Texas Basketball: Shaka Smart doing brilliant work on recruiting trail

There’s a lot to be proud of for the recruiting results for the Texas basketball program and head coach Shaka Smart as of late.

Up until they landed a commitment from the elite five-star Vandegrift power forward and Austin, TX, native Greg Brown to get the sole piece in the 2020 Texas basketball recruiting class, the Longhorns weren’t in a great position on the trail. Head coach Shaka Smart didn’t have much luck in getting any positive results on the recruiting trail for the men’s hoops program until Brown really changed the momentum.

Smart now has landed three commitments for his 2020 and 2021 classes over the course of the last three months or so alone. He landed that aforementioned commitment from Brown back on April 24. And since they, he landed two more commits to get his 2021 recruiting class really going in the right direction.

He didn’t waste any time for the 2021 class after getting going way too late for his 2020 group. Texas is going to need more than one commitment in both the 2021 and 2022 classes, as it looks now, since only one prospects was signed during the 2020 recruiting cycle.

At least Smart made the most of his one commit in the 2020 signing class. Brown ranks as the nation’s No. 9 2020 high school prospect, No. 2 power forward, and top overall prospect out of Texas (247Sports Composite). He should also have a bright NBA future in front of him after at least one year on the Forty Acres.

To start off the 2021 class, Smart landed a commitment from three-star Grace Christian School power forward/center and Raleigh, NC, native Keeyan Itejere. The 6-foot-9 and 190 pound Itejere was a real gem find for the Longhorns, as Smart had to go halfway across the country and really do his homework to find this North Carolina native.

But the biggest gem find for the Longhorns of the three commitments listed here is the three-star Assumption 6-foot-5 point guard Emarion Ellis. Texas landed the pledge of Ellis, who was picking up a lot of steam on the recruiting trail of late, on July 28. He became the second pledge in the 2021 class, and the first at the point guard position for the Longhorns in three cycles.

Texas will need a headlining commitment in the 2021 class to get as much notoriety as 2020 did. But Texas didn’t rank high at all in the national class rankings for their 2020 class since Brown was the sole signee.

Next: 4 schools that would benefit from joining Big 12

Where Texas goes from here is up to Smart. He’s on a roll on the recruiting trail right now, despite the long haul of no commitments throughout a lot of 2019 and 2020. His lack of success on the hardwood in recent years could be made up by a solid 2020-21 campaign and more good results on the trail.