Bluiett learns to carry team

INDIANAPOLIS — Rarely on either of his organized teams has Trevon Bluiett been asked to dictate the action on offense.

During the Adidas Invitational, though, the 6-foot-5, 205-pound small forward from Park Tudor found out what it was like to be far and away the No. 1 scoring option.

It wasn’t easy.

“It’s definitely tougher than usual,” Bluiett said.

As long as the rising junior and Indiana target has been at Park Tudor, Bluiett has had Indiana signee and McDonald’s All-American Yogi Ferrell running the show, which of course led to back-to-back state titles. And on Bluiett’s usual summer travel team, Spiece Indy Heat, he’s surrounded by several of the most highly rated players in the Classes of 2013 and 2014 in the state of Indiana, including Indiana commitments Trey Lyles and James Blackmon Jr., Purdue commitment Bryson Scott and coveted point guard Jaquan Lyle.

But most of that Spiece team scattered this week — Lyle and Lyles, for instance, are playing in the Nike Global Challenge in Washington, D.C. — so that Spiece team effectively took a week off in preparation for next week’s Peach Jam in South Carolina.

That left Bluiett in need of a team, and he and his father Reynardo — the coach for Spiece Indy Heat — formed Spiece Blue. The group isn’t nearly as loaded as the one the Indy Heat group, and that put just about every ounce of responsibility on Bluiett’s shoulders.

That had consequences positive and negative. His scoring numbers skyrocketed, as he broke the 30-point barrier twice, but Spiece also lost its first game in pool play and then its first game in bracket play, its tournament ending on Friday night.

Still, Bluiett said the experience was positive because it forced him to do things he wasn’t used to doing. Most notably, he had to bring the ball up the floor, which he hadn’t done consistently since sixth grade.

“(It helped with) confidence,” Bluiett said. “Bringing down the ball, taking it to the basket at will. Just basically I would say ball handing. I needed to sharpen up my skills. I think that’s what I did.”

Bluiett was already well known for his outside shooting and for his general versatility. His size allows him to play both in the post and on the perimeter, especially at the high school level. Along with helping his handle, his role at Adidas also allowed Bluiett to show off his improving athleticism. He appears to be in much better shape this spring and summer than he was a year ago, and that’s allowed him to start to play above the rim on both offense and defense. He rebounded the ball well on both ends, and in a loss to the Northern Kings in bracket play, he caught a ball-handler from behind and swatted his shot away.

He said continuing to build on that will be the most important thing in his future development.

“Being quicker, guarding people,” Bluiett said. “Definitely dunking. That’s going to end up being a huge part of my success. All the greats can jump. Very few of them – like Paul Pierce, he’s not a great athlete, but he’s lethal — but I feel like that’s what I need to improve on.”

The interest is there already, and it will only get better if it does. Bluiett has scholarship offers from Indiana, Purdue, Butler, Florida, Illinois, IUPUI, Kansas State, Louisville, Michigan, Notre Dame, Virginia and Xavier.

Though Bluiett has long been expected to be IU’s next commitment, Bluiett made it clear he plans on taking his time. He doesn’t currently have any visits planned for the fall, and said he probably won’t start thinking about that until August.

“August, we’re gonna start breaking stuff down,” Reynardo Bluiett said. “Really just looking at the offers and seeing. We haven’t put any time into it. He hasn’t wanted to. In August, we just want to sit down and see what’s important to him and what he wants to do.

3 comments

  1. He is a very good player. Would like to wait, to see how roster looks in two years. IU is currently one (1) over in scholly’s for the 2014-2015 season. They are currently 1 over in scholarships for the next 3 seasons.

  2. Would love if he ended up half the player Paul is. I really want to see this kid in person… I think I’d love his game.

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