Indiana basketball went through monumental roster changes this offseason. In the transition, three players graduated, two left early for the NBA and two transferred from the program. Six freshmen will soon arrive to fill the gaps. After all of the movement, one scholarship spot remained.
Gordon is a significant pickup for IU. The former Arizona State Sun Devil brings experience, the ability to play multiple positions and is a boost to a depleted offense. Tom Crean will ask him to perform these tasks during his time at Indiana.
Set an Example
Indiana's roster is full of inexperience. Outside of senior Will Sheehey, the main contributors will most likely be sophomores and freshmen. Being a senior himself, Gordon brings maturity to the Hoosiers. His presence provides veteran leadership, something IU's roster lacks.
Gordon will be a key component next season because of his ability to play multiple positions. He can take the court as a point guard or shooting guard. This is important because after Yogi Ferrell, Indiana is thin at the point guard position. Gordon can come in for Ferrell when he needs a rest or gets into foul trouble.
The roster isn't loaded with capable shooting guards either. Sheehey will likely start, but who comes in after him is still a mystery. Before Gordon came into the picture, the job seemed to be for incoming freshman Stanford Robinson. If Crean wants to use Robinson as a point guard, or if he struggles with the adjustment to the college game, look for Gordon to check in for Sheehey when needed.
Put Up Points
The most important part of Gordon's role is to help the offense. The Hoosiers lost the majority of their firepower this offseason. Lucky for them, he should be able to replace some of what was lost.
He is a proven scorer at the college level. Prior to his stint at Arizona State, Gordon played at Liberty University. He averaged 12.0 points per game his first season and 14.1 his second. Last year as a Sun Devil, he scored 10.1 points per game. Indiana will need him to have similar offensive production.
Most likely, Gordon will be the first or second man off the bench. If he can produce like he did at his two previous stops, he will be a very valuable member of Indiana's roster.