Ever since Marcus Smart's commitment, even tracing back to the first rumors that he was considering Oklahoma State, Cowboy basketball fans started to research the five-star guard.
Who was he? What kind of player was OSU getting? Could he help bring a struggling program back to prominence?
Wherever they searched, whatever kind of opinion they found, the reassuring info continued to flow in about Smart.
He's a winner. He can play every position. He does everything on the court.
“(Smart) is the ultimate, ultimate competitor,” OSU coach Travis Ford said on signing day. “He will rip your heart out.”
But long after his early November commitment, Smart continues to solidify and expand the hype surrounding his arrival in Stillwater.
Part of that can be traced to the growing appetite for recruiting information in the digital age. But most of it can be attributed to Smart and his growing list of impressive accomplishments.
In 2012, Smart led Flower Mound Marcus High School to its second consecutive Texas Class 5A state championship, averaging 15.1 points, 9.2 rebounds, 5.0 assists, 2.8 steals and 1.3 blocks per game.
Soon after the title, Smart was given another repeat award, winning Gatorade High School Player of the Year in Texas for the second consecutive season.
“Every time you watch Marcus Smart, every coach in America just said, ‘Man, we need him on our team,'” Ford said. “You want him on your team. You are going to be successful with that guy on your team.”