2017-2018 Player Profile: Clifton Moore

  • 10/17/2017 8:48 am in

With the start of college basketball season on the horizon, we’ve transitioned from our look at other Big Ten programs to our player-by-player previews of the 2017-18 Indiana roster. Today, our profiles continue with a look at Clifton Moore.

At the time of his commitment to Indiana in October of 2016, Hatboro-Horsham (Pa.) forward Clifton Moore was the least heralded of Indiana’s three class of 2017 commits.

A little more than a year later, Moore looks like he could be the next under recruited Hoosier to land on the NBA radar.

As was the case with Justin Smith and Al Durham Jr., Archie Miller and the new Indiana coaching staff made it a priority to keep Moore in the fold after taking over in Bloomington last March.

Moore’s AAU coach, Jonathan Michels, told Inside the Hall in late August that IU’s sincere approach went a long way in keeping the talented forward in the fold.

“When we met with Archie, it was a very sincere feeling,” Michels said. “You didn’t feel like you were getting sold. You just felt like what he was selling you was legitimate.”

As a senior at Hatboro-Horsham, Moore averaged 20 points and 10 rebounds and had a 22-point, 13 rebound and 10 block triple-double.

At 6-foot-10 and 220 pounds, he’s unique because of his ability to shoot from the perimeter and put the ball on the floor. Moore also has the size and length to block shots, but he’s going to have to continue adding strength to physically compete in the paint against Big Ten opponents.

“Early on here — I don’t want to say he’s wet behind the ears or a little young, but he’s like a slippery guy on ice skates out there at times, just getting his footing,” Miller said last month. “But you’ve seen him go in big, big jumps week to week where he is. From a conditioning level, from a mobility standpoint, he’s as gifted as any player I’ve ever been around, and I think that speaks volumes. His length is something that you can’t really judge offensively and defensively in terms of being able to make some plays.”

The mobility for his size and skillset is what has drawn attention to Moore from NBA scouts. He grew seven inches from his sophomore year of high school until graduation, which helps to explain why his ball handling is above average for a big man.

Jonathan Givony and Mike Schmitz called Moore the best NBA prospect in the Jordan Brand Regional Game last spring and included him in their initial 2019 mock draft at ESPN.com.

“Long term, I think Clifton’s got a chance of being an NBA player,”Michels said. “I think while he’s (at Indiana), everybody is going to kind of be surprised at how competitive he is. I think that gets minimized because he’s a bit of a suburban kid. I think you’re going to realize he’s very competitive, he’s a much tougher guy than people give him credit for and he’s an absolute work guy. He’ll work all day long if you allow him to. It’s what’s made him improve the way he’s improved.”

Bottom Line: Moore is one of the most intriguing players on the roster entering the season because of his potential to make major improvements as the season goes along. Early on, Moore should show glimpses of his long term upside while also struggling at times like most freshmen do. He’s a mystery to many because he didn’t play on one of the shoe company sponsored AAU programs and was relatively unknown nationally until the summer before his senior year. Long term, he appears to have a legitimate shot at becoming the next unheralded IU player to make the NBA.

Quotable: “I feel as though Cliff, because of the way he works and is gifted athletically and talented, will show glimpses as a freshman of what he can be. My hope is that he can help us with multiple positions in the frontcourt with our depth, and I think that, as the season goes into January, February, March, you can see a guy really blossom into what we think is going to be a star here one day.” – Miller on Moore in late September.

Previously: Justin Smith

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  • VOXAC30

    Alex, I am the King of the typo but I figured you would like to know. I think the wording may be a little messed up.”which explains helps to explain why” You can delete this comment as well.

  • BruceA

    All I can say is… what’s not too like about this kids potential. Go Hoosiers!

  • pcantidote

    The thing that immediately jumps out at me is his physique. I expected him to be a rail, but the kid already has some muscle. Makes me think he might be able to bang a little inside and be an imposing shot blocker.

  • TomJameson

    Yeah, I imagine he’s been told to work on that. 🙂

  • inLinE6

    What’s his current weight? I know he’s been gaining muscles, and he has to get at least 240 lbs to make an impact.

