Austin Etherington recaps July, looks ahead

If Austin Etherington moved out of the national rankings as a result of missing significant time this past spring, perhaps his performances in July will prove his name belongs amongst the country’s elite high school players.

The 6-6, 190-pound Hamilton Heights guard returned from a stress fracture in his back at the end of May and by the time he reached Las Vegas in late July for the adidas Super 64, his game was clicking on all cylinders.

“I feel like I’m back to normal and playing well,” Etherington told Inside the Hall. “But I can always get better. I felt like I proved myself in Vegas and other times in July, so we’ll just see what happens.”

Playing on a loaded Indiana Elite roster with several high-major prospects, Etherington said lessons in teamwork were the major takeaway from the spring and summer.

“Relying on your teammates is one thing you gotta learn when you get to this level,” he said. “Everyone is capable of making plays so it’s something you have to get used to and not do it all yourself.”

The end of AAU means less time for Etherington with two friends he’s drawn closer to over the summer — Washington’s Cody Zeller and Park Tudor’s Yogi Ferrell.

Although the IU commit says he’ll touch base periodically with several of his teammates over the fall and winter, he’ll make it a point to continue regular dialogue with Zeller and Ferrell.

“I try to stay in contact with most of them, but Yogi and Cody, I stay closest to them because I’m trying to get them to go to school with me. That’s a big thing.”

The pitch to join him at IU, Etherington says, is the same for both players. The delivery of his message, however, is different.

“Both players are different. Yogi, you can mess around with him, but Cody, you can’t just throw it all at him. He’s going to go where he wants to go,” Etherington said. “Indiana would love them for staying in-state. That’s one thing I let them know and they like that idea.”

Etherington’s focus now shifts to his senior season of high school, where he’ll try to lead his team to a sectional championship. A big part of that goal being reached could hinge on the play of Etherington’s younger brother, Alex, who will be a sophomore.

“I’m expecting a lot out of him,” he said. “He finally got the chance this year to play AAU and play against good competition. He played so well that he got to play on the other Indiana Elite team that went out to Vegas. He’s more of a forward than I am. He still can’t handle the ball, but he’s better guarding the post and he can shoot the ball just as well as I can.”

If Etherington is able to lead Hamilton Heights to its first sectional title since 2003, a potential meeting with his friend and the frontrunner for Mr. Basketball, Zeller, is already on his mind.

“We definitely want to win the sectional, but I think our team’s good enough we can make a run in the tournament and meet up with Cody. My goal is to meet up with Cody and see if we can beat Cody and not let him win a third state championship.”

Related:

+ adidas Invitational Video: Austin Etherington
+ adidas Invitational Video Q & A: Austin Etherington
+ Etherington updates injury, talks Elite Camp

  • slikyslim222

    Seems like a great kid with an awesome attitude & team attitude. The kind that helps turn programs around and then to top flight ones. Rock on, A.E. I will be rooting for you & the IU team!!! Also, kudos to CTC for recruiting talent AND character student/athletes.

  • Marsh21

    This kid will be great for IU. Great get Crean!

  • Kelin Blab

    How can you say NO to a kid like this Cody and Yogi?

    I heard his brother was pretty good too, not sure where IU is with him yet but he is young. Cody winning his third title would be massive in this state but would be tarnished going outside of the state to play college ball…..especially not going to IU. Winning three isn't ez at all. Write his name on the Mr. Basketball trophy now please.

  • BaseballBuc

    I wonder if AE has given up on recruiting JD. At this point I think I would rather have Yogi a year later. I heard Alex Etherington is a BETTER athlete that Austin. If this is true, and if he is just as good as a shooter (according to Austin) it would be a good get.

  • Kelin Blab

    Good point and I have heard no mention of “I am working on JD”. It has been Cody and Yogi. I have heard the same about Alex as well which is pretty impressive as Austin is a helluva athlete.

  • Luke72

    Austin shows the kind of heart that's going to turn this thing around. Keep at it Austin, gott'a love his efforts to bring in Zeller and Yogi!

  • Outoftheloop

    I like all of your points. Austin is a great kid and he has really worked for IU and Coach Crean!

  • eph521

    That may be the highlight of this story, that Austin doesn't even mention JD. Just a few weeks/months ago JD was part of his recruiting efforts… it says alot that JD is now off of Austin's radar and perhaps CTC's too?

  • http://www.prinsportsblog.com BGleas

    Of all the pitches these guys get from coaches, family, friends etc. you have to think one of the strongest is a fellow teammate basically saying “come with me to IU guys, we'll bring this program back and go down as legends together!”

    That has to resonate, doesn't it?

  • iubase

    I like his attitude. It does help to have him encourage yogi and cody to come – friendships and compatibity on and off the court are very important for team chemistry and this is a great sign…..he has a nice handle and jump shot and looks good….still like what I saw in Perrea and Dawson – Austin could you put a plug in with them too.

  • stonaroni

    Alex and Austin are two different types of players. Austin has more finesse and a better floor game. Alex is a better defender and plays more on the blocks.

    IU has been watching Alex for 2 years now too. Who do you think plays in the pick up/open gym games that Crean and Buckley visited to watch Austin?

    I heard Alex held his own in Vegas with the better competition this summer. Time will tell with him, but one thing is for sure, he has to be a good defender having to match up with his D-I brother his whole live in the driveway or playing one on one.

  • stonaroni

    JD who??? Just kidding. I think the recruiting of other PG's is writing on the wall to JD. On top of this, every AE interview, he mentions that CTC wants him to improve ball handling and defense. when asked what CTC has in store, AE says coach wants him to be a shooting guard.

    JD has shown he is no longer a PG and his inconsistency as a shooter is troubling as a SG.

    We have Sheehey and AE as newer recruits that should be 4 year players who have limitless range.

    We need a PG and Zeller along with AE to secure the foundation of the program. Sorry JD.

  • Kelin Blab

    THanks for the Alex info….

    I think you raised a good point about JD. I think IU kinda gave him a shot to prove he could be that PG they need and he really didn't, so they shifted their recruiting to more PG's like Tharpe, BJ Young and a couple of others. With the number of two guards they are recruiting in 2012 (DSR, Patterson, etc.) Davis priority is not as high. We don't know what happened 100% but what we do know is, the opportunity was there to commit, he had his name in the conversation with Cody, and now it seems like he really didn't want it or want it right now.

  • marcusgresham

    Anybody else get the feeling if we live long enough to watch IU basketball for the next 20 to 30 years we may be listening to Austin doing the color commentary?

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