Romeo Langford commits to Indiana

NEW ALBANY — Romeo Langford is committed to Indiana.

The star shooting guard pledged to the Hoosiers during a public announcement ceremony inside the New Albany High School gym on Monday night, giving coach Archie Miller the first blue-chip recruit of his IU tenure.

A large crowd erupted at Langford’s announcement, chanting “IU! IU! IU!”

Langford, considered the No. 6 overall player in the 2018 recruiting class, the No. 2 shooting guard and the top player in the state, is a potential one-and-done talent who ultimately chose the Hoosiers over Kansas and Vanderbilt.

During his first 13 months on the job, Miller made Langford’s recruitment his top priority. By this spring, IU became the popular pick to land Langford, who ranks fourth in state history with 3,002 career points. Last summer, Langford announced seven finalists on a list that also included Louisville, Kentucky, UCLA and North Carolina.

A turning point in his recruitment came when Louisville was implicated in the FBI’s investigation into college basketball last September, at which point Langford dropped the Cardinals from consideration.

Langford watched Indiana closely as Miller put his mark on the program last season, examining how he would fit inside the coach’s style of play. He attended IU’s annual Hoosier Hysteria in October and later visited the campus in January, sitting behind the Indiana bench for the Hoosiers’ blowout victory over Northwestern.

The 18-year-old fills a glaring need for the Hoosiers at shooting guard, where he’ll be counted on to provide an immediate scoring punch.

Langford’s list of high school accomplishments reads like a tome:

— Indiana Mr. Basketball

— McDonald’s All-American

— Fourth-leading scorer in Indiana history, with 3,002 career points

— New Albany’s all-time leading rebounder with 907 career boards

— Scored 923 points during his senior season

— One of three finalists for 2018 National Gatorade Player of the Year

— Three-time Courier-Journal Male Athlete of the Year

— Three-time top vote-getter on the Associated Press First Team.

This story will be updated.

29 comments

  1. Sure am glad this is over. We will have something to talk about other than rehashing everything else!

  2. Expectation for next yr just increased. Spotlight will be on Coach Miller as well as a bit of pressure. Can’t wait.

  3. I knew Bryce Drew couldn’t hit two unbelievable desperation shots in one lifetime….

    Ola…who?

    I haven’t seen him play enough to know who to compare his style…I’m picturing sort of a Jared Jeffries type of game. Does he have a decent outside stroke?

    This doesn’t happen without the coaching change. This young man has goals beyond the mirror image of his own greatness.

    1. I feel like you must be trolling Harvard, so I’ll oblige… Yes, he’s just like Jeffries. Although I see a lot of Matt Nover in him too… when I’m not comparing him to Newton it’s usually because I’m in a more Dean Garrett mood.

        1. Have you been watching the game at all over the last decades? They are pretty much interchangeable …Ben Simmons brings the ball up court at 6-10. He’s listed as a point guard/forward.
          Embiid has a better outside stroke than Oladipo. Don’t let that mask fool you…He’s a power point guard.
          Anthony Davis’s fluidity makes Jabbar look like a toe-tripper. Davis needs an unstoppable hook only when he goes fishing during the off-season.

          Once Romeo starts drinking the PED’s (Protein Enriched Daiquiris) and Darryl Strawberry strawberry milk shakes Oladipo was pouring into his biceps over the last 12 months, he’ll be a shooting guard and a power forward….and post player…and a point guard….and Captain America. But it won’t happen during one season of wearing candy stripes.

      1. I was trolling for 30 million over 10 years. My downfall was that I forgot to say “it’s Indiana.”

        Other than that, I tend to think the greatest news conferences(along with presence of mom, dad, coach, pastor, etc, and all glorious testimonials) occur at podiums when championship trophies are hoisted in confirmation of inflated image.
        But I forgot it’s not a team game anymore….

        Do you respect the Pacers now, bro? If not, I got no respect for you….Because exiting Sweet 16’s and NBA first rounds is where it’s at!
        I’m #1!…I’m #1!…I’m #1! Do you see me at the press table telling you so? Now who’s trolling? …when you’re tellin’ me how great you are after exiting a first round? Banners, bitches. Banners. Then podiums….unless you remember to say “it’s Indiana” first.

  4. Biggest thing I see is it appears CAM just hung a giant poster around the state for the future saying, new sheriff in town, no poaching allowed!

