2012 Intro: A.J. Hammons

  • 06/01/2010 1:03 pm in

The Essentials: 7-0, 260-lb center for Carmel and Spiece Indy Heat

The Schools: Illinois, Indiana, Minnesota and Xavier have offered scholarships. Butler, Kentucky, Ohio State and Purdue have expressed interest.

The Numbers: 8.3 ppg, 7.8 rebounds and 4.8 for Carmel, which finished 15-7.

The Quote: “I’m pretty much focused on trying to get my schoolwork done right now. I really don’t just have one college I like. I’m looking for somewhere I can develop more and get playing time. It’s pretty open right now.” – Hammons to Kyle Neddenriep of The Indianapolis Star.

The Ranking: The Hoop Scoop ranks Hammons the 94th best prospect in the 2012 class.

The Scout Says: “We’ve seen the progression for this kid over the past year and we can see the light slowly coming. The 7-footer out of Carmel (Ind.) is being more aggressive on both ends and is starting to show his potential. Offensively he has a go-to move in a right jump hook, now we’d like to see him add from there, but he already has what many young posts are missing. Defensively he contests shots and he certainly got his hands on quite a few on Sunday.” – Scout.com analyst Evan Daniels on Hammons at EYBL Los Angeles.

The Highlights:

Filed to:

  • Scott W.

    Glad that A.J. wasn't part of the problems going on with Carmel Basketball.

  • tg1438

    He seems more skilled than a lot of the big guys you see at his age, and pretty athletic for a guy his size (love the block around the 2:11 mark). He could easily be more aggressive on the offensive end, but that should come as he gets older and becomes the focus of his team.

  • GFDave

    I hadn't seen a vid of him in a long time and I really saw a change in him from then until now. He's losing the baby fat and playing more actively.

    I like his up and under move, but he brings the ball down after a board or catch almost every time.

    He moves extremely well, imo, and has an athletic demeanor. I think his upside is very high. It all depends on his outlook and desire (doesn't it always?)

    Based on this vid I'm changing my shopping list for 2012 to:

    1. Patterson
    2. Perea
    3. Hammons
    4. One of DS-R, Hollowell, Harris

    That's a top 5 recruiting class in the country, I think.

  • Lucasgarcia20

    Sean May? Anyone

  • Uncle Joey

    No point guard? Are you banking on JDavis in 2011?

  • BaseballBuc

    Kind of a puzzle for me. He's probably the biggest player physically in the state. He isn't putting up the numbers you would usually see from a 7 footer in high school. Granted he is only a sophomore and has a lot of upside but I hope he eventually finds it. Also not sure if he works in a Tom Crean system that relies on running and stretching the floor, seems kind of slow. But hey we need all the front court talent we can get and I would still take A.J. any day of the week.

  • BFowler

    Seems to me he has all the tools to be successful at the collegiate level. Does not seem to have the explosiveness (see Dwight Howard, Amare Stoudamire, etc.) to be an NBA type yet.

    Is it just me, or does any one else get a Hangin' with Mr. Cooper (I can not think of the guy's name)vibe from him?

  • Kelin Blab

    GFDave…..Our shopping list is similar until we get to #3.

    1 Patterson
    2 Perea
    3 DSR or Ferell
    4 Harris, Hammons, Jurkin

  • GFDave

    Can't really bank on anything, just going for what I think are the best players available. You are right in that we need a point guard.

  • I've only ever seen Hammons in this clip, so I hate to judge him, but I didn't really see a fire in his belly or a passion for basketball in this clip. He seemed really laid back as like he'd need someone on his all the time to maintain a certain intensity level that's needed at this level.

    Again, I've only ever seen him in this clip, so it could have been a bad clip, entirely possible. Also, he's only a sophomore, so if it is a problem, there's time to improve, just my two cents from the clip.

  • Diesel

    He's tall.

  • i dont know much about the kid but it seems like everything you can knock on the guy for is true of most post players his age. he has all the physical tools you could want it seems. i dont know much about jurkin either. so ill be interested to see how these big guys progress

  • marcusgresham

    I think I saw a previous video on this kid, and he's improved quite a bit since then. He's losing some baby fat, gaining some aggressiveness, and looks to have at least OK hands. I agree with Buc in the fact that anyone 7 feet tall should have better numbers than this, but he's playing some decent competition (I'm pretty sure he was matched up against Fromm from Bloomington South in this clip at one point,) and Dave pointed out that big guys don't usually progress athletically as quickly as others. I still think I'd prefer Jurkin, as well, at least for Crean's system. I think Jurkin would be a much better shot blocker/defender. Hammons appears to be a guy who would fit in a Butler/Wisconsin type system.

