In case you’re counting, the state of Indiana has eight basketball players in the Class of 2011 listed among the nation’s top 150 according to Rivals.com. That’s twice as many as in the Class of 2010, of which the Hoosiers got zero.
How many is Indiana involved with this time?
Let’s take a look.
In case you’ve forgotten or are too distracted trying to figure out the meaning of the “Lost” final episode (do you mean the last six years were just limbo for the characters on their way to heaven?), three of those eight are already committed.
Indianapolis Pike guard Marquis Teague, ranked No. 2, is going to Kentucky. Indianapolis Lawrence North forward Ryan Taylor, ranked No. 70, is going to Louisville. Bloomington South guard Darwin Davis, ranked No. 80, is headed to Xavier.
Everybody else is in the Cream ‘n Crimson picture, some better than others.
The highest rated is No. 10 Michael Chandler of Indianapolis Lawrence North. Louisville and Ohio State have offered the 6-10 forward. IU is just recruiting him. It's very unlikely he'll be a Hoosier.
Gary guard Branden Dawson is ranked No. 30. He has a ton of offers, including Indiana, Purdue, Michigan State and UCLA. Purdue reportedly is the favorite, but the Hoosiers have a chance.
Then there’s 6-10 forward Cody Zeller of Washington. He’s adding schools to his formidable list that already included IU, Purdue, Florida, Notre Dame, Ohio State and Butler. He’s ranked No. 46. Yes, the Hoosiers struck out on his older brothers, yes the competition is fierce, but coach Tom Crean and his staff have a good chance at landing him. He said he won't make a decision until the fall.
Also in the running for Indiana are No. 96 Jeremiah Davis of Muncie and No. 101 Mitch McGary of Chesterton. Davis, a 6-3 guard, offers include IU, Purdue, Tennessee, Michigan State and Miami of Florida. McGary’s grades have been a problem, although he’s said he’s improving there. Cincinnati, Marquette and Dayton are recruiting McGary along with Indiana. Purdue’s interest seems to be declining, probably because of grades.
There is, of course, speculation over how IU can offer all these guys scholarships when they don’t have them available. The answer is that Crean will find a way.
First, however, he'll have to get them. Landing two of the five available -- with one being a big guy -- would be great. Is greatness in IU's summer future? It's way too early to tell.