clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

Bryce Drew's First Recruiting Task: Keep the Class of 2016 In the Fold

New, 32 comments

Via Twitter, new Vanderbilt head coach Bryce Drew has been reaching out to Vanderbilt's 2016 signees over the past couple of days, and the reaction seems to be positive.

Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

Whenever there's a coaching change, the new coach will have two immediate recruiting tasks: one, recruit the current players on the roster and make sure nobody decides to transfer elsewhere because of the coaching chance.  And two, re-recruit the players who signed a Letter of Intent with the previous staff (if you want them) and make sure they don't go elsewhere.

I've long argued that one advantage that Vanderbilt has in this is that, for many of the players who come here, Vanderbilt the school is hardly tangential to why they came.  If you came to get a Vanderbilt education, you're not going to trade that for a Tennessee education because of a new coach, or trade that for a Middle Tennessee education because of playing time.  Earlier reports had indicated that it would probably take a genuinely poor fit with Vanderbilt's new coach for the two early signees -- PG Payton Willis and PF Clevon Brown -- to go elsewhere, and it doesn't seem like that's going to happen.

Willis hasn't officially reaffirmed his commitment to Vanderbilt, but he hasn't asked out of his letter of intent, either, and it's fairly easy to assume that he's still planning to come here.  One thing of note from that picture -- assistant coach Roger Powell is 6'6"; Willis (who we've been told is 6'4"), standing next to him, appears to be the same height, though of course Powell is leaning down slightly.

Before you freak out about Clevon Brown appearing to be the same height as Coach Powell (Brown is listed at 6'8"), keep in mind that Brown is not wearing shoes in that picture; basketball shoes often add an inch or two to a player's height, and player measurements are frequently taken with shoes on.  (Damian Jones, listed at 7'0" in shoes, is 6'10" with shoes off according to Luke Kornet.)

So the first two recruiting tasks seem to have gone well for Bryce Drew.  Now, with Wade Baldwin IV's scholarship opening up, Drew has the opportunity to add to the 2016 recruiting class if he wants -- though he may try to go for a transfer instead (why not Duke's Derryck Thornton?)