Who will fill the last scholarship for 2009?

  • 07/24/2008 12:20 pm in

Tom Crean, Bennie Seltzer and Tim Buckley (and perhaps the third assistant) are in Las Vegas this week watching parts of three different AAU events. The burning question that IU fans are still pondering: Who will fill the last available spot for the 2009 recruiting class?

The most likely candidates: Roger Franklin, Chris Braswell, Christian Watford and Stephan Van Treese. IU appears to be in solid standing with Franklin and Watford. The staff is looking hard at Braswell, who is playing AAU with Maurice Creek. Braswell has reclassified from 2008 to 2009 and will play alongside Creek next season at Hargrave Military Academy. And the latest we’ve heard on Van Treese is that it’s a long shot he’ll end up in Bloomington.

Based on what we know about all four players, the two most likely to end up in candy stripes seem to be Franklin and Braswell. Watford does have an unofficial trip planned to Bloomington, but the recruiting machine known as Memphis is reportedly out in front for his services. (And wherever there’s Memphis, there’s usually Worldwide Wes.) Perhaps his visit can swing momentum towards Indiana.

Put yourself in the staff’s position: Of these four guys, who is your main target and why? Do you want the guy who flat out goes after it every time he takes the floor in Franklin? Is Braswell, a 6-8 bruiser, your guy? Or maybe it’s Christian Watford, an athletic wing who can score in variety of ways? Or does the fact that Van Treese is from Indiana still lead you to believe that he should get an offer? Thoughts in the comments, por favor.

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  • theanalyst

    I think priority number one should be securing a committment from Franklin, with Watford a close second. While Watford might have more raw talent, I'm honestly not sure I want a guy on our team who is a major priority for Memphis and a guy who says that Memphis is currently his favorite. I am immediately turned off by such statements. Memphis is a school with low academic standards, a coach with shady recruiting tactics, and has a history of churning out thugs as players (kind of like Sampson's teams on steroids).

    Franklin, from what I can tell is a high character kid who is a combination of talent and hustle a la Rod Wilmont. He's going to be an immediate-impact player who can both defend and score, and he will also be a four-year player who will be a star in the Big Ten in his junior and senior years.

    As for Braswell, if we're going to recruit yet another 6-8 power forward, why not just go with the Indiana kid and pick Van Treese? Don't we already have enough 6-8 power forwards (Pritchard in 2008, Capobianco and Elston in 2009)? Let's pick up a true small forward in Franklin or Watford. If neither of those choose IU, let's pick the Indiana kid.

    Final note: you said that the Van Treese looks like a long shot. I think that's only because we haven't offered him a scholarship yet. From all of Van Treese's comments, I get the impression that he would love to play at IU — close to home, plenty of friends and AAU teammates already committed, chance to rebuild the program, play for Tom Crean, etc. His problem is that we haven't offered yet and his stock continues to drop due to poor play (not to mention the fact that we alreay have two 6-8 power forwards in the 2009 class). If he can put in some solid play in Vegas, who knows what might happen.

  • The reason SVT is a long shot is because it seems unlikely he's going to get an offer. It's not from lack of interest from SVT.

  • B_MD

    I think we're kind of similar to an NBA lottery team right now in that we need the best available talent regardless of position. Do we need help inside? Of course. But with all of the turnover and basically Crean starting from scratch, we need the most talented players we can get. I don't know who is the best player out of the four mentioned, but I'm assuming Crean does.

    On another note, I almost hate to bring up this debate again, but seeing how we're in the running for 3-4 highly thought of recruits with only 1 scholarship left, do you think Crean wishes he had one of those scholarships back that he gave to Williams, Story, Dumes, Jones, Rivers or Creek?

    Those guys all committed in a short time span and I remember a lot of debates on here about whether we needed all of those guys and should we be saving 1-2 scholarships for when Crean gets in good with the '09 class. Looks like that debate may be coming to fruition.

  • I've wondered the same thing myself, B_MD. Then again, with the program in the predicament it was in when he took over, Crean probably wasn't sure what he'd be able to pull in from 2009. With that said, I'm sure arrangement can be made if more than one of these guys want to come to Bloomington. These types of things always have a way of working themselves out.

  • hoosier07

    1) Watford 2) Franklin 3) SVT 4) Braswell (is he not even in Rivals top 150?!)

    I don't think Watford is out of the question at all though. Referring back to the article on peegs, his dad was pretty open about saying how high IU is on their list because of Bennie Seltzer's connections to them in Birmingham … I also think SVT is most interested in coming to IU, so it really is a toss up. I'm happy it's not my decision. I would be pleased with any of my top 3 …

  • B_MD

    I agree Big A, it will most likely work itself out and Crean was in a position that he had to get guys to fill the roster. It's an interesting debate though.

  • Braswell is in the top 100 for 2008. He's going to Hargrave next year and is reclassifying to 2009.

  • JerryCT

    Assuming these are our only choices then I want Franklin due to :

    1. his high motor on the floor
    2. opens up a new geoography for recruiting
    3. helps create an infectious practice/game attitude

    I think our future team w Capo, Pritchard, Hulls, Dumas, Rivers will be an “attitude” team ( ala Wilmont or last years Drake team ) that will not quit on the coach, the school, the fans or themselves.

    Next I go with Braswell so our other bigs have bodies to improve against. I have nothign against Watford but his highlights video showed the same corner jump shot over and over and no real muscle or rebounds , unlike Franklin's highlights so it left me uninspired.

    SVT seems to play too small and slow for me so I would rather not offer him, I donot care that he is from Indiana. Besides we have Hulls, Lewis, Moore, Taber, Dumas, FInkelstein, Elston and the other walkon from Indiana to represent the state.

