Ever year the summer AAU circuit provides a platform for lesser known prospects to step up and showcase their games. One player that has done just that over the past few months is Valparaiso, Indiana combo forward Scott Martin. The 6-8, 200-pounder has turned a number of heads with his versatility and shooting touch in recent weeks. After observing him in early April, ScoutHoops.com's National Recruiting Director Dave Telep was extremely impressed.
"The lefty draws rave reviews for his compact and accurate stroke from deep and mid-range," wrote Telep. "He’s got a feel for the game and is a strong passer. There’s reason to like him and he’s a lock high-major wing player with good size."
While Martin's skills may have flown below the radar nationally until now, they haven't been so secret back in his home state. He and fellow Michigan target Robbie Hummel teamed up to make Valparaiso high school one of Indiana's best teams.
"Our season went well," Martin said. "We got to the regional finals…two games away from the state championship game. We had a good season but we wish we could have gotten a little farther. I averaged 20.3 points per game, about 7.8 rebounds per game, and about two assists per game."
Martin and Hummel were a formidable inside-out duo, with Martin functioning as the inside man. That isn't his role during the summer though. When playing with his AAU squad, the SYF Players, Martin plays on the wing. The question is, which position he projects to in college.
"I'll play the three and a little four," said Martin "Michigan is looking at me for that…the three and a little four as well. I'm 6-8, so I'm pretty tall for the three, but I'm pretty versatile. I was a point guard when I was younger so I believe I handle the ball pretty well. I know the game. I have a good IQ. I can shoot it from three and I have a good midrange game. I'm pretty much a face the basket player. I don't do much with my back to the basket in AAU. But in high school ball I do a lot with my back to the basket. I do a combination of both."
If Martin is to be a successful three-man at the next level, he knows there are aspects of his game that he must continue to improve.
"My ball handling can always get better," he said. "You can never get too good at that. My strength. I definitely need to get a little bigger to play Big Ten basketball. I'm a little thin, so I've got to put some pounds on (laughing)."
A number of coaches in the Big Ten and throughout the country already believe Martin is a high-major player. With current offers from Michigan, Northwestern, Valparaiso, Purdue, IU, Bowling Green, Ball State, DePaul, Arizona State, and Xavier, the humble youngster's recruitment appears to be headed into overdrive. Michigan has certainly made Martin a recruiting priority, and he has definitely taken notice.
"Coach Swenson has made it to about three of my games," said Martin. "I came up to a couple games during the season. I went back up for a visit on Tuesday. They took us on a tour of campus. We ate, met some of the players, talked with Coach Amaker, Coach Jackson, and the other coaches for a while."
Tuesday's unofficial visit marked the first time Martin was able to see the academic campus. It also was the first time he was able to sit down and speak at length with Tommy Amaker. Both events clearly made very positive impressions.
"Coach Amaker really likes the way I play and he really wanted me to come there," said Martin. "He said that he would really enjoy coaching me. Coach Amaker is just a great guy. I really like him. The whole coaching staff makes me comfortable. The players do too. The university is outstanding. We took the tour, and that place is amazing. It's an amazing place."
Despite the positive vibes Martin got from his trip to Ann Arbor, he remains wide open at this time. His plans for the immediate future involve continuing to work his game and getting out and see a few more college campuses.
"We've been Purdue, Northwestern, Ball State and Valparaiso," said Martin. "We're going to go to IU soon. I'm not really sure when I'll cut my list down. I'm kind of just taking things easy right now and weighing all of my options…looking at every school. I definitely about what school I'm going to go to before my senior season starts."
When Martin sits down to make his final choice, there is one factor that will stand out above all others.
"First of all, education is probably the most important thing to me," he said. "I want to go to a very reputable school that is going to provide a great education. Basketball wise, playing time is one of the most important things. A winning program is probably the other."