Scouting notes: 2013 Derby Festival Basketball Classic

042113dncLOUISVILLE, Ky. — One of the final opportunities to watch five of IU’s 2013 signees before they arrive in Bloomington in early June came over the weekend at Freedom Hall in the 2013 Derby Festival Basketball Classic.

The all-star game has become a regular stop for IU recruits in recent seasons as Cody Zeller, Victor Oladipo and several others have participated. Inside the Hall was in attendance at Wednesday’s closed practice, Thursday’s night of the future stars event at Floyd Central and Friday’s game, which was won by the black team featuring all five IU signees, 124-113.

Here are game statistics, observations and scouting notes on all five guys:

· Troy Williams – 21 points (9-13 FG, 2-2 3PFG, 1-1 FT), five rebounds (two offensive), four assists, two turnovers, one block in 18 minutes

Williams walked away with MVP honors for the black team and there’s a good argument to made that he was the best player on the floor on Friday. That wasn’t the case in Wednesday’s closed practice as he forced some shots and didn’t finish particularly well around the rim. Williams was once ranked as high as No. 6 nationally in the 2013 class and he’s an elite athlete that gets into the lane and finishes plays with dunks. While the setting of an all-star game doesn’t lend itself to defense or rebounding being areas of focus, Williams has the tools to be very good in both areas. He’s a long, high motor player with the ability to score in a variety of ways, which should earn him minutes from day one in Bloomington.

· Collin Hartman – 7 points (2-7 FG, 1-5 3PFG, 2-2 FT), four rebounds (all offensive), two steals, one assist in 18 minutes

Hartman’s forte is perimeter shooting, but it wasn’t his week to excel in that area. He struggled in the 3-point contest and in the game, but all was not lost as he found other ways to make an impact. Hartman was active on the glass with four offensive rebounds and also had two steals. Health has been an issue for Hartman over the past year as he battled concussions and also a wrist injury that forced him to miss time during the past high school season. He said he’s ultimately emerged stronger from missing time and said that unlimited gym access is what he’s looking forward to most in college. With work in the weight room, there’s potential for Hartman to grab a role as early as next season.

· Luke Fischer – 12 points (5-7 FG, 2-3 FT), six rebounds (three offensive), three steals, two blocks, one assist, one turnover in 17 minutes

Fischer is often compared to Cody Zeller and it’s a comparison that makes some sense because of their similar games and build. Zeller probably has a solid two inches on Fischer in shoes, but much like the former IU All-American, the Wisconsin native is a sound post player who understands how to play the game. Fischer was efficient all week in Louisville and didn’t need the ball thrown to him to make an impact. His footwork and ability to catch the ball are both very good and while he’s probably not the athlete Zeller is, he finishes well through contact and runs the floor hard. He’s also a very good passer who can come out to the high post and find his teammates. Like most incoming players, adding strength to prepare for the rigors of the Big Ten will be key, but the tools are present for Fischer to play significant minutes early.

· Devin Davis – 14 points (7-8 FG), eight rebounds (five offensive), four assists, two turnovers, one block in 17 minutes

The name of the game for Davis is activity and in an all-star game where most guys were focused on dunks and getting shots up, he was hitting the offensive glass, sharing the ball and making the shots he did take, which were all inside of a couple of feet. Davis is probably a bit undersized to play the four and might not handle it well enough to play the three, but he’s a guy you don’t really worry about a position with and just let him make plays. I don’t recall seeing Davis taking any plays off dating back to the first time I saw him play as a rising sophomore and that mentality has followed him throughout his high school career.

· Stanford Robinson – 6 points (3-9 FG), four rebounds (two offensive), four assists, three turnovers, one steal in 20 minutes

Robinson was impressive in Wednesday’s closed practice as he competed hard defensively and excelled at scoring the ball in transition and also facilitating for teammates. His stat line wasn’t gaudy in Friday’s game, but he did tie for the team-high in assists and seems to be at his best when he’s attacking the rim off the dribble. Robinson said on Wednesday that he’s really working on his ball handling so that he can be prepared for potential backup minutes at the point guard following the transfer of Remy Abell. He’s got the length and quickness to be a very good defender and also seems to be a very bright kid who enjoys playing the game and competing.

  • xCowHoosier

    College basketball is a beautiful game…always fun reading these recaps, thanks Alex

  • kewaynes

    This will be the starting line up by the time Big Ten starts

  • James Foster

    give it a rest

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Steve-Fischer/691470077 Steve Fischer

    Really? Yogi is going to lose his position because a few guys played well in a high school all star game? Sheehey can’t become a 5th Man? It’s great to see our recruits progress, but we also have a few old leftovers who can still play.