    Biting at the call for debate, I seriously questioned the Scholly for Story who was labeled as a guard, non leaper , slow laterally and a long way from home. I also am concerned about Roth on “D” . I hope he is Jimmy Rayl reincarnated or JJ Reddick.

    As usual of course I want ALL the players to be great and me to be wrong when I worry about them and above all I trust TC and the staff to make the best choice they can

  • hoosier07

    oh, gotcha! thanks for the clarification!

  • B_MD

    I was going to bring up the Story signing also, mostly because he was last, but he seems a little redundant following the Williams, Dumes, Roth and Creek signings, and even throw in Rivers and Jones who can play time on the wing. The benefit to signing a couple big point guards is that they're versatile and can save you a scholarship or two to use elsewhere.

    Would be nice to have two scholarships to get Franklin and Watford then the “it will work itself out/someone leaves scholarship” would be icing on the cake instead of sort of necessary.

  • Ryan_T

    Forget Williams, Story, Dumes, Jones, Rivers or Creek… what about Jobe??

  • B_MD

    You have a point on Jobe. But I guess the point with the other guys is that they really seem to duplicate each other.

  • BobbyDigital

    I have personally always been a Watford fan, but I love how Franklin plays so that would hardly be a let-down. I do have some interesting info from a well informed Memphis fan to share (bear with me)…. he said about a week ago that things were looking good for Indiana landing Watford but wouldn't explain why Memphis was suddenly not the favorite. Now it is rumored that Demarcus Cousins (UAB verbal) is reopening his recruitment and Memphis is a very real possibility. If that were to happen, Memphis would no longer pursue Watford, he said. Basically this guy said Cousins to Memphis and Watford to IU… Take it for what its worth. I'd be happy with any of them.

  • Heard similar things about Cousins and Memphis.

    Also, I've heard Louisville has backed off of Watford significantly.

  • student

    At one point, Cousins had IU high on list, probably due to Mike Davis, but why doesn't TC swoop and pick up Cousins? This obviously isn't a reality, but how great would it be to land a player of his caliber?

  • student

    Aside from the ridiculous Cousins-coming-to-IU scenario, I don't see TC adding another PF to our lineup. Braswell is more appealing than SVT, because he should be more polished, and rated even higher in the '09 class than he was in '08. To me, Braswell can only be taken after one of the small forwards is taken.
    But the need at the moment is for a wing-type player. Watford is more skilled and suited to playing outside, which makes him look like a better fit for Crean's style of play. But Franklin has that 'motor' which also suits him well with Crean's style, and he would be strong enough to bang with PF's on defense if necessary. It's a really intriguing question. My hope is that one of guards feels slighted at the end of the season and transfers, freeing up a schoarship for another player to come. That would be the ideal scenario.

  • msdiu81

    Franklin, then Braswell, then Watford. Van Treese shouldn't get an offer. Maybe only if the first 3 don't want it, but SVT isn't playing all that well and is not impressive.

  • pacino

    I agree we don't need to waste a scholorship on a 6-8 guy that isn't proving much on the aau circut. SVT is slow and won't be an impact player. I have nothing against him, but I have watched him play a ton of times and he never has wowed me. BRASWELL is very talented!!!! He has a very long but solid frame. He would be eable to add significant impact right away and eventually become like D.J. MY only thing is I dont know how interested he is and TC wouldn't want to waste his time on someone not even interested. The positive is that Creek is his teamate and reports have said he is constantly talking to him about being a Hoosier. My second pick is Franklin. He is just as good as Watford! He is very underated. His shot is very pure and heis a Heck of a lot stronger. His big frame can allow him to punish undersized guards and contain a PF similar to A.J. Moye. I just hope we come out of this situation with a good player!!!!!

  • Kelin Blab

    This one is tough……
    Love Franklin's engery
    Love watfords length

    I would want these two, after that not sure. SVT brings a recruitment tool with him into Big Man central LN and that isn't a bad thing to have and LN have some BIG MEN and other talent IU could use….

  • JerryCT

    SInce 99% of all HS players need to improve their game 150% to star in college I would take the best combination of athleticism and work ethic and then the TC development program( assuming there is one ) takes it from there. As such I think that is Franklin if these are our choices.

  • B_MD

    Am I missing something? Did we sign a standout power forward that I'm not aware of. Although at this point I think Crean has to take the most talented player regardless of position, but looking at our roster another wing player is probably at the bottom of the needs list.

    There are question mark around all of our incoming big men. We need a sure thing big above anything else.

  • HoosierSmitty

    I've been high on Franklin, but Watford seems like a good pick as well. My concern is why are Louisville and Memphis suddenly running cold with him? I mean I understand the Cousins situation in Memphis, but is there something about Watford that we don't know?

    Franklin seems like a pretty polished guy both on and off the court. I think he'd work hard and be proud to be an Indiana Hoosier, and not treat it like IU was a “secondary” option for him.

  • JerryCT

    Demling's review of Vegas today says Watford is unimpressive this week and implies he this has caused UL to move on . Franklin is however consistent in every game.

  • Kelin Blab

    Not sure if this is a sign, but in Demlings report….no mention of SVT…

  • junkman

    I still think we need the bigs…and if Braswell has a relationship with Mo Creek, than that will help build a team/family atmosphere when they arrive on campus, which helps on and off the court…

    Braswell seems to be more interested than Van Treese at this point, but I would be happy with any of the 4 players we have listed …

  • junkman

    I still think we need the bigs…and if Braswell has a relationship with Mo Creek, than that will help build a team/family atmosphere when they arrive on campus, which helps on and off the court…

    Braswell seems to be more interested than Van Treese at this point, but I would be happy with any of the 4 players we have listed …