BBall Recruiting & The Battle of DC

Yesterday we learned that Jamelle McMillan is not going to play basketball at NC State. SFN shared some thoughts and analysis in this entry that we hope that you didn’t miss.

Something that we tried to politely dance around was the ‘priority’ that the new NC State staff put on McMillan’s recruitment. We commented that it “never seemed as though Coach Lowe wanted to make the full court press on Jamelle; almost wanting JM to go ahead and commit somewhere else so that we didn’t have to tell him that we didn’t want him.”

In support of that theory, shared the following information in one of their reports yesterday:

McMillan said that he had only heard from new N.C. State coach Sidney Lowe once in the past month – a text message since he returned from Las Vegas at the end of July. “I saw Sidney Lowe a couple of times in July, but I haven’t talked to him in a month,â€? McMillan said.

Now the public attention on NC State’s guard recruitment will shift exclusively to Chris Wright. There is no doubt that Sidney Lowe has put the majority of his eggs in Wright’s basket creating a high risk/high reward proposition for the point guard position of the program.

Wright is featured in the following piece on college basketball recruiting in Washington, DC at Sports Illustrated’s new College Basketball Blog. (Link to entry)

The following are couple of additional comments that were made by our readers on theoriginal Jamelle McMillan entry that we felt were worth highlighting:

I don’t know why everyone is getting so worked up over Jamelle going to ASU. Jamelle himself said that he was a solid player but not a program changer and that fans shouldn’t expect him to be or they would be disappointed. The last thing Jamelle would have wanted to do is come into a program where his father is an all-time legend with overblown expectations.

I am sure Sid, Nate, and Jamelle talked about that and all wanted what was best or better for Jamelle. Jamelle is closer in height and skill set to his father when Nate came out of high school—and even the great Jimmy V didn’t take future great Nate then, only after Nate grew into a much oversized pg for the era and major matchup problem.

It is pretty obvious that Sid felt that Degand offered a lot of what Jamelle does, so Sid has chosen to invest all of his energies in higher rated Chris Wright in addition to trying to build relationships with future pg’s in 2008 and beyond while Jamelle gets to go somewhere where he will have an opportunity to shine (hopefully) without the intensity and scrutiny of the sometimes overly rabid NCSU basketball fanbase.

Sid is shooting for the fences, and it is a high risk but potentially high return endeavor. If Sid misses out on the big names in 2007 and 2008, we will be hating basketball life. BUT, honestly, I can’t see that I will hate basketball life any worse than I have watching Herb Sendek send his “almost goodâ€? teams on the floor to build nice records against weak teams early in the year….lose UGLY early season non-conference games against other mediocre teams…look confused as hell at every timeout, press, and end game situation…give us a little hope and then blow it in the most excruciating fashion (the Maryland technical game and/or last second shot games, the Wake Forest home debacles vs Josh Howard once with a foul and then Chris Paul with a last second shot after a nut punch, or the Duke ACCT Final meltdown) OR simply get blown out (UNC last year, Duke in an ACCT Final, etc.)…

I mean, seriously, the 1997 ACCT Final run and the NCAA win over UConn were about all that was enjoyable in a decade’s worth of Herb Sendek ball with a lot of gaps and disappointments in between. So, if Sid wants to shoot for the fences, I’m with him whether he whiffs or not. The only way to evoke real change is to take the chance and accept the risk. We had 6 years of suck under Les, 5 years of suck under Herb, and 5 years of “almost pretty good� under Herb—none of it was all that enjoyable. So, if Sid hits it big, GREAT!! If Sid fails, well, I am not sure I will notice the difference between suck and “almost pretty good� this time around.

Hell, beating Southwest Missouri State or whoever the hell it was back in the 1997 NIT of Herb year 1 was a lot more enjoyable than getting blown out by Texas in the NCAA’s last year in Herb year 10 (especially with Gavin and Courtney on the bench after they brought us back once already). After 10 years you should have more to hang your hat on, so, if we have to blow the program up and start over, so be it—it wasn’t all that to begin with…

“The reason most fans wanted him to come to NCSU was to see his name in the rafters, next to his dads. Outside of the sentimental value, it held for fans, we’re not losing out on a program changing guard.�

That is the reason most Pack fans wanted him here. I wanted him here a lot more when I read that he was a lockdown defender and that he locked down UNC-Ch’s top rated PG. I wanted him here because he was a decent student and he would have added depth.

Don’t get me wrong, if I had to choose between as basketball players, I’d go after Wright. However, I would consider Wright far from a lock at this point. It would also be nice if this was a sign that Fells, Ferguson and Degand have made Sid feel like all he needs is this one guard.

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80 Responses to BBall Recruiting & The Battle of DC

  1. Luke12321 08/31/2006 at 12:24 PM #

    I think it is funny to hear some people in a true panic about our program. I think someone earlier hit it on the head. With Herb we were going to the NCAA every year but we was never going to win a ACC title…much less even compete for one. (Lets not even talk about a NCAA title) Everyone knew taking a former player…with no college coaching experience was a risk but we decided to take it. What is the worst that will happen? 5 or so years we are last in the league? Well being middle of the pack is really no better than last place. You are either competing and every now and then winning a title or you are losing. Middle of the pack in the ACC and losing in the 1st round of the NCAA does nothing for our program. We are taking a risk here….everyone knows this. I am looking forward to the ride. We will either make it back to the top or still be in that losing “area” which does include middle of the pack and ncaa 1st round bow outs. Chris Wright is coming to town this weekend…..I won’t be in Raleigh. Just keeping my fingers crossed because I think we all know…if he recommits then the bleeding stops QUICKLY!

  2. ShootingGuard 08/31/2006 at 1:08 PM #


    I TOTALLY agree. Lowe jumped in to stop the bleeding caused by Lee Fowler’s pathetic coaching search. Lowe was a big risk who was willing to take a big risk of himself on a program being driven straight into the ground by Lee Fowler. Let’s give him some realistic time, and, if he doesn’t work out, we’ll try and hire the next saviour. Being at the bottom and losing the big games doesn’t feel any worse than being in the middle and losing the big games…We just need to keep swinging!!

    Of course, CHRIS WRIGHT could help quickly swing us back in the right direction!! CHRIS WRIGHT come on down!!

    (I am definitely going to the Fan Zone Sat. to see if CW is roaming around and give him some positive feedback on NCSU bball and what a legend he could be among this rabid and incredibly hungry fanbase!!)

  3. Luke12321 08/31/2006 at 5:53 PM #

    Sounds great Shooting! We can only hope he enjoys his time in Raleigh and decides to come back to the pack. I think we have a great chance with him. I am sure he has built friendships with several of the current players (Probably with G-Town players as well though) but hopefully them guys will be there to hang out with him as well! I feel confident Lowe and company will pull out all the tricks for the visit. Anyone who has any info on the Wright visit…keep us posted!!!

  4. vtpackfan 08/31/2006 at 9:08 PM #

    Wright’s coming for a hurricane party, allright!

  5. burnbarn 09/05/2006 at 3:22 PM #

    SG.. I am new to this fight..

    Were you Lee Fowl, how would you have handled the seach and how do you think that might have made an impact above what actually hppened?

    Not pointing fingers, just wondering.. you seem to know a lot about what is going on.

    Also, any word on CW’s visit here?

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