Bloomington – One of the state's top junior running backs has the IU staff's attention.
Evan Kroot, a 6-0, 190-pound junior from Indianapolis Brebeuf Jesuit, was one of 17 high school juniors who was in town last weekend for IU's Junior Day.
An All-County selection last fall, Kroot has put up huge numbers in each of the last two seasons. As a sophomore Kroot ran for 1,700 yards and 28 touchdowns, and he followed that up with a 1,591-yard, 23-touchdown effort as a junior to lead Brebeuf to a 7-3 record.
Kroot has caught the eye of not only the IU staff, but Northwestern, SMU, Duke and Cincinnati as well. Kroot made trips to both Northwestern and SMU (where his father, Greg Kroot, played) in the fall for games, and all indications are that he'll have a chance to follow in his father's footsteps and play Division I football.
"It's been a dream to play college football," said Kroot. "I'm from Indianapolis, so we always come down to Bloomington to watch games and I've always wanted to be a part of college football.
"My dad, he had the ability to play at the next level at SMU in the late 70s, and we have always talked about it. He feels I have the ability, it was just a matter of how hard I want to go to get there. I'm willing to go pretty hard, so I'm looking forward to getting that chance."
Kroot will likely get a chance to play at the next level, although it might not be as a running back. He's been in the offensive backfield his entire life, but most college coaches project him as a safety in college. With that in mind, Kroot expects to start on both sides of the ball as a senior so that he can gain more experience in the defensive backfield.
"I love running the ball, but my defense is starting to pick up," said Kroot, who also played cornerback this past season. "I'm really aggressive and I like delivering the hit. I'm looking forward to playing safety this year."
The adjustment doesn't figure to be too difficult for Kroot, a multi-sport star at Brebeuf. In addition to his exploits in football he's also a starting guard on Brebeuf's basketball team and is averaging 11.6 points/game this season, helping his team to an 8-6 record.
Kroot said the IU staff is looking to evaluate him over the summer at one of their one-day camps before making a decision on a scholarship offer, but it's obvious that the Hoosiers have significant interest in him as a potential target for their 2010 recruiting class.
"They told me they like my overall game," Kroot said about the IU staff. "As a high school player I have excelled more on offense as a running back, but they said they'd like to see me play a little more defensive back because that's where they're looking at for me."
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