It's been a big weekend for UNLV basketball, and not just because the Rebels have been getting ready for their season opener against Northern Arizona.
Two of the nation's top high school prospects, Isaac and Daniel Hamilton, were on campus for a visit, and landing the California natives would be the latest in a string of recruiting successes for coach Dave Rice and his staff.
Isaac Hamilton, a 6-foot-5 guard, is rated as one of the top players in the Class of 2013 (No. 15 in the Rivals 100), while 6-foot-6 Daniel Hamilton is one of the top swingmen in 2014 (No. 20 in the Rivals 150). The brothers attended Rebels practice at the Thomas & Mack Center on Saturday and watched a portion of Sunday's practice, and they plan to stick around for the Northern Arizona game on Monday night.
After leaving practice on Sunday, the brothers seemed enthused about the UNLV program.
"I'd say it's one of the top three schools that I really like," said Isaac Hamilton, adding that UTEP and Baylor were the other two leaders. "It's such a tough decision."
Isaac Hamilton averaged 26.0 points, 11.1 rebounds and 5.8 assists per game for St. John Bosco (Bellflower, Calif.) last year. One of the advantages UNLV has had in his recruitment has been Rice's style of play and the fact that the Rebels see him as a point guard in their system.
"They play a run and gun type offense, and I love to play in a situation like that," said Isaac Hamilton. "And that's who I am, a scorer. But at the next level I look at myself as a point guard, so in this case I'd say I'm a scoring point guard but I can still distribute and make plays."
There has been much speculation that the Hamiltons are a package deal, and they didn't do much to dissuade that notion on Sunday.
"It'd be tough not to go to the same school," said Daniel Hamilton, whose visit was unofficial. "Another school would have to offer a whole lot."
Daniel Hamilton averaged 18.9 points and 8.5 rebounds per game as a sophomore last year, and he said that his top three was currently the same as his brother's. He did add that he plans to take some solo visits.
While the early signing period opens on Nov. 14, Isaac Hamilton said he didn't expect to sign until April. He said he may commit before then, however.
Both Hamiltons will stay for Monday's game, so there's presumably a chance the Rebels could still get a commitment before they leave town. The UNLV coaching staff isn't allowed to comment on unsigned recruits due to NCAA rules, but sources have told me the Rebels are unsure of which way the Hamiltons will go. They do feel that their ability to play Isaac Hamilton as a point guard gives UNLV an advantage over the rest of the field (most other schools are recruiting his as a combo guard or shooting guard).
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