  • N71

    Seems like he’s an Anthony Davis style of player, a contributor in a number of ways but being able to “bang” probably won’t be at the top of the list. Blocking shots yes, pushing someone off the block or ripping away a rebound from some 255 pound MSU dump truck, not so likely.

  • StudentHoosier

    Clifton Moore, man what a guy.
    Funny story –
    I missed the first two weeks of classes this semester (I was actually on a mission trip in Ghana, provided dozens of kids with Hoosier gear!) and naturally I was worried the whole time about being too far behind in all my classes.

    I roll in at 8:03am to my class, scramble for a seat near the back on the third week of classes. I look down at the backpack next to me and see “CLIFTON MOORE” on the classic IU student athlete tag, and realize that I was so flustered coming into class late that I didn’t even notice the 6’10 behemoth I sat next to. And as if I wasn’t nervous enough – now I’m sitting next to a player on my favorite team!

    I just stay silent the whole time, trying to think of something cool to say. But about halfway through the (BORING!) lecture, CM leans over after the professor changes the slide and says “Yo, you get that lass bullet?” I did, thankfully, so I showed him what I had written and then he made some comment about the material. I then told him I had actually missed every class so far so I really had no clue what he was talking about. He chuckled, and said “I gotchu” and then flipped back in his notes and showed me what I had missed. I was able to quickly jot down some of the main points and thanked him for his help.

    Just a simple gesture, I know, and this act will have no impact on his season this year, but it’s just these types of things that really convince me that we have some good Hoosiers here. We recruit the right type of guys. CM, looking to see some awesome moments from him this year.

    Is it November yet?

  • Outoftheloop

    Clifton is THE most athletically gifted player on the Hoosier roster. He will be great at IU! Great to see Archie on top of this talent early!

  • Outoftheloop

    Great personal note!

  • Outoftheloop

    Absurd statement. Strength not weight!

  • Outoftheloop

    No a Kevin Durant type of player!

  • We’reAllForYou82

    I think Archie is going to be the perfect coach for CM, he won’t just let him get better at what he has talent for, he will get better at everything. Of course, I think Archie will be a great coach for all of us.

  • Awesome story, thanks! Especially with all the scandals, I’m proud to be an IU fan — kids not only go to class, but they actually take notes and learn the material. Can’t wait until we’re winning at an elite level _and_ doing it without cheating.

  • Two words: Coach Marshall.

  • marcusgresham

    I think that would be Justin Smith. 42.5″ vertical jump and pretty decent strength to go along with it.
    Actually, McSwain might be in the conversation, too. I’m pretty sure if I was built like Freddie McSwain I’d just cruise down the street in a Speedo every day letting the world admire me.

  • marcusgresham

    …and they go to classes that are actual classes!!!!!

  • TomJameson

    Not an absurd statement. Down in the trenches (so to speak) you need both weight AND strength. If you’re too light you can still get pushed around, no matter how strong you are. It’s a matter of physics really, large mass overwhelms small mass. lol

  • TomJameson

    Coach Marshall will turn out to be one of our beloved not-so-secret weapons. He definitely knows how to add strength and weight. I really like how he’s been sculpting these kids.

  • Outoftheloop

    6’10 versus 6’6.5. I rest my basketball case!

  • IU_theoracle

    Pretty funny but I feel the same way. Met Freddie at the IU vs Michigan game this weekend. Super nice guy, very friendly and polite. He spoke very highly of Coach Miller and the direction of the team.

  • marcusgresham

    You didn’t say “most athletically gifted for his size,” though, you just said the most athletically gifted. If you’re putting that qualifier on it you’re probably right but you didn’t word it that way.

  • Doug Wilson

    I like your story. Forget all the hype we hear about players at the moment. How about the man who notices that a IU ‘paying student’ could use an assist. Not only does Clifton read the floor well to make the right pass for a score. but he reads the environment in which he will spend more time. Clifton sounds like he is ready to lead on and off the court. Nice! “Mr. Miller Time” can not teach what Mr. Moore has just done for you my friend.

    Magic Johnson He was 6’10 and was always admired for the way he could post and play point. If I remember Magic correctly. I believe he too had a growth spurt in HS that took him from playing point to Power Forward. I am sure Archie remembers this about Magic Johnson. Good Luck Clifton. ~Pass the word please. Let Clifton research Magic. oh yeah!