Hoosier Morning


Austin Etherington talks with Jeremiah Davis as Mike Pegram (aka Peegs) looks on. Jeremy Hogan | Herald-Times



Hoosier prospect Aaron Thomas at the Adidas May Classic

Team Score: 17 U Queen City Prophets 59, Shining Star Sports Kentucky 49

AARON THOMAS: The 6-foot-5 guard from Aiken High School in Cincinnati scored 20 points.

THOMAS SAID: “I feel comfortable (at Indiana). It’s the biggest sport in Indiana so I’d like to be a part of that. And Tom Crean’s a good coach. He taught Dwyane Wade, so he has a lot of history.”

MY THOUGHTS: I feel like I’ve been saying this a lot so far, but Thomas proved he was athletic if nothing else. I don’t know if I saw him take a jumper all day, but he had several rim-rocking dunks and putbacks at the rim. At 190 pounds, he’s not the thickest player you’ve ever seen, but he’s still strong enough to finish against contact. He defends pretty well from what I can tell.

According to his coach, Osie Davis, I didn’t see the best of him.

“He has no weaknesses offensively,” he said.

Also, and we’ll have more on this later, Thomas is extremely interested in Indiana.

Hoosier recruits Hanner Perea, Peter Jurkin, D’Vauntes Smith-Rivera, Kenny Kaminski at the Adidas May Classic

TEAM SCORE: 16 U Indiana Elite Team Indiana 67, Wabash Valley Prospects 36

INDIANA RECRUITS: North Central sophomore guard D’Vauntes Smith-Rivera had 14 points. Sophomore forward Hanner Perea from United Faith Christian Academy in North Carolina had 11. Peter Jurkin, also of UFCA, and Kenny Kaminksi of Medina, Ohio each had four.

JURKIN SAID: “I just have to get stronger and try to work on my offense, my post play and my jump shot.”

MY THOUGHTS: It was just as difficult to get a read on Indiana Elite’s 16 and Under team as the 17 and Under squad. Wabash Valley was one of the scrappier overmatched teams I’ve seen in this tournament, but it was really, really overmatched. One thing you could take from this one, though, is Hanner Perea is obscenely athletic. In one sequence, he basically swallowed a shot from a Wabash player, then threw down an alley-oop dunk on the other end. He’s 6-foot-8, but I think his arms come down to his knees, and his wingspan has to be the same as a 7-footer’s. D’Vauntes Smith-Rivera had another solid outing just minutes after playing with the 17 and under team. He’s been a workhorse today, and he’s still shooting it well. As for Kenny Kaminski, I’m still waiting.

Here are some video clips from good friend Alex Bozich of Inside the Hall.

adidas May Classic: Kenny Kaminski from Inside The Hall on Vimeo.

adidas May Classic: Hanner Perea from Inside The Hall on Vimeo.

adidas May Classic: D’Vauntes Smith-Rivera from Inside The Hall on Vimeo.

Hoosier Recruits Austin Etherington, Cody Zeller, Jeremiah Davis, Yogi Ferrell, D’Vauntes Smith-Rivera and Kenny Kaminski at the Adidas May Classic

TEAM SCORE: 17 U Indiana Elite Team Indiana 80, Illinois Bears 30

INDIANA RECRUITS: Austin Etherington, an Indiana verbal commitment from Hamilton Heights, sat out the game with a stress fracture in his lower back. Cody Zeller, a junior forward from Washington High School, had 12 points. Yogi Ferrell, a sophomore guard from Park Tudor, had 13 points. D’Vauntes Smith-Rivera, a North Central sophomore guard, had 10. Jeremiah Davis, a junior guard from Muncie Central, had nine points. Kenny Kaminksi, a sophomore forward from Medina, Ohio, had five points.

ETHERINGTON SAID: “I just have a stress fracture. I’m just out 3-4 weeks. It’s on the left side of my back. I started doing strengthening stuff for my core. I think just arching my back doing bridges and stuff, I think that’s what started it.”