  • shoeiufan

    haha no it will not and if you think that then you dont know very much about iu basketball!!

  • Benhyoung14

    You will see 7 – 8 starters during the course of the season. Yogi and Sheehey will always be 2 of them.

  • http://www.facebook.com/hoosiergrampy Bill LeeMaster

    Do you plan on playing Noah Vonleh this coming season?

  • The_Real_Assembly_Hall

    Between the class of 2012, the incoming class of 2013, and potential commitments for the fall of 2014 there is one player I feel that is getting lost in the cracks when it comes to major accord. That player is Devin Davis Jr. I have a confident feeling that this kid is going to be really special for us. I see him contributing in many facets of the game, and somewhere along the way he is going to make some very key plays for us during crunch time. Most likely a 4 year guy with plenty of room to grow, but I think this guy is going to surprise a lot of people perhaps this year.

    On another note I want to remark on how well spoken these guys are. Especially Collin. Frankly, they look like the have been participating in post game pressers at Assembly Hall for several years. I think this group as whole is going to bring a very high level of maturity with them compared to typical incoming freshman. This class speaks volumes for what CTC recruits for on the mental level and is apparent based on their interviews.

    I think after the soft impact that the class of 2012 as a whole had….Wellllll just maybe as a collective fanbase we lowered our expectations of what freshman will give us going forward. Lowered expectations are not a bad thing if that takes some pressure off, but without over hyping it or trying to sell it I will say that if there is that mindset then we will be pleasantly surprised with this class. There seems to be no turmoil with eligibility, lingering health or injury issues, and as fans we are very aware with what we are getting. This is the first big class coming in CTC’s tenure where I feel like we are getting RE-loaded with solid proven talent at most every position and we are re building at a couple levels above the foundation.

  • http://twitter.com/IUinNap Caleb Moore

    Think all of these guys make some level of impact next year. Probably would rank them Vonleh, Williams, Fischer, Robinson, Davis, Hartman from an impact standpoint. Fischer could go higher if he earns the starting C spot. I think Williams will start at the 2 or 3 with Will starting at the other spot. Think you also have to have Hollowell in there with Yogi and whoever earns the C spot. What this team next year really needs is Yogi to develop his jumper and Sheehey to be able to hit the 3 consistently. Shot making is my biggest worry.

  • notfargj

    devin davis – the sleeper of the class. despite his size, he has the heart to really compete and make a difference. last summer he had an impressive showing at the junior-senior all-star game in seymour. if determined, i could see him making more consistent, more effective, contributions to the team than hollowell. jeremy has far more natural ability, far more upside than devin but i question jeremy’s drive to improve his skills. there’s no question he can be explosive but he has yet to demonstrate this. he can shoot the three but isn’t deadly at this point. his demeanor comes across as passive and consequently i believe that there is a correlation between that passivity and his passivity on the court.

    luke fischer – if not by his junior year, he will be a big ten first-team player as a senior, playing a very significant role in the program. unlike zeller’s methodical approach to the game, luke demonstrates a little flare and emotion on the court which i believe will prove to compensate for his weaknesses.

    collin harman – although he has potential, he won’t see much playing time in the IU program. unless he is content to simply be on the hoosier roster, i wouldn’t be surprised if he transferred within the next two years. we are now recruiting and landing players who are just far more athletic and skilled. he’s the type of player who comes off the bench his senior year and knocks down a timely three in the tournament.

    noah vonleh – have yet to see him take over a game. he appears to be a bit lethargic, a slow-mo kyle anderson type player. what he does have is an impressive amount of skill in a big body. the team will best be served by his rebounding and shot-blocking abilities, along with his modest offensive numbers.

    stanford robinson – has the ability to be an above-average big ten guard. his shooting needs a lot of work. from what i’ve read, he can distribute the ball and is an aggressive defender.

    troy williams – is the best recruit in the class. has the skills to rival and surpass victor’s game and upstage vonleh. along with yogi, will, and even fischer, i think troy will provide the fire, the spark, to motor the team. as a result, the 2013-14 team will be far more gritty and spirited than last years.

  • notfargj

    not having read your post, i made a similar post with regards to devin. i 100% agree with you.

