Point Guard Follies II

According to one recruit's Dad this is UCLA's point guard for one more year, than nothing. - Ronald Martinez

Next Saturday or Sunday 5 star Point Guard Josh Perkins will announce his decision on where he will attend. First there was the "good news" that Kentucky effectively passed on him taking another player. However, if sources and tweets are to be believed it seems very likely Josh Perkins is going to Gonzaga. This means UCLA is not just losing on a national level but also on a local level.

Of course, an epic disaster would be to lose Jordan McLaughlin to USC. USC and now Kansas are pursuing this local kid hard who went to the same school as Darren Collison. Jordan's recruitment has always been a must for UCLA and while it is good to have backups, Alford's high profile and likely unsuccessful recruitment of Perkins will be called into question if he fails with McLaughlin, especially to USC.

That is probably not strong enough. UCLA needs to own the first choice of the best in the West, especially a guy like McLaughlin. His recruitment is not over yet but McLaughlin is as close to a must get as possible and to lose him to Kansas is bad, USC unthinkable.

The current alternative choice to McLaughlin is Quentin Snider. Snider was going to Louisville until Louisville found someone they liked better. That does not mean Snider is bad, quite to the contrary Snider is very very good. Actually Snider is probably the best hope for a national recruit in that Snider recruitment just opened up again, starting Alford on near equal ground.

Snider has scheduled two expense-paid, official visits to national championship-winning programs - UCLA on Aug. 31 and Connecticut on Sept. 20 - plus unofficial visits to Memphis (Sept. 7) and Illinois (Sept. 28). . . .

[Dad] Scott Snider had this to say about the teams they'll visit:

UCLA: "It's one of the teams that starting recruiting him. We've talked to the assistant coaches and (head coach) Steve Alford, and everything sounded real good with the situation. He just wants to go out there and check it out and visit. (Quentin) just came from the West Coast (while playing for the Louisville Magic in tournaments in Los Angeles and Las Vegas), and he liked it out there. It was one of the schools he decided he wanted to go look at. ... He sees an opportunity where he could go there and play early. Just from talking to the coaching staff, they said a lot of good things that they talked to him about and made him want to go visit.

Snider is on the same level as McLaughlin, maybe better right now. An interesting quote in the Snider article from his Dad underscores the extreme importance of the Point Guard recruitment.

"They need a point guard immediately. I think they're going to play (6-foot-9) Kyle Anderson at the point this year because they don't have one."

Kyle is gone after this season barring a disaster like a major injury. That means according to Coach Alford the only point guard on the roster next year is Son Bryce Alford. This should be a real positive for recruiting because unlike many places whoever is recruited is going to be the point guard from Day 1.

But it is real scary for UCLA fans, especially if Perkins turns out to be the best freshman point guard in the West for Gonzaga and McLaughlin is running point for a school where basketball is an afterthought at USC. There is still time, but the situation is critical.

Go Bruins!

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