Late signing period begins: Where will top college basketball recruits end up?

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The former Louisville signee featured prominently in the federal investigation into fraud and corruption in college basketball recruiting.

NBA Draft 2018: Brian Bowen, former Louisville signee, invited to combine

The former Louisville signee featured prominently in the federal investigation into fraud and corruption in college basketball recruiting.

College basketball's late signing period began Wednesday with a number of top prospects still uncommitted.

Teams such as Michigan State, Arizona, Oregon, Duke and yes, Kentucky are still in search of some of the top 2017 high school basketball players. Prospects have until May 17 to sign on the dotted lines.

Recruiting in college basketball has changed dramatically over the last couple years. With underclassmen declaring for the draft, graduate transfers re-entering the recruiting pool and coaches moving around, there is very little stability this time of year.

Here's a look at the top uncommitted prospects and where they might be headed:

Mohamed Bamba

Bamba, a 6-11 power forward, has rim-racking abilities on either block. He's arguably the best shot-blocker in this class, though he is still learning some defensive positioning. Despite his size, he can step out beyond the arc and hit open shots.

As a stretch-4 with an NBA-ready body, Bamba can instantly impact any school he attends next season. Ranked No. 3 overall in the 2017 class, according to 247 Sports, Bamba will soon make one lucky fan base very happy.

Bamba is currently deciding between Michigan, Kentucky, Duke and Texas.

Prediction: Texas.

Trevon Duval

Duval, a 6-3 point guard with a 6-9 wingspan, has been compared to Derrick Rose due to his explosive first step getting to the basket. Duval is a great finisher around the rim, and a solid defender thanks to his size and length around the perimeter.

Explosive point guards are always a hot commodity in college basketball. Teams want to get the ball up the court and stymie opposing teams' attacks. Duval, ranked No. 5 in the class, will have the ability to lead a team deep into the NCAA Tournament next season despite being a freshman.

Duval is currently deciding between Kansas, Duke, Arizona, Seton Hall and Baylor.


Kevin Knox

Knox, a 6-9 small forward in the same mold as Brandon Ingram, is a slashing mastermind that can also hit outside shots. Knox has improved every year of high school basketball, and could develop into a Kevin Durant-like talent in college.

Like so many other top recruits from this class, Knox, ranked No. 8 in the class, is waiting to see which schools thin out as players declare for the NBA Draft. So far, he still has plenty of options.

Knox is currently deciding between Duke, North Carolina, Florida State, Kentucky and Missouri.

Prediction: North Carolina.

Brandon McCoy

McCoy is a monstrous center with a versatile post game. While he doesn't step out too often, yet, that part of his game certainly has improved. McCoy is terrific defensively. He's an opportunistic shot blocker, and arguably the best area-rebounder of the class.

Currently ranked No. 11 in the class, McCoy represents a dying breed of true centers. He predicts to improve as a shooter and resemble a LaMarcus Aldridge-type talent at the next level.

McCoy is currently deciding between Oregon, Michigan State and UNLV.

Prediction: Oregon.

Brian "Tugs" Bowen

Bowen, a 6-7 small forward, has a silky, almost throwback offensive game because he shoots so many mid-range shots. Bowen can catch fire from beyond the arc as well, but he usually uses his size advantage on other wing players to get a little closer to the basket.

There are two schools left in the running for Bowen. Michigan State has been recruiting the Saginaw native, who is related to former Spartan great Jason Richardson, for years. However, Miles Bridges might be blocking his path should he return. Bowen is also waiting on Arizona, wondering what its lineup will look like once the dust settles.

Prediction: Arizona.

Jeremiah Tilmon

Tilmon, a 6-11 power forward, was originally signed with Illinois, but a coaching change led to Tilmon applying for a release from his letter of intent. His wish was granted earlier this week, so now Tilmon is back on the market.

It appears Tilmon, ranked No. 29 in the class, is now headed for Missouri, which will give the bottom-feeding Tigers one of the best classes in school history, headlined by No. 2 Michael Porter Jr.

Prediction: Missouri.

Mark Smith

The curious case of Mark Smith started with a burgeoning baseball career that once had him expecting to get drafted out of high school. Now an elite basketball prospect, Smith is shifting his attention to the hardwood.

Smith's basketball recruiting skyrocketed so much this spring that he recently received offers from Kentucky and Michigan State. The four-star, 6-5 point guard can score in bunches or pick out teammates.

Smith is currently considering Kentucky, Ohio State, Illinois, Missouri and Michigan State.

Prediction: Michigan State.

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