College basketball recruiting is finally back in its usual rhythm. Coaches were on the road for most of July, hitting big shoe company-sponsored tournaments and watching recruits in the next few classes. Prospects took multiple visits in June, which has lessened the need for busy official visit weekends in the fall, but programs are still playing host to recruits every weekend. Two of the biggest names who were once members of the 2022 class — Emoni Bates and Jalen Duren — have reclassified and will play for Penny Hardaway and the suddenly loaded Memphis Tigers in 2021, but the focus on the trail has officially switched to the 2022 cycle.
And beginning today, Sept. 9, coaches can once again hit the road and watch players at their high schools and conduct in-home visits — for the first time in 18 months.
So it’s business as usual on the recruiting front. After No. 1 overall prospect Shaedon Sharpe committed to Kentucky on Tuesday night, four of the top five prospects in 2022 are already off the board, yet a dozen of the top 20 prospects remain uncommitted. No. 2-ranked prospect Dereck Lively is now the uncommitted headliner in the class, but who are the other priority names to know in 2022 — and which programs are chasing them?