If you believe Rivals.com, the national Internet recruiting service, Indiana basketball verbal commitment Austin Etherington has the exact same rating as Dick Vitale.
In other words, none at all.
However, if you believe Scout.com, another national Internet recruiting service, Etherington is rated No. 88 nationally.
So who is right?
We won’t know for about three years, when Etherington is in the middle of his college career.
What we do know is that rating players is an inexact endeavor. Calbert Cheaney was the lowest ranked of IU’s celebrated freshman class of 1989-90 and wound up as the Big Ten’s career scoring leader and the 1993 national player of the year.
Anyway, Rivals.com and Scout.com just came out with their top-recruits-in-the-nation lists. Rivals has a top 150, Scout stops at 100. Both are run by reputable recruiting experts in Jerry Meyer (Rivals) and Dave Telep (Scout).
So what does it show for some of the players IU is recruiting? Let’s take a look, in no particular order:
*Cody Zeller (No. 23 Scout, No. 46 Rivals)
*Branden Dawson (No. 17 Scout, No. 30 Rivals)
*Marshall Plumlee (No. 32 Scout, No. 79 Rivals)
*Mitch McGary (No. 101 Rivals, no Scout rating)
*Aaron Thomas (No. 89 Rivals, No. 98 Scout)
*Jeremiah Davis (No. 65 Scout, No. 96 Rivals)
*Austin Etherington (No. 88 Scout, no Rivals rating)
Remember, all these players are from the state of Indiana, and it doesn’t include No. 2 Marquis Teague, who has orally committed to Kentucky. The state is loaded with talent for the next couple of years and the Hoosiers are poised to capitalize.
In the big picture, the ratings don’t mean anything. Performance does.
Just ask Dick Vitale.