IU Visit Makes Impression on 2010's Irving

Bloomington – Kyrie Irving is a top-50 prospect with a long list of suitors, but only two programs have hosted the Class of 2010 prospect for unofficial visits. The first was Villanova, and now Indiana has added its name to the list. Irving talks about his trip to Bloomington...

Bloomington – Kyrie Irving is a top-50 prospect with a long list of suitors, but only two programs have hosted the Class of 2010 prospect for unofficial visits.

The first was Villanova, and now Indiana has added its name to the list. The 6-1, 165-pounder from St. Anthony's H.S. in Elizabeth, N.J., was joined by his uncle for a trip to Bloomington this past weekend.

"I wanted to get a good feel for Indiana and what they're about," Irving said. "I wanted to see the atmosphere in person and get a feel for the program. They're definitely one of my leaders."

Irving arrived in Bloomington on Friday and attended the Hoosiers' team practice before sitting down with IU Coach Tom Crean Friday evening. On Saturday he was accompanied by Hoosier junior Devan Dumes for a tour around campus and then sat courtside for Indiana's season-opening 83-65 win over Northwestern State.

Irving was impressed with the Hoosiers' play against their Southland Conference foe, but even more enamored with the crowd.

"The environment at the game was just incredible," Irving said. "It's completely different than seeing it on TV. I like playing in front of a lot of people and showing what I'm all about."

What Irving's all about is that he's a high-scoring combo guard that is among IU's top recruiting priorities for the 2010 class. Irving averaged 27.6 points per game as a sophomore at Montclair Kimberly Academy, and will now look to lead one of high school basketball's top programs, St. Anthony's H.S., for the next two seasons.

During his visit, Crean sat down with Irving and spelled out what kind of impact he thinks he could make if he winds up accepting IU's scholarship offer and signing in the fall of 2009.

"Coach Crean talked about the where they see me playing and different ways I could come in and make an impact and what ways I need to get better to be a great guard," Irving said. "Coach Crean told me straight up what would be my position, and what he could see me doing for the team if I came there. He said I could be a great guard at Indiana and a great guard overall and that he could help get me ready for that next level."

Irving's game and skills have enabled Irving to climb to No. 44 in Scout.com's most recent Class of 2010 rankings, including the No. 8 spot on the list of point guards in the class. Irving has drawn recruiting attention from not only IU and Villanova, but also Memphis, Kansas State, Kansas, Florida, Notre Dame, Pitt, Marquette, Rutgers, Seton Hall, West Virginia and USC.

At this point Irving isn't ready to put those schools in any sort of pecking order, and he's yet to establish any sort of timeframe for making a decision.

"It depends on the situation – if I think it's a great situation, (a decision) could be soon, or it could be a while," Irving said.

And what would be a great situation for the talented junior?

"I'm just looking for a home away from home," Irving said. "The coaching staff is big, and just a comfortable environment somewhere I'd feel comfortable and make an impact right away."


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