There are two ways Georgetown can look at losing Nerlens Noel, the country's top basketball recruit, to Kentucky:

First, Georgetown can say it had no chance against the Wildcats even though it was among his last three choices. Kentucky set a new standard with freshman Anthony Davis leading its run to a national title.

Or the Hoyas simply can be thankful for the attention they received from Noel's recruitment. At least he didn't choose Syracuse, the other of his finalists.

There seems to be no stopping the recruiting machine of John Calipari, who must be tithing the NBA since the league's age restriction is keeping his pipeline in business. As long as Calipari is around, it will be news only when he doesn't have one of the top incoming classes.

But surprisingly, he didn't land Shabazz Muhammad, who was drawn to UCLA in part because of the legendary program's recent struggles. The Bruins have missed the NCAA tournament in two of the past three seasons and were ravaged by a Sports Illustrated investigative story this year. Meanwhile, Noel's decision to take his flat top, which had the letters "UK" shaved into it for his announcement Wednesday, to Lexington leaves Georgetown in the same place it began last season: off the national top-25 radar.

That could change somewhat if 6-foot-7 forward Devonta Pollard chooses Georgetown over Missouri, Alabama and Texas. Unless he does, the pecking order in D.C. college hoops will start next year where it hasn't in a while -- with Maryland.

- Craig Stouffer