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Jeff Capel and Pitt end effort to recruit Nigel John

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The Texas native no longer has a committable offer from Pitt

Matt Hawley

Jeff Capel and the Pitt coaching staff traveled a complex path to land the commitment of 6’9” power forward Eric Hamilton last Thursday, and one of the other recruits they were pursuing was 6’9” center Nigel John. However, with Hamilton now in the fold, it appears Pitt has lost interest in John, and according to Mike Vukovcan of Pittsburgh Sports Now, he no longer has a committable offer.

Prior to receiving an offer from Pitt, the Weatherford, Texas, native had committed to Washington State on Nov. 21, 2018, joining a class that, at the time, included current Pitt commit Ryan Murphy. However, he backed off that commitment on March 19 after the firing of Cougars coach Ernie Kent. John has three-star ratings from 247Sports and Rivals. With that said, the only other Power Five offer he has is from Kansas State.

John was one of several recruits that emerged as a frontcourt option for Pitt after the team missed out on junior college standout Khadim Sy. Others included Josaphat Bilau, Charles Coleman, Rodney Howard and John Ojiako. Coleman and Howard committed to East Carolina and Georgia, respectively, on May 29, and the other two recruits remain on the board. It is unclear what the news about John means for Bilau and Ojiako as Pitt prospects.

Bilau, a 6’10” power forward in the 2019 class, was heavily involved with Pitt and West Virginia just a few weeks ago. However, Kansas and Tennessee have since entered the fray for the three-star recruit out of Spire Academy in Geneva, Ohio. He also took an official visit to Nevada on Monday and recently said that he would announce his decision around June 20. So Bilau's future will become clear soon.

As for Pitt, if Capel decides to stick with his current group of players, he will have a five-man class consisting of 2019 commits Justin Champagnie, Karim Coulibaly and Gerald Drumgoole in addition to transfers Hamilton and Murphy. Pitt has two open scholarships remaining but may opt against using them.