  • http://twitter.com/IUinNap Caleb Moore

    Last years team was 7-2 on the road in the Big Ten………..the best and most physical league in the country and the best the league has been in many many years. I think you are having a case of amnesia about last year’s team because you are so pumped about the future. I like our recruits too, but this team will not be better in ANY area compared to that team other than better defensively and athletically at the 2 guard spot and better at the PG spot because Yogi will get better. Those guys didnt luck into winning the Big Ten outright for the first time in a billion years at IU because they lacked grit and spirit. This team has a lot to prove, probably for at least a couple years, before they even enter that conversation compared to last year’s team. That team we had last year, combined with UK being down, was probably our best chance to win a title in the next decade. That team had everything other than athleticism at the 2 guard spot.

  • jasonwehlage

    Was at the game on Friday and was blown away at the absolute inability for anyone not named Frankamp to shoot from outside 16 feet…yes, Williams made both of his 3 pt. attempts, but the stroke these guys possess are the least fundamentally sound i have seen in years. Not just talking IU recruits, but the entire display on the floor. In the finals of the 3pt. contest at halftime (3 of 4 going to UL), 1 guy scored 6 points out of possible 30 (which is how many fingers he shot w/ on his right hand + the thumb on his left), and another scored 8. Have been to this game the past number of years, and usually can get a feel for what this guy is really good at, or where another guy is athletically above all others, and who can really excel at the collegiate level. Lone takeaway this year was lack of shooting…work on your stroke Yogi, Hollowell and Sheehey…you’re our only outside hope.

  • skotchie

    I most look forward seeing how Devin will shape up for one reason. He played high school ball for Greg Graham, mentally he should be ready for the jump to D1 basketball and what is expected from him at IU.

  • xCowHoosier

    I may, depending on what your definition of the word “it” is…

  • notfargj

    no case of amnesia here. and, not pumped nor attempting to convince myself that the future will be any more successful than this past season. what i do think we are going to see is a more animated, confident ferrell, the ever-present passion sheehey brings and, an elevated enthusiasm from both williams and fischer in particular. listening to interviews with the new recruits, the hightened enthusiasm and confidence is evident.

    while maintaining their individual styles, the last two players mentioned will emulate what they saw in oladipo and zeller. while we had all the talent in the world last year, something was missing from that team. watford and zeller both lacked a dynamic element that i think williams and fischer already have.

  • notfargj

    in response to your comment: “…this team will not be better in ANY area compared to that team other than better defensively and athletically at the 2 guard spot and better at the PG spot because Yogi will get better.” i respectively disagree in that vonleh will certainly fill the shoes of watford if not exceed them by january and i believe williams can certainly rival oladipo’s play. troy is extremely competitive and has made no bones about his that belief he can one-up oladipo’s dunks and athleticism. you can’t teach a kid that type of mental fortitude. if a self-fulfilling prophecy is true in his case, williams will bring an very explosive presence on the court, not to mention better passing skills.

  • Ole Man

    Vonleh MAY have Wat’s outside shot. Remains to be seen. And Wat averaged what in his B1G career, almost 13 points, 6 rebounds. And few who have warn the candy stripes had a more dramatic flair for big moments.
    Not disrespecting you, but have gotten tired of several posters not realizing just how much Wat brought to this team. He can be replaced, but it won’t be easy.

  • Ole Man

    Just my humble opinion in reply:
    Fischer is a “poor man’s” Cody Zeller; shorter and not as athletic. So I sincerely doubt that he accomplishes in two years, what Zeller did.
    I do see him staying four years and really maturing into a very good player.
    And until I’ve seen Williams in The Hall, I’ll reserve judgement on the Oladipo comparison.
    I doubt we see another like Oladipo for a decade.

  • Ole Man

    Agree….we will be hurting outside next year; especially considering we had 3 viable options in ’12: Oladipo, Hulls, and Watford.
    And if we can’t hit a few, teams will pack the lane on us, really shutting us down.

  • BluegrassHoosier

    I had to look the other way when the Big Fish was in the 3 point contest. Good thing he is 6’10″ and can make a big impact in the post.

  • http://www.facebook.com/efoy.mcnaughton E Foy McNaughton

    Bold prediction – next year Sheehey, Hollowell, & Williams will match the 3 pt percentage of Oladipo Hulls & Watford this year

  • WiscHoosier

    “I doubt we see another like Oladipo for a decade.”

    Agreed. Oladipo was a once in a decade player. Troy Williams has a similar skillset though and is about 2-3 inches taller than Oladipo is.

