiltjer following the 2010 Nike Global Challenge.

Nike Global Challenge: Kyle Wiltjer assumes a leadership role on Team Canada


There are disputing reports about who Wiltjer is and is not considering for his college destination. At least three Pacific Northwest teams are said to be in the running, according to Oregonlive.com's Aaron Fentress: Gonzaga, Oregon and Washington.  Another list has only Gonzaga in the mix locally.

One thing is clear: whoever lands Kyle Wiltjer on Saturday will be adding a difference-maker in 2011 and beyond.

For everything Gonzaga basketball, head over to SB Nation's The Slipper Still Fits.

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