STATE CHAMPS! SCOUT TEAM: Butler grabs Lawrence North’s DJ Hughes; Burney rounds up Indy area hoops recruiting news
Indy’s Dr. Dunkenstein will be wrecking rims near home in college.
Lawrence North senior forward D.J. Hughes, one of Indianapolis’ highest-flying forwards, has committed to Butler. The rangy, 6-foot-7 Hughes is long, lean and mean and full of high-ceiling potential at the next level. He plays baseline-to-baseline and knows much of his offense comes on transition from his active defense on the wing. Filling the lane and finishing is his specialty.
Hughes averaged 12 points and eight boards per night last year on a 25-2 Wildcats club that claimed a sectional crown before the 2020 state tournament was shuttered due to the pandemic. With Hughes holding things down in the frontcourt, Lawrence North should be nails-tough again in 2021.
Butler put its bid for Hughes’ services on the table earlier in June. Duquesne, Toledo, Ball State, Evansville had also offered this offseason. Xavier and St. Bonaventure were said to be on the verge of offering.
His teammates in the Lawrence North backcourt, senior point guard Shamar Avance and junior shooting guard C.J. Gunn, are making waves on the recruiting scene as well. Gunn garnered offers from Kansas State and Ball State in the spring. Avance has impressed at the start of AAU season.
Tigers Try To Claw Into Hoosierville
Silver Creek four-star senior forward Trey Kaufman, one of IU and Purdue’s prime targets for the Class of 2021, got offered by Clemson last weekend. Kaufman led the Dragons to a state title as a sophomore and averaged 26 points and 10 rebounds per game last winter, and was named the Gatorade Indiana Boys Basketball Player of the Year.
No flash in the pan
Franklin Central’s Jalen Hooks and Javon Small are a bone-chilling pair of baller prospects coming out of Flash Nation that deserve notice. Franklin Central went 14-9 last winter.
Hooks, a 6-7 small forward, is one of the most highly-touted young-gun phenoms in the Hoosier State. He averaged 10 points and five rebounds per night. The 6-0 Small is a speedy and smart floor general with bulldog tenacity.
Three more Indy recruits on the rise to know in the Class of ‘21:
Malik Stanley (Warren Central G) — Slick point guard, natural scorer, nasty-as-he-wants-to-be mentality on the hardwood 24/7.
Jaylen Carson (Indianapolis Crispus Attucks F) — Oozing with upside on the wing, came into his own in the second half of last season on Attucks’ city-title squad.
Tayshawn Comer (Indianapolis Cathedral G) — Finesse and toughness personified at the floor general spot, defines the phrase “killing you softly” out of the backcourt.
— SCOTT M. BURNSTEIN