Just over a week ago, Oregon State was a surprise inclusion to four-star prospect Kevin Porter Jr.’s final list of six schools, despite the fact that the Beavers were the only program in the mix that had yet to officially offer him a scholarship. And yet, just days later, it seems that the product of Rainier Beach High School (WA) has already begun to look past the Corvallis program and focus on some other Pac-12 schools instead.
Of the six schools that Porter Jr. had previously narrowed his search down to, which included the likes of California, Oregon, Oregon State, UCLA, USC and Washington, the 6’ 5”, 190 pound guard has also begun to look away from the Golden Bears program and focus more on newcomer Washington State instead. Speaking to Corey Evans of Rivals.com, Porter Jr. stated that ”Washington, Oregon, USC, UCLA and Washington State” were the schools that are “trying to recruit (him) the most” at the moment. The Beavers seem to be a complete thought of the past.
Within the same article, which can be found in it’s entirety here, Porter Jr. also comments on each of the remaining programs involved in his recruiting and what he sees as positives in eventually choosing any of the Pac-12 based schools.
Washington: “(Mike Hopkins) makes me feel real comfortable. I thought it would be a little awkward since I was so used to (Lorenzo) Romar but he made me feel comfortable the first time that I met him.
“They are definitely in consideration with them being my hometown school, but I have to talk to my family deeply about staying. It is a school that I definitely would attend.”
Oregon: “My brother who played with me, Keith Smith, he thinks it is a great environment. Oregon could definitely be a place that I can adjust to and adapt to new things.
“You’re not going to get a lot of slack over there. Everybody just works hard and nothing is given at any college, especially at Oregon.”
USC: “That is one of the schools that I could adjust to since their playing type is my type with run and go. I like their campus; I just went on an unofficial visit there. It is pretty nice. I didn’t think it would be how it was but it was a really nice experience.”
UCLA: “It is the same as USC; they are basically the same school with a different name. It would be a great school to go to and for me, just like USC, I would be very comfortable with the coaching staff. Coach (David) Grace makes me feel like I am already there.”
Washington State: “They have been on me but they recently picked up coach (Ed) Haskins from Garfield; I have a great relationship with him. We have a big Garfield-Rainier rivalry. I know somebody that is there and I feel like it could just adapt me and teach me some things if I was to go there.”
As mentioned in our previous article pertaining to Porter Jr., the Beavers were once seen as a legitimate destination due to the Rivals Top 50 player’s relationships on his Seattle Rotary AAU team with 2019 target P.J. Fuller and 2018 in-state prospect Khalil Chatman. However, some unique new connections throughout the conference, specifically those of former Garfield High School (WA) coach Ed Haskins being added to the staff at Washington State, may change the game for whoever eventually lands Porter Jr.’s services.
As far as a timeline for Porter Jr.’s decision, he told Rivals.com that he shorten his list of schools after the AAU season is complete and he expects to decide by sometime in September.
“I want to get it over with before my senior year,” Porter Jr. said.
With Porter Jr. now mostly out of the mix for Oregon State’s 2018 recruiting haul, the Beavers must make a concerted effort to add to their one-man class, which at the moment, consists only of seven-footer Jack Wilson from Junípero Serra High School (CA). Making strides in securing the commitments of 6’ 7” forward Jarvis Thomas from Minnesota and 6’ 6” swingman Emmitt Matthews, Jr. from Washington, could be crucial to rounding out next year’s roster, which may be also impacted by the early NBA Draft decisions of Tres Tinkle, Stephen Thompson Jr. and Drew Eubanks.