Posted: 11:43 p.m. Monday, April 29, 2013
By Anson Whaley
When it rains it pours, I suppose.
Pitt lost another one of their recruiting targets today - this time, it was power forward Lennard Freeman.
A couple of weeks ago, Freeman had Pitt in his final five schools. But the Panthers couldn't land the Oak Hill Academy forward, who decided on North Carolina State. The Wolfpack have now beaten Pitt out for two kids - Freeman and Beejay Anya.
Like Jon Severe, Freeman isn't a highly-touted recruit. But he was a three-star recruit and with all of the team's holes, would have likely helped in some capacity. His coach calls him a rebounder and defender, and that's the type of player that can thrive at Pitt.
These kind of losses really underscore the problem in trying to get recruits late in the game. Not only are you fighting for marginal players, but you're not even guaranteed to get them. Here's the other thing, too. Laugh all you want, but I think constantly losing out on these types of kids hurts the perspective of the program as well. Once you get passed up so many times, it's hard for me to believe that other recruits don't start wondering why. It may not play a huge part in the grand scheme of things, but I wouldn't be surprised if it mattered a little.
And if Moore ends up leaving forcing Pitt to fill yet another hole, that's even more cause for concern. As I mentioned in the comments section of a recent post, the problem isn't that Moore is a great player - he's not. The issue is that losing him means losing a player in the system. Even if Pitt is able to fill his spot with a JUCO player or recruit, it's someone that needs to fit in Dixon's system - and that's no guarantee (especially in a first season). Moore wasn't a perfect fit, but at this stage in the game, it's going to be difficult to find a player that can contribute as much as he would have.