Jason Delaney was announced as the head coach at Arsenal Tech High School on May 11.
And with less than 90 days on the job thus far, the 34-year old Delaney has seen enough of his star sophomore, Indiana commitment Trey Lyles, to get a pretty good idea of what he’ll be working with over the next three seasons.
“With Trey, I see a kid that constantly wants to get better,” Delaney told Inside the Hall at the GRBA National Championships in Fort Wayne. “He’s always in the gym either lifting to get stronger or working on his shot or working on the little parts of his game. Even the conditioning aspect of it. The kid that everyone saw last year, by this season, is going to be a beast because he’s constantly wanting to get better.”
National accolades have come quickly for the 15-year old Lyles, who was named the MaxPreps.com National Freshman of the Year last season after averaging 18 points and 12 rebounds at Tech.
The 6-foot-9, 205-pound forward was also named to the adidas Nations USA 2013 team and the USA Basketball Men’s Developmental National team.
But perhaps more impressive than those accolades is the advanced basketball IQ Lyles posseses.
“He studies the game. When he’s at home, he’s watching old games on TV and breaking them down and studying,” Delaney said. “He’s kind of like a Peyton Manning clone. Where Peyton’s always studying tape, that’s what Trey’s always doing because he wants to be as good as he can possibly be.”
The challenge for Delaney is to turn around a Tech program that finished last season 7-13 and saw its season end with a 24-point loss to Avon in the sectional.
The early results have been encouraging as the Titans advanced all the way to the championship game of June’s USSFA High School Shootout at Carmel before falling to Lawrence North.
“I think challenging for a sectional title is definitely one of our goals because its been since 1978 since we’ve won one,” Delaney said. “Once you get past the sectional, anything is possible. In the next three years, definitely our goal is to get better and compete for a state championship.”
If that lofty goal is to be achieved at Tech over the next three seasons, the leadership of Lyles with both his play and being vocal could be the key.
“A lot of it (his leadership) right now is just through his play is how he leads,” he said. “There are some guys who lead vocally and there’s some guys that do it by their actions and right now it’s his actions. As he gets older and we get into the season, we want him to lead more vocally, too, because he has his platform. He has a great gift.”
(Photo credit: Jamie Owens of J. Scott Sports)
Filed to: Trey Lyles