Mundelein's Ben Brust's Saga Takes New Turn

The Ben Brust saga has taken another turn as the Big Ten Conference is meeting today to decide if the talented Mundelein shooter will be able to play in the league. Brust signed with Iowa in the fall, but asked for a release from his letter of intent when Fran McCaffrey replaced Todd Lickliter. GoldenSports.Net caught up with Brust's AAU coach Michael Weinstein to learn the latest.

Ben Brust averaged 24.6 points per game and made 83 three-pointers this season. He scored more than 50 points twice (against Evanston and Buckeye, a team from Arizona), more than 40 points four times and more than 30 points five times en route to becoming the second leading scorer in school history with more than 1,700 points in his career.

Brust also averaged 4.6 assists, 5.9 rebounds and 3.1 steals per game and picked Iowa over Northwestern and Butler and signed with the Hawkeyes in the fall. However, Iowa finished just 10-22 this year and Lickliter was fired after the season.

Minnesota head coach Tubby Smith was expected to visit with Brust this week, but has canceled the trip, due to questions with compliance whether he can sign with another Big Ten school.

GoldenSports.Net caught up with Rising Stars AAU coach Michael Weinstein to learn the latest on Brust's recruitment.

"The Big Ten is having a meeting today," said Weinstein. "Wisconsin is still coming for a visit. They really want him. He is an academic All-American and wants to be a Big Ten player. He was told that he would have a full release and could go to any Big Ten school."

Weinstein said that there are several other schools showing interest in Brust, but he want to play in the conference he watched growing up as a kid.

"Wake Forest is really recruiting him hard right no, so he is going to have other options," said Weinstein. "But, you are talking about a true Big Ten kid who grew up in the middle of the Big Ten. He is an unbelievable kid. He is the kid that you put on the commercial for the Big Ten network. You know "Big Stage, Big Stuff, Big Whatever." This is going to be a big disappointment if they don't find a way to let that kid have the opportunity. He is an ideal kid. He is a four year straight "A" student. Awesome kid. He is the type of people you are proud of. He is exactly what a conference should stand for.

Weinstein said that Brust is hearing from several Big Ten schools.

Minnesota. Wisconsin. Iowa is still recruiting him hard. Northwestern called to offer him. This will have to be worked out here in the Big Ten," said Weinstein. "I know that my phone is ringing off the hook and I am not answering calls.

Weinstein has plenty of praise for his standout guard.

This is a wonderful kid," said Weinstein. "He is nothing but a class act.

Minnesota head coach Tubby Smith was expected to visit Brust, but the trip was been canceled, due to questions about his ability to sign with another Big Ten school.

"He was very excited to see Tubby," said Weinstein. "We have not talked to Minnesota yet today. I know that they called me, but we understand the situation."

Weinstein said that some of the others school recruiting Brust have ties to the Rising Stars' program and have plenty to offer Brust.

Boston College was in here yesterday," said Weinstein. "Cal comes in tomorrow. Those two are very interesting, because they are great academic universities. Good people. Coach Donahue coached Chris Wroblewski, who was one of our kids at point guard this season. Cal-Berkeley. One of our guys, Alex Rossi, is going there. Coach Montgomery is a class act and unbelievable guy. Those are two fantastic universities with a great education and great coaches who are stand-up people. The coach at Wake Forest, Jeff Bzdelik, is an awesome guy and an awesome coach. He is an outstanding person and Wake Forest is another great academic university. So, we will see how that plays out."

Weinstein said that Brust has plenty of college opportunities.

"He has some unbelievable options and if he decides to go somewhere in the Big Ten, that should be his choice and if he wants to play in the Big Ten, that should be his choice," said Weinstein. "He deserves it. He did everything that he was supposed to do. There are 30 academic All-Americans in the country and he is one of them. He is what college athletics are supposed to be about. He is one of the amazing kids that I've ever had. He is here today coaching our fourth grade team right now. He is not getting paid. He is just volunteering his time.

Gopher Illustrated Top Stories