2017 point guard Markus Howard “excited” by Indiana offer

  • 06/01/2015 8:40 am in

If class of 2017 guard Markus Howard wants to learn more about Indiana University, he doesn’t have to go far to get answers to his questions.

That’s because his father, Chuck, now the director of performance athletics at Grand Canyon University, was a running back for the Hoosiers and earned his degree from IU in exercise science and recreation in 1986.

The 5-foot-11 Howard, who will play next season at Findlay Prep after averaging 32.4 points per game last season for Gilbert Perry (Ariz.), has emerged this spring as a major recruiting target for Indiana.

Tom Crean offered a scholarship in a conversation with the family last week.

“I was just really excited about the offer,” Howard told Inside the Hall. “I know the great history of guards that have come from Indiana. Coach Crean is a great coach. He really wanted to find out what kind of a person I was and he really liked what kind of a person I was. He thinks I’d fit really well in their system, just be a strong guard for their program.”

Howard said his father is also excited about the interest from his alma mater.

“He’s been a fan since he went to college there,” he said. “He really likes the program and he really loves watching them. So he’s really liking Indiana. It’s a great school that really helps prepare you for life.”

Rated the No. 35 player nationally in the 247Composite, Howard has no shortage of suitors. He originally committed to Arizona State in August of 2014, but decided to reopen the process in March.

Howard said his father, who has trained over 1,000 athletes since moving to Phoenix in 2002, has been a major help as he navigates the recruiting process.

“He’s just really helping me understand the recruiting process,” Howard said. “It’s a tough process, but something you really just have to go through, push through with it. He’s really been helping me with that. The level you have to constantly be playing at is something he’s really emphasizing. He’s been really helping me in all aspects.”

This spring, Howard was the third leading scoring in the Nike Elite Youth Basketball League (EYBL) at 20.2 points per game for the Las Vegas Prospects. He’s currently in Colorado Springs, Colorado, as one of the finalists for USA basketball’s men’s U16 national team which will be announced this week.

Howard made the first roster cut from 33 to 17 on Saturday. The final 12-man roster will be announced prior to the team departing for Argentina and the 2015 FIBA Americas U16 Championship.

“I’m just blessed to be here and have the opportunity to play at this level,” he said. “Just coming out here with the best players in the country, it’s really an awesome experience. I’m really privileged to be out here with these guys. Playing in the EYBL really gets you prepared for this type of level.”

Surrounded by some of the nation’s best players, Howard said he’s trying to keep things simple as the training sessions move along.

“I’m just trying to embrace the point guard role, lead the team, facilitate, communicate really well,” he explained. “Just get the guys involved and really just get them pumped up to play.

“You’re representing not only yourself, you’re representing your country and everyone that lives in the country. You have the USA on your chest, it makes you have an appreciation for the game much more and makes you want to play harder each and every day.”

(Photo credit: USA Basketball)

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  • WhatsUpKnight2.0

    yogi 2.0. a bit undersized, but fast as hell. has a nice jumper, and actually looks like a better passer. kid would be fun to watch.

  • Lance76

    My shoes fell off watching his cross over and step back!

  • SCHoosier

    Small..but a sturdy body. Quick as a wink… a great handle and a very soft jump shot with range. This kid will go anywhere he WANTS to go.

  • Gregory J. Haggard

    Looks like he might be quick and clever enough to keep his man in front of him on the defensive end as well.

  • Drew

    Coincidence that his number is 11? He’d fit right in Tom Crean’s system.

  • BobbyBeGoodKnight

    He really plays games. Fast runner and thrower. 5’11’ with hairs? Bobby Hurley coaches at ASU. T.J. Leaf? Opportunities for everyone. IU hires dad son shall follow. If you build he comes.

  • TomJameson

    Oh yeah, the same as everyone else is saying … Quick, great floor vision (no look passing), great passer, good handle on the ball, attacks the rim, has a floater, and hits from long, and very hard to defend. Great footwork!! Didn’t really see anything defensive in the highlights, but he’s so quick you’d think he was good there as well.

    5’11” – but maybe he’ll grow another couple inches???

    And he’s going to get better… We really want him I think.

  • PV Mike

    His passing, court vision and step back jumper looks like he is influenced by Stephen Curry.

  • At the Quarries

    His height is his blessing (in disguise)! Ask Yogi.

  • The_Bob_Michaels

    As long as there’s size at other positions, I’m partial to short playmaking point guards (quick ones with a shot!).

  • Robert Golden

    He would easily be a 3-4 year kid. He was one of like 5 rising sophomores invited to team USA workouts last summer. The kid can go. He is already solid physically, especially in the legs. I’m not sure he will ever have Yogi type guns, but who does?