    Watford, as frustrating a player as he was sometimes, will be extremely hard to replace. But you also can’t discount Vonleh. More athletic and can hit the three. He has also hit multiple game winners in his HS career. If he can step up and be more dominant he can be better than Watford, the skills are all there.
    And Luke Fischer. The one thing I absolutely hated about Zeller is that he was weak in the post. Fischer is a better post player than Zeller was. Fischer has a better set of post moves compared to Cody’s “turn and try to shoot it over a person just as tall as he is”

  • WiscHoosier

    No.

    Are you also forgetting Vonleh…

  • KAPONYA44

    I doubt it …. The true Center is over-rated when you have enough big time athletes who are 6-7 to 6-10 but have the hops to dominate the post & also affect taller players and alter their shots on the defensive end ..When everyone is well coached and plays hard talent separates teams ..Dont ever forget that . That is THE reason the NBA teams draft those type guys the earliest .Just after the BTT loss to Wisky sunk in , it became clear why Ryan Evans dominated CWat every time we played them…THAT debacle was the type of pivotal Athlete vs less Athletic match-up that was a microcosm of why IU never figured Wisconsin.They Neutralized IU at four spots and Killed us on Evans vs. Watford where they had a clear advantage ..I feared a similarly well coached but more athletic team coming between IU and the Final Four and that is exactly what happened .. IU failed to get by get by UK last year and the Cuse this year because it ran into a team full of those Grade A thoroughbreds …. Lacking a true Center was much less a factor than gravity holding guys closer to the ground than certain types of teams .

  • http://twitter.com/TheRealzzoglman Zachary Zoglman

    Starting lineup
    Yogi
    Will
    Hollowell
    Vonleh
    Hanner

  • Ole Man

    Man, I hope you’re right!
    But Sheehey is streaky. Hollowell is unknown; and until he does it in college, Williams is the same.
    And least we forget, Oladipo and Watford did not reach the heights they did until this year.
    So, it often takes time.

  • Ole Man

    Respect your opinion.
    I can’t agree with the ‘Cuse thoroughbreds theory, however. I still believe we were a better team. Syc was on; we were off, they won. Had we been on, just for a few more baskets, we win. Had a couple of our early “gimmies” fallen, we get confidence, stop rushing, we win. Don’t forget, Our defense shut them down.

    Also, we had great basketball athletes on the floor.
    Athletes seldom win basketball games by themselves. They fit into spaces on team with basketball athletes and basket players (like Hulls, for example).
    Case in point: With Burke feeding him, Hardaway looked like he was really a basketball athlete. Without, Burke on the floor, Hardaway often struggled; so his athleticism was not worth nearly as much.

    Zeller: recognized as being probably the most athletic big man in the country.
    Oladipo: a Picasso on the court
    Yogi: athletic and honing basketball skills
    Watford: somewhat athletic, but a knack for finding the spaces
    Hulls: Some athleticism, but more savvy than most college players
    Sheehey and Abell, basketball athletes.

    Sorry to be so long winded. But I wanted to throw those thoughts out there.
    Pick them apart as you wish.

  • notfargj

    not disrespecting you either but vonleh will exceed watford’s numbers. although, i doubt we’ll see noah around for more than a year – two, if we’re lucky. he has a decent shot but he is a far more explosive player than watford. having watched christian over the past four years i can confidently say that it won’t be a colossal challenge to replace his contributions. sure, he was a solid player for the program, made a big shot last year and a big block this year and has a nice stroke from the outside. but, vonleh is in a different league than watford.

  • http://twitter.com/TheRealzzoglman Zachary Zoglman

    I feel like it will be tough for hanner to guard some of the centers in the big 10. I think he’s like 6’8 but I’m not For sure, if he’s 6’10 I think we’re fine. I don’t have a lot of confidence in Luke Fisher as a freshmen. Last year we had 3 highly rated recruits comin in “the movement” and only yogi played really that well. I just see luke playing about the same as hanner last year. We’ll see how it works out but I think Troy Noah and Stanford will play a lot of minutes this while Collin Devon and like spend a lot of time on the pine.

  • http://www.facebook.com/efoy.mcnaughton E Foy McNaughton

    I envision Sheehey never leaving the gym, and Hollowell showed us something last season at the end. I see him making Watford strides. I agree that Williams is truly unknown until we see him play.

