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2022 CAA Recruiting Class Rankings
Saturday, 05 November 2022

Eric Van Der Heijden
by Bill Martin

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This was quite a task, thanks to the overly active transfer portal, but I finally finished watching at least 2 games of every incoming CAA scholarship player (over 80 prospects in total). The goal of this exercise was to evaluate each prospect individually and give them a rating, so that I could accurately rank the 2022 CAA recruiting classes.  You can find an explanation of the Recruit Recon Player Rating System here.  

The ranking of these recruiting classes is purely based on talent and not team needs, as the latter would require a much more in depth analysis.  Even just ranking the recruiting classes based on talent alone proved difficult due to varying class sizes and years of eligibility for all the transfers.  The Average (Player) Rating was used as a guideline and was not the only driving factor in the rankings. Enough intro, let's get into it. 


Class Rank: #1 - UNCW (Average Rating: 3.07)

In my opinion this is the top recruiting class in the CAA, beating Towson out by just a hair.  Prospect Highlights: Eric Van Der Heijden is a legit high major prospect at 6-9 with guard skills and is one of only three 4.0 rated incoming prospects (all transfers) for the entire CAA in 2022.  Noah Ross is also a great get for the Seahawks with his outside shooting and athletic ability but can score in other ways as well.  While most of the rest of the CAA filled out the bottom half of their recruiting classes with 2.5 rated players, UNCW was able to land mostly 3.0’s.  Victor Enoh is the only outlier at 2.0 but he is a one year guy that will just provide some depth inside.  UNCW fans should be very excited about the talent level they are bringing in this season.

4.0 Eric Van Der Heijden (6-9 SG/SF) - Ole Miss (MS) transfer with 3 years of eligibility

3.5 Noah Ross (6-7 SG) - Freshman out of Trinity Academy (NC)

3.0 Donovan Newby (6-1 PG) - Milwaukee (WI) transfer with 3 years of eligibility

3.0 Maleek Harden-Hayes (6-7 SF) - North Dakota St. (ND) transfer with 2 years of eligibility

3.0 Nick Farrar (6-7 PF) - College of Charleston (SC) transfer with 3 years of eligibility

3.0 Nolan Hodge (6-7 SF) - Freshman out of Northern Guilford (NC)

2.0 Victor Enoh (6-8 C) - Marist (NY) transfer with 1 year of eligibility

Class Rank: #2 - Towson (Average Rating: 3.10)

Towson was right there for the top spot with UNCW and actually has the highest Average Rating in the conference.  I slotted them second mostly due to Towson having a pair of one year transfers with 2.5 ratings, whereas UNCW only has one player below a 3.0 and has more players in the class.  Like UNCW, Towson pulled one of the three 4.0 rated prospects in Ryan Conway.  Prospect Highlights: Ryan Conway is what I would consider the only hybrid guard in this CAA Class.  He can reign down 3’s from anywhere on the court but can also run point and create for his teammates.  Dylan Williamson is a high level point guard prospect and I love what Christian May brings to table as a top end glue guy, who just always seems to be in the right spots making plays on both sides of the ball.  This is a really strong class with a good mix of potential stars and transfers that can contribute immediately on an already talented team.

4.0 Ryan Conway (6-1 HG) - Seton Hall (NJ) transfer with 4 years of eligibility

3.5 Dylan Williamson (6-1 PG) - Freshman out of Our Lady of Good Counsel (MD)

3.0 Christian May (6-5 SF) - Freshman out of Bishop O'Connell (VA)

2.5 Sekou Sylla (6-5 SF) - Nova Southeastern (FL) D-II transfer with 1 year of eligibility

2.5 Nygal Russell (6-4 SG) - Southeast Missouri St. (MO) transfer with 1 year of eligibility

Class Rank: #3 - NC A&T (Average Rating: 3.08)

This third spot was a close call between NC A&T and Northeastern but I gave NC A&T the slight edge.  With a pair of 3.5 rated prospects, a trio of 3.0’s and only one 2.5 this class has a lot of potential and not many weaknesses.  Prospect Highlights: Love Bettis is a big time shot maker who can run point, Tyrese Elliot is an athletic combo guard who can run point but looks to score first.  Their three 3.0 rated transfers all have multiple years of eligibility remaining and potential to be good players for them.

