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Missouri, UNC, and Duke to make in-home visits for 5-star Kevin Knox on Wednesday

Here are today’s Mizzou Links.

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Today’s the day Missouri head coach Cuonzo Martin makes an in-home visit with five-star forward Kevin Knox.

On Wednesday, Knox will have North Carolina, Missouri and Duke in-home. UNC will meet with him at 4:15. Missouri is scheduled to be at the Knox house from 6:00 to 7:15. Duke will follow from 8:00 to 9:15.

Yesterday, Kentucky and Florida State had in-home visits with the Knox family. The original report was that only Missouri and Duke were going to get visits, but North Carolina managed to make time Wednesday. I can only presume ol’ Roy Williams will attempt to filibuster the entire evening.

As it stands, Missouri is in the hunt for ESPN’s No. 1 Michael Porter Jr., No. 9 Kevin Knox, No. 43 Jeremiah Tilmon and No. 96 Blake Harris according to their final basketball recruiting rankings.

A potentially relevant note: Duke has one fewer scholarship than it maybe expected to have.

Combine another Duke guard deciding to stay with Knox’s father stating he was watching the moves of Luke Kennard and Grayson Allen, plus five-star point guard Trevon Duval visiting Duke yesterday and you’ve got a very interesting roster situation to monitor. And that’s just on the Blue Devil side of things, North Carolina saw Justin Jackson declare for the NBA and have a visit with former Mississippi State commit Garrison Brooks also scheduled today.

If you’re curious about scouting reports, on Michael Porter Jr. and Kevin Knox, DraftExpress has the latest from the Nike Hoops Summit:

Knox underwhelmed the majority of the week in Portland as his development has stalled a bit since we first began evaluating him at the age of 15. While he shows an improved skill set for brief stretches, he's too focused on proving that he can play the three rather than making an impact by using his tools, explosiveness and energy. If he can find a way to buy into defending multiple positions, moving off the ball, crashing the glass, running the floor, and playing as more of a modern four man (which is very much the trend in today's NBA) he's far more interesting as an NBA prospect. He'll have to continue to stick to his strengths while finding a way to make spot-up 3s consistently to validate his current standing as a prospect. Knox's skill-set is undoubtedly best suited at the 4 at the NCAA level (even if he insists on being recruited as a 3), but if he's still concerned with developing into a wing his development and overall intrigue as a prospect will continue to take a hit.

If Missouri can land Kevin Knox it will join elite company, as Dave Matter pointed out last Friday,

Should Mizzou land Knox, Martin’s team would join select company in one regard. In the last three years, only these schools have signed multiple McDonald’s All-Americans in the same year: Duke, Kansas, Kentucky, Michigan State, LSU, UCLA, Texas, Arizona and Cal. Should Missouri join their company, Martin would be the only coach to make the list at two schools.

And coming on the heels of Jontay Porter’s announcement he will visit Columbia next Monday, it was announced he had been bumped up to that coveted fifth star by Rivals.

Whether Jontay will or won’t reclassify “up” remains in question, as reported by Alec Lewis of the KC Star.

“It’s his decision,” Michael Porter Jr. said. “My dad’s not pressuring him. My mom’s not pressuring him. He doesn’t know yet. He’s listing the pros and cons and can’t make a decision yet, so I don’t know the timetable. He might class up or he might do his senior year of high school.”

Glad that’s settled.

Elsewhere on the recruiting trail, Cuonzo Martin remains busy, meeting with two 2018 in-state stars — Lee’s Summit West forward Christian Bishop and Grandview point guard Jordan Lathon.

He also got four-star Jeremiah Robinson Earl, a 2019 forward from Bishop Miege, to visit next Monday. Perhaps Jontay can do his own player-recruiter pitch.

Pivoting back to Cuonzo Martin, several national outlets decided to weigh in on the best and worst basketball hires this year. Spoiler alert: they’re all rehashing the same talking points we addressed in our article a month ago.


4. Cuonzo Martin, Missouri: Martin has been a hot name in coaching for what seems like half-a-decade at this point, but he’s been the head coach of three different programs for the last nine seasons and has been to just two NCAA tournaments and one Sweet 16 despite having a team with three NBA players at Tennessee and Jaylen Brown and Ivan Rabb at Cal. There’s reason to question his coaching chops, but when you’re a Missouri program that’s dealing with NCAA issues and coming off three straight 20-loss seasons, you’re not getting Archie Miller or Gregg Marshall.

Evaluation: Martin knows this is it. He has to succeed at Missouri, otherwise his next job will not be as a head coach. Sounds weird to say for a guy that's never been fired, but if you move around this much in less than a decade's time, you've eventually got to win big at a spot. Martin has spent the past nine seasons at three schools and has two NCAA Tournament trips. Missouri will get more publicity heading into next season than any other team that's no sure-fire lock to make the Big Dance.

One more note about the future: On Tuesday afternoon, the NCAA announced March Madness hosts through 2022 and St. Louis was picked to host the first and second rounds in 2020.

More Links:

Tiger Woods is coming to Branson?!


“I have to make sure I don’t screw this up,” Woods said in announcing “Payne’s Valley,” a new 18-hole course adjacent to the Buffalo Ridge site and the newest part of the Big Cedar Lodge stable of courses south of Branson.

Woods made the trip to the Ozarks on Tuesday to make the announcement, and was joined by Bass Pro Shops founder and CEO Johnny Morris, and a group of big names in the world of golf, tourism and the state of Missouri.