James Blackmon Jr. selected for USA Basketball Junior Select national team

  • 12/17/2013 8:32 pm in

For the second straight year, an Indiana signee will play in the Nike Hoop Summit.

As announced earlier tonight on his Twitter account, class of 2014 Marion guard James Blackmon Jr. has been named to the 2014 USA Basketball Junior Select national team.

“Blessed to have these opportunities, it’s an honor,” Blackmon said on Twitter.

The team is comprised of 11 of the best high school seniors in the country who will compete in the Nike Hoop Summit in Portland, Oregon against a team of the best 19-and-under players from around the world.

Current IU freshman Noah Vonleh was on the 2013 USA Basketball Junior Select national team. Before Vonleh, D.J. White was the last IU player to play in the Hoop Summit back in 2004.

Through the first two games of his senior season at Marion, Blackmon Jr. is averaging 46.5 points and the Giants are 1-1.

The Nike Hoop Summit will be played at the Rose Garden on Apr. 12, 2014.

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  • Gregory Spera

    Can’t wait to see this kid in candy stripes.

  • Jerry Pickler

    This guy is going to be something special. sort of reminds me of a young tim hardaway.

  • HoosierPat

    I’ll definitely be going to watch him play at least once this year. The kid is a special talent.

  • TomJameson

    The 2014-2015 season is going to be a very special season!!

  • Alford Bailey

    Yes me too. I hope he has a monster game against Lyles and Tech next week. Make a statement for Mr. Basketball.

  • Alford Bailey

    Its been awhile since I’ve have been excited to watch a kid play in high school. I cant wait to see JBJ in January.

  • WisconHoosier

    Together, Max and James Jr are averaging over 54 points a game. Nice.

  • steve

    I think its a little early to be calling the 2015 season special. You are right though with max’s big 8 points a game they are over 54.

  • Snookafly

    I am so happy for both JBJ and RJ. I wish we had them both this season. On a side note apparently Crean’s recruitment of Jaquan Lyle has dropped off. I still wish we could sign him too.

  • “Will”take charge!

    Stephan Curry

  • Miamihoosier

    It’s not early Steve. Vonleh, Ferrell, and Blackmon Jr., give us 3 McDonalds All Americans in the starting 5. By the time this season is over, Noah and the team will figure out he’s unstoppable in the post…..going in to the 14/15′ season, as teams are forced to double or triple him, Blackmon, Johnson, and Ferrell will snipe people all day. It’s the same thing as last year, but with better players….specifically on defense (sure, no Vic, but also no Jordy or Watford…everybody on next year’s squad can guard at a high level) We’ll have to have our worst game of the year, and the opponent their best, to not make the final 4…..pretty good odds

  • Alford Bailey

    JL headed to KU or Memphis IMO.

  • TomJameson

    IMO, with the returning class, and I exclude any early outs to the NBA (I think not ready), add these 3 SHOOTERS into the mix, the 2014-2015 season can be very special! Can you imaging the class we have now with a year of tough experience, a summer of building, and likely a VERY big chip on their shoulders, combined with the shooting ability we have coming in? All I can say is WOW!

    Now that doesn’t mean I’m giving up on this year. I’m one of those that thinks that they’ll work out the kinks and do okay. If they make the big dance, I think they’ll surprise a few people with at least one win. I’m hoping that with their late start they’ll be peaking about that time. THAT would be nice to see.

    Actually, any peaking would be good to see right now. LOL


  • CrimsonBill

    I’m with this optimism in regards to the talent, but Crean will never make a Final 4 at Indiana. That’s a bit of a leap in logic, but he’ll do the same thing next year as he has every other year – poor game planning, lack of adjustments, odd sub patterns, out-of-position players, and hummingbird-style clapping. Best case is he manages to briefly levitate on the sideline as we get upset in round 3. That’d be…an accomplishment.

  • HoosierTrav


  • HoosierTrav

    I’m bummed too. Wish we never would have offered Max. We have Colin Hartman and AE. Not sure why we added this kid.

  • RMK

    He’s much more athletic than Curry.

  • HoosierTrav

    I agree. His style of play and skill set screams Ray Allen.

  • RMK

    Your entire argument is built off the assumption that Vonleh comes back. As of now (and I highly doubt this will change this season) he is considered a top 10 pick. Now, he could benefit by coming back because he could end up being a top 3 pick in next years weaker draft (it probably won’t be really weak, but this year’s is so strong.) However, without him, I don’t see us having a chance to win a title. I think we’d be definitely in the top 25, but that’s about it. With him (and the typical player development we’ve seen under Crean) the skill from this years class could make it a great team.

  • SCHoosier

    Getting this kind of “pub” can only help the entire IU program and JB’s personal development.

