Matthew Hurt, a 6’8 power forward out of Rochester Minnesota is the 10th ranked player in the class of 2019. He is one of the last top recruits to decide on a school, but will be announcing on Friday, April 19th where he will spend next year. The 4 schools he’s considering are Duke, Kansas, UNC, and Kentucky. Here are the pros and cons of each school and a prediction of who will get the star forward.
Duke is already considered a heavy favorite to land Hurt after he cancelled his in-home visits with Kansas and Kentucky. Hurt will join a team with star point guard Tre Jones returning, and will set up Hurt for success next season. He will also join a team that is already ranked 11th in recruiting and has two 5 stars. If he goes there, he will be paired with stars and can make a deep run in the tournament,
Sometimes, playing with too many stars hurt, and if the other 5 stars shine on Duke, Hurt can see his draft stock slip. We’ve seen this happen to many top recruits who have gone to Duke. The ACC is also very deep next season, and he will have a difficult schedule if he goes to Duke.
With Dedric Lawson leaving, Matthew Hurt is guaranteed a spot in the starting lineup. He will also be the solo star of the team and could put up big numbers, improving his draft stock. He will be coached by one of the top basketball coaches in the country in Bill Self and Kansas is the closest of the 4 schools to his hometown in Minnesota.
Kansas is probably the worst of the three talent wise for next season, and could be bounced early in the tournament once again. There is also uncertainty of whether Silvio de Sousa will play next season, and while it would be huge for the Jayhawks to get him back, it would take minutes away from Hurt.
If Cole Anthony decides to sign with UNC, then him and Hurt can combine to be the most dominant guard-forward duo in the country. Pair those two with 5 star center Armando Bacot, and they are a top 5 team in the country. Like Duke and Kansas, he will be coached by an elite coach in Roy Williams. He will have the starting power forward spot with Luke Maye leaving the school.
UNC has really struggled to produce NBA talent in the last 20 years, with the best players being Vince Carter and Harrison Barnes. UNC are also very young and inexperienced, losing 5 players to graduation or the draft. Even if they get Hurt, they still won’t have a top 25 class, which isn’t very good.
Hurt would be joining a powerhouse in Kentucky, who have the #2 recruiting class and definitely #1 if they sign Hurt. He will be the 4th 5 star on the team, and will play with sophomore guard Ashton Hagans. Kentucky has had high success putting bigs in the draft and Hurt would be guaranteed success if he chooses Kentucky and hall of fame coach John Calipari.
Hurt would have to play center if he went to Kentucky, and being only 6’8, he could struggle defensively against bigger teams. Like Duke, he may be overshadowed by the other 5 stars, lowering his draft stock.
Photo via Tipton Edits on Instagram