Former Indiana All-American and current Orlando Magic guard Victor Oladipo was courtside for Friday night’s Jordan Brand Classic at the Barclays Center.
Oladipo, who averaged over 17 points in his second NBA season, is a Jordan Brand athlete, along with Cody Zeller and Noah Vonleh.
In an interview with ESPN2 during the broadcast for the Jordan Brand Classic, Oladipo was asked for his thoughts on class of 2015 big man Thomas Bryant, who committed to the Hoosiers earlier this month.
“I thought they did a great job (this past season), but we do need an inside presence,” Oladipo said. “They need an inside presence, especially defensively, someone to protect the paint and rebound. So he’s going to be big for us. He’s gonna be a huge help.”
Bryant finished with 11 points and eight rebounds for the East team, which fell 118-116 to the West, in the Jordan Brand Classic.
He was 5-of-10 from the field, 0-of-3 on 3-pointers and 1-of-2 from the free throw line.
Indiana already has two players signed for its 2015 class and expects to receive a National Letter of Intent soon from McDonald’s All-American Thomas Bryant, but the Hoosiers may not be done recruiting for the incoming class.
The 6-foot-4 Mulder, who is originally from Windsor, Ontario, averaged 15.7 points and 6.9 rebounds last season and will have two years of eligibility at his next school.
Earlier this month, Vincennes assistant coach Brian Davis told Inside the Hall’s Jordan Littman that Creighton, Georgia Tech, Minnesota, Missouri, Wichita State were the schools with offers out to Mulder.
Kentucky is also now involved with the JUCO All-American, per multiple reports. The Wildcats lost seven players early to the NBA draft.
The NBA’s regular season is complete and just one of the four Hoosiers currently in the league, Eric Gordon, is on a playoff team. Here’s a look at how Victor Oladipo, Cody Zeller, Gordon and Noah Vonleh fared this season:
· Victor Oladipo, Orlando Magic
Stats (72 games): 17.9 points, 4.2 rebounds, 4.1 assists, 1.7 steals in 35.7 minutes per game
Notes: Oladipo had an injury setback early in the season, but recovered nicely for a very solid sophomore season in the NBA. His scoring average was up more than four points per game and his shooting percentage was up as well – although there’s plenty of work to do in terms of improving efficiency. In Oladipo and Elfrid Payton, the Magic have one of the more intriguing young backcourts in the league, but more changes are coming for this franchise in the offseason as Jacque Vaughn was let go in-season and the team has yet to hire a permanent replacement.
Quotable: “This is temporary. So that’s motivation in itself. This year — we just need to use it as fuel and fire and go out and work this summer, and this summer needs to be all about winning. We need to come back and have that mentality to do whatever it takes to win.” – Oladipo after Orlando’s final regular season game.
Throughout the 2014-2015 season, 2016 guard Tony Carr watched Indiana basketball on TV.
The Hoosiers had just started recruiting the 6-foot-4 guard, ranked No. 91 in the junior class by the 247Composite, and the Hoosiers had already extended a scholarship offer to his close friend, 6-foot-6 junior Lamar Stevens.
So on Saturday, when the Hoosiers finally extended an offer to Carr, the rising senior got exactly what he wanted.
“It means everything, man,” Carr told Inside the Hall on Monday. “I’ve been watching Indiana all season on TV, and I just know it’s a great school and they have great history, great tradition there. And once I heard I got the offer, I was just super excited.”
But for Carr, Indiana’s offer has extra significance.
Class of 2015 Huntington Prep (W.V.) big man and IU commit Thomas Bryant was one of three future Hoosiers who participated in the Derby Festival Basketball Classic at Freedom Hall.
Inside the Hall was there for both practices, the Night of the Future Stars event and the game. Today, we conclude our recap of the weekend for all three recruits with our look at Bryant.
19 points (8-of-13 FG, 3-of-6 3PFG), six rebounds (two offensive), two blocks, two turnovers and a steal in 20 minutes; Purple Team MVP
For those who had a chance to watch Bryant in Louisville, it is hard to draw anything but positives about his weekend. Off the court in interviews, he is an engaging and polite kid who likes to smile and laugh. His personality is one that Indiana fans should quickly embrace. And on the court, there’s plenty to like about the player he is now and the player he can become once he arrives in Bloomington. He’s only 17 and won’t turn 18 until late July, which means there’s still a chance he will continue to grow. He’s certainly strong enough to hold his own right now in the paint, but should look like a totally different person, particularly in the upper body, once he goes through several months of weight training at the college level.
Indiana junior point guard Yogi Ferrell will announce whether he’ll return to college for his senior year or enter the NBA draft on April 25, a key decision that could drastically alter the outlook for the Hoosiers in 2015-2016.
His return likely means Indiana is a consensus top 15 team in the preseason and a viable contender in the Big Ten. His departure, however, would leave the roster without a definitive option at point guard and without its leading scorer.
ESPN college basketball and NBA draft analyst Fran Fraschilla, who covers the draft as diligently as anyone, told Inside the Hall on Monday afternoon that the depth of prospects at the point guard position could hurt Ferrell’s chances of being selected.
“It’s one of the deepest point guard drafts I can remember in a while,” Fraschilla said. “And that necessarily doesn’t bode well for Yogi. When you look right at the top with D’Angelo Russell and (Emmanuel) Mudiay and you just work down from there, there’s six or seven potential first round picks that are point guards. Right off the bat, he’s behind the 8-ball.”
ESPN.com currently rates Ferrell as the No. 85 prospect overall in the class and just the 17th best point guard prospect. There are 60 picks in the draft and only first round picks receive guaranteed contracts.
Class of 2015 Jefferson City (Mo.) forward and IU signee O.G. Anunoby was one of three future Hoosiers who participated in the Derby Festival Basketball Classic at Freedom Hall.
Inside the Hall was there for both practices, the Night of the Future Stars event and the game and will be recapping the weekend for all three recruits.
12 points (4-of-7 FG, 0-of-1 3PFG, 4-4 FT), four rebounds (one offensive), one assist, one steal in 18 minutes
Along with Louisville recruit Ryan McMahon, Anunoby was one of just two recruits selected for the Derby Festival Basketball Classic without much of a national profile, but used the weekend to showcase that he belonged. A long, athletic wing, Anunoby is a legit 6-foot-7 and showed off his ability to rise and finish at the rim in Friday morning’s practice. In fact, one of the event organizers told me that many of his peers believed he would win the dunk contest on Friday night, a prediction that didn’t come to fruition after he got off to a rocky start on his first dunk and never recovered.