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Recruiting Spotlight: Nebraska, Indiana Target 4-Star 2017 Point Guard Markus Howard

Markus Howard's stock continues to sky-rocket amongst college coaches, including Nebraska and Indiana.

Tom Crean and Tim Miles dispute call
Tom Crean and Tim Miles dispute call
Steven Branscombe-USA TODAY Sports

Markus Howard is a sharp shooting machine from Chandler, Arizona, and is ready to ramp up his game at national power Henderson (NV) Findlay Prep this fall. Ranked 33rd in the 247Sports Composite, he recently led the USA U-16 national team to a gold medal at the FIBA Americas Championship this past June in Argentina..

During the America's Championship, the 5' 11" junior averaged 16.5 points, 3.3 rebounds and 2.3 assists per game. Some notable big names on the 12 member squad were Gary Trent Jr, Jarred Vanderbilt, Tre Jones, Wendell Carter, Jalen Hill, and Jordan Brown. Team USA beat Canada 77-60 in the fifth and final game for the gold.

Howard was one of the top scorers in the country last season, averaging 32.4 points per game with Gilbert Perry. He dropped 47 points in a losing effort during the regular season against eventual state champion Corona del Sol. His last game of the season in the second round of the state tournament against Phoenix Desert Vista, he served up 41 points on 12-of-23 shooting, hitting 6-of-11 three pointers.

This spring he has guided Las Vegas Prospects (Nike EYBL) to a 11-6 record, averaging 20.2 points, 3.2 rebounds, and 2.0 assists with 18 steals. Markus impressively hit 49 percent from the field, including 45 percent from beyond the arc.

Howard talks about the Team USA experience, recruiting, Findlay Prep, and his short and long term goals with Jared Cohen of Sports360 AZ:

Howard has received nine offers, among them Arizona, USC, Baylor, Memphis, and Arizona State. He committed to the Sun Devils last summer before de-committing in March. Indiana offered May 28, 2015 and Howard told Alex Bozich of Inside the Hall:

I was just really excited about the offer. I know the great history of guards that have come from Indiana. Coach Crean is a great coach. He really wanted to find out what kind of person I was. He thinks I'd fit really well in their system, just be a strong guard for their program.

Currently, Indiana has six scholarships available for 2017. The Hoosiers will be in desperate need of one and two guards. Howard fits the void. Kevin "Yogi" Ferrell will be long gone and his backup is freshman non-scholarship player Harrison Niego. However, that could change drastically because Tom Crean and his staff have offered 12 guard spots to the 2016 group, but no commits as of yet. His dad Chuck was a running back at Indiana and graduated in 1986 with a degree in exercise science and recreation. He has trained over 1,000 athletes since moving to Phoenix in 2002 and has been a major help to Markus as he navigates the recruiting process.

His most recent offer was Nebraska on the 28th of June. As of now, the Huskers have three spots to fill. The incoming 2015 class is set at point guard with Glynn Watson, but there is still room at the shooting guard position. However, Tim Miles just lost assistant and a top-level recruiter Rashon Burno to Arizona State after seven weeks on the job. That puts Nebraska in a "pickle" during the three evaluation periods in July.

Markus Howard is a fun player to watch with his complete arsenal of artistic shot-making.

This kid is the full suitcase, jam packed with inside scoring grooves, an awesome fade-away, pull-up jumper from mid-range, a beautiful stroke from the perimeter, 20/20 court vision in transition, and one wicked cross-over.

In the final analysis, Arizona may have the slight edge, but with the hire of Bobby Hurley in April, Arizona State is back in the mix. Nebraska is outside looking in and Indiana is still in the hunt with the father connection.

Follow Tim Langevin on Twitter@Sports Rockers