Jim Christian and his coaching staff will hit the road hard after the conclusion of the Mountain West Conference tournament in Las Vegas.
Recruiting is perhaps the most critical part of Jim Christian’s job. He has stabilized TCU’s program and now he simply MUST get the players that will play his style.
So for Jim Christian the strength of his recruiting class in this upcoming offseason could very well determine whether Christian will be at TCU for years to come or if his team will be able to compete in the Big East.
Players like Amric Fields, Garlon Green, and Nikola Cerina are great players to build around. Now Christian must set out to find the class that is going to permanently make TCU relative to the college basketball landscape. It would appear that TCU would like to bring in anywhere between 3-5 players.
Christian’s prize recruit this year could very well be small forward Josh Richardson from Santa Fe, Oklahoma. Richardson is deciding between TCU, Georgia Tech, Providence, and Missouri State. Richardson is a three star player according to rivals.com.
Richardson is the type of perimeter scorer that TCU often lacked this season after Ronnie Moss was suspended by Christian. Richardson is also a very good defender who has the length at 6’5 and quickness to guard other elite perimeter players. He visited TCU on the 19th of February.
Christian is also courting 6’11 center Vashill Fernandez. Fernandez currently lives in Bowie, Maryland. ESPN’s recruiting database has him listed as a two star prospect but one that has tremendous potential as he continues to learn the game and develop his offensive potential. Vernandez is also considering East Carolina.
TCU also hosted a 6’11 prospect from Jamaica at the New Mexico. His name is not known at this time.
One advantage that TCU has over other schools in basketball recruiting is that despite some guys not being recruited by traditional powers, TCU is an avenue for those players to still get tremendous exposure while playing in the Big East. As Christian continues to grow the program, TV exposure and plenty of scouts will be at TCU games because they are competing in the best basketball conference in America.
Finally Jim Christian is able to see himself to these players. Christian has been successful everywhere that he has been. He made Kent State relevant to the basketball world, and he even achieved a Elite 8 appearance while he was there. As I had previously written, Christian will be successful at TCU. Patience and diligence will be key, however, not just for Christian but for the fan base as well. As I wrote in a previous post:
"Christian is the right coach for this team. Everyone ought to believe that, but many people around TCU are giving Christian and his basketball team a who cares attitude. That attitude needs to be changed.And that is what Jim Christian must change. That is what Jim Christian will change. And with more talent, the right talent, Jim Christian will turn back around TCU basketball. He has won everywhere he has been. This just may be his toughest job yet."
The Frogs have also been rumored to have interest in the following players:
1. Julian Welch-Sacramento, CA-This junior college shooting guard has not officially been offered by TCU. He is also considering: Minnesota, UNLV, and Utah
2. Quinton Chievous-Niles, IL-this shooting guard is a two star recruit according to rivals.com. He is also considering Penn St., Iowa, Nebraska, NC St., and Colorado St.
3. Delvidas Pukis-Humble, TX-this foreign born prospect is known as an extremely hard worker who is tough and willing to do the dirty work for his team. He also has good range on his shot. He is considering TCU and Baylor.
4. Ryan Rhoomes-Queens, NY-TCU may have fallen off of Rhoomes radar but ESPN.com still says that Rhoomes has interest in TCU. He is a good inside scorer who is very tough. Rhoomes is also considering Cincinnati, Xavier, Florida, and Seton Hall.
5. Austin Richie-Indiana- This point guard is also considering Fordham.