Early Signing Period Winners & Losers

The last month or so has been full of commitment and just the past week has been full of twist and turns on the recruitment trail. The dust has begun to settle, with just about 15 prospects inside the Top-50 remaining available now. Here, our Max Feldman, Travis Graf and Colby Giacubeno go around the table and break down 10 winners and 10 losers from the early signing period.




Based on scheme fit, I don't think I would've handpicked a different duo for the Canes than Top-5 Jalil Bethea and No. 37 Austin Swartz. Both are proven, potent shot-makers both off the catch and off the dribble. Both love to play in tempo and are constantly in attack mode as scorers. Sounds like a hand-in-glove fit for a Jim Larrañaga backcourt. Isaiah Johnson-Arigu fits the bill of what they've seeked out on the wings in terms of versatility, athleticism and upside to tap into. Multiple of the programs I'll hit on here related to sustaining momentum, and that's just what the Canes have done in 2024.  Max Feldman


Obviously you have to talk about the top class with the number one overall prospect as a winner, right? They have a lot of great pieces in this class, and all make sense together. Flagg gives you an immediate two-way threat, Kon Knueppel might be the best shooter in the class, Isaiah Evans is a lengthy wing with upside, and Patrick Ngongba is a high floor, low maintenance big. — Travis Graf


Bill Self did Bill Self things once again in putting together a stout incoming freshman class. He did so by securing one of the best bigs in the country in Flory Bidunga as the Jayhawks swooped in in the last minute as the 6-foot-9 forward seemed to be a heavy Auburn lean leading up to decision day. Self also got involved somewhat late with another talented 2024 prospect in Rakease Passmore and won over the 6-foot-5 wing swiftly to pair with his Team Thad counterpart Labaron Philon. Philon is a 6-foot-4 guard with a score-first mentality. They should be prospects that sport Kansas jerseys for more than one season and develop under Self’s system. — Colby Giacubeno


The Boilermakers were a late add here, largely because of the addition of Gicarri Harris on the final day of the early signing period. The 6-4 Georgia product is one we're about 30 spots higher on than the rest of the industry, and the fit in West Lafayette is snug. Arguably 2024's most dynamic shooter with a super mature approach to the game and a craft-based scoring package that should scale up well to the Big Ten. Painter and company did a fantastic job evaluating Kanon Catchings prior to ascension to Top-25 status and locked him down before other programs could get serious. In a class that gets a bit cloudy outside of the Top-6, Catchings' upside is as high as anyone. Daniel Jacobsen should develop into a versatile frontcourt piece in time, while Raleigh Burgess, assuming health, should slot in and provide value on the interior early.  — Max Feldman


Dennis Gates is making big things happen in his second year at Missouri. They’ve got a lot of good pieces that have college ready bodies. Annor Boateng is built like a middle linebacker and is their best prospect in the class. Peyton Marshall is a load in the paint, and TO Barrett has come on strong over the past year. Trent Burns is one of the more intriguing prospects in the class at 7’2” while loving to play on the perimeter.  — Travis Graf

North Carolina

The Tar Heel locked in two prospects within our top-15 in Drake Powell and Ian Jackson. Powell brings the positional size at 6-foot-7 combined with athleticism and versatility that should equate to a productive stay at the college level. While his offensive skill set is still a work in progress, his defensive attributes is where he can bring instant production. This isn’t to say he can’t put the ball in the basket, but he’ll likely earn most of his time on the floor because of how disruptive he can be in passing lanes and on the glass. Jackson brings some of the most electric plays at both ends of the floor that you’ll see from a high school prospect. Making those plays on a more consistent basis will be key for how he ultimately fares. James Brown is the third commit and brings the necessary size to the frontcourt at 6-foot-9. He’s an efficient finisher around the rim with either hand and brings strength physically as well as mentally acting as the anchor down low.— Colby Giacubeno


Talk about sustaining momentum, that's just what Mitch Henderson and company have done in this 2024 class. The Tigers locked down Top-150 prospect Malik Abdullahi and fringe T150 guard Jack Stanton, to go with a heady guard in Peyton Seals and a hyper-skilled post in CJ Happy. This staff identifies guys at a high level, but they're also beginning to win out in some hotly contested recruitments. As long as Mitch Henderson is there, the Tigers aren't going anywhere. Max Feldman

Saint Mary's

I’m not a history buff, but I’d bet good money that the Gaels have kicked off their best recruiting class in program history, or at least in a very long time. They’ve landed two top-75 prospects in Zion Sensley and Mikey Lewis who should be able to step on campus and have an immediate impact in that conference.   — Travis Graf


Ed Cooley didn’t wait long to make a splash at his new school especially in recruiting the local market. Caleb Williams, a 6-foot-7 southpaw wing from nearby Sidwell Friends, committed to the Hoyas in late June to give Cooley a quality addition from the DMV. Thomas Sorber is a 6-foot-9 big man hailing from the Philadelphia area who Cooley developed strong ties with when he was recruiting him at Providence. Sorber’s faith in Cooley didn’t waver and should provide an imposing paint presence for the Hoya faithful moving forward. Kayvaun Mulready, a tough-nosed guard who will be ready to compete on day one, was already committed to Cooley while at Providence and followed him in the move to Georgetown. — Colby Giacubeno

Kennesaw State

Bit of a deep cut here, but I love what Antoine Pettway has done in his first recruiting class at Kennesaw State. Mentioned it before and will once again, I think Top-150 G Adrian Wooley is one that's looked back upon as a miss for high majors. 6-8 F Braeden Lue is one who high majors flirted with consistently these past few months after a big summer, now committed to the Owls. Both Pettway and Bryan Hodgson (Arkansas State HC) departed Alabama this past offseason with big-time reputations on the recruiting trail, and those have quickly translated to the mid-major level in their first full cycle. — Max Feldman


Kansas State

This class was either going to be a massive winner, or fall into the losers category simply because of the time spent on now Duke commit Patrick Ngongba. Jerome Tang and company made it clear, even before his big spring in the EYBL, that the 6-10 DMV-based big was at the top of their board. It's looking like a portal-heavy offseason for the Wildcats after signing just one prospect in the ESP in David Castillo while being set to lose at least four players from this years' roster.  Max Feldman


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