As much I like to follow recruiting, there are some things that drive me crazy. One of those things is when a recruit, parent, coach, representative or handler takes a list of schools and discusses it with a reporter. Take Emmanuel Negedu’s coach at Brewster Academy, Jason Smith, for example. Smith talked to Adam Zagoria of the Zagsblog about the four schools in the running for Negedu and the result was a big pile of nothing:
Indiana has tremendous tradition and passion for basketball. The previous staff recruited Emmanuel, so he was familiar with the University, but it was a great chance for him to get to know Coach (Tom) Crean and hear about his style and track record of player development. They are rebuilding and would offer a shot at immediate playing time. He is very familiar with Bloomington, since he lived there and played for Indiana Elite. A few of his former teammates at IU definitely make it an attractive option. Emmanuel enjoyed getting to know Coach Crean. It’s very evident he’s a high-energy, upbeat coach who Emmanuel reports works non-stop…constant motion.
Indiana has tradition and passion for basketball? Who knew? I know some of you are waiting anxiously on a decision from Negedu, but all signs point to Tennessee or Memphis. Luckily we have Kyle Taber* back to hold down the paint.
In an interview with Rivals.com recruiting analyst Justin Young (subscription required), Emmanuel Negedu sounded less than enthusiastic about his visit to Bloomington a week ago today. Negedu called his time in Bloomington “okay,” but expressed excitement about his visit today to Tennessee as well as Thursday’s trip to Memphis. I’m not sure exactly what to make of this because kids change their minds all of the time in recruiting, but if Negedu’s comments are any indication, it sounds like IU is a long shot to land him.
The best player still on the market for the 2008 class — Emmanuel Negedu — will visit the Indiana campus on June 3 to meet with the coaching staff, according to Chris Korman of the H-T/Hoosier Scoop. No word on where Indiana is positioned on his schedule of visits, but he will likely visit all four schools still in the running (IU, Memphis, Tennessee and Georgia Tech.)
Update: It looks like Negedu’s other visits are as follows: Georgia Tech (June 8), Tennessee (June 10) and Memphis (June 12). In other words, a strong first impression better be in order if IU hopes to land Negedu.
Well, according to our friends over at the H-T/Hoosier Scoop, Rivers made it official over the weekend.
Jeremiah Rivers committed to Indiana this weekend, a source close to the situation has told The Herald-Times.
He will sit out next season per NCAA rules and have two years of eligibility remaining.
Rivers is the seventh player in Indiana’s incoming class, and the fifth brought in by new coach Tom Crean since being hired in early April.
Rivers is a very solid pickup as he’s a great on the ball defender and an exceptional ball handler. He’s not going to light up the scoreboard in Assembly Hall, but perhaps the coaching staff can convince him to be a bit more aggressive offensively. However, let’s hope this isn’t a precursor to a press release stating that Jordan Crawford will be peacing out. That, my friends, wouldn’t be good.
With his recent release from Arizona, Emmanuel Negedu is the top remaining player on the board for the 2008 class and will consider Georgia Tech, Memphis, Tennessee and Indiana. Inside the Hall takes a look at his list and breaks down how Negedu could fit in at each destination.
Georgia Tech: Paul Hewitt’s club loses Jeremis Smith (10.5 ppg, 7.1 rpg) to graduation and Tech’s lone 2008 recruit is a point guard. Zack Peacock is their top returning big man in terms of scoring (9.9 ppg), but he didn’t start at all this past season. In other words, Negedu would likely step right in for the Yellow Jackets at the four spot.
Memphis: All five Memphis starters will be eligible for the NBA Draft (although Antonio Anderson and Robert Dozier have not signed with an agent) which means that John Calipari is in search of players to fill out his roster. Couple that with the fact that Calipari recently hired Josh Pastner (who recruited Negedu to Arizona) to anchor his recruiting and Memphis might be the school to beat.
The exodus continues. Though exodus probably isn’t the best word, because that would imply that everybody leaving is doing so because they want to. Anyway, Brandon McGee is officially peaced. A release from IU media relations:
Indiana Men’s Basketball Coach Tom Crean announced today that freshman Brandon McGee (Chicago/Crane HS) has been dismissed from the program for academic and team guideline negligence.
