Last month, we started our Sales Pitch series by ranking the schools in the ACC based on the quality of their enticements for men’s basketball recruits and then moved on to the Big East, where we examined whether anyone in the league can close the recruiting gap on Villanova. We followed that up with the Big Ten, and the biggest first tier we’ve seen of any conference so far, and the Pac-12, where UCLA and Arizona are keeping the rest of the league at arm’s length. Last week we continued with the SEC, where everyone continues to chase Kentucky on the recruiting trail, and then looked at the Memphis vs. Houston battle at the top of the American.
This week, we continue our exercise with the Big 12. The league is home to one of the true bluebloods in college basketball history, but also has the reigning national champions and several deep-pocketed programs. Within the past six seasons, seven of the 10 teams in the Big 12 have been to the second weekend of the NCAA tournament, and of the three to miss out, one is about to have the No. 1 pick in the NBA draft (Oklahoma State) and another just hired one of the best coaches in the sport (Texas).
As a reminder, ESPN spoke with a wide variety of anonymous coaches across college basketball’s top seven leagues (as rated by KenPom and other relevant metrics systems), as well as nationally relevant programs beyond those conferences, for our Sales Pitch feature. Over an eight-week period, we’ll rank the programs in order of which have the best sales pitches for recruits and transfers.