Armon Bassett still remembers the moment when he knew he wanted to be an Indiana Hoosier.
Bassett had just completed his freshman season at Terre Haute South H.S., and was in Bloomington with his AAU coach on an unofficial visit. Indiana Coach Mike Davis, meanwhile, had just wrapped up his second season in Bloomington with a Big Ten championship and an appearance in the NCAA Championship game.
"I met with Coach Davis and I knew I wanted to be a Hoosier that day as a freshman," said Bassett.
While plenty has changed since that 2002 encounter, Bassett's interest in playing for the Hoosiers hasn't waned. And that's a big reason why the 6-2, 175-pound guard from Hargrave Military Academy verbally committed to IU Wednesday night.
"I think every kid that plays basketball in Indiana wants to play for IU in some sort of way," said Bassett, who averaged 22 points and nearly six assists as a senior at Terre Haute South. "Some times it doesn't work out that way, but I think all kids want to play at Indiana – it means a lot to me to have that chance."
It appeared Bassett wouldn't have that chance after he verbally committed to play for Quin Snyder at Missouri earlier this year. But the Indiana product re-considered, re-opened his recruitment in early September, and eventually re-visited his desire of playing in Bloomington.
"I wanted to be a little closer to home, and with Missouri being four hours away (from Terre Haute), the only big-time basketball that I was going to get any closer was Illinois and Indiana," said Bassett. "I wasn't really talking to Illinois, so I contacted Indiana."
That contact resulted in a couple of trips by the IU coaching staff to see him play at the Virginia-based prep school, and soon afterwards Indiana offered him a scholarship.
"They talked about me coming in for a visit and we got it done," said Bassett.
Bassett made that unofficial visit was this past weekend, but it was far from his first tour of the IU campus or facilities. He estimates he's been to Bloomington 15 times.
That includes that first encounter with Davis more than three years ago, and now he's excited to have the chance to play for a program and a coach that he's long admired.
"Coach Davis, he did well his first couple of years and it's been down the last couple," said Bassett. "I want to play for him and help him.
"I think it's a good group they've got there this year that's going to turn it around. I want to be a part of that next year. I want to play for a coach who has been through adversity like I have been, with people against us, yet still striving to succeed."
Editor's Note:HoosierNation.com will have more features in the coming days on Bassett, including what his days are like at Hargrave Military Academy; what it's like to play on one of the nation's prep powerhouses; and in what areas his game has dramatically improved.
Bassett's Wait Is Finally Over
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