Hoosiers to sign four

We’ll give you updates this evening from coach Sampson’s 5 p.m. press conference to discuss the recruits who sign their letters of intent today. Until then, here’s Chris’ story from today’s newspaper about the four who are expected to sign.

By Chris Korman

The centerpiece of Indiana’s 2007 freshman class may not sign his letter of intent today.

North Central guard Eric Gordon may or may not deliver his signature on the opening day of the NCAA’s early signing period.

But it will get to Bloomington eventually.

His father, Eric Gordon Sr., said he’d like to gather the whole family for the ceremonial sending in of the paperwork – which is ready to go, he said – but might not be able to do that tomorrow.

“We’re anxious to get it done,” Gordon Sr. said. “But then again we want it to be a whole family thing. So we’re not sure what will happen.”

Three other players – Brandon McGee, Jamarcus Ellis and Eli Holman – are expected to make their verbal commitments binding today.

The Hoosiers must replace, at the very least, their point guard, Earl Calloway, and high-energy guards Roderick Wilmont and Errek Suhr. They’ll probably have to replace junior forward D.J. White, who has NBA aspirations.

If those four players leave and none of the current players transfer (which seems unlikely), Indiana would have six scholarships to give out.

With the four players expected to sign early, Indiana picks up a high-scoring guard in Gordon, a versatile guard in Jamarcus Ellis, an athletic small forward in Brandon McGhee and big man Eli Holman.

That leaves them looking for another pure point guard to backup current freshman Armon Bassett.

Detroit native Jordan Crawford, currently playing at Hargrave Military Academy (Va.), could fill that need. Scout.com’s John Decker reported Tuesday that Crawford is expected to either pick between Indiana and Xavier soon and sign early, or wait until the later signing period.

Rivals.com reported Tuesday that one of Ellis’ teammates at Chipola Junior College, forward DeAndre Thomas, will follow him to Indiana. The two also played together in high school at Chicago Westinghouse.

Thomas is 6-8 and – ready for it? – 300 pounds.

“In a week I am going to make a decision and right now I am leaning towards Indiana,” Thomas told Rivals. “I will sign in the spring.”

By then Indiana coach Kelvin Sampson will know if White is indeed planning to jump to the NBA.


Jamarcus Ellis
6-foot-6, 195 lbs., G/F
Chipola (Fla.) Junior Coll.
Ellis hadn’t planned on signing early but Indiana’s persistence swayed him. He’s the most complete player in the class and is a first-team NJCAA preseason All-American.

Eric Gordon
6-foot-3, 185 lbs., G
North Central (Indpls.)
Gordon originally committed to Illinois but changed his mind when Kelvin Sampson took over at Indiana. He’s considered by many the best pure scorer in the nation.

Eli Holman
6-foot-9, 210 lbs., C
Richmond (Calif.)
Holman figures to continue growing developing his left-handed shot. Playing on the West Coast let him slip under the radar but many scouts rave about his aggressiveness.

Brandon McGee
6-foot-7, 210 lbs., G/F
Crane Tech (Chicago)
McGee garnered increased attention after a stellar summer camp and AAU season. Given Indiana’s depth at guard he’ll probably be expected to concentrate on his inside game.

Indiana has received one commitment for the 2008 class, from Kentucky guard Bud Mackey. Indiana’s coaches will hear from another of their targets, Fort Wayne North guard Eshaunte Jones, Thursday. Jones is a senior but will enroll in prep school for a year. He’s choosing between Indiana and Kentucky