Ranking the 2012-13 NEC recruiting classes

We released our Top 10 NEC Recruits for the 2012-13 season on Tuesday.  It was a challenging list to say the least, and rating how each NEC team stacked up against each other proved to be equally as difficult.  We wanted to summarize our extensive recruiting research, and link all of the previous posts in case you missed them along the way (just click on the team for their detailed recruiting profile).

So without further ado, here’s our rankings of the incoming Northeast Conference recruiting classes for 2012-13!

12) Bryant — Curtis Oakley and Shane McLaughlin are nice prospects that could blossom into good NEC players, however, Tim O’Shea’s recruiting class lacks two things – upside and frontcourt help.  Andrew Scocca will add a warm body in the paint, but the Bulldogs are still a young program and needed even more down low.

11) St. Francis (PA) — Ronnie Drinnon had a big opportunity presented to him when Scott Eatherton transferred.  While Greg Brown and Canadian guard Ben Millaud-Meunier will have to compete more for playing time, there are openings aplenty for the youngest members of the Red Flash to make their mark this season.

10) Fairleigh Dickinson — After Sekou Harris, Greg Vetrone’s recruiting class is made up of relative unknowns. Unfortunately, Myles Mann – who had an opportunity to start right away – torn his ACL before he could attend fall practice.  It will be intriguing to see how JUCO transfer Sidney Sanders fits into the Knight’s backcourt and if Xavier Harris can step in immediately and fill a gaping hole at the “4” for FDU.

9) Sacred Heart — For Dave Bike and his Pioneers, frontcourt play was a major issue last season, especially when Justin Swidowski found himself in foul trouble.  As a result, three players were signed, all of whom each have the potential to eventually contribute.  What holds this recruiting class back is the lack of star power – each player was lightly recruited, but De’Aires Tate and Tevin Falzon certainly have the ability to become very productive NEC players if they improve upon their weaknesses (Tate – offense, Falzon – conditioning).

8) Monmouth — It’s time to focus on the future at Monmouth and King Rice’s five-man class should help the Hawks continue to compete with the top of the league.  The class has a little of everything, including two point guards of the future, a couple of respectable big men and transfer Deon Jones, who should make an impact when he’s eligible in 2013-14.  Colin Stewart, an athletic 6-foot-8 player with range – is the real wildcard in this group.

7) St. Francis (NY) — Sharp-shooter Aleksandar Isailovic seems to be a great fit for St. Francis’ style of play.  Local products Anthony White and Sheldon Hagigal profile as Glen Braica’s future backcourt, although both recruits will need time to develop and probably won’t have much of an impact in their freshman campaign.

6) Mount St. Mary’s — Most would believe that Jamion Christian was at a disadvantage when he was hired late in March, especially with four scholarships to fill.  But Christian wasted no time signing his point guard of the future in Shivaughn Wiggins and grabbing two high upside big men as well.  All of a sudden, the Mount has the makings of a deep team which could give the upper echelon of the league trouble on some nights.

5) LIU-Brooklyn — It’s too late to wonder what could have been.  LIU has brought in two high ceiling players, which keeps this recruiting class in the top half.  Both could provide much needed depth along the wing, while learning on the job playing behind upperclassmen such as Jason Brickman and C.J. Garner.  It sounds like another scholarship could be filled in the coming weeks, so write LIU’s ranking in pencil for now.

4) Central Connecticut — CCSU may have the most under-the-radar recruit in JUCO transfer Matt Hunter, who will play and probably impress on both ends of the floor.  Khalen Cumberlander is a player we had trouble keeping off the bottom half of our top 10 recruit list.  We expect a contribution from him as well.  Brandon Peel and Jalen Chapman are lower ceiling projects at this point, but their development is in good hands with Howie Dickenman.

3) Quinnipiac — Tom Moore needed to shore up his backcourt of the future, and that’s exactly what he did this offseason.  It will be fascinating to see which of the four incoming guards will produce right away, though we’re betting three of the four newcomers (Ford, Shannon, and Carey) will find niche roles that will prove valuable for the Bobcats.

2) Wagner — With two players in the top eight and Valpo transfer Jay Harris, Wagner is set up very well to repeat their success for the next few years.  The biggest issue currently is whether Dwaun Anderson will be declared eligible by November.  If he is forced to miss the first half of the season, the Seahawks may have difficulty replacing the production of Tyler Murray and Chris Martin.  Of course, that could potentially open up a spot for Eric Fanning.

1) Robert Morris — The Colonials arguably may not have the best recruiting class talent-wise, but they surely were number one in filling specific needs for their team.  Karvel Anderson will add more scoring, while Vaughn Morgan, and to a lesser extent, Stephan Hawkins will provide an instant upgrade at the “4”.  With a deep frontcourt, Andy Toole can afford to stash the talented Towson transfer Jervon Pressley until the 2013-14 season, when Lijah Thompson and Russell Johnson graduate.