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Rivals upgrades Zach Collins to five-star recruit

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Gonzaga officially has recruited its first five-star recruit in a long while.

High School Basketball: McDonald's All-American Jamfest Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports

The final Rivals150 list for the class of 2016 was released on Tuesday and Zach Collins received a nice upgrade to a five-star recruit.

Collins will enter Gonzaga as the No. 21 recruit in the entire nation according to Rivals. Eric Bossi cited Collins McDonald’s All-American appearance and his four state titles to land the elusive five-star ranking.

Now, of course, in the grand scheme of things, outside of accolades for Collins and his family’s mantle, this doesn’t mean very much. Rivals lists Collins as a five-star, 247 Sports lists him as a four-star. Either way, Gonzaga is getting a really good recruit.

But in the name of the recruiting game, snaring a five-star recruit is a big deal, mainly because Gonzaga hasn’t ever done that since Austin Daye in 2007 (of course all of this is ignoring the original rankings of transfers). We detailed earlier how Gonzaga’s recruiting game has been stepping it up as of late, and the emergence of Collins as time went on is just as important.

Players are committing earlier and earlier, and a lot can and cannot happen between sophomore, junior, and senior years. Collins chose to have a lot happen, and he continued to make sure his stock was rising despite the fact he already had a home for college.

Collins will be entering an uncertain situation in the post next year for the Zags. Przemek Karnowski still hasn’t definitively said what his plans are for next season, and even he does return there is no guarantee that he is the player he used to be.

If Karnowski does return, Collins will have ample opportunity to grow and develop his game at his own pace. If Karnowski is out of the picture, barring an insane summer of development for Ryan Edwards, Collins will be leaned on, healthily, in the paint.