Vols to Visit Pair of Five-Star Guards

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    Photo credit: Anne Newman/RTI

    Basketball recruiting is starting to pick up across the country now, and Tennessee has been incredibly busy over the last few days and will continue to be working hard all this week. On Monday, the Vols were set to meet with a five-star player (though the meeting didn’t get to happen because of weather) and a talented high three-star guard. Now they’re going to use in-home visits on a pair of five-star guards in the 2019 class.

    Five-star combo guard Jalen Lecque and four-star/five-star combo guard Josiah James will both be getting visits from Tennessee coaches according to a report from 247Sports. Lecque lives in Arden, North Carolina while James lives in Charleston, South Carolina.

    Lecque has been pursued heavily by the Vols over the last few months. He unofficially visited the Vols back on January 6th, and Tennessee visited him on March 22nd. He recently picked up an offer from Louisville and adds their offer to an already huge list that includes Villanova, Xavier, Auburn, Florida, UConn, Kansas, Syracuse, and Miami among many others.

    According to the 247Sports Composite rankings, Lecque is the No. 12 player in the entire 2019 class, and he’s the 2nd-best combo guard in the class as well. He’s ranked as the No. 1 player in the state of North Carolina.

    There had been talk about Lecque possibly reclassifying and being part of the 2018 class instead of the 2019 class, and he told Jason Jordan of USA Today Sports that there wasn’t anything stopping him if he wanted to. It would just depend on his situation if actually decided to do so.

    “Academically I’m good to go,” Lecque told Jordan. “It’s all about my development. Right now, I’d say I’m 50-50 on moving up to 2018…I want to go into a situation where I’ll be playing a lot as a freshman because I want to potentially be a one-and-done.

    “If I don’t have that situation, I have no problem staying in my class.”

    The Vols haven’t been quite as involved with Josiah James, but he’s still a big target for Tennessee. He’s listed as a high four-star by the 247Sports Composite rankings, but the regular 247Sports rankings have him as a five-star. The composite rankings have him listed as the No. 29 overall player and No. 3 combo guard. The regular 247Sports rankings rate him as the No. 20 overall prospect in the 2019 class.

    Currently, James holds offers from Cincinnati, Virginia, Auburn, South Carolina, Stanford, Oklahoma, Louisville, and others.

    But the pair of highly-rated guards aren’t the only players the Vols will be checking out while in the Carolinas. They’ll also be paying a visit to a tall center in South Carolina.

    Malcolm Wilson is a 6-foot-10, 205 pound center out of Columbia, South Carolina. Right now he’s rated as just a three-star, but the consensus among high school basketball analysts is that he could be in store for a big jump this summer. He’s ranked as the No. 163 overall player and No. 29 center in the 2019 class according to the 247Sports Composite rankings.

    The Vols have yet to offer Wilson, but the fact that they’re using an in-home visit with him certainly shows that they’re very interested in him. He currently has offers from Clemson, Georgetown, VCU, South Carolina, and Georgia Tech.

    Tennessee only has one commitment in their 2019 class thus far, and that’s from three-star small forward Davonte Gaines. The Vols will definitely have two scholarships to offer in this class because of the departure of Admiral Schofield and Kyle Alexander off the roster due to graduation after this season. But they could have a scholarship or two left over from their 2018 class depending on if they add anyone to the roster for the upcoming season, and they would gain additional scholarships if any player elects to transfer or declare early for the NBA Draft after the season.