Now that the AAU period has come to an end, the Gonzaga coaching staff has been able to dial-in their recruiting focus for the 2015 class. With the likely starting backcourt set to graduate after this season, it's not a surprise that adding elite talent on the wing has emerged as a priority.
The name that has emerged as the key target for the backcourt in the 2015 class is Matisse Thybulle of Eastside Catholic high school. He has been on the radar for awhile, but attention really picked up after a strong junior year and impressive play on the EYBL circuit.
"They've been talking to me for awhile," explained Thybulle. "It really started to pick up after the EYBL started. They (Gonzaga) got really serious after I was there for a team camp. I pretty much get a call or text from Coach Few or Coach Michaelson every day."
The Scout 100 member has visited Gonzaga each of the last two summers with his high school team. Naturally, this visit was a little different than the previous year.
"So this was my second time at Gonzaga," Matisse said. "This time, the kids at the camp looked at me a bit differently and Coach Few was at pretty much every game we played. It was really fun and Coach Few showed me around and showed me his office. That guy has trophies!! The ground in his office was just covered with them."
As he enters his senior year, Thybulle is taking control of his recruitment and learning all he can about his top schools.
"Right now, I feel like I am doing the recruiting," the Eastside Catholic star revealed. "I am doing my research and I am asking the questions that are important. It's not like they are telling me what I am trying to hear anymore. Right now, I want to know as much as possible and get all the facts."
Following a very successful summer, Thybulle is focused on four schools and has three official visits setup, including a trip to Spokane on September 12th.
"It's pretty even between Cal, Gonzaga, Oregon and UW. I have visits to Cal, Oregon and Gonzaga for officials."
With Gonzaga always looking to find an elite athlete on the perimeter, it's not a surprise that Thybulle has become the priority target in the 2015 class.
"They (Gonzaga staff) keep telling me that I am their number one guy. Coach Few told me that I would have the opportunity to come in and make an impact."
The opportunity for immediate playing time is important for Thybulle and the fact that Gonzaga is graduating its starting backcourt has been noticed.
"I think that's really important. I don't want to go to a school where I might have to redshirt or sit behind a lot of guys. I want to compete for playing time. I know as a freshman that I won't be a starter, but I want to know that if I come in and fight and I am producing, that I can play as many minutes as possible."
With a set four schools he is focusing on, the rest of the recruiting process will be key to determining which school fits his criteria the most.
"What I've narrowed it down to is that I don't want to go to a school with a big academic drop off," revealed Matisse. "The other thing that will be big is how much I am on the same page with the coach in terms of my future position and what I can do on the court. I don't want to go to a school where they will try and change me into something I am not. I think I should be playing the 2 or 3 and I want to have an understanding for how I can develop for the future."