2014-2015 Player Profile: Tim Priller

  • 10/09/2014 8:58 am in

With the start of college basketball season on the horizon, we’re taking a long look at the conference at large as well as Indiana’s roster this month. Today, we continue our look at Indiana’s roster with Tim Priller.

The news seemingly came out of nowhere on a late-April night. 6-foot-9 Tim Priller, a name Hoosiers fans had yet to hear of, announced his commitment to Indiana on April 26, becoming the Hoosiers’ fifth member of their 2014 recruiting class.

As the news broke, the picture surrounding Priller’s recruitment began to form. After the season ended, Indiana associate head coach Tim Buckley watched Priller in action at his high school in Richland, Texas. Weeks later, Indiana coach Tom Crean and associate head coach Steve McClain followed and watched Priller and then extended a scholarship offer. Priller committed without even visiting.

Conversation started to form, as well, of what made the Hoosiers so interested in a player who only had other offers from Albany, Illinois-Chicago, Drexel and Lamar. During his senior season, Priller shot 51 percent from behind the arc. He also shot 48 percent from the floor, overall, 78 percent from the free throw line and also was the team’s target on game-ending plays.

That said, Richland coach Richard Bacon noted the Hoosiers will have to work with Priller to further develop him. But the benefits of doing that, he said, will outweigh any negatives of adding him to the mix.

“He’s got to get a little stronger, and he knows that,” Bacon said. “Like I told coach Crean, they’re going to appreciate more, and the fans of Indiana are going to appreciate him more and more the more they see the kid. The more they’re around him, the more they’ll say ‘Wow, I didn’t know he could make that shot,’ or ‘Wow, I didn’t know he could do this.’

“He’s been doing this for quite a while.”

When Crean talked about Priller for the first time in early June, he also mentioned some of the intangibles Priller had which attracted him to offer a scholarship.

“I loved what I saw on film and it wasn’t just the ability to make shots, it was how he impacted games when he wasn’t shooting the ball,” Crean said. “It’s drawing a charge at 6-foot-9 at the end of a game to win a game. It’s grabbing a big rebound.”

Priller’s shooting ability combined with his size also helped to make Crean’s decision a bit easier. And in August, the Hoosiers got their first look at on-court action with Priller during their preseason tour of Canada.

In 44 minutes of action over the span of five games, Priller took five 3-point attempts on nine shots, making three of them in sparse usage. In July, Crean said Priller’s role is “a little bit situational right now,” suggesting that Priller’s first official game-time as a Hoosier will come off the bench.

But Priller said he knows playing time will not be a given, and that he knows he will have to work to earn time on the court.

“I definitely have to earn my minutes, it is not just a given thing,” he said after IU’s win over McGill University in Montreal. “I think I need to rebound, that is probably the biggest thing for me that I need to work on.”

Bottom line: The late addition of Priller surprised many, but the hope of the coaching staff is that the 6-foot-9 forward will bring unique qualities to the program. As Crean suggested in July, though, Priller might not be ready to fully contribute on the court, meaning he could be limited to a role-player this season in coming off the bench as a shooter. But as he gets stronger and creates more of a presence on the court, Priller could see more and more playing time as his season and career progresses.

Quotable: “I think I have improved a lot. I definitely need to get better – everyone needs to get better – but I need to get better at some things. My teammates are really helping me out. There is no negativity on the team and they are really just pushing me to do better and help them out as well.” — Priller following Indiana’s win over McGill University

Previous: James Blackmon Jr., Max Hoetzel, Robert Johnson

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  • HoosierGrampy

    I wish that fat (expletive deleted) would retire. He is a joke.

  • Snookafly

    Stings doesn’t it?

  • Not sure if you saw Valentine last season, but he’s trimmed down considerably.

  • Hoosier Taxidermist

    I can never get enough of that game. I live in southeastern Ohio but was there for that game. Those tickets were given to me by some UK fans as a joke so I could go watch their # 1 ranked team beat mine at home. I took them and boy was I glad I did. Assembly Hall went nuts as did I. You could imagine how they felt when they saw me the next time. It was great. Also ESPN just ranked Assembly Hall the # 1 court in all of college basketball. GO HOOSIERS!!!!!!!!!

  • MK

    wait i thought no one ever transferred from RMK?

  • TomJameson

    I think Tim is going to be a solid 4-year player, getting better every year. No, he won’t be starting this year, even CTC said his minutes were going to be “situational”, but he will get some minutes. IMO some are being too critical of this young man. One almost gets the impression that others might think he is going to just stand at the 3-point line waving his arms hoping to get a shot. LOL I just think he’s a much better player than that, after all he was a go-to guy on his last team. YES, the B1G is very demanding! YES, Tim needs to put on weight and get accustomed to the greater speed of play (although it looks like he’s already gained 10 lbs). Almost nobody coming in as true freshmen is built to take the B1G physicality, and some are more ready than others, but I think Tim will get stronger and his “foot speed” will get better. No, not tomorrow, but consistently over time. Which brings me back to my first sentence.

