Rafael Castro is down to three schools: Dayton, Miami, and Providence. Castro was ready to commit on 10/9, but decided to push this back to a date yet to be determined.
Below, we analyze each school for the Top 150 recruit.
At first glance, a kid from New Jersey interested in Miami for their basketball program doesn’t make a whole lot of sense. When looking at their past recruiting classes, however, Jim Larranaga has recruited quite well in the Northeast/Mid-Atlantic region. In the 2021 class alone, Miami has commits from New York, Pennsylvania, and Maryland. Last year, they signed players from Maryland and New Hampshire. So, there is a pattern here of players from Northeast going down South to Coral Gables.
The appeal of playing in the ACC has to be stated as well.
Lastly, who doesn’t want to go to school at the University of Miami? Beautiful weather, campus, etc.
Anthony Grant has done a fantastic job at Dayton, winning the Coach of the Year last year. Dayton had a historic year last year before it was cut short due to COVID. They had the Naismith POY and likely top 10 pick in Obi Toppin, which will pay off in spades in future recruiting cycles. This will likely resonate with a guy like Castro who is probably being pitched that he could be the next Toppin. Watch here as he dominates URI!
This is a basketball first school as well. While Miami puts football first, Dayton and PC can both tout being the primary sport at their school. That’s a huge plus.
Lastly, Dayton doesn’t always land this caliber of recruit in Castro, so he will be a big fish in a small pond from the moment he steps on campus. You can’t say this about the other two finalists.
Many of the same positives that Dayton has are also possessed by Providence, but on a much larger scale.
Providence is a basketball first school and arguably plays in the top conference in the country in the Big East. A New Jersey kid sees the appeal of playing in the Big East, playing the BET at MSG, etc.
Under Cooley, Providence has a history of making the NCAA tourney, so playing for a consistent tournament program is something that PC has going for it.
Castro can’t go wrong with any of the 3 schools. Each has their own unique advantages over the other programs, and it is a matter of what specific traits Castro looks for in a program that will be the ultimate decider.
BOC: Dreams of being the next Obi Toppin win Castro over. A big recruiting win for the Flyers.
Crier: I’m going to go with a relative upset and pick the Friars. There have been rumors that we’ve been recruiting Castro harder than meets the eye. If the Friars miss out though, a major upset of landing Bryce Hopkins becomes more important.