3.5 Love Bettis (6-0 PG) - Coffeyville CC (KS) JUCO transfer with 3 years of eligibility

3.5 Tyrese Elliot (6-2 CG) - Freshman out of Grayson (GA)

3.0 Austin Johnson (6-9 PF/C) - UC Irvine (CA) transfer with 2 years of eligibility

3.0 Kam Woods (6-2 SG) - Northwest Florida St. (FL) JUCO transfer with 3 years of eligibility

3.0 Will Felton (6-9 PF/C) - Arizona St (AZ) transfer with 4 years of eligibility

2.5 Garrison Powell (6-4 PG) - Freshman out of The Skills Factory (GA)

Class Rank: #4 - Northeastern (Average Rating: 3.00)

Really good class here for Northeastern, without a 4.0 rated prospect they are a tier below the top 2 spots but right there with NC A&T.  Every other team ranked below them has an Average Player Rating below 3.0.  I slotted them below NC A&T partly because they were one of only two teams in the CAA to not do anything in the transfer portal.  This would be more understandable if the team was good last year but they weren’t and could use some more immediate help.  A couple of these freshmen might be ready to go immediately but it would have been nice to see them bring in more experience to the roster.  Prospect Highlights: At 6-8 Jared Turner can really shoot the ball and Masai Troutman is a versatile athletic wing with the tools to be a great defender.  I really like Collin Metcalf’s athletic ability but he is a bit on the raw side.

3.5 Jared Turner (6-8 SF) - Freshman out of Gonzaga (DC)

3.5 Masai Troutman (6-6 SG) - Freshman out of St. Andrew's (MD)

3.0 Chase Cormier (6-2 CG) - Freshman out of Milton (GA)

3.0 Collin Metcalf (6-9 PF/C) - Freshman out of Mercersburg Academy (PA)

2.5 Harold Woods (6-5 SG) - Freshman out of Bosco Institute (IN)

2.5 Rashad King (6-6 SG) - Freshman out of Evans (GA)

Class Rank: #5 - Drexel (Average Rating: 2.93)

Drexel has a really strong group of freshmen but didn’t pull the high end talent out of the transfer portal that some of the other teams in the conference did.  In the Dragon’s case some of the freshmen could be called on to play earlier than the more experienced transfers.  The transfers Drexel did pull in have plenty of eligibility though, so they will have time to develop. Prospect Highlights: Justin Moore is an athletic point guard with excellent court vision and passing skills.  Shake Blakeney is a player that can get his own shot at any time and has range well beyond the arc.

3.5 Justin Moore (6-3 PG) - Freshman out of Archbishop Wood, PA

3.5 Shane Blakeney (6-5 CG) - Freshman out of Legion Collegiate Academy, SC

3.0 Cole Hargrove (6-8 PF) - Freshman out of Methacton HS, PA

3.0 Jamie Bergens (6-2 CG) - Oral Roberts transfer with 3 years of eligibility

2.5 Garfield Turner (6-8 PF) - JUCO transfer out of Odessa College, TX with 3 years of eligibility

2.5 Kobe Magee (6-6 SG) - Freshman out of Executive Education Charter Academy, PA

2.5 Yame Butler (6-5 SG) - JUCO transfer out of State Fair MO, TX with 3 years of eligibility

Class Rank: #6 - William & Mary (Average Rating: 2.89)

W&M did a great job in the portal, pulling out a trio of 3.5 rated prospects and two other 2.5’s that should contribute in their lone season in Williamsburg.  Even though they did better in the portal than Drexel, their freshmen class just isn’t as strong.  I gave Drexel the edge due to W&M having more than half their class with 2.5 ratings.  Prospect Highlights: Gabe Dorsey does not hesitate to pull the trigger from 3 and can hit shots with a high degree of difficulty.  Matteus Case can run point and can score in a variety of ways.  Noah Collier is an athletic forward that can play inside or out.  Chase Lowe is a big, skilled point guard that was a big time winner in high school but his complete lack of a jumpshot is why I ranked him a 3.0 and most likely how he was still available for W&M.  The top of this class is as good as anyone in the CAA.  

3.5 Gabe Dorsey (6-6 SG) - Vanderbilt (TN) transfer with 3 years of eligibility

3.5 Matteus Case (6-5 CG) - Providence (RI) transfer with 3 years of eligibility

3.5 Noah Collier (6-8 SF/PF) - Pitt (PA) transfer with 3 years of eligibility

3.0 Chase Lowe (6-5 PG) - Freshman out of Weddington (NC)

2.5 Anders Nelson (6-1 PG) - St. Thomas (MN) transfer with 1 year of eligibility

2.5 Charlie Williams (6-10 PF/C) - Freshman out of Carmel (IN)

2.5 Chris Mullins (6-3 SG) - Rice (TX) transfer with 1 year of eligibility

2.5 Jack Karasinski (6-7 SF) - Freshman out of Grand Rapids Catholic Central (MI)

2.5 Miles Hicks (6-1 PG) - Freshman out of St. Albans (DC)

Class Rank: #7 - Hofstra (Average Rating: 2.79)

Hofstra lost a ton from last season so it’s not surprising that they hit the portal hard, but I don’t love having only two freshmen in a seven man class.  I like the freshmen a lot, the lone JUCO recruit has potential but three of the D-I transfers all only have 1 year of eligibility remaining.  It’s hard transitioning to a completely new system in one year and this is just too many one year guys for my liking.  Prospect Highlights: Lual Manyang will need a little time to develop but is loaded with potential.  He’s athletic, can score inside or step out and hit from 3.  German Plotnikov and Tyler Thomas are the standouts among the transfers, but Bryce Washington and Warren William could contribute immediately as well.