“Our coaching and support staff tried to make this work out, but we felt that there were some basic standard operating procedures that were not being met,” said Crean. “I feel badly for his family and Coach (Anthony) Longstreet (Crane Head Coach) who were helping us to try and make this work, but in the end it just was not possible to continue in the current direction.”
He played in just 17 games and averaged 1.5 points and 1.0 rebounds.
My favorite part about these releases are the coded quotes. I could spend at least 1,000 words trying to spell out exactly what Crean is trying to say above, but what’s the point? McGee wasn’t going to class, or didn’t care, or whatever, and now he’s gone. We never really had a chance to see if he had any talent last year, so c’est la vie, monfrere, as they say in Latin.
Hopefully McGee lands well, and IU can replace those 1.5 points. Should be incredibly difficult.
According to a report on philly.com, Upper Marlboro (MD) big man Maurice Sutton will attend Villanova. This is not surprising, as IU picked up Tijan Jobe yesterday and are pursuing Emmanuel Negedu as well for 2008.
Sutton was also considering Seton Hall. He’s not among the top 150 players in the 2008 class on Rivals.com and was considered a project by many scouts I’ve talked with.
Update: Here’s what Sutton had to say about choosing Villanova.
“It came down to what God said, what God said goes. When I went to Villanova for a visit, it just felt right. I just felt comfortable with coach [Jay] Wright . . . Everything, his personality, just the way he came in, he’s just so honest. I know his track record. There is something about him I really like. I can really say that I’m going to love having him coach me for how ever many years I’m there. I’ve seen what they have done in the tournament the last few years. I would love to be part of that.”
Bloomington – Indiana University men’s basketball coach Tom Crean has announced that Tijan Jobe (Tee-zhan Joab), a 7-0, 255-lb. center from Olney (Ill.)?Central College has signed a national letter of intent to attend IU and play basketball for the Hoosiers beginning next fall.
“We are excited to be able to sign a player with the defensive ability and rebounding presence that Tijan has,” said Crean. “We feel he has a lot of room for growth in the sense of improving on both the defensive and offensive end and we love the fact that he plays extremely hard. His height and wingspan (7-5 1/2) is something that our team was in great need of.”
Originally from Banjul, Gambia, Jobe averaged 4.0 points, 4.0 rebounds and a block for Coach Mike Burris at Olney. He attended Butler County (Kan.) Community College as a freshman and attended Laurinburg (N.C.) Prep School.
He came to the United States four years ago through the African Hoop Opportunities Providing an Education Foundation (A-HOPE), a Bloomington based organization. The foundation is designed to provide talented basketball players from a host of African countries the opportunity to come to the United States to use their skills as a means to get a U.S. education.
He chose Indiana over UAB, Auburn and Nebraska.
He is the sixth player to accept a scholarship to play for the Hoosiers joining forward Tom Pritchard (Lakewood, Ohio/St. Edwards), guard Verdell Jones III?(Champaign, Ill./Central) guard Matt Roth (Washington, Illinois), guard Devan Dumes (Vincennes/Indianapolis/Decatur Central) and guard Nick Williams (Mobile, Alabama/LeFlore).
Physically, Jobe will provide a much needed presence in the paint. Developmentally, he sounds raw, but obviously Crean and staff saw some tools they could work with. A-Hope, which is led by founder and president Mark Adams of Bloomington, also assisted in bringing Alfred Aboya (UCLA), Beas Hamga (UNLV) and Emmanuel Negedu (considering IU) to the states.
According to our good friend Chris Korman of the H-T/Hoosier Scoop, Bloomington South 2009 point guard Jordan Hulls has committed to Indiana. Hulls was also considering Purdue, Duke, Stanford and a host of smaller schools.
Scout.com recently ranked Hulls the 13th best point guard prospect in the 2009 class. His addition brings IU to 12 scholarship players for the 2009-2010 season.
According to sources speaking with Peegs, Tigan Jobe a 7-foot-0, 265-pound sophomore from Olney Central College will sign with IU today. He averaged three points, three rebounds and six blocks a game. (See: project.)
It seems Crean went after what was left of big men in both the high school (Maurice Sutton) and juco ranks (Jobe), and perhaps might find himself a bit handcuffed now as far as scholarships are involved if Emmanuel Negedu wants to bring his services to Bloomington. (Fingers crossed.)
Discuss the latest recruiting news amongst yourself in the comments.