Minnesota's top junior prospect is off the board! Prior Lake seven-foot junior center Carson Shanks committed to Utah State last night just four days after making an unofficial trip to the school. Shanks had offers from Utah, Nebraska, Colorado State, Northern Iowa, and others but the wild atmosphere of Logan, Utah won out.
"I knew Coach Stew Morrill had a great reputation for developing big guys coming into all of this (the recruitment) and I knew that going into last weekend," explained Carson. "Slowly more and more through the process I liked the school, the program, and the university.
"Then what did it for me was just walking into The Spectrum through the tunnel and 45 minutes before the game was about to start the students were already there just going nuts. That is what sealed the deal for me along with them having a great tradition of winning, winning a lot and going to the tournament."
This off-season Shanks unofficially visited several schools including Colorado State, Nebraska, North Dakota, Minnesota, Northern Iowa, Utah, Wisconsin, and others. The visit to Utah State definitely stood out amongst the rest.
"Once I got there I watched the shoot-around and I got to see how Coach Morrill ran his practices and how he got his team prepared," explained Shanks. "I had to wait for a couple hours before the game so I took a little tour of the campus and met the Athletic Director and the President of the university.
"Once I got to the game that was the highlight for me. When the fans did the "I Believe That We Will Win" chant I was pretty locked in."
Shanks received his first offers from Northern Iowa and Colorado State followed by North Dakota, Drake, Utah, and then Nebraska. These schools amongst others were commonly at Prior Lake open gyms checking on Carson.
Between the several unofficial visits, the multiple scholarship offers, meeting with the coaches in various fashions, and having them in open gyms, Carson's recruitment was a lot more advanced than most kids heading into there junior year. After seeing several schools and meeting with all the coaches Carson was ready for his decision and now that it's made, Carson is relaxed and ready to focus on his next two years of Prior Lake basketball.
"This entire time I had no set time as to when I was going to commit," said Carson. "I was just looking for the right fit and as soon as I was done with my visit last weekend I knew that it was the right fit. It's a little bit of a relief to be over with it but I'm pretty happy with the choice I made. The good thing about committing early is that now I can help get some other guys to Utah State."