July 18, 2011
It's not often UNLV has a legitimate chance to land the nation's consensus No. 1 prospect, so Rebels fans are going all out to show Las Vegas native Shabazz Muhammad how badly they want him to play for his hometown school.
In addition to a twitter account entitled UNLVluvsShabazz and the usual steady stream of pro-UNLV tweets and facebook messages, Las Vegas-based art director Josh Meeter has created a faux Nike commercial encouraging Muhammad to "become a Rebel."
UNLV remains a dark horse to out-duel the likes of UCLA, Kentucky, Kansas and Arizona to land Muhammad, but the Rebels do have certain advantages over their peers besides their location.
Newly hired UNLV coach Dave Rice's younger brother, Grant Rice, is Muhammad's coach at Bishop Gorman High. Plus, Muhammad regularly plays against some of UNLV's current players and tweeted Sunday that he'll be spending a few days this week in California with Rebels guard Bryce Jones.
Interestingly, UNLV isn't the only non-BCS program with a chance to land a prospect considered to be among the top players in his class. Jabari Parker, Rivals.com's No. 4 player in the Class of 2013, remains very interested in BYU because of his Mormon faith and close relationship with the coaching staff.
"It's pretty serious," Parker told the National Hoops Report. "They keep on recruiting me and I'm showing interest in them too. I don't have any favorites, but they are in there."
Sounds like it's time for BYU fans to make a faux Nike commercial of their own.
(Thanks, Ryan Greene)