    Very impressed with Coach Miller’s first recruiting class. Every recruit has the potential to fit perfectly into his system, no waste of scholarships. Very impressed with the way Romeo Langford has handled himself in throughout the recruiting frenzy. Was really impressed with what appears to be the Langford family’s loyalty to Indiana HS fans in general and to IU fans in particular. They appear to be refreshingly concerned about the legacy this young man will leave in his home town and state.

    Whether he stays one year or two, if Romeo continues conduct himself as he has done so far he will have a special place in the heart of Hoosier BB fans everywhere. This looks to be a win-win for both IU and Romeo. The next level intensive training he will receive from the IUBB staff should make him a coveted draft prize when he decides to make the jump to the NBA. More importantly a continued exemplary conduct will make him a tremendous representative for both IU and a role model to be followed.

    Correct me if I am wrong, but I believe I have seen reports he is also great with his teammates and has a team first attitude. If all these things be true then Archie has recruited a tremendous building block for future success. My biggest concern is Hoosier Nation’s expectations for Romeo and the program becoming too exorbitantly high too soon. Have to give both parties room to grow, room to make mistakes, and not be under too much pressure to overcome.

    Here’s hoping that JM’s exploration of his NBA prospects will give him the input to up his game even further. Hoping CAM picks up another vital piece of the puzzle with his remaining 2018 scholarship. Hoping the roster jells together quickly and effectively. If the new additions come up to speed fast and the veterans make the quantum leaps hoped for, this could be a very deep and very lethal team.

    . . . . .and for the first time in many years (taking nothing away from this year’s overachievers), a lot of fun to watch.

    1. Also, this class is set up pretty well for when Romeo does decide to leave. You have players with talent that will stick around well past Langford but learn from him as well. I don’t mind the one and done recruit every so often and not on my entire recruiting class.

  5. I believe this is a game changer for IU. Perhaps the top players in Indiana High Schools and elsewhere now consider IU as their college destination. Much credit should go to Archie ad this would have never happened with Crean. As far as this coming season is concerned, I believe Archie realizes he still needs a quality, defensive-minded big man and you can bet he is looking. He cannot have any confidence that Davis is the answer. When Morgan gets in foul trouble, he needs another option. Let’s see what happens, beacause if he gets that player, IU could field a very strong team this year.

    1. I don’t think Archie is looking for the 7 foot monster prototype many may be thinking. I see Archie looking for a very athletic big in the mode of a maybe a Dean Garrett or on the small end, a Steve Downing to compliment the pack-line. Height is important, but not as much as mobility. A quick footed big man of 6’9″ or 6’10” would be just fine. A guy that size wouldn’t necessarily be a offensive liability either, especially if he could develop the forgotten art of the hook shot.

      1. The 6-10 grad transfer from St. Mary’s is intriguing ….He supposedly shoots around 40% from the 3-pt. line. Kinda bet he’ll be a Hoosier this fall….We need the extra outside shooting and the 6-10 frame stretches the defense.

  6. MaxPreps had the stats…

    Romeo’s 3-pt percentage final h.s. season = 36% (79 made/222 attempts).

    The top 100 college basketball 3-pt shooters of 2017-18 all shot higher than 43%.

    Outside shooting was our major Achilles heel last season. RJ had his moments but was generally very inconsistent. Newkirk…Nada.
    Hope Archie has some shooters coming in.

    http://bleacherreport.com/articles/2762158-the-3-point-revolution-has-taken-over-college-basketball-too

    1. H4H,

      Correct me if I am wrong, but I believe I read somewhere that Romeo frequently was double or triple teamed and it did affect his 3 point shooting. Really stretching the memory here, but I think he was often forced to shot 3s from NBA range. Would like confirmation on that from somewhere.

      1. thinkaboutit,
        You are talking to a guy who has been campaigning for a bowler to be inducted to the basketball hall of fame.

        1. I know Chet, I know . . . . .

          But if we can keep him out of the weeds, H4H can make some very valid comments. He raises a good point regarding Romeo’s 3 point shooting prowess. Seems there were some stories addressing H4H’s rightful concerns in the matter. Hoping some of the posters can shed some light on how the defenses were stacked against Romeo might have affected the 3 point accuracy.

          Big question in my mind is will there be enough firepower from other parts of the team to keep opponents from double and triple teaming Romeo? JM’s return would certainly be a big part of the equation as would continued development of JS, DG and the other veterans. How quickly the incoming Freshmen can adapt to a higher level of competition will certainly be important. RP being half as dominant as he was in HS or the other points being effective would be optimum.

