West Virginia's new basketball coach, Bob Huggins, has wasted little time living up to his reputation as a great recruiter. When he arrived at WVU in April there was little time to recruit high school seniors. That fact didn't matter much since WVU had just one scholarship available for Huggins to use.
He used that grant in aid to sign 6-5 point guard Will Thomas. Thomas was a highly recruited player following his junior year at Cleveland Shaw High in Cleveland. His status as a top recruit changed just a few games into his senior season when Thomas suffered a broken leg in a freak accident when running the halls of his high school. It seems the team was running the halls when someone opened a classroom door thus ending Thomas' senior season.
The recruiters backed off a little bit because of the leg injury, but Huggins wasted little time to contact Thomas when taking the WVU job. By most accounts Thomas is a great late addition who has already made his passing skills known to his new teammates in pickup games this summer. Some of his pass work may be deemed a little too fancy for his own good, but he will have plenty of time to learn how Huggins wants him to use his exceptional vision.
But top recruit to date may be Noah Cottrill from Poca. The thing about Cottrill is that it will be 2010 before we will see him in a WVU uniform. The rising sophomore gave Huggins a verbal commitment last week.
As a 6-2 freshman guard at Poca last season, Cottrill averaged 22 points a game and has made quite an impression in the the AAU circuit in the last several years. One publication that watches these things rates Cottrill as the fifth best sophomore in the country next season.
That is impressive stuff which is why Cottrill already had offers from the likes of Florida and Kentucky to mull over. Cottrill's verbal to WVU and Huggins seems solid, but it is still 2 1/2 years before he can sign his name on the dotted line, so things could change, but there is little indication of that for now.
A possible fringe benefit of Cottrill's commitment is that his travels to the AAU tournaments will bring him in contact with other top players, some of whom he may be able to interest in West Virginia.