If you were to describe Indiana basketball by one trait in the past two seasons, it would likely be their three point shooting. The art of the long range shot has become their calling card, if you will. Last year, the Hoosiers shot 41.6% from deep, good for the 6th highest mark in the country. As a whole, IU was a very accurate shooting team last year, with an effective field goal percentage of 58.7%, best in the nation.
It would appear Tom Crean is in the market for another three point shooter, as he just offered a scholarship to 2017 prospects and 6-4 SG Andrew Platek. A player already receiving interest from numerous other schools, including North Carolina, Platek visited Bloomington on May 9th.
The shooting guard really enjoyed the visit and appreciated everything that Indiana has to offer. Platek is currently rated three or four stars by most major media outlets, and his stock is rising quickly. He has really come into his own at the Nike EYBL this year with the Albany City Rocks. Anytime a player goes from a relative unknown to drumming up interest from programs like IU and UNC, they are clearly doing something right.
In an interview done with The Left Bench, Platek described his desire to make sure whichever school he commits to will provide him with great educational opportunities. He is currently being recruited by academic juggernauts Harvard, Yale, and Stanford. While the two Ivy League schools cannot offer him an athletic scholarship, they still have a lot to offer in terms of playing time. So where is he leaning?
As of right now, the Platek camp has kept things pretty close to the vest. In addition to establishing a priority in academics, it is clear he believes he is talented enough to play at the highest level. He currently plays for one of the best prep schools in the country in Northfield Mount Hermon.
A native of Massachusetts, he definitely has his ties to the northeast, but it is difficult to ignore the national interest he has received. Ultimately, his decision will most likely to come down to what he values the most; playing a little for an elite program or a lot for an academic minded institution.
North Carolina is currently the frontrunner for Platek according to 247's Crystal Ball. Roy Williams has been interested in Platek for some time now and obviously, UNC offers some great educational opportunities and a basketball program with a tradition that speaks for itself. That said, a lot can still change. There is still the dark cloud of potential NCAA sanctions looming over the Tar Heels.
Stanford would seem like the happy medium in terms of playing time and academics. Jerod Haase can also offer Platek the competitive platform of the PAC-12 to showcase his skills. But if an athletic scholarship is not something Platek feels like he needs, Tommy Amaker is building a beast in Cambridge, MA. Reeling in a top-10 recruiting class in 2016, Amaker would love to add a sharpshooter like Platek to the mix. Harvard's friends in New Haven, Ct have also been coming into their own recently, basketball wise. Yale has recorded a top two finish in the Ivy League the past three seasons.
Even though Indiana is not the frontrunner for Platek, keep your eye on their progress with the shooting guard in the coming months. When Tom Crean decides he is interested in a player, IU puts on the full court press; showing up at numerous events the recruit attends in hopes of maximizing face time. So if it is another three point specialist Crean is looking for, he may have found it in Andrew Platek, but only time will tell.