  • MK

    Every time you post something down here you complain about how it isn’t posted quick enough. Maybe the mods are in the bathroom or something. maybe your computer doesnt work

  • Alford Bailey

    Personally, I would be shocked if Tim became “a solid 4-year player”. Talent wise I’m not sure yet but it has more to do with the current climate in cbb. Kids don’t want to sit on the bench for 2-3 years to get their chance and with recruiting the way it is now there will always be 2-3 kids leaving the program to make room for incoming recruits. We’d all love the “4 year guy who worked his butt off to become good his senior year” story I just don’t think it happens too much anymore.

  • Corey M

    I continue to be shocked by how many people on ITH think that Priller is going to be a contributor. You guys need to take the blinders off and get real. Everyone is so down on April but in love with Priller. I have watched tape of both and I cannot understand it…

  • HoosierGrampy

    Alex, I did watch him do a couple SEC games–TV Ted was at his best/worst in the Auburn-South Carolina game when he & his cohorts called something like 6-7 straight fouls against Auburn to open the 2d half, and he ejected a fan who, to this day, maintains he never swore or used any profanity against TV Ted. I’d like to retract the word “fat” from my comment, but retain everything else as written. BTW, a big THANKS for all you do @ ITH!

  • HoosierGrampy

    The list of players who left prior to completing their eligibility is rather long and with the possible exceptions of Ricky Calloway and Lawrence Funderburke, very undistinguished. Other than these 2 players, it could be argued that none of those who transferred did better at their “new” school than they could have done had they stayed in B’town despite the appearance of greener grass on the other side of the fence.

  • HoosierGrampy

    The climate and culture in Madison, WI, seems to favor this type player.

  • Zach

    I don’t understand the recruiting of Priller. We are a high level program and we should be recruiting high level players.i don’t see Tim contributing anything to our team even his senior year. We should be recruiting players of a much higher caliber.

  • cooper

    If he is playing more than mop up minutes….yikes

  • INUnivHoosier

    Say what you want about him, but it sounds like he knows he needs to get better; he knows what he needs to do better, and he makes no excuses about needing to get better.

    Hopefully, he can get better.

  • kaponya44

    To a man this group admits it has a lot to work on.Gotta love that collective attitude even if we can’t all agree on anything else .

  • mark

    IMO those 2 transfers were the reason IU didn’t win that 4th NCAA championship. And the transfers were directly related to Knight’s treatment of the players, if I recall. What a shame, because with those 2 big guys in addition to Henderson and Nover inside, plus Cheaney and the Grahams and Bailey and Reynolds, that team might just have done a 32-0.

  • TomJameson

    Well it might surprise you to learn that I agree with that, up to a point anyway lol. I think that IF Tim stays for 4 years, he will be a solid player his junior and more so his senior year. I do know the way CBB is with transfers and all, but I’m not sure Tim is the “I have to have playing time now” kind of guy. Just the impression I have with no other input than what I read in his interviews. I also believe that HE KNOWS that he won’t be getting bunches of minutes this year, but I think he’ll get some of those “garbage” minutes. I also think that he’ll get even more next year, especially after a full year of workouts! Really depends on his work ethic, and I’m counting on that to be good. But to your point, yes … the climate in CBB points to his leaving after his sophomore year. He’d probably be a GREAT addition to the Evansville Aces! Not really kidding there. lol

  • Alford Bailey

    As usual just our opinions. Will be interesting to see what takes place.

  • marcusgresham

    It was like watching someone puke onto a canvas and the splatter formed a Rembrandt.

  • marcusgresham

    Then you also went to HS with two of my old USI roommates.

  • marcusgresham

    I don’t think anyone missed Chris Lawson. Funderburke was a beast.

  • marcusgresham

    Larry Bird?

  • marcusgresham

    I was thinking the exact same thing, I was just scrolling through to see if anyone else mentioned it first.

  • marcusgresham

    I personally think, if he can get healthy, April has a chance to be something.

  • HoosierGrampy

    I was considering only players who actually saw the court in a game. No question that Larry would have been a great fit had he stayed.


    Marcus, you and only you, could describe Shurna’s shot like that, and I firmly believe that anyone that ever witnessed his shot would say that that was a very adept description of it. lol


    Calislimy hasn’t been the same since ! Would love to have a giant pic of his face when “The Shot” was announced as the Espy Award. lol


    Count me as one also seeing it that way.