Bloomington, Ind. – The Indiana coaching staff is making good on its promise to recruit the state of Indiana, and Connersville power forward Matt Howard is evidence of that fact.
"Indiana called my coach and told him they were going to offer me just this week," the 6-7, 190-pound Howard said Friday night.
The offer came with perfect timing because Howard is in Bloomington over the weekend as his Spiece Central Stars AAU program competes in the Adidas May Classic. Howard played his first game in the classic on the Hoosier home court at Assembly Hall, giving him a chance to see the facilities first hand.
"We played here last year so I'm familiar with Bloomington," said Howard. "I really like it here and the atmosphere of playing on a college floor is good experience."
The Central Stars are already on their fourth tournament of the summer, but have yet to have the success they expect. In all three of their first tournaments the Stars have won their early pool only to lose the very next game.
"We have high standards for ourselves and we want to win every time," said Howard. "Last year we won a lot so we think we can continue to win. We think this tournament can be different and we'll get something going from here."
Indiana is looking at Howard for his hustle play and ability to find the ball off the glass. The Hoosiers join West Virginia, Xavier, Miami (Ohio), Dayton, Purdue and Butler in the recruitment of Howard's services, but just joined the hunt in the last few weeks.
"That's what I try to do – rebound and just play hard," said Howard. "Do whatever I can because we have tons of shooters. We have a lot of good players.
"I've got a few new offers, but pretty much my recruiting has stayed about the same. West Virginia, Indiana, Xavier and Purdue are offering me now."
With new offers on the table, Howard has not been able to put together a list of top schools, but he hopes to have that done by the end of the summer.
"I'm hoping to know late July, sometime late in the summer," said Howard. "I'm getting to where I'm trying to narrow it down. I haven't cut out any schools, but I know I am going to be more concentrated on staying closer to home if possible."
Howard plans to spend the summer mostly with his AAU team, but will be working to improve his own game at the same time.
"I'm trying to work more on being able to penetrate the lane and working on my shooting," said Howard.
"There aren't any big camps I plan on going to. I might go to the Xavier camp where they workout with you individually and the way our AAU is setup and because of basketball this season I haven't been able to make trips. Hopefully in June I'll spend some time and go out and make some visits."
Howard has already been in contact with the Hoosier coaching staff and had only good things to say about their conversations.
"I've talked to Coach (Kelvin) Sampson and Assistant Coach (Jeff) Meyer recently," said Howard. "They're really good guys, I like them. They definitely have a winner's mentality and they want to come in here and return Indiana back to a big-time program."
Hoosiers Like What They See From Howard
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