It has become clear that recruiting California is an emphasis for the 2014 and 2015 classes. With Gonzaga emerging as one of the top teams in the country, the Zags have been able to draw the interest of some of the truly elite prospects in the state.
One prospect that has long held GU in a high regard is 2015 guard Kendall Small. The talented point guard is in the midst of an impressive sophomore campaign and has made many strides as a prospect.
"He has made a lot of developments," said Don Small. "He is showing that he can be a leader as a sophomore. He has worked on his mid-range game. He has shot pretty good from the three-point line, about 33 percent, and has been very effective from the field."
As his AAU coach, Don has long emphasized a well-rounded game for his son, which has certainly been on display this season for Ocean View.
"He has always been a rebounder," Don explained. "When he was younger, he was one of the bigger kids, so he had to rebound. I knew he would be a guard, so I just made sure he had all the skills. I've tried to train him to be a complete player."
Kendall has been on the radar for Gonzaga for nearly a year and the coaching staff had a consistent presence at his games throughout the season.
"I've had the chance to meet with Tommy (Lloyd) and I've known Donny (Daniels) for awhile," Don said of his relationship with the Gonzaga coaches. "They have been out here quite a bit. Donny has probably been here four times this season and Tommy has been out twice."
With the AAU season rapidly approaching, it is no surprise that Kendall's recruitment has really picked up, with interest coming from around the country.
"Gonzaga and Arizona have been there since the beginning," said Don of which schools are coming on hard. "UNLV has come in as of late and we just started hearing from Oregon St. and NC State in the last month. Columbia came through and watched him and most of the Pac-12 is interested. UCLA and USC haven't really recruited him but it's early."
Since Kendall can't begin taking official visits for another year, the focus is on visiting local schools.
"Nothing right now, " Don said of visits. "He has been to UNLV and the local Pac-12 schools and Pepperdine."
"That is going to be a long trip," the Superior Athlete's AAU coach said of the trip to Spokane. "If it does happen, it would have to be in the summer since that is when we would be able to make it."