  • sarge

    Get the best from Indiana, and we hang banner 6. This guy is definitely in the conversation for Mr. Basketball and I’m glad he is gonna be a Hoosier!

  • Ole Man


  • Ole Man

    Max will rarely see the floor, so’d I only count on two shooters.
    That should be enough, however.

  • Ole Man

    Up vote just for the laugh on the “levitate.”

    That was funny no matter what ya think of CTC.

  • Dee McDonald

    Next year could be the perfect storm to have a REALLY nasty team with veterans and young shooters all over the court. This is what most really good programs do…they survive and make some noise with classes as they develop and every 2-3 years the make a run at a national title. If they’re contending for national titles every year in this market, you’ve either established an amazing ability to scout guys that will stay 3-4 years and mesh them with the ultra talented guys who can actually assimilate for 1-2 year in college before going pro. It’s a tough combination but I think Crean is recruiting that way…to build for a run at a national title every 2 or 3 years. I think we have a lot of the pieces in place to be scary next year or the year after.

  • ScoopGeoff

    Because Max is a pure shooter and those guys aren’t. We have no one that size that can shoot…

  • ScoopGeoff

    I get it… Funny. Maybe you’re just trying to get Trav to laugh, but maybe you believe it.

    Listen, Max is going to be playing against competition that will be… Ehhhh… Approximately 7x stronger than what JBJ twill be facing all year. I’m sure James can score no matter where you put him, but his team would go 0-24 against the New England Prep School Conference schedule that WMA plays. Every night Max will have a D1 guy guarding him and 2 or 3 6’8″ – 7’1″ guys waiting for him at the rim.

    Many guys in that league are 19 or 20 years old because they are doing a post grad year. Noah was a McDonald’s AA last year and only averaged something like 16 ppg in that league. McGary was the #2 ranked junior in the country, then went into that league and dropped off the face of the planet…

    8 ppg is ok right now for a guy making the adjustment from playing against 16 year olds in suburban California in a small school conference to Prep School ball against line-ups with 3-7 D1 scholarship players on every roster.

  • inLinE6

    What’s the odd of having JBJ and RJ both becoming McDonald’s AA?

  • Hoosier Hall

    His size and shooting ability are more akin to Curry though.

  • Hoosier Hall

    I agree. He is basically the same player as Hartman so naturally Collin will probably play before him. I don’t doubt that Max will contribute in a couple years but I think the minutes are going to be hard to come by next season. Lots of talent coming in and returning.

  • ScoopGeoff

    Not good…

  • CrimsonBill

    Do you really believe all this? This is way too much effort defending a kid that, honestly, should have never been signed to play here.
    Rankings aren’t everything, but recruiting is such an industry now that diamonds in the rough no longer exist. This is IU, where we should expect 5-star kids, like Kansas, Duke, UK and EVERY other traditional power does. And this kid ain’t it. His tapes are done by his family, along with outlandish titles like “Max Hoetzel has NBA Range!!!” It’s a joke.
    What this is, is that crean has decided that he liked the acclaim that came with Vic and now he has to find the next one. But Vic was a special kid, who coupled tremendous athleticism with work ethic – it takes both. This was a waste of a scholarship – the kid won’t play here. We could have creek here this year, but we HAD to have Hartman? Please. Jurkin? Jokin.
    Players play. Scorers score. All this, “oh he’s adjusting,” is garbage. If you can play at indiana, you should star wherever you are. Take off the blinders, sheep.

  • CrimsonBill

    Thanks OleMan…Ill be here all week. Actually, ill be here until…always.

  • SCHoosier

    Dear b-ball gods..let’s not dubbed Max “a shooter” at this point in time..what did he get..8 pts in his first game at the new school.?. Gotta trust the coaches on this..Blackmon and Johnson are shooters and have proven it. Hopefully Max will be but the kid is coming off a significant injury and has a lot of development…physical and otherwise to get to where IU needs him to be. I will grant you he has the stroke.

  • ScoopGeoff

    He did star where he played last year. He was the conference player of the year. He has played exactly 5 games against the current level of competition. Why isn’t Williams flourishing this year? He was a five star recruit at one time… Because it takes time to adjust when you take a step up in weight class. Why isn’t Zeller dominating in the NBA? He was an all-Amercian last year? Oh, because he jumped up a level in competition and it takes time to adjust.

    Besides that, you can’t have an entire roster of 5 star guys… It’s impossible to manage. Does Duke have a roster full of them? nope. Does Kansas? Nope. MSU? Nope? Lousiville? They didn’t even have one 5-star player on their roster last year.

    Here’s another question… How many other D1 players is JBJ sharing the ball with? His brother? Who is what, a sophomore? 15 years old… Max is playing with Goodluck Okonobo and a handful of lower D1 talent. He’s not going to come down and jack the ball every possession.

