Indiana Basketball Recruiting: Latest Updates on Hoosiers' Top 2014 Targets

Kyle GrandFeatured ColumnistOctober 31, 2013

Indiana Basketball Recruiting: Latest Updates on Hoosiers' Top 2014 Targets

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    Much has happened on the Indiana recruiting front this week. The Hoosiers added a second player to their 2014 class, while another target decided to take his talents to a different program. 

    Additionally, two more elite high school players are still deciding if IU is the right choice.

    Let's take a look at the status of Indiana's 2014 recruiting class.  

Max Hoetzel

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    Credit: insidethehall.com

    Meet Max Hoetzel, IU's second commit in its 2014 class. He was a relatively unknown recruit on Indiana's list. 

    Tom Crean noticed him when he was recruiting Hoetzel's teammate Goodluck Okonoboh. As more and more of IU's targets decided on other places, clearly Hoetzel became a real option for Crean. 

    Hoetzel received a scholarship offer on October 22, visited Bloomington last Sunday and committed during the trip. He chose Indiana over Connecticut, St. John’s and Florida.

    Hoetzel isn't a great athlete, but what sets him apart is his shooting. He's a legit threat from the outside. Crean loves having shooters on his team (remember Matt Roth and Jordan Hulls?), and Hoetzel can be that type of scorer. 

    Another positive attribute is his height. His 6'7" frame allows him to shoot easily over most defenders. 

    Is Hoetzel the dynamic player Crean was hoping to add from the 2014 group of potential recruits? No, but he's a solid addition to the roster nonetheless. 

Devin Robinson

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    Credit: 247sports.com

    Forward Devin Robinson had Indiana, Florida, Notre Dame and Oklahoma State on his final list. Tom Crean and his staff pushed hard for Robinson, but he announced he is headed to Florida to play for Billy Donovan. 

    This is disheartening for IU because it had a real shot at Robinson. Hoosier commit Robert Johnson is very close friends with him. Crean and Hoosier fans everywhere were hopeful Johnson's presence would be a big selling point.

    Adding Robinson would have been big. He's a very athletic wing, and seeing as how Will Sheehey is graduating, he would have been a solid replacement.

    Unfortunately, Robinson gets added to the ever-growing list of 2014 recruits who have decided against becoming a Hoosier. 

JaQuan Lyle

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    Credit: ukrecruiting.bloginky.com

    Not much has changed with JaQuan Lyle since I last discussed his status. Indiana is still on his radar, and he wants to visit Indiana, according to AllHoosiers' Justin Albers.

    Lyle is No. 39 in ESPN's 100 and would be a monumental addition to the roster if he decides to head to Bloomington. 

James Blackmon Jr.

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    Credit: pawofthetiger.com

    James Blackmon Jr., the former Hoosier commit, will make his college choice on Oct. 31. The schools he is picking from are Indiana, Michigan, Kentucky, Michigan State and Kansas. 

    Blackmon Jr. visited Bloomington last weekend, and Tom Crean gave his final pitch. Now, Crean can only hope.

    Despite the visit, things are not looking good for Indiana. Blackmon Jr. was so impressed with his Kentucky visit he almost called off his trip (subscription required) to IU altogether.

    On top of that, any time a player decommits, the chances of him coming back are very slim. Blackmon Jr. becoming a Hoosier is definitely a long shot. 

    UPDATE (1:45 p.m.): According to a report from AllHoosiers' Justin Albers (subscription required), Blackmon Jr. is considering Indiana and Kentucky. It is said to be 50/50 between the two schools. Blackmon Jr. will announce his decision tonight.