Tennessee already has a small forward committed in their 2019 recruiting class, but they’ve been offering several small forwards in this cycle as of late. And that trend continued late Wednesday night.
Greg Gantt, a four-star small forward from Fayetteville, North Carolina, picked up an offer from Tennessee on Wednesday night. He plays for Trinity Christian School, and he was teammates with five-star forward Joey Baker, a Duke commit, who just announced he’s reclassifying to the 2018 class.
— Greg Gantt Jr. (@juuune__) May 3, 2018
Gantt is the No. 79 overall player and No. 24 small forward in the 2019 class according to the 247Sports Composite rankings. He picked up an offer from N.C. State and Texas on Wednesday as well, and he adds his offers from the Vols, Longhorns, and Wolfpack to ones he already had from Virginia, Cincinnati, Vanderbilt, Pittsburgh, Louisville, Clemson, Florida, Xavier, and others.
At 6-foot-8, 195 pounds, you might assume Gantt is more of a typical post player and scores mostly on dunks and post moves. But that’s not the case at all. Gantt can play a multitude of positions on the court, and he has a pretty jumper that he can make shots with consistently. He’s not a sniper from three, but he’s more than capable of hitting outside shots. But he’s not just some finesse forward; Gantt isn’t afraid to pound in the paint and battle for rebounds. He’s also a solid defender and protects the paint very effectively.
As a junior this past season for Trinity Christian School, Gantt averaged 10.9 points per game, 7.2 rebounds, 3.5 assists, 2.2 steals, and 1.6 blocks per game according to MaxPreps.
Right now, it doesn’t look like there’s much of an early favorite for Gantt, but both Virginia Tech and Louisville have gotten Gantt to unofficially visit them and have been pushing the hardest. Tennessee may be able to work their way in to Gantt’s recruitment since it doesn’t appear he’s leaning any one way as of now.
The big question, though, is this: Why have the Vols been offering so many small forwards lately when they already have three-star Davonte Gaines committed in their 2019 class at that position? Gaines committed back on July 1st of 2017, and Tennessee’s coaches have checked up on him during this early summer evaluation period. Have the two parties decided to move on? Or are the Vols trying to get some insurance in case something happens? Or is it just Barnes and his staff trying to increase the competition and make sure Gaines doesn’t get complacent?