Welcome to the Monday Morning Roundup, a collection of noteworthy Northwestern-related news from the weekend and past week. This week, we have recruiting updates and a couple random stories, including one where we learn about maybe the least likely Northwestern Olympian ever.
The 2020 Olympics will feature 3-on-3 basketball, which could mean an international spotlight on Northwestern’s...Craig Moore?
Let’s start this Monday off with a story that needs some serious attention. Last Friday, the list of events for the 2020 Olympics was announced, and the one that got the most buzz on social media was the addition of 3-on-3 basketball. 3-on-3 is a staple of parks everywhere and has been gaining national prominence with things like the BIG3 league. In 2020, it will hit the world’s biggest stage.
Most basketball fans, upon hearing the news about this new addition to the Olympics, probably started salivating about watching an American team of Stephen Curry, James Harden, and LeBron James (or any other combination of NBA All-Stars) dominating their way to the gold medal in Tokyo. Maybe, if they were super curious, they went to check out the USA 3-on-3 basketball roster. Yeah, let’s do that.
Wait what? Who are these guys? IS THAT CRAIG MOORE???
Yep, that’s Craig Moore, a sharpshooter for Northwestern from 2005-2009, appearing on the official USA Basketball website. Moore is the team’s captain, and after playing in the 2014 3-on-3 World Championships, is back for the 2017 World Cup, which begins this weekend. Obviously, this roster was never going to include famous NBA stars, because those guys have their own 5-on-5 teams to worry about, but it’s still funny to see Moore up there and think about watching him in the Olympics.
The Ringer writer and former regular around these parts Rodger Sherman wrote about how 3-on-3 basketball might not be as fun as it sounds.
You want the USA 3-on-3 team to have LeBron, KD, & Steph. Instead, it has a guy who was OK for Northwestern in 2008: https://t.co/slXxopOpJd— Rodger Sherman (@rodger_sherman) June 9, 2017
When your 2019 QB target commits elsewhere, what do you do? You move on and offer a new one
Pat Fitzgerald generally likes to sign a quarterback per recruiting class. Since getting two in 2013, each of the last five classes have followed that trend, although 2018 commit Jason Whittaker technically hasn’t signed yet. The hunt for a 2019 quarterback took a slight turn this weekend.
High four-star QB Grant Gunnell, Northwestern’s lone offer at the position until very recently, committed to Texas A&M last Monday. It didn’t take long for Fitzgerald and his staff to move on, as they offered Colorado native Ty Evans on Friday. Evans has offers from Arkansas, Colorado and Colorado State, and might be difficult to pry away from his home state. Obviously, there is still tons of time to land a 2019 quarterback, but the current focus has shifted from Gunnell to Evans.
Honored to receive an offer from Northwestern University. I want to thank Coach Fitz, McCall, Clarke and Bowers. #bigten #gocats pic.twitter.com/FjAjlBwN1F— Ty Evans™ (@EvansTy18) June 9, 2017
Northwestern basketball’s success last season may have kept it from getting Cormac Ryan
Two Sundays ago, Cormac Ryan, arguably Northwestern’s top recruiting target, committed to Stanford. If you haven’t already seen it, Teddy Greenstein has an interesting piece on why Ryan chose the Cardinal, with quotes from his dad Mike Ryan.
It definitely sounds like Northwestern was a close second in the running for Ryan’s services. Ironically, one of the things that hurt Chris Collins’s chances was that he already built the foundation that got Northwestern over the hump. Ryan didn’t want to be B-Mac’s successor, he wanted to be B-Mac and help build a program from the ground up.
In what might qualify as irony given NU's decades of futility, Ryan said his son was attracted to Stanford, which has missed the NCAA tournament three straight seasons, because Cormac "is interested in being on the ground floor, building up from scratch. There are risks and it could go really badly, but he's OK with that. He wants a really big opportunity.”
I guess this is the price we pay for having an established basketball program now.
With Ryan out of the picture, the name to watch at shooting guard right now is Miller Kopp. Kopp’s only currently scheduled official visit is to Northwestern in September.
Anthony Walker Jr. finishes up college classes, is competing for a starting spot
It’s not easy being on the quarter system and competing in OTAs for an NFL team. Anthony Walker Jr. can handle it. Kevin Bowen of Colts.com wrote a nice feature on Walker.
Crafting #OTAs pic.twitter.com/upjWdol9M0— Anthony Walker Jr. (@__AWalkJr) June 7, 2017
Also, Walker apparently wants to be a GM someday, when his playing days are over.
Last wk @Colts rookie LB @__AWalkJr finished his last class @NorthwesternU. Now he's all about football. Then he wants Chris Ballard's job. pic.twitter.com/cos3Tb7xaY— Brett Bensley (@brettbensley) June 6, 2017
Have a great Monday, everyone. No Bachelorette tonight because of the NBA Finals.