DAVIS SAID: “I’ll finish the school year, then I’ll see (what other visits I’m going to make).”

MY THOUGHTS: Following IU recruits in an Indiana Elite game is kind of odd because Indiana is really recruiting everybody. It’s even more difficult when its playing a team it’s a lot more talented then, because you weren’t learning anything anyway.

So what did I take away from this shellacking? Well, Cody Zeller looks better every time I see him. He keeps adding strength, and he can do whatever he wants against smaller opponents. Considering how little Illinois had inside, it wasn’t even fair that he got to play in this game.

Davis did a solid job of running the offense. he didn’t shoot it particularly well, but he still has all the tools. D’Vauntes Smith-Rivera showed a better outside touch than I’ve seen him him so far with three 3-pointers. His stroke looked really impressive, and so did his handle. Yogi Ferrell also looked impressive. He’s got a great looking mid-range jumper and a really nice handle as well. But man is he little.

I didn’t see a lot from Kaminski. He was playing up and didn’t get a ton of playing time. Gonna try to watch him closer later.

Hoosier prospect Bryson Scott at adidas May Classic

TEAM SCORE: 15U Spiece Indy Heat 75, Michigan Mustangs 48

BRYSON SCOTT: The 6-foot-1 rising sophomore guard from Fort Wayne Northup scored 25 points.

SCOTT SAID: “We talked about it, my family. I don’t know if we want to go to the same college or not. We could go and see what we could do for different college teams.”

MY THOUGHTS: There are a lot of things to like about Bryson, the twin brother of Brenton (who is solid but maybe not a high-major prospect). He is well-built and strong with the ball, has a very nice vertical leap and can score around the basket. He worked hard on defense, picking up steal after steal in a zone defense.

The only concern with Scott is his outside shot. I do not remember him taking a shot out of the paint in this game. He admitted afterwards that the jumper is his weakness, and that’s he working on it.

No offers yet, but he has interest from Indiana, Illinois, Purdue and Notre Dame.

Hoosier prospects Zak Irvin and Devin Davis at adidas May Classic

TEAM SCORE: 15U Eric Gordon All-Stars 62, Ohio Basketball Club 47

ZAK IRVIN: The 6-foot-4 guard, a rising sophomore at Hamilton Southeastern, had 19 points.

DEVIN DAVIS: The 6-foot-5 wing, a rising sophomore at Warren Central, had 17 points.

BASIL SMOTHERMAN: The 6-foot-5 wing, a rising sophomore at Heritage Christian, had 4 points.

IRVIN SAID: “It was tough playing JV, because I thought I could play varsity. But next year I am supposed to get a lot of minutes. I wasn’t strong enough. … I gained about 15 pounds (to 165).”

DAVIS SAID: “Coming down here, it was a real eye-opener. It was real fun to come down here and play with some of the players. … I can’t wait come down here again.”

MY THOUGHTS: Irvin is a quickly rising name at this tournament. Not a lot of people knew about him because he played for the JV team at Hamilton Southeastern (he said because the coaches did not think he was strong enough). But the colleges are interested — Xavier, Purdue, Ohio State, Michigan State and Vanderbilt all rolled off his tongue easily and he said IU contacted him for the first time two weeks ago.

Irvin has a really nice outside shot — it was he who drilled a 3-pointer at the buzzer to beat the Indiana Elite Stars Friday. It was on display again this morning, as he led Eric Gordon in scoring. He moves well for a player his size and, if he continues to grow, is going to be a high-major prospect.

Davis plays inside at Warren Central (for former IU player Greg Graham) and it’s obvious when you watch him play that he needs to become more comfortable with the ball. If he continues to grow he may become a Christian Watford-type 3/4, but if he does not, he will need to develop better ballhandling skills. His dribble is very high, as the Courier-Journal’s Jody Demling noted.

Davis is a very good scorer, and said he is a fan of both Purdue and IU’s practice facilities.

Smotherman had a disappointing effort after scoring 24 Friday. He did not shoot the ball nearly as well and blended in after a while.


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