Making the case: Five-star point guard Trae Young
Five-star point guard Trae Young is next in line from the class of 2017 to make his decision. He will announce his choice during a Thursday press conference at Norman (Okla.) North.
The situation: The high-scoring point guard from Oklahoma was down to a final six of Kansas, Kentucky, Oklahoma, Oklahoma State, Texas Tech and Washington. Young's father, Rayford Young, played at Texas Tech. Young's good friend Michael Porter Jr. (2017's No. 1 player) is committed to Washington. Kentucky has already landed two point guards. So, throw out Kentucky, Tech and Washington.
That leaves the two in-state schools and Kansas. Brad Underwood has done a great job recruiting Young to Stillwater, but there has likely been too much room for him to make up given that he's only been on the job since last spring. For that reason, we see it as a battle between the Sooners and the Jayhawks.
Young has been to both Kansas and Oklahoma multiple times and both staffs have thrown everything that they have into recruiting Young. Both schools are also losing their starting point guards to graduation.
THE CASE FOR KANSAS
"For Bill Self, signing an elite guard in the 2017 class has always been a priority, and five-star point guard Trae Young certainly fits that mold. At Kansas, Young would likely slide in and take over for senior guard Frank Mason III. A year from now, Young could very well find himself running KU’s backcourt with senior Devonte’ Graham, but should Graham decide to leave a year early, a handful of talented guards are waiting to step in and fill the void.
"As a program, Kansas ranks second in all-time in wins, has won multiple national championships and has captured 12 straight Big 12 regular season championships. Since Bill Self’s arrival, Kansas has been one of the most consistent and successful programs in all of college basketball. As good as the Jayhawks were when Roy Williams was head coach, Self has simply elevated the program to new heights. The facilities are second-to-none, the new McCarthy Hall dorms are as good as you’ll find anywhere in college basketball and the fan base and level of support is as good as it gets.
"At Kansas, Young would play in front of sellout crowds on a nightly basis. The exposure he’d receive at Kansas is like nothing he’d receive at the other schools remaining on his list and, Kansas is well within driving distance of Norman, Okla., which means his parents would be able to attend most, if not all, games. At Kansas, Young would play a significant role early on in his career, and a starting spot in the rotation is likely, but he wouldn’t be forced to play the role of “savior.” Depending on who returns and who leaves, Young could very well be the missing piece KU needs to not only capture its 14th-straight Big 12 regular season championship, but also make a deep run in March." Shay Wildeboor, JayhawkSlant.com.
THE CASE FOR OKLAHOMA
"No other school and no other coach have been recruiting Trae Young longer than Oklahoma and Lon Kruger. Now, they did have the inherent advantage of being headquartered in Young’s hometown; nevertheless, the Sooners have built a relationship and comfort that no other program can match. Kruger has recruited the Norman North five-star since the eighth grade and built this roster specifically for Young, who would be the heir-apparent for Jordan Woodard at point guard.
"OU is pursuing no other backup plans at this point in the class of 2017 and has sold Young on the idea of coming in to take over the keys of the team from day one. The Oklahoma coaches have assured Young that they will give him every opportunity to succeed in Norman, as he’ll be “the guy” for as long as it takes until he’s ready for the NBA. This system is designed for a team that can run and get up attempts with high-volume shooters, a la Buddy Hield, something that should be enticing for a point guard used to handling the ball and shooting it 25-30 times a game. The addition of Young to two of the Big 12’s top true freshmen - Kristian Doolittle and 2016’s No. 51 overall player Kameron McGusty - would transform the rebuilding Sooners into an immediate tournament contender.
"Don’t be surprised if Young bucks the blue bloods to follow in the footsteps of Hield and one-time Oklahoma five-star Blake Griffin – both of whom were national players of the year and lottery picks while in Norman." Joe Duvall, Soonerscoop.com.
"The rumor mill has been all over the place on Young for the last month or so, but over the past few weeks Oklahoma has been emerging as the school that seems to be the hottest with Young at the right time. He is a scoring point guard who likes to let it fly and it seems that Lon Kruger the Sooners may have convinced him that their offense is a little more wide open even though Bill Self clearly lets his guards play a freewheeling style as well. At Kansas, Graham is likely to test the NBA waters, but it's looking like he will back and he's more than capable of sliding over to the point to replace Mason. I won't be surprised if Young ends up picking Kansas, but I think he ends up staying home at Oklahoma because of the lure of being 'the' guy from day one and the face of a program looking to rebuild after a down season." Eric Bossi, Rivals.com National Basketball Analyst.