3.5 Lual Manyang (6-10 C) - Freshman out of Blair Academy (NJ)

3.0 German Plotnikov (6-6 CG) - North Platte CC (NE) JUCO transfer with 3 years of eligibility

3.0 Khalil Farmer (6-4 SG) - Freshman out of Roman Catholic (PA)

3.0 Tyler Thomas (6-3 SG) - Sacred Heart (CT) transfer with 2 years of eligibility

2.5 Bryce Washington (6-4 SG) - Penn (PA) transfer with 1 year of eligibility

2.5 Warren Williams (6-9 PF/C) - Manhattan (NY) transfer with 1 year of eligibility

2.0 Nelson Boachie-Yiadom (6-8 PF) - Davidson (NC) transfer with 1 year of eligibility

Class Rank: #8 - Hampton (Average Rating: 2.88)

Hampton is bringing in the last of the three 4.0 rated prospects in the conference and Jordan Nesbitt is the most proven of that elite group. Prospect Highlights: Jordan Nesbitt is an athletic wing with good size who was already highly productive in his freshman season in the A10.  He’ll just need to be more efficient shooting the ball to take his game to the next level.  Kyrese Mullen is a little undersized to play inside but he has some length to make up for that and is a rebounding machine.  He can step out and hit 3’s as well.  The two freshmen guards aren’t on the same level as some of the other better guards coming into the CAA.  This is a small class so the 4.0 really elevated their Average Player Rating but I couldn’t put them ahead of Hofstra even though Hofstra’s Average Player Rating was lower.

4.0 Jordan Nesbitt (6-6 SG) - St. Louis (MO) transfer with 3 years of eligibility

3.0 Kyrese Mullen (6-7 PF) - Freshman out of Massanutten Military Academy (VA)

2.5 Tre Thomas (5-11 CG) - Freshman out of SPIRE Institute (OH)

2.0 Ihsan Duncan (6-1 CG) - Freshman out of Hampton HS (VA)

Class Rank: #9 - Charleston (Average Rating: 2.61)

Charleston finds themselves in the ninth position mostly due to not having anyone rated above a 3.0.  Everyone rated above them had at least one player rated 3.5 or higher.  I really like the four players they have rated 3.0’s but the other two freshmen I think will struggle at this level.  Also their three D-I transfers all have only one year of eligibility remaining which limits their potential.  Prospect Highlights: Evan Kilminister is a borderline 3.5 rating, as he is automatic when open from 3 but can also hit 3’s with a high degree of difficulty.  I left him as a 3.0 because he can be a defensive liability and once he moved inside the arc he wasn’t as effective scoring the ball.  Jordan Crawford, Khalil London and Ante Brzovic all have a chance to be high quality players for the Cougars.

3.0 Ante Brzovic (6-10 PF/C) - SE Oklahoma St. (OK) JUCO transfer with 3 years of eligibility

3.0 Evan Kilminster (6-1 PG) - Freshman out of Australian Institute of Sport (Australia)

3.0 Jordan Crawford (6-2 CG) - Freshman out of North Mecklenburg (GA)

3.0 Khalil London (6-3 CG) - Freshman out of Scotland Campus (PA)

2.5 Jaylon Scott (6-5 DF) - Bethel College (KS) NAIA transfer with 1 year of eligibility

2.5 Pat Robinson III (6-3 CG) - West Liberty (WV) D-II transfer with 1 year of eligibility

2.5 Ryan Larson (6-1 PG) - Wofford (SC) transfer with 1 year of eligibility

2.0 Spencer Legg (6-6 SF) - Freshman out of IMG Academy (FL)

2.0 Frankie Idlett (6-0 PG) - Freshman out of IMG Academy (FL)

Class Rank: #10 - Delaware (Average Rating: 2.67)

The Blue Hens have a couple of freshmen bigs with potential but their transfers will have to up their production from their previous stops to be relied upon heavily at Delaware.  Prospect Highlights: Gabe Moss is a forward that can score in a variety of ways around the hoop and step out for an occasional 3.  Houston Emory has really good length and timing to block shots.  Offensively he scores most of his points around the hoop.  Cavan Reilly can really shoot the ball but is a little one dimensional.  I would expect similar production from LJ Owens and Christian Ray that they had at their previous schools.

