adidas May Classic: What we learned

So another May Classic has been completed.

The two 17 and under Indiana Elite teams ended up playing each other in the gold bracket final, with Team Indiana beating Indiana Elite Orange for the title.

Tyler Zeller, a center ranked in the top 25 in the class of 2008, had 16 points, as did Arizona bound Emmanuel Negedu to lead Team Indiana. That team, by the way, has to be among the very best in the country. Top three, no doubt. To think that 7-footer Beas Hamga didn’t even play this weekend and Team Indiana had very little trouble winning the tournament. Yikes.
Edgewood’s Garrett Butcher had 15 to lead Orange.

Indiana Elite, a Bloomington-based AAU program that attracts players from across the country, really dominated this tournament as a whole. It’s 16 and under team won the gold bracket, and the Indiana Elite Fort Wayne Flames, led by Deshaun Thomas and Bloomington North guard Ray McCallum Jr., also took the gold in the gold bracket. The under 14 Indiana Elite squad fell to Indy Spiece, the other Indiana state power, in the final. Complete results can be found right here.

Anyway, on to the recruits.

From all accounts, Devin Ebanks really enjoyed his visit. The 6-8 small forward out of Queens, N.Y. appears close to choosing between Miami and Indiana. His Team Take Over squad stood no chance in bracket play because Ebanks had to leave early to get back to New York. He did play one game early Sunday, and according to Mike Pegram finished with 37 points on 14-of-17 shooting including 4-of-4 from 3-point.

But the question remains: how did Indiana manage to get this far with Ebanks despite several obstacles? Ebanks previously said he wants to play either in the Big East or ACC. He’s said he wants to stay on the East Coast, or even remain in New York City to be near his mother. The Hoosiers didn’t start recruiting him until late and head coach Kelvin Sampson is still restricted in how much he can do because of sanctions imposed on him for recruiting violations he committed while at Oklahoma.

Yet it looks like the Hoosiers have a real shot at this guy. Amazing.

So let’s look at the overall class of 2008 so far:

Bud Mackey and Eshaunte Jones are smooth shooting guards who will fit well in Sampson’s system.

They’ll take up two of the five scholarships Indiana will probably have to offer. Mike White, Lance Stemler and A.J. Ratliff are all graduating. D.J. White and Eric Gordon could both enter the NBA Draft.

So an Ebanks commitment would leave the Hoosiers looking for two guys. Maybe a pure point guard such as Lewis Jackson or a post player such as Tyler Zeller. Both those guys play for Team Indiana.

Supposedly the Class of 2008 has been slow to develop. There’s still some mystery to it, a remarkable fact considering the way kids are scouted by coaches and covered by the media today. But for now Indiana is targeting mostly the known commodities and faring well.


  1. Hey, all the hype about the well known players is great. They definitely deserve it! but i just have to tell ya, our 16u team IN Sharks-Crase made up of all 16 yr old sophs was unable to get in the16u division therefore was playing in the 17u. We were team D1 and came inFirst in our pool. We got beat by So Cal but only 78 to 64! So Cal went on to the final 4. I am totally impessed by this group of 16 yr old kids. you really ought to pay notice to these kids. Danke!!!!!!

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