Now that State is entering the offseason there a lot of questions that need to be answered. Who is leaving? Who is coming? Who is staying? All of these are great questions to ask because of offseason moves from other schools, and because the NBA draft does not have a whole lot to pick from this year.
So, to the first question, who is leaving? Well, there are a couple of people to examine here. First person I think is pretty obvious, CJ Leslie. Granted he didn't have the greatest season, but he did average 15 points and 7 rebounds for the year, which is nothing to blow off. I'm sure he will examine his options like he did last year by waiting on the NBA to send him a letter saying when he could possibly be drafted. Whatever he decides to do, we should know by early to mid-May.
The next person is Lorenzo Brown. Though he has not been the topic of discussion for leaving, he could possibly leave for the NBA this year. He proved that he is a difference maker because, when he was out with an ankle injury, State struggled. Lastly, and most shocking to me, is Rodney Purvis. We know that he was not pleased with his playing time this year, but, at the time, he was not performing very well. The opportunity for playing time will increase drastically with the likelihood that CJ is leaving, so hopefully Gottfried can convince him to stay, which brings me to my last person...Coach Gottfried. Since UCLA has fired their head coach, we definitely need to raise this question. It is known that Gottfried has ties to UCLA, being an assistant coach for years, and that the Bruins are looking for a coach that brings a fun brand of basketball, which Gottfried does; so what is he going to do? He is not one of UCLA's number one prospects, but I don't believe they are going to get who is on their top list. All we can do is sit back and wait.
Now, whom do we have coming to State next year? First we have Anthony Barber, who is 23rd in the ESPN top-100 recruiting rankings. Barber is a point guard from Hampton, Virginia, a McDonald's All-American, and is supposedly an extremely explosive player. Scouting Report says that he has tons of speed, and watching his videos, I must agree. The next player coming to State is BeeJay Anya from Germantown, Maryland. BeeJay is a 6'9", 275 pound center, and ranked 69th in the ESPN top-100. Scouting Report says this kid is an "aircraft carrier," meaning, he can get up in the air. Apparently he is stepping his conditioning up to play a more up-tempo style of basketball that NC State runs.
Lastly is Kyle Washington. He is a 6-9, 215 pound power forward from Champlin, Minnesota. He's ranked 83rd in the ESPN top-100 and is a very athletic forward for his height. Watching his videos he is a play-making machine; he can drive and pass or drive and finish. His capability to run the floor is magnificent and will be a great asset to NC State's struggling front. Those are the for sure recruits that State is getting this year, but there are a few transfers that State could be getting as well. Visiting this weekend is Desmond Lee, who is a Junior College player from New Mexico. He is 6'4", 195 pound shooting guard, who averaged 21 points and shot 46% from the field this year. Adding him could definitely add depth to State's guard position that could potentially be losing a major player in Brown.
Lastly, we got to know who is staying. State will not lose any freshman, in my opinion, unless Purvis decides to leave. Next year the Pack will have a fairly young team with little playing time. The hope is that Zo will stay to bring leadership to the team, and continue to let Tyler Lewis mature in to a phenomenal point guard. If Gottfried leaves, then I have no idea what will happen. All I can do is pray he stays to hold everyone together.