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2014 Pitt Basketball Recruiting: Wade Baldwin names Panthers in Final Five

Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Pitt recently missed out on Ja'Quan Newton for 2014's recruiting class, but the Panthers did manage to land in the top five for another recruit - New Jersey guard Wade Baldwin. His top five includes Pitt, Minnesota, Vanderbilt, Rutgers, and Virginia Tech. He says he is planning to visit all five schools soon. In fact, NBE basketball previously said those visits should take place in August.

Baldwin isn't as highly-ranked as Newton, but still drawing his fair share of attention. ESPN tabs him as a four-star recruit, which Rivals and Scout both have him as a three-star player. FWIW, Scout also ranks him as the #23 shooting guard in the nation.

One would think Rutgers might have the inside track because they're the local team, but according to Baldwin, that isn't true:

What won’t play a factor? Leaving the East Coast, where he grew up and where four of his five schools hover near.

“Actually no – both of my parents are moving away,” he said. “My dad will be in Arizona after I graduate and my mom is going back to Virginia so I’ll be away from Jersey and I’ll pretty much have no home town to go back to.”

Baldwin also has an interesting way of fixing his shot when it's off:

After playing two games on Saturday at the Southern Hoop Group Jam Fest, 2014 Immaculata (N.J.) guard Wade Baldwin returned to his hotel room.

But in the middle of this AAU tournament, he didn’t go back to get some food or watch a movie or take a nap.

He hadn’t shot as well as he typically does in those first two games, and he wanted to make sure his third game didn’t end up that way.

“I wasn’t getting the lift on my shots that I wanted,” Baldwin told by phone. “So I just did a drill where I lay on my back and shoot the ball into the air and make sure I catch before it comes back down. It straightens my shot out.”

Like I've said before, it will be interesting to see what kind of guards Pitt lands next season. The team has several young, quality options at guard that are all and immediate playing time there could be scarce.

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