  • kenny george

    Agree with the group, only exchanging troy for hanner. I can’t see hanner developingtothelevel troy is currently just over the summer. I d hope hanner improves enough to be a spot starter on occasion for matchups and hopefully by the B1G he’ll be improved enough to play a lot. Besides the hands issue, I hope the foot is completely healed.

  • kenny george

    Not to disagree a lot, but to me Vonleh will be a 2year player. I don’t see the skill level now in some aspects of his game that would garner him a lottery draft pick. I am only judging this on the all star games I’ve seen, so being wrong is a great possibility. Besides, an education appears to be important to him and by staying two years puts him very close to a degree. type of young men TC is bring in to the program seem intent on an education, which only speaks highly of the family and their goals in life.

  • Big D

    By Big Ten time we will have two better and taller guards then Yogi for the starting line up. But I’m not sure Crean will know that, or make the change. If not, we will win one or two games in the tourney like this past year.

  • kewaynes

    I think Luke will play more this year out of necesity

  • http://twitter.com/TheRealzzoglman Zachary Zoglman

    Then who’s gonna guard the post? Vonleh is way to skinny and plays like more of a 3 than a 4, gotta have either hanner or Luke in there I’d think.

  • HoosierMumma

    The kid is 6’10″ and weighs 240. He has a solid frame even without being in the IU weight room yet. That said I would never peg him at the 5 spot as someone did earlier.

  • Riley Green

    1-Yogi
    2-Will
    3-Williams
    4-Vonleh
    5-Perea

    What do you guys think?
    Fischer could start at the 5, but I personally think that Perea will be ready next fall to dominate. Yogi and Will, I think we’ll see them start at the 1 and 2 all season long. Williams and Robinson will be a nice combo too. I personally think that this team looks stronger than this years team to be honest. Should be a very entertaining year to come no doubt.

  • Riley Green

    well said! But I have to say we deserved the right to rush the court against UK after all we went through the past 3-4 years.

  • GoIU811

    I’m not going to predict that next years team will be better than last years team, but I don’t feel like there is no possibility that they could be. Lets look at last years team. Yogi- great great player but still made freshman mistakes and didn’t have best shot in the world. Hulls- one of the bigger disappointments of the season. Hulls didn’t not contribute much the whole B1G season. He had a few games where he had a good half but didn’t not put together a solid full game as soon as B1G started when he didn’t make a shot against Iowa. He was better defensively and rebounded but we really needed more scoring out of him. Oladipo stud obviously very hard to replace but the one negative was Oladipo had 1.06:1 ratio of turnovers to steals. So for every one of his steals he gave a little more than one back to the other team. Watford was great when he wanted to be. Zeller played like he was 6-9 most of the time and in my opinion got into the play when Cody wanted to mentality like Watford especially late in the season. Plus add in basically no bench with the exception of a at times inconsistent Sheehey.

    Next years team. Obviously most of this is prediction since its in the future but should be a better Yogi, better shooting and hopefully fewer turn overs. Hopefully better 2 guard whether its a hopefully more consistent Sheehey (then Hulls last year) or a much better defender in Stanford. Troy Williams who definitely has the potential to make as big of an impact as Oladipo. Vonleh who will replace Watford’s numbers in no time especially if he plays hard every game unlike Watford. And if we get a much improved HMP which isn’t impossible and/or a Fischer that plays somewhat comparable to Zeller. Plus what should be a much deeper bench then I really feel like it is not a total stretch that next years team could be just as good as last years team. I know some may say there are a lot of IF’s and Hopefully’s in there and I admit there is but I also feel like the things I said weren’t a complete stretch either.

    I hate talking negative about any of the players but I had to bring out some negatives of last years team to try and make my point.

  • http://twitter.com/TheRealzzoglman Zachary Zoglman

    Well who would you have then? Our options at the 5 spot are hanner and luke and i guess Peter? I just see hanner beating out the freshmen.

  • WilliamTellOverture

    This is my lineup as well. I really want to see Hanner become the player he can be. I think he will be a defensive difference maker next year, he has the ability, just needs to be coached up. I think Will and Troy are both SF, but we played with 2 PGs last year.

  • Ole Man

    Head-to-head, last year’s team thrashes this year’s team, even if Yogi played point for this year’s team.

  • HannerTime Hoosier

    I echo your comments totally!

  • HannerTime Hoosier

    CTC needed to have Cody shoot from the outside, he won our 3 pt contest and was never used to spread the other team’s defense or for running a difficult to defend offensive set. Thus my critical comments on CTC’s in-game coaching on a regular basis.

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