2015 guard Michael Benkert recaps trip to Bloomington

2015 Center Grove guard Michael Benkert was in Bloomington for an unofficial visit on Saturday and the talented shooter had a chance to experience the speed of the college game for the first time.

The 6-foot-4 Benkert, who played with the Eric Gordon All-Stars over the spring and summer and averaged 8.1 points, 3.1 rebounds and 2.4 assists per game as a freshman, said getting a chance to play with the preseason No. 1 team was a positive experience.

“The pace was definitely was faster than what I was used to, playing in high school,” Benkert told Inside the Hall. “How quick they were on their first steps and guarding them was a lot harder. It was really fun just being on the court with them.”

Cook Hall housed the pickup games on Saturday prior to IU football’s game with Michigan State and the state of the art practice facility impressed Benkert.

“I thought that place was really nice. Coach Tim (Buckley) said that the place is open 24/7 for all the players,” he said. “I thought that was really neat how that anytime they can come in and shoot. I also got to see the weight room and see them lift for five minutes before open gym and all the stuff they have in there and the accessibility was really neat.”

The trip to Indiana was the third unofficial visit Benkert has taken. This trip didn’t include a full tour of the campus, but he said he hopes to do that on his next visit.

His first visit was to  Purdue in June, followed by Michigan in September. Evansville and Butler have also expressed interest. While he’s still relatively early in the process, Benkert said there is one important factor he’ll seek out in a program.

“I’m just looking for a team that likes to win,” Benkert said. “And all those teams do.”

  • SS8941

    This kid comes from an awful high school program that should be much better. He stands out because he is just so much more talented than his teammates.

  • http://www.insidethehall.com/ Alex Bozich

    They weren’t very good the past two years, but prior to that with Jonny Marlin (now a walk-on at IU) and Andrew Smeathers, they were pretty good. Remember watching them beat Washington during Zeller’s senior year at the Hall of Fame Classic.

  • jacobdetroy

    Not sure I understand the negativity, but keep in mind that these athletes are being evaluated in AAU in addition to their high schools. I am positive IU’s interest in Michael Benkert extends beyond their knowledge and experience with Center Grove high school. If Benkert is standing out in AAU competition then that is totally different than standing out in an “awful high school program”.

  • N71

    Agree. He’s also being recruiting by Purdue and Michigan versus Trine and Hanover. All indications are he’s a high level talent.

  • dtfreed

    just because you have a masters doesn’t mean you find a job. . .

  • Pritch24

    Goes to my Church. Good kid.

  • OhioHoosier

    Especially under the current administration

  • HoosierPat

    I have seen him play a lot, he has a lot of raw talent and has good potential. By the time he is a senior he may be an elite player but he has a lot of areas where he needs to improve.

  • SS8941

    They were a great team two years ago, I was at that game too. That season was their first regional appearance since 1994 and their last before that was 1972 I believe. My point is that he may not stand out so much if he were at a different school, but jacobdetroy did make a good point about AAU ball.

  • http://twitter.com/JamieOwens JamieOwens

    The kid is a hell of a shooter. Smooth. I watched him a lot this summer. He was the best shooter on EG. Maybe all 3 EG teams. Kid can stroke it.

  • Evansville Hoosier

    If this guy is as good a shooter as advertised and is 6’4″, the only thing yet to be determined is his athleticism. If he’s an above average athlete, he’ll be an elite, top 30 talent.

  • IndianaTractorServices

    CG has been to a lot more Reionals than you give credit for. If you want to make the claim that CG is awful fine, but you at least should use somewhat accurate information to make your case. Just sayin.

  • Evansville Hoosier

    just watched a couple videos of Benkert. Rookie Analysis:
    1. He’s long, and uses his length well in the passing lanes.
    2. He’s a good ball handler, not great, as he keeps the ball a little too far from his body.
    3. He can get to the basket. The height definitely seemed to help him there as well.
    4. He barely gets off the ground with his jumper. It’s almost a set shot. That won’t fly in high D1 basketball.

    Bottom Line: he seems like he may have recently grown into his 6’5″ frame, as he looked a little awkward in his movements. Maybe when hes a little more comfortable playing at his current height the negative stuff will be corrected. I think it will, and he seems like he has a lot of potential at the 2. It’ll be interesting to watch him develop.

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