Crean needs a Star Trek transporter or Porsche

Photo by Chris Howell.

The gym.

Indiana basketball coach Tom Crean saw at least one of his future guards play this morning when he took in Bloomington South’s 61-50 win against New Albany at the Seymour Regional.

Jordan Hulls, a leading candidate for Mr. Basketball and a class of 2009 signee for Indiana, had 12 points, seven assists and four steals to lead the No. 1 Panthers past the No. 2 Bulldogs.

Donnie Hale, a 6-foot-7 forward for New Albany, had 12 points, eight rebounds and two blocks. He also shot 1-for-6 from the line in the first half, and once stared in disbelief at the heavans after one shot didn’t fall. Crean was sitting about 12 feet away.

Hale, a junior and class of 2010 prospect, is a player that many of the upper echelon schools, including Indiana, appear to be still evaluating. He is very long for his height and has good defensive presence, which he showed by rejecting a Hulls lay in attempt. And he’s actually a very good free throw shooter, as he hit somewhere in the 75 percent range this year.

Through his 20 plus years of recruiting, Crean has always valued length. If Hale can show that he has the ability to spread the floor during AAU season — his role for the Indy Spiece team might allow him to show off different parts of his game — Crean and his staff could make more of a push to add Hale to the 2010 class. Indiana has yet to take a commitment for that year.

Crean left the South-New Albany game with about six minutes left to make his way to Indianapolis, presumably to catch part of Pike-Lawrence North game. Crean has spent much of his recent recruiting efforts on Pike sophomore Marquis Teague, the younger brother of Wake Forest star Jeff. He appears to be the primary target for Indiana’s staff in the class of 2011, which already includes Arizona guard Matt Carlino.

Three other South players are also getting attention from college coaches. Junior forward Erik Fromm has many of the top mid-majors chasing him. Coaches from IPFW, Butler, Wright State, Ohio, Rice and Evansville attended the game this morning to see him score 14 points and grab six rebounds.

Sophomore guards Dee Davis and Spencer Turner have gained the attention of coaches at various levels; Turner visited several Big Ten schools this year, while Davis has a bevy of schools interested.