National Signing Week is upon us, and it is time to take stock of the country. Here is a look at what went right, what went wrong, and what is still left to do for teams. This edition focuses on the Indiana Hoosiers.
What went right?
The Hoosiers were able to land three commitments in the class, one of which is a top 100 player in Justin Smith. Smith is a supremely athletic combo forward who defensively is capable of guarding a host of different style of players, and then on offense he is developing a more consistent perimeter game while bringing skill off the dribble and athleticism to finish around the rim.
Smith is a good start with his upside and ability to contribute right away, and he is joined by a pair of interesting prospects.
Maybe the most interesting is Clifton Moore. Moore is someone who blew up out of nowhere, and Indiana identified him at the end of July. The Hoosiers were able to beat out Ole Miss for his services and land a big commitment from a high upside power forward who is just scratching the surface of how good he could become.
Also Indiana landed Al Durham early. Durham is a tough combo guard who can score and is a solid athlete. Durham loves to attack off the dribble, and should be able to defend either backcourt position.
What went wrong?
Quite honestly the in-state recruiting was a nightmare for Indiana. The Hoosiers lost out on four players from inside their state borders who have McDonald’s All-American potential.
Losing out on all four was a crushing blow for Tom Crean and the Hoosiers who spent so much time recruiting them. Especially tough was missing out on Kris Wilkes who played a position of need, and considered the Hoosiers until the very end.
Also not being able to snag Tremont Waters was bad news. For a while it looked like the Hoosiers led for Waters, but Georgetown was able to close the deal at the end.
What is left to do?
Crean is one of the coaches who likes to use the spring signing period to secure prospects and add to his roster, so it is logical to expect that they will be recruiting the class of 2017 hard over the next several months.
Ideally the Hoosiers would like to land a potential instant impact big due to the likely loss of Thomas Bryant to the NBA. At this point it doesn’t appear that Indiana is seriously involved with any true post player, but the ultra-talented Billy Preston has made an official visit.
Also Indiana is in the top six for five-star talent Hamidou Diallo. Add in four-star Jordan Tucker, and it is clear that Indiana is going to be chasing some talent that could greatly impact the class as we head into the spring.