In the 7½ months since accepting an offer to coach the LSU basketball team, Will Wade has been on a serious roll on the recruiting trail.
Wade wrapped up the 2017 class by getting four-star point guard Tremont Waters and three-star power forward Mayan Kiir to join the program. He also brought in junior-college guard Daryl Edwards to go with the two players signed by former coach Johnny Jones: Four-star combo guard Brandon Rachal and forward Galen Alexander.
But that was just a start for Wade.
His recruiting efforts for the Class of 2018 yielded one five-star and two four-star commitments who can officially put their names on the national letter of intent when the early one-week signing period begins Wednesday.
Scotlandville point guard Ja’Vonte Smart, a two-time Louisiana Mr. Basketball pick, will sign on the dotted line at 2 p.m. Wednesday in the school’s gym, while forward Darius Days is expected to make it official at his school in Gainesville, Florida.
Both Smart and Days are rated as four-star prospects.
The highest-rated member of LSU's class, five-star power forward Nazreon Reid, has indicated he’ll sign Monday in his hometown of Asbury Park, New Jersey.
While Wade will likely add at least one more player for the 2018-19 season in the spring, the three-man class is currently ranked third in the nation behind only North Carolina, the reigning national champion, and Kansas in the 247Sports composite rankings.
“To me, it’s amazing that my school in my city has the No. 3 recruiting class nationally,” Smart said Tuesday. “One of the reasons I chose LSU was because I feel like I’ll get pushed to be better every day.”
LSU is far and away the top team among Southeastern Conference schools. Arkansas is 20th, Florida is 26th, Mississippi State is 32nd and Alabama rounds out the league’s top five in 45th. Kentucky is next at No. 68.
Wade and his coaching staff had to beat out some of the nation’s top programs to get commitments from Reid, Smart and Days. All three were in the top 65 in the 247Sports composite player rankings list as of Tuesday.
Reid was 17th, Smart is 29th and Days is 65th. By position, Reid and Days are fourth and 17th, respectively, among power forwards; Smart is rated as the No. 5 combo guard in the country.
Smart was the first to announce his decision on June 30, while Reid was taking an official visit to the LSU campus. Reid followed suit on Sept. 12 and Days chose the Tigers a month later.
Kentucky, Kansas and UCLA were among Smart’s finalists, Reid picked LSU over Arizona, and Days decided to go with the Tigers over North Carolina.
Advocate sportswriter Robin Fambrough contributed to this report.