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Texas A&M's Big-Splash Signing Highlights Start of the NCAA Basketball Early Signing Period

Bryce Lindsay plans to sign with the Aggies. Plus, top prospects Xavier Booker and Cody Williams declared their decisions.

The NCAA's early signing period for basketball—which opened Wednesday and runs through Nov. 16—doesn’t tend to have quite the level of drama that football inevitably offers, but top recruits officially stamping their spots at Power 5’s always impassions fan bases.

Here are a handful of the most intriguing happenings from the first day:

Texas A&M Snags Elite Prospect at the Point

Buzz Williams made a big splash on opening day of the early signing period, snatching elite point guard Bryce Lindsay from Virginia and West Virginia. Lindsay was originally a member of the 2022 class and South Carolina commit, but decommitted from the Gamecocks when Frank Martin was fired last March.

Lindsay then decided to take a prep year at IMG Academy (Bradenton, Fla.), a move that will undoubtedly raise his stock in the 2023 class.

A shifty marksman of a scorer who doesn’t toe the line, Lindsay’s range is NBA three-point line extended and he thrives as a playmaker with the ability to create his own shot at any time.

As it stands, Lindsay is the lone commitment for the Aggies in 2023 and plans to sign later in the week.

Booker on the Books for Izzo

The whispers out of East Lansing are officially centered around the 2024 Final Four in Phoenix now that Tom Izzo has signed Xavier Booker. The 6’11” center has earned the “unicorn” nickname because of his size and versatility.

Booker can grab a rebound and ignite the fast break like a point guard, knock down perimeter jump shots efficiently and dominate the paint on both ends of the floor.

Think Chet Holmgren, the 2021 SI All-American Player of the Year.

Booker went No. 2 overall in Sports Illustrated’s all-high school NBA Mock Draft in June and is undoubtedly in the conversation for the top spot in the SI99 basketball recruiting rankings which drop next month.

Izzo already had a strong class in 2023 with Jeremy Fears, Gehrig Normand and Coen Carr, but Booker’s addition elevated it to special.

Cody Williams to Colorado Makes History

On Tuesday, we said that Colorado coach Tad Boyle was in good position to land Williams in the 11th hour, and on Wednesday the 6’7” wing made it official, picking the Buffs over Arizona, LSU, USC, LMU and Santa Clara.

Williams, a lock for the top tier of the SI99 basketball rankings next month, is Colorado’s highest-rated recruit in the program’s history and likely their biggest get since Chauncey Billups in the 1990s.

Link Academy's Omaha Biliew (0) dunks during the second half of the GEICO Nationals semifinal between Prolific Prep (Calif.) and Link Academy (Mo.), Friday, April 1, 2022, at Suncoast Credit Union Arena in Fort Myers, Fla.Link Academy defeated Prolific Prep 59-53. GEICO Nationals 2022: Prolific Prep (Calif.) vs. Link Academy (Mo.) semifinal, April 1, 2022

Biliew should make an impact from day one at Iowa State.

Omaha Biliew Gives Iowa State Highest-Rated Recruit

Biliew wasted little time making it official with T.J. Otzelberger and the Cyclones, signing his letter of intent around 8 a.m. ET.

That officially gave Iowa State its highest-rated recruit in the modern recruiting era.

At 6’8”, Biliew is a versatile rim-runner who scores in a variety of different ways and finishes with authority. His physicality makes him a matchup problem in the paint, and his motor and timing make him an impactful defender, capable of guarding multiple positions.

Biliew is a virtual lock to be in the top tier of the SI99 basketball recruiting rankings for 2023, which will be revealed in December.

No. 1 Montverde Academy’s Loaded Senior Class

The Eagles are once again sitting atop the SB Live/Sports Illustrated Power 25 basketball rankings after claiming the GEICO Nationals title last season.

This year’s appointment is due in large part to a loaded class of seniors, all of which signed with their respective schools Wednesday.

Sean Stewart (Duke), Kwame Evans (Oregon), Chris Johnson (Kansas), Dra Gibbs-Lawhorn (Illinois) and Marvel Allen (Georgetown) will all play intricate roles in the Eagles' title quest this season and most are virtual locks for SI99’s basketball recruiting rankings.

Still Looming

The biggest pre-planned news is coming next week when Isaiah Collier, arguably the top prospect in the 2023 class, announces his commitment Nov. 16.

Collier, a point guard, will decide between Cincinnati, Michigan, USC and UCLA. Before Collier announces his decision, elite center Baye Fall will decide between Arkansas, Seton Hall, Auburn and Rutgers the day before. His cousin and teammate Assane Diop, also a center, will decide on the same day between Colorado, Arkansas and Seton Hall.

Also, this Saturday, elite wing Kaden Cooper will announce his decision between Kansas, Gonzaga, Alabama, Oklahoma and LSU.

As it stands, top 2023 prospects like DJ Wagner and AJ Johnson have yet to reveal a timetable for their decisions. The same goes for the class’s most recognizable prospect Bronny James, who visited Ohio State in September and has offers from Memphis and USC.

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