Will Wade stayed hot landing elite talent when five-star point guard Marvel Allen committed to LSU on Friday night, live on an ESPN broadcast. Allen picked the Tigers over Alabama, Georgia, Kansas, Maryland, Memphis, and Ohio State.
Allen is the No. 18 prospect in the 2023 class, according to the On3 Consensus, a complete and equally weighted industry-generated average that utilizes all four major recruiting media companies. He is ranked as the No. 4 combo guard and the No. 1 player in Florida.
Watching the Top 25 Tigers play this year, the Calvary Christian Academy (Fla.) standout saw how he’d fit right into the program.
“What makes LSU one of my top schools, they just reach out a lot to not only me, but my parents,” Allen told On3Sports earlier this month. “That’s one thing in my recruitment that I’m big on is coaches reaching out to my parents and making sure my parents feel comfortable with the decision too. That’s what stands out about them. I can se myself fitting in their system.
“The way they play defensively, get up and down, the freedom the guards have, it’s just a great school that will fit my playing style.”
LSU coaches have strong bond
Assistant coach Kevin Nickelberry is leading the charge on his recruitment. Nickelberry’s relationship with Allen as well as head coach Will Wade is strong, which tells Allen he’d be in good hands.
“He’s been in the game a while as a head coach at Howard. He coached at Clemson and coach Wade used to be one of his GAs,” Allen said. “Those two guys, they have a relationship and a bond that’s just more than LSU. If coach Nickelberry thinks something, coach Wade thinks something. They can communicate with each other and they trust each other.
“If you’re close to one of the coaches and there’s a play you want to run, you’ll always have the freedom so that’s the vibe I get.”
Allen ready to play for Will Wade
Wade, who can be fiery at times, doesn’t necessarily appear that way to the 6-4 guard. He sees a team that plays hard for the LSU head coach.
“I’ve watched a few of the LSU games and one thing I’ll say about coach Wade is when the team gets down, I never see him panic,” Allen explained. “He’s always cool, calm. Next thing you know, the team just plays hard and gets back defensively. He’s the same personality no matter if they’re losing, they’re winning. He’s going to coach and he doesn’t get frustrated.
“He gets frustrated, but he doesn’t show it. If you’re in the game, you know you got a coach that believes in you and knows that they’re you’re going to come back, that gives you a lot of confidence.”