Hummel An Emerging Prospect

Valparaiso (Ind.) wing Rob Hummel has grown - literally - into one of the top hoops prospects in Indiana for 2006-07. Hummel went through a huge growth spurt in recent years and now has schools from all over the region interested in his ability. Kyle Lamb has more on this new name to the recruiting scene.

It wasn't more than a couple of years ago that Rob Hummel stood a modest 5-9 and weighed 140 pounds. Now, he is 6-7 with a chance of further growth. His body isn't the only thing growing, however.

So is the list of schools interested in Hummel.

The talented wing prospect is an emerging force in the class of 2007. A native of Valparaiso (Ind.) High School, Hummel averaged over 10 points a game last year as a sophomore for a team very senior-oriented.

His recent growth spurt, an abundance of skill, and a little exposure in playing with the SYF Players on the AAU circuit has given him plenty of attention from colleges this spring.

"I've been hearing from Xavier, Ohio State, Indiana, Purdue, Illinois, Notre Dame, Michigan, Wisconsin, Iowa, Northwestern, NC State, Charlotte, and Valparaiso too," Hummel said.

The SYF Players have had a successful spring led by another Ohio State target, Luke Harangody, who is a 6-8 PF/C from Merrillville, Ind. and is considering the Buckeyes, Purdue, Notre Dame, and Indiana.

A second-place finish at the Kingwood Classic in Houston-one of the biggest AAU tournaments of the year, and other successful finishes have forced many college coaches to begin taking note of Hummel's game.

"Definitely (it helps) because people come to watch them, and maybe they get a glimpse of me," Hummel noted. "Coaches are going to see them and maybe they will see the things that I do."

And Hummel does plenty of things.

First and foremost, Hummel is a skilled scorer that can shoot, pass, and drive. He's considered a hard-nosed kid with a lot of passion and good fundamentals. He's also a good rebounder with pretty good athleticism.

If you ask Hummel if there are any weaknesses to his game, he can think of at least one he's trying to improve on.

"Well, I think I need to really work on shooting off the dribble," Hummel explained. "I want to improve that mid-range shot."

Off the court, Hummel is a 4.0 student who wants to major in architecture or engineering in college. He grew up rooting for the hometown Valparaiso Crusaders and his boyhood idol, Bryce Drew.

Ironically, some people compare Hummel to a little taller Drew by way of how he plays the game.

Accordingly, Hummel has already visited Valparaiso several times. Visits are on the itinerary for later this fall.

"I've already visited Northwestern, I've obviously been by Valparaiso a lot, and I've been by Purdue as well," Hummel said. "Actually, I think I'm going to take a trip to Ohio State this fall, probably for a football game."

Northwestern and Valparaiso are the two early offers that Hummel has currently received, although many more should be forthcoming in the summer and fall months.

Should Hummel take a trip to Ohio State, he will have a chance to learn more about the campus. Currently, he doesn't know too much about the Buckeyes just yet.

"I know they have a really nice arena that they just recently built," Hummel said. "I remember watching Scoonie Penn and Michael Redd pretty much dominate the Big Ten a couple of years ago, and that was a really good team. I don't know much about the University yet, because it's kind of far away. I know the football games are really crazy down there, and the basketball is pretty good too, and I've heard it's a really good school, but I just don't know a lot about it yet."

Hummel did say that he's been to Columbus when he was younger, as his mother had a friend that lived there until recently.

Over the next couple of years, Hummel will be one of the key names to watch for in Indiana by way of not only Ohio State targets, but in the region and nationally as well.

Right now, Hummel's hype is only just beginning, but his star is already growing. Growth is the Hummel way and soon, he'll be pretty big.

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