Mark L. Baer-USA TODAY Sports
A quote from this Sports on Earth piece on Indiana's resurgence seems to sum up most of what we've discussed here in fairly eloquent fashion.
"Did they win?" Crean said. "Not just did they win part of the year, but did they win year-round? One of the most under-valued things in recruiting is: Are they winning all year-round? Do they have athletic upside? Do they have intelligence upside? And what is their character like? Can they keep getting better? I would put work ethic in there. If they have those attributes, then you have a real chance to get better, and that's what we were looking for."
McDonald's All-American Noah Vonleh may be an odd choice for the picture connected with this slide, considering that his team amassed only a 17-12 record this past season. Consider Vonleh's surroundings, however.
Point guard Travis Jorgenson (Georgia Tech) and wing Lincoln Davis (Fairfield) are the only other Division I recruits on Vonleh's New Hampton School team, according to ESPN.com's database. New Hampton put only Vonleh and Jorgenson among the 17 players named New England Prep School Athletic Council (NEPSAC) Class AAA all-stars.
Brewster Academy won the Class AAA title thanks to strong performances from its three all-stars, including ex-Indiana commit Ron Patterson, who's now headed to Syracuse. Three other schools had more all-stars than New Hampton. Northfield Mount Hermon racked a whopping six, including Harvard recruit Zena Edosomwan.
Vonleh was a 13-RPG man for New Hampton, the kind of figure that often details a player outworking his opponents. Talented players outworking their opponents are dangerous, regardless of level. If Vonleh proves nearly as productive in college as he was in high school, the titular question here will be answered in the affirmative.