  • marcusgresham

    Mark Curry, isn't it?

  • Kelin Blab

    Kids FYI, mark your calendars. You can see alot of IU recruits including Aaron Thomas next year here in Indianapolis…..some great games….

    http://blogs.indystar.com/recruitingcentral/201

  • aceman07

    I like Jurkins more!!! I like this kid and he seems like a fine basketball player, but here's what I think: Jurkins moves better, he seems to have better hands, he leaps better, and he seems to run the floor better. That to me fits CTC's system better, not to mention the fact that if IU landed a Jurkin/Perea package they've played together. I think if Hammons was the 7 footer that IU could get then it would be a good sign but I'd much rather see PJ at IU than AJ, IMHO!

  • aceman07

    I think I still like Jurkin better because of the athleticism, ability to run the court, and hands.

    Correct me if I'm wrong.

  • Kelin Blab

    you get no arguments from me on Jurkin. Jurkin gets the project label because he is not US born and an A-Hope kid but he is far far far from a project.

  • GFDave

    I think you may be right, but he's a young big man. It takes time for them to get competitive.

  • slikyslim222

    If IU had someone rebounding like that last year then our boys would've won ten more games!

  • Bigjoe2389

    Is he a legit 7′ tall?

  • GFDave

    What a great pick up for Crean. This kid may be a walk-on now, but you can see that he might just one day earn a schollie.

  • aceman07

    Holy crap man! Great video post. I saw a little bit of everything from Howard in those clips: Great handle for a big, shooting ability, passing ability out of the post and to cutters from the wings, dribble drive, post defense, a nice spin move and fade away. To beat it all he looks like he's more under control and polished than Elston and I saw DE a lot in high school. I've heard some really good things about this kid and how this is a steal for IU as a walk-on but these videos are pretty impressive. He's got some skills and if he is athletic at all he's going to be able to play in the Big 10. Could be as solid as one of those WISC bigs who always seem to turn into double double guys.

  • Kelin Blab

    Kids here are some nice clips of Hammons v IU 2010 signee Howard…
    Howard has some nice nice skills….sees the floor well, not afraid of contact, has some elston like versatility, played Hammons tough

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D19TB_9dgRc&feat
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-6m-1xkuQfE&feat

  • Diesel

    Jerry and I are also working on the ITH Shootout for next summer to fund the scholly we are wanting to give. Entrance requirements:

    1) Must have a player on your team that was given and ITH “Intro”
    2) Must have a cumulative team GPA better than 2.09
    3) Must publicly speak bad about KU and/or Purdue
    4) Must make a donation to ITH

    Still trying to work out a few details, more info to come much later!

  • aceman07

    I'm not sure you meant to do this or not, but it's a nice bash to call Kentucky KU instead of UK! May have just been an oversight but I know a lot of UK fans that hate that!

  • aceman07

    Also went right around Hammons in one sequence for the board and the foul on the put back attempt in video 1. That was a really encouraging move because he crashed the board under control and with intelligence.

  • Kelin Blab

    the good thing about these clips is they are high school clips, within a system, against good competition, and really shows his skills.

  • aceman07

    Yeah, I agree. They definitely allow you to see him operate within an offense against a good post player. How'd you like the steal and breakaway dunk towards the end of the game? He seems to be pretty athletic in the open court as well as on the boards. This could be a real diamond in the rough!

  • Kelin Blab

    I saw on twitter Crean is trying to get 5 deep at every position. This kid could help them get to that point. If you consider Pritchard having to play against less skilled players like Bawa or Tijan, it did not help his game. Even JR going against the daniel moores on IU's team. Not that these were the exact match ups but a more competitive practice helps create a more competitive team for example…this year…

    1st Team v 2nd Team
    VJ3 vs Rivers/Hulls
    Mo vs VO/Roth
    Watford vs Sheheey/Howard
    Elston vs Capo
    Guy vs Pritch/Bawa

    There will be some fights for playing time….

