Five star SG and top-5 ranked player in the nation Rodney Purvis ended speculation and committed to Mark Gottfried and the NC State Wolfpack on Friday afternoon. During what was a long, roller coaster ride recruitment, Purvis initially committed to Louisville before backing out and finally choosing NC State over UConn, Ohio State, NC Central, Duke,VCU and Missouri.
Rodney Purvis has been a household name in Raleigh for over 3 years now. It was around the time that John Wall was starting to explode that a few articles surfaced about the ‘next’ John Wall, a high school freshman from just down the road. We ran an intro article on Rodney on September 29th, 2009 that explained why Purvis coming to NC State was a very real possibility. Nearly exactly 3 years later it’s became reality.
We’ve covered Purvis over the years and even visited his high school to get footage of his workouts and quotes from his coach and AD, former NC State player, Avie Lester and were perplexed at why we kept hearing that Sidney Lowe and his staff had barely shown interest in the young superstar. Lester told us that he thought NC State could make a play, but would have to start showing that Rodney mattered to them. They quickly were losing ground to top tier schools who were already showing Purvis the love.
Many expected Rodney to wait and have a long, drawn out recruitment like his Raleigh predecessor, John Wall. But Purvis surprised everyone when he popped for Louisville last year. To those following closely it wasn’t too much of a surprise as Tim Fuller, who had a long standing relationship with Purvis, was on staff there. But Fuller left and joined Frank Haith at Missouri, prompting Rodney to take a second look at his decision. After a few days he decommitted and opened himself back up.
Just around that time NC State had hired new head coach Mark Gottfried. Now open to new schools, Rodney took another look at NC State. His long time friend Tyler Lewis had already committed there and he was constantly on campus playing pickup with the current players and other local talent. His relationship with NC State began to grow and with Lewis in his ear about putting the Wolfpack back on the map, he knew staying home was what he had to do.
We had gotten word that Purvis was a likely commit back in early May, but it never happened. Instead it was Torian Graham who made the quick commitment (which he has since backed out of). Our sources still felt very confident that NC State was going to get Purvis but felt it might take a while for him to make his final decision since he does not want to rush it like he did with Louisville. However, those we talked to became nervous when months passed and he still had not made his mind up 100%, some felt that other schools were getting much needed time to makeup ground and attempt to change his mind. Duke made their push, so did Missouri and VCU, but they got the hint that his heart was still at NC State. Now, don’t get it twisted. Many big time media sites have gone on to say that Duke, Missouri and VCU stopped recruiting Rodney. That may be the case, but it’s only because they knew they weren’t getting him. There’s no doubt that any team that Purvis wanted to play for, would take him. Fortunately, for State fans, his choice was made today and that team will be Mark Gottfried’s Wolfpack.
With Lewis and Purvis now committed, State is looking to add a few more pieces to make their 2012 class a national story. One way to do that would be to land TJ Warren, another 5 star recruit from Raleigh who just so happens to be in Raleigh this weekend, hanging out with Lewis and Purvis at the NC State – Georgia Tech game while on his official visit.
With commitments from both Lewis and Purvis, Mark Gottfried has sounded warning shots to the rest of the schools on Tobacco Road, letting them know that he currently owns the North Carolina recruiting scene and anyone that wants to dispute that will have to prove otherwise.