One scholarship dangles.
The waiting game is under way.
Tennessee basketball was a flurry of activity last Monday. Two recruits — one a highly coveted All-America candidate from Dyer County, the other a top-150 player with NBA bloodlines — sent fans into frenzy.
The verbal commitments of Robert Hubbs III and A.J. Davis made waves. Hubbs, a 6-foot-5 shooting guard ranked as high as No. 12 overall in the Class of 2012 by some, became coach Cuonzo Martin's second five-star haul since arriving at UT in March 2011. Davis, son of former NBA veteran Antonio Davis, is a skilled combo forward.
It all happened in a 12-hour span Monday. Reports of Hubbs' commitment broke at 9 a.m. At 9 p.m., Davis made his announcement on Twitter.
Just like that, decisions from Hubbs and Davis slashed Martin's available scholarships in 2013 from three to one. Huntington (W.Va.) Prep point guard Travon Landry, who spent this weekend taking an official visit to Tennessee, committed to the Vols in December.
Nearly as soon as UT fans' jubilation peaked Monday, the conversation steered to a two-part million-dollar question.
Who is next? And when?
The list is short and centers on Briarcrest Christian School forward Austin Nichols and Southwind High School forward Johnathan Williams III.
Nichols is ranked No. 25 in the Class of 2013 by 247Sports and rated as a five-star recruit ranked No. 17 overall by Rivals.com. He's a true power forward who moves well, can play on the blocks or the top of the post, and has a nice midrange jump shot.
Williams, meanwhile, ranks No. 50 overall on 247 and is a four-star player ranked 47th overall by Rivals. He's a long, lean left-handed combo-forward with an inside-outside game and across-the-board versatility.
Nichols is expected to make an official visit to Tennessee on Oct. 20 for the UT-Alabama football game, following a visit to Duke on Oct. 6. He's previously taken official visits to Virginia and Vanderbilt, and made an unofficial visit to hometown Memphis. Nichols has played AAU summer ball with Hubbs and has a sister currently enrolled at UT.
Williams is a former classmate of current Vol Jarnell Stokes at Southwind. Having made official visits to Georgetown and Missouri, he took an official visit to Tennessee alongside Hubbs for last weekend's Florida game. He is scheduled for two additional official visits — Michigan State on Sept. 28 and Texas on Oct. 12.
The aforementioned waiting game should be prolonged. No movement is expected until Nichols' late-October visit. UT has interest in players outside Nichols and Williams and could sign beyond its scholarship limit, a common practice in college basketball.
One question that's been answered is the level to which Martin can recruit. After a year on the job in Knoxville, few questioned the Gene Keady disciple's coaching prowess, but some remained dubious of his skill to catch a five-star recruit.
Tennessee beat out Duke for Hubbs' services.
Brendan F. Quinn covers Tennessee men's basketball. Follow him at http://twitter.com/BFQuinn