Name: Ricardo Ledo
Position: Shooting Guard
Weight: 180 lbs.
Hometown: Providence, RI
ESPN Overall Ranking: 13
ESPN Position Ranking: 3
It’s always nice when Providence and head coach Keno Davis somehow grab a recruit over schools like UConn, Florida, Indiana, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisville, Pittsburgh, and Syracuse, among others. It is just a little nicer when the recruit that Keno Davis managed to get a commitment from is considered by some to be the best shooting guard in the country.
On Christmas day, Keno Davis and many of us Friar Faithful received some of the best news that I have heard in years, Ledo was committing to Providence. As a Providence native, a person unfamiliar with college basketball would assume that his hometown school would be his number one choice. In many instances, recruits actually are more prone to go away from their hometown for school for many reasons. Some realize that the northeast isn’t the best region in the country for basketball (although that can be disputed), others want to get away from their family and friends for college, and some are chasing the dream to play professional basketball and realize that they need to go away to achieve their goals. Whatever the reason, recruits rarely make the move that Ledo pulled just a few short days ago.
Amid speculation that Keno Davis would be fired as head coach of the Providence College Friars over the summer, I encouraged you all to be confident in Keno’s ability to install his system, improve players’ performances on the court, and bring in big time recruits. As of December 29, 2010 it looks like Keno Davis is doing all three of those things. I’m not going to get ahead of myself and say that PC should give Keno a nice new contract to keep him in town for many years to come, but as a Friar fan, you have to be encouraged by what you see. Gerard Coleman, 2010’s biggest recruit, was the highest ranked recruit to ever commit to PC. The benefit of bringing in big-time talent similarly to Coleman can be seen already. He is producing as a freshman, which is a rarity in the Big East, and he has shown flashes of an unstoppable offensive arsenal. The commitment of Ricardo Ledo obviously tops Coleman in terms of national prominence and ranking, but the move is just another stepping stone in the right direction.
Aside from Ledo, there are even more reasons to be enthralled with the possible future of the Providence College Friars. The 2011 recruiting class seems to be locked up. The Friars will lose only two seniors this season (again, not counting walk-on Chris Carter) in Marshon Brooks and Ray Hall, and already have two ESPN 90 grade recruits lined up to come in an fill those scholarship spots, PG Kyan Anderson and SF Markus Crider. I’m actually amazed that Keno was able to lure such talented recruits to fill those spots considering the current youth of the team, which would lead one to believe that there will be little playing time available for a true freshman next season.
As for 2012, that recruiting class has the chance to be a program changer. We already know about Ledo, who as previously mentioned is one of the country’s top recruits. Also committed for 2012 is 6’5” SF Joshua Fortune (#34 SF according to ESPN). Just those two recruits alone would provide some promise for Friar fans, but it doesn’t seem that Keno is stopping there. Among recruits currently considering PC are 6’11” center Andre Drummond (ESPN 98 grade, #1 overall prospect, #1 position prospect), 7’0” center Kaleb Tarczewski (ESPN 97 grade, #24 overall prospect, #7 position prospect), 6’8” power forward Shaq Goodwin (ESPN 96 grade, #44 overall prospect, #9 position prospect), 6’8” power forward Anthony J.P. Cortesia (ESPN 92 grade, #100 overall prospect, #25 position prospect), 6’3” shooting guard Melvin Johnson (ESPN 88 grade, #44 position prospect), 6’8” power forward Evan Cummins (ESPN 87 grade, #57 position prospect), and 6’8” power forward Kamari Murphy (ESPN 85 grade, #69 position prospect). Drummond, Tarczewski, Goodwin, Cummins, and Murphy are all in the ESPN U Super 60 for 2012, which is reserved for the 60 best high school juniors in the country. If Davis could land just one of those guys this program would have one of the better recruiting classes in the country and looking to finally crack the top eight perennially in the Big East.
Have faith Friar fans, have faith…