McRoberts Completes Huge Summer

Last season he was considered a borderline top 30 prospect in what many considered to be a weak class. At 6-foot-10 and 210 pounds Josh McRoberts looked more like a version of Mike Dunleavy than an inside presence. Fast forward to the present and everything has changed.

"I think I played well this summer," Josh McRoberts told TDD this week. "I tried to play hard each time out, and when you compete against the best players in the country there is a lot of opportunity to be successful."

A lot of opportunity that was taken advantage of by the Indiana big forward as he's now considered among the top five players in the class, and number one by several analysts.

"Simply stated, he's the hottest big man prospect in the country right now," said's Dave Telep in a mid-July report. "He's healthy, much improved since the spring and has the momentum to run down Tyler Hansbrough and Richard Hendrix for top honors."

It's debatable which summer event was McRoberts' best, though many consider it to be the USA Development Festival in Colorado where he averaged 12 points and 14 rebounds per game, and bested anyone put in front of him.

However, the Nike All-American camp was also a top notch performance for the big guy. There he showed the ability to bring the ball up the floor, hit mid-range jumpers, rebound on both ends of the floor, and run the floor. However what really caught the attention of gurus was his unheralded athleticism which was on display on countless dunks that left numerous opponents posterized.

Telep reported as much in his Nike Camp recap:

It's amazing what a little confidence and a few good outings will do a kid. Right now McRoberts is cementing his status as an elite big man. He's dunking everything and there's every reason to believe that he winds up on the short list of best big men in this class.

With such a successful summer you have to expect the NBA to come calling on the big man's door. Especially in this age of drafting on potential more than anything else. And while he won't make the mistake of ruling a jump to the league out, McRoberts comes pretty close.

"It's an honor to be recognized as someone who could go, but it's a very tough thing to do. I need to go to college for a number of reasons. I'm not ready for the physical, mental, and social demands that playing in the NBA would bring. At Duke I'll get prepared."

He'll get his first taste of life in Durham later this fall when he'll take an official visit to Duke, though no date has been set at this time.

After becoming the first member of the class of 2005 to commit to Duke last year, McRoberts has now seen Greg Paulus and Jamal Boykin join him. However, he knows the coaching staff in Durham has eyes on two more players – Eric Boateng and Jon Brockman.

"It was great news about Jamal, I got to know him at Nike camp and he'll do whatever it takes to help the team win. I know they're looking at a number of players to bring in. I'd like to see Brockman come in as well."

McRoberts will begin his high school season in the late fall with the Carmel Greyhounds, who finished 15-7 last year while McRoberts sat out with a broken bone in his back.

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