    Sorry you don’t get it.

    I’m not saying Max is going to star at IU. Not every recruit can, will, or should. ‘m saying he is a superior shooter to Hartman and Etherington. He fills a need they don’t currently possess.

  • ScoopGeoff

    By the way, I’m fairly critical of Crean. Certainly not a sheep. If Noah stays, which I think is highly likely, and they don’t contend seriously for a National Title next year then he will have lost me as a supporter… But that’s beside the point.

    I love when people try to rebut what I’m saying with stupid arguments… Here’s your gem “IU should expect 5-star kids every year, like Kansas, Duke, UK, and every other traditional powerhouse does.”

    2011 – class size = 5, only one 5-star recruit
    2012 – class size = 2, only one 5-star recruit
    2013 – class size = 3, only one 5-star recruit

    2011 – class size = 5, zero 5-star recruits
    2012 – class size = 5, zero 5-star recruits
    2013 – class size = 6, three 5-star recruits

    UK is a different story because they turn over most of their freshman every year, but if you look at their roster there are currently six 5-star recruits and seven scholarship players that weren’t.

    Again, not to beat a dead horse, but UL is a traditional powerhouse with a HOF coach and recruiter, but last year they had ZERO 5-star recruits on their championship winning roster.

    You are going to have to come with something real if you want to battle with me son… Sheep. Hah!

  • PDXHoosier

    ESPN has JBJ ranked 19 and RJ ranked 44. There are 24 (maybe 25?) kids on the roster, and they make sure every position is accounted for. I’ll be happy with JBJ being on the roster representing the candy stripes

  • Alford Bailey

    What are your credentials Geoff? You seem to have alot of really good insite on our recruits and basketball in general. More than just a typical fan.

  • Alford Bailey

    Nice point. Do not need the 5 star kids but what those successful programs all have in common is 5 star coaches.

  • Hoosier Hall

    Well played. I love to bring actual facts and data into these debates but sometimes I get too lazy and just call them a doo doo head.

  • ScoopGeoff

    Played in college, coached HS, assistant college, currently do opponent film breakdown for couple buddies who are college coaches on the side. Do a little bit of film breakdown using eSpor on recruits, with my concentration being the New England Prep circuit.

  • CreanFaithful

    In zero of Max’s footage did I think Collin Hartman. He’s 6’8″ with a bigger frame. Supposedly they think he is still growing (speculation is 6’10”). I’ll believe that when I see it. But meanwhile he is already a bigger player than Collin.

  • ScoopGeoff

    That and Hartman had a terrible year shooting the ball his senior season. He is a solid basketball player, but never proved to be an elite shooter. People that have that misconception weren’t paying attention.

  • Alford Bailey

    I said this when we signed him. If this kid comes in 6’8′-6’10” and can shoot the 3 thats a whole different dynamic. I am no way a recruiting guru and knew Collin was not that tall or a pure shooter.

  • Alford Bailey

    So you think Max is a legit recruit and fills a void for us?

  • SCHoosier

    I think Noah has to stay for it to happen next year.

  • SCHoosier

    When he signed he was listed as 6-7..which usually means he is actually 6-6. Still Growing..probably. A bonfide prospect? Yet to be determined. Let’s see how his year at the new school develops. Its important that the kids wants to be good..and Max apparently does. Then again I remember the glowing reports about the potential shooting ability of both AE and CH. Hopefully we’ll see that…sooner the better.

  • CreanFaithful

    The 6’8″ and possibly growing to 6’10” according to doctors comment was something Alex shared in the forum a while back. 247Sports also lists him 6’8″. But I catch your drift. Who knows…

  • ScoopGeoff

    I think he’s a legit shooter. I’m still waiting to see him, but I’ve known his Prep coach for about 17 years and he isn’t one to artificially boost guys ability. He’s kinda a natural pessimist… at best a realist. He isn’t a glosser or promoter, so when he tells me this kid is as good a shooter as he’s seen, and he’s put a few kids into D1 and the NBA, then I have go reason to think he’s lying.

    I think its way too early for fans to be turning on him. At least lat year when they turned on Hartman they had 3.5 years y watch him in their back yard. None of the guys on here bitching about him have a scooby doo what they are talking abut when it comes to Max… It’s 100% conjecture and stereotyping….

  • WisconHoosier

    Hope you’re right. But a lot of people said both Davis and Hartman would “easily” be 6’8 to 6’10 by the time they arrived at IU.

    If you want to speculate, I’ll bet Max is not 6’10 when he gets here. Loser pays in BitCoins.

    (Legal department disclaimer: this poster is joking. He will never even own a bitcoin, let alone have any idea how to pay with one.)