3.0 Gabe Moss (6-8 PF) - Freshman out of Hill School (PA)

3.0 Houston Emory (6-9 PF/C) - Freshman out of Blue Ridge (VA)

2.5 Cavan Reilly (6-4 SG) - Freshman out of Bishop O’Connell (VA)

2.5 Christian Ray (6-6 SG) - La Salle (PA) Transfer with 2 years of eligibility

2.5 LJ Owens (6-3 SG) - UMBC (MD)  Transfer with 1 year of eligibility

2.5 Nigel Shadd (6-9 PF) - Pacific (CA)  Transfer with 1 year of eligibility

Class Rank: #11 - Monmouth (Average Rating: 2.63)

Monmouth has two 3.0 rated prospects, both teams rated below them only have one 3.0 each, this puts them solidly in the 11 spot.  Prospect Highlights: Andrew Ball has shot making ability and you have to like the potential of Jaret Valencia.  The other half of their class I think will struggle at this level.

3.0 Andrew Ball (6-6 SG/SF) - Freshman out of Shawnee (NJ)

3.0 Jaret Valencia (6-9 PF) - Freshman out of Legacy School of Sport Sciences (TX)

2.5 Amaan Sandhu (7-1 C) - Freshman out of First Love Christian (PA)

2.0 Jack Collins (6-5 SG) - Freshman out of Phelps School (PA)

Class Rank: #12 - Elon (Average Rating: 2.50)

With a new coach coming in, Elon lost out on some talented players that had previously committed to them.  The transfers they brought in should be able to contribute right away but mostly as role players.  The freshmen have some potential but the highest rating of the group is only 3.0.  Elon just isn’t bringing in the same level talent as most of the rest of the CAA and that is why they find themselves in the twelfth spot.  Prospect Highlights: L.A. Pratt has the physical tools to be a lockdown defender but needs time to develop on the other side of the ball.  Sean Halloran can really shoot the ball and run point so he should see minutes in his lone year of eligibility.

3.0 L.A. Pratt (6-5 PG) - Freshman out of Lincoln Park Performing Arts (PA)

2.5 Deandre Smart (6-6 SF) - Freshman out of Loomis Chaffee (CT)

2.5 Max Mackinnon (6-5 SG/SF) - Freshman out of NBL Bullets (Australia)

2.5 Sean Halloran (6-0 CG) - Belmont Abbey (NC) D-II transfer with 1 year of eligibility

2.0 John Bowen (6-8 PF) - UNCW (NC) transfer with 1 year of eligibility

Class Rank: #13 - Stony Brook (Average Rating: 2.44)

Stony Brook is bringing in a lot of size at the forward and center positions.  While they have height, I’m not confident they can be big contributors at this level with their athletic profiles and skill sets.  Prospect Highlights: The lone exception would be Kenan Sarvan who looks every bit the part of a stretch big at 6-10 and is athletic enough to play in the CAA.  The rest of the class is filled with guards 6-4 or under that are a combination of freshmen and transfers but none of them really stand out as a bonafide star with ratings all 2.5 and below.  I just don’t think the talent level is up to par with what they’ll need to compete in the CAA and that is why they find themselves with the lowest rated recruiting class for 2022.

3.0 Kenan Sarvan (6-10 SB) - Mineral Area College (MO) JUCO transfer with 3 years of eligibility

2.5 Aaron Clarke (6-1 PG) - Sacred Heart (CT) transfer with 1 year of eligibility

2.5 Dean Noll (6-2 CG) - Cornell (NY) transfer with 1 year of eligibility

2.5 Jared Frey (6-4 SG) - Freshman out of ISA at Andrews Osborne (OH)

2.5 Keenan Fitzmorris (7-0 C) - Stanford (CA) transfer with 1 year of eligibility

2.5 Rocco Muratori (7-3 C) - Freshman out of MG Academy (FL)

2.5 Toby Onyekonwu (6-0 CG) - Freshman out of Joliet West (IL)

2.0 Leon Nahar (6-10 SB) - Freshman out of Asheville School (NC)

2.0 Sabry Philip (6-4 SG) - Navarro College (TX) JUCO transfer with 2 years of eligibility

Position Legend

PG = Point Guard

SG = Shooting Guard

CG = Combo Guard

HG = Hybrid Guard

SF = Small Forward

PF = Power Forward

DF = Dual Forward

SB = Stretch Big

C = Center

Last Updated ( Saturday, 05 November 2022 )
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