  • Outoftheloop

    We did, his name was Elston, he just did not get enough time on the floor. Elston rebounded at a rate of .274Reb/Min; Watford .210 (tied for 10th in Big-10); Bawa .210; Capo .219; Pritchard .173.

  • JerryCT

    Great idea Diesel !

  • JerryCT

    His feet are alot quicker than Elston is what I can see from the video and he has a passer mentality along with a good touch on the ball. I like Howard as a walkon …. good catch

  • marcusgresham

    More similarities than just the name, Jeff Howard reminds me a bit of Matt Howard at Butler, with a bit more ability to step away from the basket. That up and under move is Matt Howard all over again. Holds his ground well on defense, blocks out nicely, which a lot of guys that size haven't had to learn to do (granted, the guy he's guarding is 4″ taller, so he better block out.)

  • slikyslim222

    I do like Elston's active energy, though sometimes I think his energy goes more to the offensive boards. He needs to improve on “D” boards and feet D.

    He is my sleeper pick for most improved and could be the biggest surprise next year if he can find the D side of his game.

  • IUfanPurduePhD

    GFD: this is off topic, but I notice that you and I are one of the few that double here and on the Scoop… is it me or does it seem like there's too much arguing and negativity over there? It's like a Jr. High locker room with the name calling and the insecurity. I told myself a week ago that I'd quit posting there (b/c of the negativity), but then I read some of the [illogically-conceived] comments and feel like I need to respond. Am I alone in thinking this or…?

  • IUfanPurduePhD

    No foolin', I noticed and appreciated his passing ability.

  • IUfanPurduePhD

    Thanks for the vids KB!

  • IUfanPurduePhD

    No foolin', I noticed and appreciated his passing ability.

  • IUfanPurduePhD

    Also, I liked his free throw stroke… one of TP's biggest weaknesses (I just looked up the stat for curiosity and TP shot 37% from the charity stripe?!! I knew he was around 50%, but that's well below whatever the equivalent of the Mendoza line would be in basketball free throw percentage (they should name it after Shaq). That means JR shot 20% better from the free throw line than TP … ouch.

  • GFDave

    Its a bad scene there with the name calling and the agenda-driven commentary (don't look for logic, its not there.) I saw that one of the usual name callers attacked you without provocation one day. I used to have all sorts of trouble with him, but now we stay out or each other's way.

    The guy that hates Crean should be banned, he doesn't add anything anymore. Its pure flame at this point.

    Put bluntly, almost the threads on the Scoop devolve in the same direction. Nevertheless, I will continue to Scoop (verb) because of the wider ranging topics and IU sports. There are some people over there that are worth the trouble: you, Chet, JPat, Clarion (when not in attack mode), eric, etc.

    In comparison to the Scoop ITH is a breath of fresh air. Alex does a nice job here keeping things civil and keeping the flamers away. ITH probably is as polite as a fan site can get. I enjoy the banter and have a lot of respect for many of the posters. I avoid arguments and just respectfully disagree.

  • IUfanPurduePhD

    You're absolutely right about ITH being a breath of fresh air. I love how people can disagree here without it IMMEDIATELY becoming an attack on the person or, strangely enough, their choice of screen name (I picked it out of the sheer irony of getting an advanced degree–and a paycheck–from IU's biggest rival, not because I was trying to portray myself as a pretentious a-hole).

    I'm going to continue to visit Scoop, and I may comment from time to time, but I've taken up Chet's suggestion to ignore certain parties (as you said, it's more about flame than legitimate discussion … which is something I might expect from a Twilight fan forum or the UK message boards, but it's disappointing when it's done by the Hoosier “faithful”).

  • IUfanPurduePhD

    You're absolutely right about ITH being a breath of fresh air. I love how
    people can disagree here without it IMMEDIATELY becoming an attack on the
    person or, strangely enough, their choice of screen name (I picked it out of
    the sheer irony of getting an advanced degree–and a paycheck–from IU's
    biggest rival, not because I was trying to portray myself as a pretentious
    a-hole). I'm going to continue to visit Scoop, and I may comment from time
    to time, but I've taken up Chet's suggestion to ignore certain parties (as
    you said, it's more about flame than legitimate discussion … which is
    something I might expect from a Twilight fan forum or the UK message boards,
    but it's disappointing when it's done by the Hoosier “faithful”).