The addition of five-star point guard Khristian Lander has given Indiana a boost in early preseason rankings for the 2020-21 season.
Bart Torvik’s preseason ratings are the most bullish on the Hoosiers following the addition of Lander, the No. 24 player in the 247Composite rankings. Torvik has Indiana at No. 11, which is the second highest for a Big Ten team behind Wisconsin.
Rob Dauster of NBC Sports does not have Indiana ranked in his top 25, but did include the Hoosiers in his “five teams that just missed.” Goodman has Indiana No. 27 in his preseason top 50.
Here’s what Parrish (with Indiana at No. 21) and Borzello (with Indiana at No. 23) recently wrote about the Hoosiers:
The late addition of five-star point guard Khristian Lander pushed Indiana’s recruiting class into the top 15 and provided Archie Miller with the perfect compliment to an experienced roster. The Hoosiers are returning eight of the top nine scorers from a team that was projected to make the 2020 NCAA Tournament. That should be enough to give Indiana a chance to compete at the top of the Big Ten standings.
We’ve been slow to come around on the Hoosiers this spring, but the decision by five-star point guard Khristian Lander to reclassify and enroll at Indiana in the fall clinched their spot in the top 25. How Lander fits into the lineup is up for debate. Archie Miller returns all five starters from last season’s 20-win team, and rising junior point guard Rob Phinisee has been one of the more efficient distributors in the Big Ten the past two seasons, while Al Durham brings leadership and defense. It wouldn’t be a shock to see Lander start the season on the bench, but his arrival is a clear talent upgrade in Bloomington. The rest of the lineup returns intact, led by All-Big Ten big man Trayce Jackson-Davis, who will look to build upon his productive freshman season. Justin Smith and Joey Brunk are also back. With the NCAA tournament canceled due to the pandemic, Miller has still not been to the dance since taking over at Indiana. The Hoosiers have taken strides each season under Miller, though, and it should pay off in 2020-21.
Of course, all of these rankings are dependent on a season actually happening next winter.
The NCAA council is expected to vote Wednesday on whether to extend a moratorium on athletic activities that is currently in place through May 31. If that moratorium is lifted, it could open a path to voluntary, on campus workouts this summer.