The Iowa Hawkeyes are surely going to miss Aaron White and Gabe Olaseni during the 2015-16 season, but Fran McCaffery returns four starters from the third-place Big Ten finisher. While Iowa's recruiting class may not have as big of an impact as say Illinois or Ohio State's, there are some solid incoming freshman that will add to Iowa's overall depth and surely push the programs (sometimes inconsistent) veterans for minutes. Today we'll take a closer look at 6'5" small forward, Brandon Hutton
Who: Brandon Hutton
What's his story: Hutton is the perfect McCaffery recruit and by all accounts, this dude is an all-encompassing Chicago-style basketball player, hold the ketchup. He's Savage. Athletic. Plays bigger than he looks. Defensive-minded. And extremely confident.
Just take a look at these quotes from a story from Hawk Central:
"I want to keep improving and keep dominating, the way I do," Hutton said Thursday night after scoring 32 points with nine rebounds in a loss that eliminated his team from the PTL playoffs. "I’m going to bring that to the season, and hopefully coach Fran McCaffery will give me a shot, get me in, get me a little time."
The story goes on:
When Hutton talks, you don't doubt he can do whatever he says. There's no questioning his desire. He admittedly comes to Iowa with a chip on his shoulder, saying, "I've had a lot of doubters that I've been proving wrong, year after year after year. I want to continue doing that."
While adjusting to college life and taking summer classes, he's found time to put up a lot of jump shots. He won't leave the Hawkeye practice gym until he makes 300, sometimes 350, in a session.
I know I eat that kind of talk up like a kid to Cap'n Crunch, but how doesn't that pump every college basketball fan up? Do you know how exhausting it is shooting 300 jump shots, let alone however many it takes to MAKE 300? I need an oxygen mask and a defibrillator just thinking about it.
Recruitnik Roundabout: According to 247Sports Composite, Hutton is a three-star recruit, having held offers from West Virginia and Wisconsin among other smaller programs. They also have him among the Top-10 recruits out of Illinois. ESPN also has Hutton as a three-star recruit and the 16th best player in the state.
Does Hutton have a Social Media presence?: Yes! YES! YESYESYESYES!
If tomatoes are a fruit, why isn't ketchup a smoothie?— Brandon Hutton Iowa (@B_Hutt_34) June 3, 2015
Honestly, that's a pretty legit question.
(Currently doing the James Harden "Stirring the Pot" motion)
No more being overlooked and this goes for the Hawkeye Nation and I. I'm working towards being a household name. #HawkeyeNation— Brandon Hutton Iowa (@B_Hutt_34) July 13, 2015
(Trying to not let my homer-ism take control...trying so hard)
The mentality is very contagious and it is going to be affecting every Basketball Hawkeye Player. https://t.co/UMmYfDYLjc— Brandon Hutton Iowa (@B_Hutt_34) July 13, 2015
(Remain unbiased, you have a job to do)
I'm bringing a new culture to the Iowa team. I'm Chi Town's very own. It's eating time— Brandon Hutton Iowa (@B_Hutt_34) July 13, 2015
(Keep it together, Jer)
My first 13 stitches came from the Prime Time League playing ball. I guess I was scoring too much, they had to do something to tame me.— Brandon Hutton Iowa (@B_Hutt_34) July 13, 2015
I can't contain it anymore! I love this kid. As a graduate of Iowa, I can't remember a time where we've had a player like this. Maybe Eric May? And the fact that the only player I could think of was Eric May, is so telling. The confidence is so refreshing. You can tell why McCaffery was so attracted to him. There's an aura there (and yes I totally realize he hasn't played a game of college basketball and that I'm setting myself up for the fall...it's what I do best).
Why should the average Big Ten fan be excited to watch him play?: While its obvious that I wasn't able to contain myself above, allow me to reel it in here. In all seriousness, Hutton is the Kanye West of Iowa basketball (and maybe the Big Ten). I wouldn't be surprised if he's walking into Brothers or SpoCo during FAC with a cut off jean jacket, a camo undershirt, some unlaced Adidas shoes and a leather-based New Era Bulls hat. The dude just exuberates a higher-than-your-average-freshman confidence level.
Heck, Hutton could probably walk into an interview with MediaCom right now and become their Head of Sales by just sitting their starring into space.
Ok, but for-real-for-real, Hutton is going to do the little things that usually spark runs. Steals. Pressure. Hounding point guards in double teams. Bodying a small forward who wants to barrel his way into the paint. Blocking a fast break dunk from behind. He wants to be known as the best defender in the Big Ten for crying out loud. How many players come into college with that as their number one goal?
What says the tape?
- While I'm somewhat concerned that this could be the college version of the Yi Jianlian Chair Workout, it looks like Hutton has decent handles for a small forward and continues to work on his craft. While I don't expect him to break any ankles while at Iowa, having the ability to get crafty with the ball in tight spaces on top of his already outstanding athleticism could be advantageous.
- Drake and Apple really should put out a Mixtape for Basketball Hype Videos. Having him flow over a video of an 18 year old working out in a gym late at night only makes this whole writing process better.
- Hutton is going to be a ton of fun during pre-game layup/dunk lines (flip to the 1:33 mark)
- All of the jump shots we've seen in this video are more open than a 24/7 McD's. The form looks ok but it's a slow developing jumper, with a bit of a winding motion...probably the reason 88% of the videos I've watched are him dunking. If you're looking for another Steph Curry, best look a different direction.
- With that said, he will be playing in the Fran McCaffery system, so having an adequate jumper right now is probably not that big of a deal, as Hutton is going to be used as a fast break, transition freak.
- I can't decide who these defenders are. I've watched this video about 23-times and it still puzzles me. If Vegas set a line on the identities of these mystery men at "-125" for "Hutton's friends", or "+105" for "Some dudes hanging around the gym that willfully bit and lunged awkwardly after every crossover dribble just to be in a YouTube video", I think I'd lay a few shekels on the latter.
- Hutton has a very nice frame. He already looks built for the college game. Hard to imagine what a couple years in Iowa's weight program will do for him. YIKES.
- Shout out to Just 1 Shot Productions... well done for a late night, solo practice hype video