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On Jontay Porter and what could be a pretty amazing Missouri recruiting class

If Jontay Porter reclassifies, it would put Missouri in rarified company when it comes to recruiting.

FloSports: FloWrestling Les Schwab Invitational Steve Dykes-USA TODAY Sports

On Monday night, Jontay Porter announced his commitment to the Tigers. I’d post his tweet, but people are awful and Porter has since removed his twitter and instagram accounts, thus erasing the announcement from the interwebs. But safe to say, I’m pretty sure he’s still committed.

The question at this stage becomes whether Jontay will be a part of the 2017 or the 2018 class. Momentum is certainly headed towards Porter reclassifying and making the 2017 class a dream class for Missouri. So we’re going to approach this post as if he has already announced.

scholarship count jontay reclassify

The scholarship count graphic is important to all of us (okay, maybe only me and Brandon Kiley). Adding Jontay to next year’s class would fill the roster for the first time in what feels like a while. I don’t know how long Jontay will be in college, but I don’t think he’s quite a one-and-done player, so I think Mizzou likely has him for at least a couple years.

Unlike his brother, the uncertainty surrounding his stay means he gets included on the scholarship count for the next three years. But understanding most top-10 players are gone after a couple years in college, it’s probably safe to assume that Porter declares after 2018-19. That is certainly a bridge we can jump off when we need to, but it changes up the wants and needs of a roster in the future.

As for next year, our primary concern at this stage:

position breakdown 5-23-17

Adding Jontay to a drastically improved roster makes the Tigers more of a contender than they already were, and that’s why he’s almost certain to reclassify. Mizzou is planning on making as big a run as it can with its one year of MPJ, and head coach Cuonzo Martin needs Jontay Porter to be ready for a big role.

One area that shouldn’t be overlooked is how quickly a really unprecedented recruiting class came together.

If Jontay reclassifies, that would give Mizzou two 5-star players in the 2017 class. The Tigers also have three 4-star players (or two plus a 3-star, depending on your recruiting service of choice) to round out the rest of the class. For Missouri, a school with a good (but not exactly great) recruiting history, to land a class like this is a bit unprecedented.

High School Basketball: 40th Annual McDonald's All-American Games Mike DiNovo-USA TODAY Sports

Dave Matter looked at some of the top recruiting classes in Missouri history yesterday. He looked into the 247sports team rankings since 2003, and only four times since then has Mizzou had a top 20 hoops class.

2003 (Linas Kleiza, Thomas Gardner), 2004 (Marshall Brown, Jason Horton, Kalen Grimes), 2011 (Tony Mitchell, Phil Pressey) and 2014 (Teki Gill-Caesar, Jakeenan Gant, Namon Wright) were all ranked outside the top 10. Missouri’s class currently sits at seventh in the country and would likely get bumped to at least fifth by adding Jontay.

So it really is a historical class from Mizzou’s perspective, and since that’s the case I thought I would look around the country and see where Mizzou’s class sits comparatively to other schools (not named Duke or Kentucky).

My stipulation was a simple one: the school must have landed two 5-star players and at least one 4-star in the class to be considered. (I only went back to 2010 because that was already plenty of work.)

Other awesome basketball recruiting classes

Year Team rank 5 star rank 4 star
Year Team rank 5 star rank 4 star
2016 UCLA 3 Lonzo Ball 47 Ike Anigbogu
18 TJ Leaf
2016 Auburn 19 Austin Wiley 93 Jared Harper
24 Mustapha Heron
2016 Arizona 23 Rawle Alkins 29 Kobi Simmons
22 Lauri Markkanen
2016 NC State 7 Dennis Smith Jr 57 Ted Kapita
26 Omer Yurtseven 59 Markell Johnson
2016 Mich State 12 Miles Bridges 34 Cassius Winston
20 Joshua Langford 42 Nick Ward
2015 Arizona 13 Allonzo Trier 52 Chance Comanche
19 Ray Smith 34 Justin Simon
2015 LSU 1 Ben Simmons 56 Brandon Sampson
16 Antonio Blakeney
2015 Kansas 5 Cheick Diallo 88 Lagerald Vick
24 Carlton Bragg
2014 Kansas 8 Kelly Oubre 99 Devonte Graham
4 Cliff Alexander
2014 UNC 9 Justin Jackson 30 Joel Berry
15 Theo Pinson
2013 Kansas 1 Andrew Wiggins 35 Brannen Greene
13 Wayne Selden 43 Connor Frankamp
14 Joel Embiid
2013 Arizona 3 Aaron Gordon 100 Elliot Pitts
15 Rondae Hollis-Jefferson
2012 UCLA 2 Shabazz Muhammad 65 Jordan Adams
3 Kyle Anderson
24 Tony Parker
2012 Arizona 8 Kaleb Tarczewski 64 Gabe York
9 Grant Jarrett
18 Brandon Ashley
2012 NC State 13 Rodney Purvis 47 Tyler Lewis
23 TJ Warren
2011 Arizona 11 Josiah Turner 60 Angelo Chol
25 Nick Johnson 89 Sidiki Johnson
2010 Ohio State 3 Jared Sullinger 38 Jordan Sibert
19 DeShaun Thomas 94 Aaron Craft
95 Lenzelle Smith Jr
98 JD Weatherspoon
2010 Memphis 13 Will Barton 24 Jelan Kendrick
20 Joe Jackson 60 Tarik Black
112 Chris Crawford
2010 Syracuse 14 Fab Melo 84 CJ Fair
21 Dion Waters
2010 UNC 1 Harrison Barnes 26 Kendall Marshall
15 Reggie Bullock

Arizona is on this list five of the seven years. At this point I think you can consider Sean Miller to be the top recruiter in the country behind Coach K and Calipari. And Duke and Kentucky are just playing on a different level.

Kansas has the next most appearances with three, NC State two, UCLA two, UNC two ... I mean, it’s not easy to make this list. No Louisville, Florida, Florida State, UConn ... yet Missouri is on the list.

The No. 1 overall player has three times signed with a team from this list: Harrison Barnes, Andrew Wiggins and Ben Simmons. Only Simmons signed with what you would consider a non-blue blood.

Enjoy it.

That’s my advice. Missouri doesn’t do this and probably won’t again for a while.

I expect that with Cuonzo Martin leading the charge, Missouri’s recruiting will pick up and be fairly consistent from here on out, but not top-five level, not unless the Porters have another set of Jontay and Michael Jr. coming down the pipe. (They don’t at least for a few years.)

Even next year’s class could be exceptional and still barely break the top 20 because the featured player in the class is only in the top 70 players.

But Martin doesn’t have to hit home runs every year like he has this year to find success at Missouri. If he can build consistent rosters with minimal turnover, he’ll do fine. The Michael Porter Jr. show and the top-five band of recruits are about to hit Columbia. Let’s enjoy it while it lasts.