One of the hottest prospects to emerge during the NCAA Evaluation Period was Cactus Shadows High School's 6-foot-9, 240-pound unsigned senior post Cassius Smits-Francisco. An unknown prospect before the evaluation period, Smits took full advantage of his opportunities this spring and earned several division-I scholarship offers as a result.
With no offers on the table for himself heading nto the evaluation period, Smits has now received offers from the University of Idaho, UW-Milwaukee and the University of Illinois-Chicago.
Smits is also generating loads of college interest from numerous other college programs, so more offers could begin to pour in very soon for him.
College recruitment is always much easier in the state of Arizona for larger post prospects to generate. Especially this high school season, as there are very few prospects in the West still available with Smits' combination of size and agility.
Smits is a late bloomer since he suffered two knee injuries in the past, but this young man has recovered fully and developed nicely into a serviceable post prospect for the mid-major division-I level - a serious change of events for the unsigned post prospect.
This past season, Smits led his school to a 15-11 overall record. He averaged modest numbers during his recovery - averaging 10 points and 7 rebounds per/game.
Smits' best years are well ahead of him though, as he has the potential and upside to become a legitimate low-post scorer and rebounder at the mid-major level. As Smits continues to improve his body, get completely healthy and also mature physically, this young man should make someone very proud.
I watched Smits compete this past weekend in Las Vegas in this year's West Coast Elite event with his club program Powerhouse Hoops Red. Smits was impressive with his low-post footwork and quickness of feet, and showed that he can score in the low post and also run the court. Smits would help lead his club team to a tournament championship this past weekend in his team's respective division.
Smits has not indicated any leaders at this point in his college recruitment, but his club coach John Ortega advised me that he is planning to take several college visits for himself before making a decision.
I will continue to follow the college recruitment of Smits closely this spring, and bring you any updates as they continue to develop.