All In On Elbert Robinson: Hoyas Make Push for 2014 Center

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Georgetown remains heavily involved in the pursuit of coveted Class of 2014 big man Elbert Robinson, and is still generally regarded as the frontrunner to land his commitment. 247sports.com released its updated Top247 rankings for the class of 2014 earlier this month and Robinson jumped up 10 spots to number 56 overall.

Standing at a monstrous 7'1'', and weighing 320 pounds, Robinson, who is entering his final year at Lakeview Centennial High School, averaged 16 points and 15 rebounds as a junior last season. He is far more advanced than Georgetown-great Roy Hibbert was at this age, and unlike Hibbert, Robinson won't need to be trained from ground zero in the art of toughness or physicality. What the two centers do share in common is an advanced passing ability that very few players of their size have, as well as a soft touch around the rim. These skills would allow Robinson to shine within the pass-heavy Princeton offense, often initiated by the center from the high post, that Georgetown employs. Robinson is also a great offensive rebounder and general low post presence due to his mass. Check out this video of Robinson at an NBPA top 100 camp from this past summer; it does a good job of illustrating the above:


Programs from all over the country have taken notice of the big man, in light of his recent successes, as one of the top true centers still available in the Class of 2014. While his list of schools is fluid, Georgetown has remained a constant at or near the top of his list. Just yesterday, after his official visit to Georgia Tech, Robinson named his current top four of Georgetown, Georgia Tech, Ohio State and Nebraska. Robinson has also received offers from Florida, Oklahoma State, LSU, Baylor, SMU, and Texas, among others.

"Right now I'm considering them all," Robinson told SMU's PonyPride.com. "I'm going to take all my visits and go from there. I want to sign during early period in November."

Considering his plans to sign at the beginning of this upcoming season, it's likely that the last college basketball game he will have attended as a recruit was on his March 7th visit to Georgetown, where he witnessed the Hoyas annihilate Syracuse in front of a packed Verizon Center. You really couldn't really ask for better timing on that one.

Here is a look at Robinson's up-to-date recruiting calendar:

Date:

School:

September 14, 2013

Texas A&M (Unofficial)

September 7, 2013

Nebraska (Official)

August 30, 2013

Georgia Tech (Official)

August 24, 2013

TCU (Unofficial)

August 17, 2013

LSU (Unofficial)

March 7, 2013

Georgetown (Unofficial)

October 12, 2012

Kansas (Unofficial)


What remains somewhat puzzling is why Robinson has already scheduled official visits with schools like Georgia Tech and Nebraska yet continues to take his time arranging official visits with the main schools that he has been talking about for months. It can probably just be chalked up to his wanting to experience and enjoy the recruiting process. That makes sense. It is also likely why most of these recent visits are much closer to his home state of Texas than is Georgetown.

SMU in particular has emerged as a contender despite Robinson having no stated intention of taking an official visit there. SMU began the resurrection of its basketball program when it lured former NBA coach and sure fire Hall of Famer, septuagenarian Larry Brown out of retirement last April. This past Monday Brown added to his legacy when he shockingly garnered a commitment from point guard Emmanuel Mudiay, 247Sports.com's number 1 player in the country. Mudiay has already made clear his intent to try to recruit national talent to play with him at SMU, and has not shied away from mentioning Robinson as a player he has already reached out to. Dallas, where SMU resides, is a mere 15 minutes from Robinson's hometown of Garland, which has allowed the program frequent access with the recruit.

"I have great interest in SMU. Larry Brown is a great coach and he has developed a lot of NBA pros. It'd be a great opportunity to play for a coach like that. I talk with the staff a lot, they're real cool. We talk all the time about the school, Coach Brown's history with big men and stuff like that."

Nevertheless, as noted above, SMU is not a member of Robinson's latest top 4 list, so take any SMU talk with a grain of salt. Kansas has apparently cooled on Robinson as they pursue more higher-rated prospects, and Robinson returned the favor by not including them on his latest list. Louisville's own CardinalConnect.com had this to offer on the matter: "Some speculate that Georgetown is the team to beat. A visit to Louisville can hopefully change things."  As each recruit is given only 5 official visits and Robinson will have used 2 on Georgia Tech and Nebraska, the pressure is certainly mounting for Georgetown to secure one of the final visits. From what Robinson has said, this seems very likely.

If Robinson were to eventually decide on Georgetown he would be joining an almost-certain consensus top-10 recruiting class for 2014 that includes 6'10 SF Isaac Copeland (40th on 247Sports.com's Top247), 6'5 wing L.J. Peak (83rd) and 6'2 point guard Tre Campbell (127th). If the team were also able to land PF Paul White (57th)- which is looking more and more likely, as broken down by CasualHoya last week- they would have a de facto starting lineup of exclusively '14 recruits (i.e., one player at each position). This is the type of well-rounded and talented recruiting class that could springboard the Hoyas into contention for a national championship in '15 alongside D'Vauntes Smith-Rivera and a healthy Greg Whittington, as well as seniors Trawick, Hopkins, and, hopefully, Josh Smith. Robinson is a large piece, literally and figuratively, that would allow this dream scenario to come to fruition. Elbert Robinson might very well be the next in a long and growing line of great Hoya big men. Hopefully we'll get the chance to find out.

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