By: Josh Bozzick ~Staff Writer~
A successful coach gets the most out of his or her players, and highly ranked players have many more items in the cupboard that can be of use.
If a program lands more highly touted recruits with other variables remaining constant, then the end result should be more wins and deeper runs in the postseason.
This isn’t to say that coaches cannot go far in the tournament
with players who have maybe been overlooked and under recruited (i.e. Butler in ’10 and ’11), but those teams are anomalies.
It is no question what the Big East brand has done for Xavier recruiting. Take a look at Xavier’s class of 2017 commits, then go back and look at the 2014 recruiting class to see exactly what it has done.
When Xavier was in the Atlantic 10 (A-10) and before that the Midwestern Collegiate Conference, it would be a rare occasion when a four-star player would not only commit to play at Xavier but even consider the team to begin with.
The opening of Cintas Center in 2000 was without question a huge tool to land potential recruits. Although Xavier still played in the A-10 while calling Cintas home for the majority of its now 16-year lifetime, the facility itself remained a magnet for decorated recruits.
Switching over to the Big East three and a half years ago has forever changed Xavier’s recruiting. Not only can Cintas be sold as a reason to come to school here, but the conference Xavier plays in can too. And that is a big deal.
In addition, the Big East and Fox Sports 1 are entering year four of a 12-year $500 million deal, which puts almost every one of Xavier’s games on national television.
Lastly, the opening of a new strength and conditioning facility is yet another step in an upward direction for the program’s ability to snag the best players.
Xavier did not land four-star players routinely, but with the switch to the Big East, it has become routine.
It won’t be much longer until Xavier lands its first consensus five-star recruit, and when it does, it will have been a long time in the making.