2017 point guard Paul Scruggs enjoying “every bit” of recruiting process

  • 04/25/2016 11:57 am in

Class of 2017 Southport point guard Paul Scruggs is one of the best at his position in the country and his recruitment is a reflection of that.

At 6-foot-3 and 200 pounds, Scruggs is a physical presence who can not only distribute, but also get to the rim and either finish or draw contact.

Through eight games this spring on the Under Armour Association circuit, where he plays for the Indy Hoosiers, Scruggs is averaging 13.8 points, six rebounds and 5.5 assists per game.

Recruiting wise, he said he continues to mainly speak with the schools who have offered him scholarships to this point. That list includes Michigan State, Xavier, Louisville, Indiana, Purdue and several others.

“I enjoy every bit of it,” Scruggs said Friday. “There’s only a limited amount of players who get to have this enjoyment with the recruiting process.”

He said the majority of his discussions with college coaches center around what he can do to work on his game. From those conversations, he’s able to develop a list of priorities to focus on for improvement.

“(I’m working on) when to push the ball and when to slow it down,” he explained. “Also when to stop and pull-up. I really need to work on my jump shot.”

Scruggs is shooting 49.4 percent on the UA Association circuit through eight games, but just 20 percent on 3s.

Indiana was one of the first schools to recruit Scruggs prior to his freshman season at Southport and the Hoosiers have remained a significant presence in his recruitment. The coaching staff was highly visible at his games over the weekend at the UA Association stop in Fishers.

Point guard is a position that is a major need for Indiana in the class of 2017.

“Our relationship has grown substantially,” Scruggs said. “They say they really need me as a point guard because they see how my tempo is and how aggressive I am.”

Ranked the No. 27 player nationally by the 247Composite, Scruggs said he has an upcoming visit planned to Michigan State. His AAU coach, Mike Peterson, also recently tweeted that he’ll visit Xavier and Indiana this spring.

Scruggs has been a frequent visitor to Indiana games and Hoosier Hysteria events since his freshman season and said several things stood out when he watched the Hoosiers win the 2016 Big Ten regular season championship.

“I liked their aggressiveness. They let their guards go,” Scruggs said. “They really know how to coach a team.”

(Photo credit: Kelly Kline/Under Armour)

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  • Arch Puddington

    I’m hoping for this guy even more than Wilkes. A big, athletic guard who might stick around for a couple of year is always at the top of my wish list. I’m sure there are others with greater first-hand knowledge than I have, but from where I sit he looks like a really important get.

  • BL

    Have read he and Wilkes would like to play together in college. Love to see Scruggs in the backcourt with Langford in ’18. Also, curious to see how he performs without Brunk next year. Would expect him to shoulder more of the load as a senior.

  • CreamandCrimson

    I’ve seen him play about ten times in the past three seasons (all with Southport…none with his AAU team) so I have a bit of knowledge (or at least I can make mildly educated guesses about what I saw). I’ll be honest, when I saw him during his freshman and sophomore seasons, I thought he was the best high school point guard I’d seen since Mike Conley (a guy that beat the tar out of me daily in practice and have the utmost respect for as a player). He’s incredibly gifted as a passer and distributor and he’s a wonderful ball-handler.

    However, his perimeter shot hasn’t really progressed all that well and I wasn’t thrilled with some of the things I saw on the floor during the two games I watched him in 2015. Take this with a grain of salt because he could have been having bad days or something may have been going on in his personal life, I have no clue…but he was behaving in a petulant way with his teammates, coaches and officials. Very whiny and somewhat argumentative and didn’t really appear to be enjoying himself at all. He’s very talented and I’m willing to look past what I saw as anomalies but it’s something that will stick in my mind as we advance through this process until I see things to wipe those images out.

    In terms of in-state rankings, I’d have him below Wilkes and Malik Williams (I’d have all in-state guys in 2017 below Bamba and Michael Porter, guys we apparently have a shot with) and on par with Jaren Jackson. He’s clearly the top point guard prospect in the state in this class though.

  • Arch Puddington

    Thanks for the insight. Attitude matters, as we saw with the Hoosiers this year in particular. As you say, wouldn’t want to pass judgment based on just a couple of games, but I’ll look for it if I get the chance to see him play next year.

  • marcusgresham

    I want Scruggs and Wilkes at IU, despite the fact the photos of each of them depict egregious carrying of the ball.
    One more thing. Scruggs shows you just HOW good Langford is—don’t forget that when they met in the semi-state Romeo hung 46 on Southport.

  • HoosierStuckInKY

    I’d like to have a big, athletic guard too. But, c’mon, this is IU. It’s a requirement that our true PGs are < 6'. If Scruggs is really 6'3" he's more likely to play the 3 lol
    All kidding aside, 2017 will be an important year for the PG role. Scruggs has a chance to be THE guy from day 1. Although 49% overall and 20% from 3 isn't exactly "lighting it up." He will benefit greatly with some extra practice from "The Shot Doctor."

  • BL

    Yeah, I know Langford is awesome but really makes me wonder about the coaching he’s getting at Southport. If you watch the tape, half the time it appeared no one was assigned to Romeo.

  • Fivelefts

    Yeah, I guess his shooting is what stood out to me as the most obvious negative in his game. It was just weird watching him, because his style is so much different from Yogi’s; and I’ve gotten used to the Jordan Hulls/Yogi Ferrell type of guard play.. His lack of quality shooting was disappointing. However, I love his size and athleticism!

  • cbags05

    Romeo destroyed him.

  • Jerry Kime

    Langford destroyed everybody. Would love to see him wear Crimson. Humble kid, great work ethics. Unfortunately, he’s being recruited by everybody which means we’ll lose another homegrown kid to somebody else.

  • dwdkc

    Limited sample size in UA league; do we know more about his 3 pt % in high school? He does admit he has to work on it but might not be that bad. Also I’d expect we might go 3 guard with him, and seniors JN and RJ. All 3 distributing and finishing. 2 PGs is not a problem; KU’s backcourt with Mason and Graham this past year was close to the best in college.

  • Jon Robling

    Being a Southsider, i have seen him play several times the last two years. The Southport vs Evansville Reitz game he had some nice plays, but didn’t have great stats, this Sectional vs Roncalli he also struggled at times, and he is very demonstrative. High School teams guard off him and let him shoot. I see him more as a 2 than a 1, maybe another Combo guard that Crean likes. He’s very athletic, pretty decent handles, strong with long arms, and is improving. Definitely would help IU.

  • SCHoosier

    Let’s do Scruggs, Wilkes and Porter early..take the rest of the recruiting season off1:) Glad to hear him say he needs to work on his jump shot…