Adam Zagoria covers basketball at all levels. He is the author of two books and an award-winning journalist whose articles have appeared in ESPN The Magazine, SLAM, Sheridan Hoops, Sports Illustrated, Basketball Times and in newspapers nationwide.
Thomas Bryant to Visit Indiana as Syracuse Penalties Complicate Recruitment
The already interesting recruitment of Thomas Bryant just got a whole lot more fascinating.
The 6-foot-10 big man from Huntington (W.V) Prep will visit Indiana this weekend for the Hoosiers’ game against Michigan State on Saturday.
And with the NCAA penalties levied against Syracuse, the Orange cannot add anyone who hasn’t already signed a National Letter of Intent. Syracuse already has a four-man class signed for 2015-16.
“That means Syracuse’s recruitment of Thomas Bryant, a highly-regarded player in the 2015 class, is all but over,” according to Mike Waters of Syracuse.com. “Bryant, a 6-9 center from Rochester, has yet to make his decision. Syracuse would not be able to get a waiver of the scholarship reduction to bring him in. As a result, Syracuse would need four players to leave in order to sign Bryant.”
Bryant had narrowed his list to Syracuse, Kentucky, Indiana and Missouri.
Linda Bryant, Thomas’ mother, recently told Syracuse.com that Syracuse and Indiana were the leaders for her son.
“Really it’s down to two,” Linda Bryant said. “Syracuse and Indiana. And it might be down to one soon. Thomas has always told me that Syracuse was the leader.”
Bryant responded in a January interview with SNY.tv.
“Me and my mom have edge, but we always talk about it,” Bryant said. “We always keep that between us. The decision is [ultimately] mine.”
Bryant has already visited Indiana, and he loves the frontcourt players that Coach Tom Crean has been able to develop.
“I just love the guys they have, how they had Noah Vonleh and Cody Zeller that were very good draft picks and also doing well in the NBA right now,” Bryant stated.
Syracuse is the home state school and Bryant has deep ties in New York. But now they appear to be out.
“That’s the home state school,” Bryant said. “I always loved seeing them. One of my teammates Chinonso Obokoh plays for them and a lot of guys that I played against and with go to that school.”
Meantime, Kentucky coach John Calipari has seen Bryant several times this season. He is one of numerous front court players the No. 1 Wildcats are involved with, including Thon Maker, Cheick Diallo, Caleb Swanigan, Ivan Rabb and Stephen Zimmerman.
“It’s how they have everybody there that is a first-round draft pick,” Bryant said of Kentucky. “Everybody there is a McDonald’s All-American. He brings the best out of everybody there that’s playing for him and will play for him.”
As far as his recruitment, Bryant doesn’t appear to be in a real hurry.
“Yes, [I’m going to] basically wait until after the season or wait until after this month goes by because this is the hardest month for us,” Bryant said in January. “We’re playing a lot of great teams that will give us their best. Just being focused on the here and right now with my teammates is what I am really focused on right now.”
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Adam Zagoria is a Basketball Insider who covers basketball at all levels. A contributor to The New York Times and SportsNet New York (SNY), he is also the author of two books and is an award-winning journalist and filmmaker. His articles have appeared in ESPN The Magazine, SLAM, Sheridan Hoops, Basketball Times and in newspapers nationwide. He also won an Emmy award for his work on the SNY mini-documentary on Syracuse guard Tyus Battle.
A veteran Ultimate Frisbee player, he has competed in numerous National and World Championships and, perhaps more importantly, his teams won the Westchester Summer League (WSL) championships in 2011 and 2013.
He lives in Manhattan with his wife and children.