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Gabe Brown provides health update, shares plans for visit
Michigan State basketball commit Gabe Brown told Land of 10 that he will take his official visit this weekend.
The 4-star senior wing in the 247Sports composite committed to Michigan State on June 20. He’s one of five pledges in the 2018 class, along with 4-star forward Marcus Bingham Jr., 4-star point guard Foster Loyer, 4-star wing Aaron Henry, and 3-star forward Thomas Kithier. At No. 98 in the nation, Brown ranks second-highest among Spartans commits, behind Bingham (No. 61).
Michigan State’s class ranks eighth in the nation and fourth in the Big Ten. However, 12 5-star prospects remain uncommitted, meaning the Spartans’ ranking likely will drop as more players make their pledges. The Spartans tentatively have 14 scholarships filled for the 2018-19 season. They are allotted only 13, but expect that at least one player will forfeit remaining eligibility and enter the NBA draft.
Though Michigan State might be done with its 2018 class, the 6-foot-8 Brown can help to recruit the younger grades while visiting. Michigan State will host its annual Michigan State Madness event on Friday, a great opportunity to welcome recruits to the Breslin Center for a celebration of the start of the 2017-18 season.
Kithier and Loyer will be there to help him out, as both plan to take their official visits as well. Henry already took his official visit, but he plans to be on campus Friday on an unofficial trip.
Michigan State might just get a visit from one of its top 2019 targets as well. Four-star Detroit Old Redford combo guard Mark “Rocket” Watts told Land of 10, “I think I’ll be there for Michigan State Madness.” Watts is the No. 68 junior in the country.
At least one big-time target plans to be in attendance: 5-star Fort Wayne (Ind.) North Side wing Keion Brooks, who ranks 14th in the nation. Brooks, who stands 6-8, visited Kentucky over the weekend for Big Blue Madness. He picked up an offer from the Wildcats in September.
Great time at UK! BBN was 🔥last night! Michigan State Midnight madness & Hoosier Hysteria next enjoying the Process!
— Keion Brooks (@keion_brooks) October 14, 2017
As Michigan State prepares for its season, recruits are doing likewise and Brown looks like he’ll be ready to go when things tip off in December. He suffered a knee injury right before the start of the July live recruiting period, ending his final AAU season. Fortunately, he avoided serious structural damage.
Brown, who averaged 9.2 points, 4.2 rebounds and 1.1 blocks per game for The Family on the Nike EYBL circuit, continues to do rehab. He’s hardly limited in his workouts, though.
“I’m back in basically full motion,” Brown said.
FBI investigation heats up
One player in attendance for Michigan State Madness a year ago? Brian Bowen. The former 5-star recruit eventually chose Louisville, and it’s since come out via a federal complaint that his decision may have been influenced by an alleged $100,000 bribe from a Louisville partner, adidas.
On Monday, Courier-Journal reporter Phillip Bailey shared a summary of an interview with Bowen’s mother conducted by former FBI agent Carl Christiansen. According to the document, “She stated [Bowen] kept Michigan State on his list of possible schools primarily out of respect for various family members who have had connections at Michigan State.”
— Phillip M. Bailey (@phillipmbailey) October 16, 2017
Most notably, former Michigan State star Jason Richardson is Bowen’s cousin. That relationship, as well as Bowen’s many visits to campus while he grew up in Saginaw, Mich., led to the Spartans being considered the longtime favorite in his recruitment.
Michigan State, not implicated in any wrongdoing to this point, told The Associated Press “yes” when asked whether the federal probe had led to a review of its program, “either internally or with a consultant.”
Michigan State offers another wide receiver
Michigan State has only a few spots left in its 18-player 2018 class, and one of them will surely be filled by a third wide receiver.
The Spartans already have pledges from 3-star prospects Javez Alexander and Julian Major, and in the search for another they offered 4-star Coffee County (Tenn.) Central athlete Alontae Taylor. The 6-foot senior is committed to Tennessee.
— Alontae Taylor (@TaeTaylor6) October 16, 2017
Taylor confirmed to Land of 10 that the Spartans offered him as a wide receiver. They have also offered 4-star North Canyon (Phoenix) wideout Solomon Enis.
While still committed to the Volunteers, Taylor has been keeping others in consideration. He told DawgNation, “I will take my official visits and I will have my in-home visits. When I wake up on Dec. 20, then I will have my decision.”
With that date, Taylor referenced the start of the new early signing period in college football.
With four planned official visits, he has one more still to be decided. Michigan State will likely fight for it, though the Spartans will have to take on Florida, Georgia, LSU and Ohio State.
On the surface, Michigan State’s chances look slim. But the offer does indicate the Spartans’ intentions to land another receiver — even though he has the versatility to end up at one of several spots on either side of the ball.
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