Some fans wondered why Fox did not go harder after Brown, since Brown is from Morgan County, just a short distance away from UGA's campus. When Tookie committed to Mississippi State, Dawgs hoops followers resigned themselves to hope that he would not be as effective at the college level as high school (over 3,000 points scored, including a recent 37-point outburst in a tournament game against #1 ranked Laney, and 25 points in the championship game against Jenkins).
Well, in perhaps a gift to UGA, Mississippi State has fired head basketball coach Rick Ray.
One of the school's commitments has already reacted by announcing that he is reopening his recruitment. What does that mean for Tookie Brown? We'll see over the next few days.
Bottom line: We need to look very seriously at bringing in Tookie Brown, should he decommit. The trend these days is that after a forced coaching change, the schools release their incoming recruits from their Letters of Intent, most of the time with no restrictions. We did it when Harrick, and later, Felton, were fired. It would be classy of Mississippi State to allow Tookie to sign with UGA, if he responded to the Ray firing by deciding to play closer to home.
That's basically how we got Marcus Thornton. Clemson coach Oliver Purnell left, and we picked up Thornton on the rebound. And where would UGA have been the last couple of years without Thornton?
Tookie Brown would be a fit for UGA. Although it could be argued that he is an undersized point guard, and UGA already has one in J.J. Frazier, Frazier himself showed us against Mississippi State that if the player gets hot, whatever his size, feed him the ball.
We've seen how the Dawgs play when one of our guards is injured. We just don't have a whole lot of options. Bringing Tookie Brown in would allow Turtle Jackson to be more of a combo guard. That would give Fox an effective five-guard rotation to work with, Charles Mann and Kenny Gaines as seniors, Frazier as a sophomore, and Brown and Jackson as freshmen. We could even make the press a staple of our defense, rather than a last minute catch-up tool.
While we're at it, the player who announced his decommitment from MSU is none other than 4-star shooting guard D'Marcus Simonds from Gainesville, Ga. Whatever Tookie Brown decides to do, let's be sure to let Simonds know that he is welcome as part of our 2016 class. Either he or Jordan Harris could slide to the 3 position, giving UGA a fantastic recruiting haul next year, consisting of three long, athletic perimeter players, Simonds, Jordan Harris and Tyree Crump.
It's time to start making rapid steps up the basketball talent trajectory. Fox, make it happen.