Class of 2017 four-star center Nate Watson committed to play for Providence on Saturday night, per Jeff Borzello of ESPN. The 6’8″, 220-pound center from Upper Marlboro, Maryland, chose Providence before taking his official visits to both Maryland and Miami, who were previously thought to be in the mix to sign Watson.
It seemed a foregone conclusion that Watson would be attending an ACC school. On August 9, he cut his list down his Top 5 schools, four of which were ACC programs; the one outlier was the Providence Friars. Choosing head coach Ed Cooley at Providence over Miami, Maryland, NC State, and Wake Forest, Watson is a huge get for a Friars team that is coming off a No. 9 seed and victory in last season’s NCAA Tournament.
While having height is never a bad thing, Watson becomes the second center to sign with the Friars in their 2017 class. With Watson standing 6’8″, he joins 6’11” center Dajour Dickens from Hampton, Virginia, also a four-star recruit. Dickens committed to Providence back in February.
The Maryland/Virginia connection has been established for the Friars, who currently have three players on their roster from the DMV area, including standout sophomore forward Rodney Bullock, who may have the opportunity to forgo his final season in Providence should he build off the stellar sophomore campaign he had last year.
It seems futile to ever predict who will and won’t be on a roster a year ahead of schedule, the height of a player such as Watson stands out and may project where he will land in the rotation. The Friars have only three players who are 6’8″ or taller, and one includes Bullock.