    Academics are of no concern. Very smart family. He has 2 years at Findlay Prep to become a true legit PG instead of a shoot first point.

    It would be nice to pair him with a larger guard for defensive purposes, even if the larger guard wasn’t a great outside shooter, because you have a great 3 point shooter with Markus ala Yogi.

    We would all take a new Yogi every 4 years, without question. IF Markus EVOLVES his game, you have an instant impact kid at the PG position. I would compare him to JBJ in that he is unstoppable scoring the ball in HS, but needs to tweak his game to be the best he can be at the major college level.

  • chiv86

    Well, he still has 2 years of growing to do so maybe he will get close to 6 feet by the time he’s in college. Anytime a short point guard has range from the 3 point line, they become a threat. Especially when they have the quickness of Yogi or this kid for example. The defense has to respect the outside threat and close in and with a good pick and roll game, they could blaze past defenses for layups or in the paint passes to their forwards for dunks. If he has the defensive skillset, he is a perfect match.

  • HoosierStuckInKY

    Crossover. Is. Sick. His handles are so good I’m confident he does dribbling drills while eating his Frosted Flakes in the morning. Highlights remind me a lot of Yogi’s in highschool. Maybe better. His jumper comes off a bit quicker than Yogi’s too. Although Yogi has bigger triceps. Much much bigger triceps.

  • TomJameson

    It will be interesting to see this kids development, game wise and physically, after his Junior year. You have to believe his game will grow and get better, and he could easily get stronger and grow another inch or two. Remember, his dad trains athletes and was a running back. I bet the kid works, and works out, a lot!

  • IU track Alumni

    Plays like Austin Rivers

  • SCHoosier

    I’m thinkin’ it will be tough to get him out of AZ given his dad’s presence there.(even if he is an IU grad). Bobby Hurley has a great tale to tell guards he’s recruiting. This kid and Suggs would be a huge get.

  • marcusgresham

    At about the 1:52 mark he just totally embarrasses a guy—watch that and then look at the dude in the crowd with his hand over his mouth laughing.
    Someone mentioned him possibly growing another inch or two but with a beard at his age he might be done.
    If he gets to Bloomington whomever is taking Troy’s spot better have his eyes open because if you make the cut he’ll find you.

  • Arch Puddington

    The starting PG for the last 5 national champions have been 6’1″, 6’1″, 6’0″, 6’4″, and 6’1″, so while Howard is a bit undersized, small guards can and do lead teams to titles. NBA PG’s tend to be 6’3″ or bigger, but even that is a bonus; as an undersized player, Howard is more likely to stick around 3 or 4 years than if he were bigger.

    Not sure what our chances are, but I’d take him for sure.

  • Zach

    This kid can hoop. Nice jumper especially from mid range with pull-ups and floaters. His handles and play making ability are really good and he can weave through defenders with his speed. The step backs are just icing on the cake. Hope we make him a top priority alongside with Scruggs and the other 2017 IN recruits

  • PV Mike

    Hopefully he will shoot better than Austin.

  • BruceA

    Kid looks like he could play at IU right now…would take him in a heartbeat! Go Hoosiers!

  • IUPatrick

    Wow… very impressed.

  • hoosier93

    So he is 1 of 45 recruits Crean has offered for 2017?

  • IU track Alumni

    According to 247sports Indiana has offered 10 players for 2017.

  • Aaron Anderson

    I love this kid! Hope CTC can pull this one off. Can not imagine the nightmares that the other B10 coaches would have. To have this kid just one year removed from Yogi is a dream come true.

  • SilentBob

    His highlights are entertaining. Handles are extremely advanced. Love how he keeps his head up on drives for the most part and squares his shoulders very well. Seems to play through his chest. His shot form and release could use work but what kids can’t. Will be interested in seeing where his recruiting takes him.

  • IU diehard from CT

    this kid is a must get…fantastic pace of play and speed. can create his own shot over bigger defenders and dribble out of trouble…agree with knight2.0 yogi2.0

  • OhioHoosier

    Him and Scruggs would form a great combo backcourt.

  • BlakeD1223

    It’s always hard to go off of a highlight reel but holy crap this kid has handles. I love his step back jumper which seems to be a very common move and a great way for a smaller guard to get their shot off. Much like Steph Curry he could use his quickness and handles to separate himself from the defenders to get his shot off. I would love to have this kid on our team.

  • Corey M

    His picture at the top of the article is very deceiving. I thought the kid was a beast until I read “point guard”.