          A point who is a triple threat to shoot, drive, or dish, is a shooting guard’s best friend. Especially if that point is unselfish in their play. I don’t think a certain Vandy commits play at the McD went unnoticed at all, may have been the final nail in their recruiting coffin.

          1. Romeo was double teamed playing high school ball. Anyone Indiana puts on the floor can go hog wild if they are not defended.

          2. If we can recruit bowlers who will also put a team on their backs and take them to a championship/Final Four…? Give them their PBA card upon arrival in Bloomington.
            Hell, they both involve one ball and maple hardwood. Each sport has lanes and lane violations. LeBron throws his forces down the lane and knocks down a bunch of helpless pins every game night. He built a career on transforming basketball into a human bowling event.
            Lack of NBA success? Didn’t most of our roster players from all of our historic Final Four teams have gutter ball NBA careers? Downing was a complete flop on the Celtics. May, Alford, Benson…all had rather uninspiring NBA years. Wilkerson? Moved to various teams..Averaged about 10 points. Vanished from the league after 7 seasons.
            Outside of Isiah Thomas, please inform of the many other Final Four Hoosiers who had ‘Hall of Fame’ basketball careers after college? Even the great Damon Bailey ended up being cut by the Pacers…The Indiana kid recruited since the 8th grade barely sniffed the NBA.
            Sue me for liking college kids from my home state who have the grit/gumption/perseverance/b-ball IQ in their veins(along with certain talent sets outside of raw/off-the-charts athleticism) to put our tiny basketball state on the map for the biggest weekend in college sports(possibly in all of sports…).

      2. So because he was double teamed in h.s., we’re assuming that was because of his perimeter game?
        I’m expecting great things from Romeo. Pretty sure he’s a natural scorer with great instincts for the game. Play h.s. ball in Indiana likely means a very high b-ball IQ as well. The 3-pt shooting numbers are certainly not that low and are of little concern when the young man can find multiple ways to score the ball in his repertoire. His 3-pt percentage numbers may come up, but the athleticism of ‘singular’ defenders increases immensely in college.
        Some additional high level outside shooting sure wouldn’t hurt. Hopefully, the young man from South Bend Riley can provide some deep threat…Durham has a really nice stroke and his numbers could be strong next season.

        I think we could have a very special season. Justin Smith may really come into his own. He’s a marvelous athlete and has very sneaky dangerous game. He was really beginning to find his stride toward the latter segment of last season…playing above the rim with an ease and explosiveness.

        With the “it factor” and scoring machine addition of Romeo, I honestly think we have all the pieces to be Final Four team.

        1. Exciting times have returned to McCracken.
          Genuine teaching has returned to McCracken.
          Talent is trumping slogans and empty hype.
          Defense has returned to McCracken.
          Basketball becomes our religion again at McCracken.
          The insult to the fan base is gone.
          The world is right. Basketball is our baby resting in the crib tonight. Football returns to its rightful role as the placenta/afterbirth.

  7. A turning point in his recruitment came when Louisville was implicated in the FBI’s investigation into college basketball last September, at which point Langford dropped the Cardinals from consideration.

    Could be wrong, but hasn’t Kansas also been implicated in the FBI’s investigation into college basketball?

    1. If you read Mike’s follow-up story, you’d see:

      When Kansas was mentioned in connection with the FBI investigation earlier last month, it gave his father, Tim, pause.

      “Kansas, it pushed it out for me,” Tim Langford said. “Just having that name on your school. I didn’t take them out of the three verbally, but in my mind, we just didn’t want him going there and anybody asking him that type of question. So we don’t want him going to school there, we don’t care how good the basketball is.”

      1. Strange it wasn’t in the initial story…
        So, at the end of the day, it was IU vs. Vanderbilt.

        Rabjohns seemed to think that Romeo’s decision had a lot to do with Phinisee. I didn’t realize they had a budding friendship…Plus, Rabjohns believed Phinisee’s game presented a better fit in getting Romeo the ball.

  8. Don’t be surprised if Romeo stays at I U for more than one season, maybe longer the Cody stayed.

    1. Yeah, I think thst is possible. Romeo doesn’t strike me as the typical one and done. He doesn’t seem to be in a hurry about anything.

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