Class of 2013 small forward Josh Hart still has seven schools left that he’s considering — Arizona, Cincinnati, Memphis, Miami, Penn State, Rutgers and Villanova — but a few select programs are beginning to stand out in certain areas.
“My favorite coaching staffs are Villanova and Penn State,” Hart told NRS in a phone interview. “I really like [Villanova head coach] Jay Wright. He has a lot of character and they have been really up front with me throughout the whole process. [Assistant] coach [Doug] Martin is a guy I’ve known for a while too. The Penn State coaches have great energy and passion and they care about their players.”
The 6’5, 200-pound Maryland native identified Villanova and Rutgers as the two schools recruiting him hardest too and since he recently cut his list down to seven, Hart has already gotten started with planning where he’ll take his five official visits.
Because he has already unofficially visited them, Penn State won’t receive an official visit but will instead get another unofficial trip September 1. Rutgers will receive an official visit the following week September 7-9 and Miami will get an official September 28-30 while Memphis and Arizona are slated for officials October 13-15 and 26-28. Hart plans on visiting Cincinnati unofficially and Villanova officially but has not set up dates yet for either trip.
The Team Takeover wing said he may cut his list down to three and that he hopes to commit before his high school season starts November 15. He also took NRS through what he likes about each school.
“At Arizona, I like the coaching staff,” Hart began. “I love their style of play, it really fits me. In this recruiting class, they’re looking for a small forward and I could play significant minutes as a freshman.
“With Cincinnati, I really like the coaching staff. I feel like it’s a good situation with their style of play and it’s a great school. If I go there, my freshman year, there will be six guards for one or two positions so there’s a question mark for that.
“For Memphis, I like the coaching staff. I’ve built a great relationship with them. They’re very genuine, they’re very up front and I love their style. I also feel like I could get playing time at the two and the three.
“Miami, I feel like [head] coach [Jim] Larranaga is a high character coach. The location is great, the temperature is nice and I like the style of play.
“Penn State, the coaching staff is probably one of the best coaching staffs that I’ve been around. They’re turning the program around, the campus is beautiful but there’s a question mark of what’s going on around that school. That’s the only question mark I have for them is what’s going on with the football team. I kind of want to see what goes on with that. I’m not sure how the community will rally around the football team but they could end up rallying around the basketball team instead. The university is also getting fined.
“With Rutgers, I feel like the style of play is good. I could probably come in and play right away too.
“Villanova is the last one of my seven, I really like Jay Wright as a coach. One of my coaches, coach Martin, is also on the staff. I know I fit into their offense and style of play.”