Justin Smith planning June visit to Indiana

  • 05/26/2015 9:47 am in

Class of 2017 Stevenson (Ill.) wing Justin Smith, who received a scholarship offer from Indiana earlier this month, is planning a visit to Bloomington this June.

The Hoosier staff has tracked the 6-foot-7, 200-pound forward closely this spring and his strong play has helped attract several new suitors in his recruitment.

“They told me that they like me and I’m planning on visiting there during June,” Smith said over the weekend at the Nike Elite Youth Basketball League (EYBL) stop in Minneapolis, Minnesota. “I don’t know much about them, but it’ll be good to learn more about them.”

In 17 EYBL games this spring, Smith averaged 8.2 points and 3.1 rebounds in 16.3 minutes per game for Mac Irvin Fire.

Along with the offer from IU, Smith also has early offers from Illinois, DePaul, Wake Forest and Rice with interest from Duke, Georgetown, Iowa, Stanford, Wisconsin, Villanova and Nebraska.

As he prepares for his junior season at Stevenson, he’ll have to adjust to a more prominent role as Jalen Brunson (Villanova) and Connor Cashaw (Rice) both graduated from a team that won the state championship.

Smith averaged 10.3 points and four rebounds as a sophomore and scored 12 points and grabbed seven rebounds as Stevenson beat Normal, 57-40, to win the IHSA Class 4A title.

“Now that we lose Jalen, Connor and all those seniors, we’re going to have to break down everything and do more teaching rather than just having things just ‘go with it’ and roll off of Jalen,” he explained. “Now, it’s going to be more of a sense of us all being smooth and less chaotic.”

Playing up a year in the EYBL is something that Smith believes will help him as he prepares for his junior season at Stevenson.

He said developing consistency in his effort is a major focus moving forward.

“Probably just playing hard all the time (is what I’ve learned from the EYBL),” Smith said. “Everyone here is playing hard all the time and trying to get better all the time.”

Currently unranked by most of the major recruiting services, Smith is likely to be a well known name nationally very soon based on his play so far this spring. During the first April evaluation period, he scored 20 points against Team Final (Pa.), which features several IU recruiting targets.

“I’m an athletic wing that can stretch the floor out and shoot threes or take somebody off the dribble,” he said of his game. “I just do whatever is needed.”

J.B. Bauer contributed to this story.

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  • Kid looks really good. Only a sophomore!

  • BruceA

    Nice looking prospect…very athletic.

  • MK

    Jeeze. Imagine what he is going to be like in two years…

  • sarge

    Ok, don’t jump all over this comment, but kid has some Calbert to his game! Nice find coaches.

  • Went to this HS + saw him play last year, surprisingly good outside shot for a wing player. This year’s going to be the big test for him, as the O is going to run through him instead of a top 5 PG in the nation. Going to need to do more off the dribble.

  • Zach

    Wow this kid can play and will only get better. Smooth looking jumper and the athletic blocks really impressed me.

  • IU diehard from CT

    wow, this kid is a must get….what this vid showed me is a couple of things I think are invaluable..1, he can shoot the ball. 2, he can shoot the midrange shot off the dribble. 3, he has a really nice swipe through move and plays with speed. he plays with a fast pace and aggression. you can see it

  • Robert Golden

    Illinois with the right coach could be a monster. The talent in Chicago is unreal. CTC & staff making a push into Cook County. Would hurt recruiting.

  • Kelin Blab

    I really like Smith….very athletic, can face up, and has a good upside. I expect a lot more offers to come….

  • TomJameson

    If he progresses at all, this kid is going to be flooded with offers after the coming season! By the time he starts his college career I think he’ll be at least a 4-star recruit. I just have a feeling about this kid, he looks so relaxed and confident out there.

    Anybody who’s seen him play, would appreciate some front-row comments on his game. Robosalt … got anything else??