In the months leading up to the 2020-’21 college basketball season, BTPowerhouse will be releasing a new series called the ‘BTPowerhouse 25,’ which features the Top 25 players in the Big Ten as voted by members of the staff. All players set to be on Big Ten rosters for next season were eligible during the staff vote with their top selection receiving 25 points and their 25th and final selection receiving 1 point.
Today's edition will take a brief look at Khristian Lander of the Indiana Hoosiers, who landed at No. 20 in the rankings. The Hoosiers enter this season hoping to build off last year’s 21-12 mark. Lander will be a big piece in determining whether Indiana can meet that goal.
'BTPowerhouse 25' - No. 20 Khristian Lander:
- Eligibility: Freshman
- Career Totals: N/A
- 2019-’20 Averages: N/A
- Positional Role: Point Guard
After two underwhelming years with Archie Miller at the helm, Indiana finally did enough to make the NCAA Tournament last season. Unfortunately, fans never got to enjoy that appearance or see how things finished because of the COVID-19 pandemic. It was a disappointing end to a promising season. Fans will now hope the team can build off that performance and Lander will be a big factor in whether Indiana meets its goals.
Lander arrives on campus with considerable hype. And while there will always be some uncertainty for a true freshman, he has the rankings to suggest he will be an immediate contributor. Lander is rated 27th nationally by 247Sports and as the top player in the state of Indiana in the 2020 cycle. He is listed at 6-foot-2 and 165 pounds.
Perhaps Lander’s best skill is his ability to finish at the rim. He’s really dangerous with the ball in his hands and is going to be able to score in the lane. There’s little doubt he will be in contention for a starting spot as a true freshman.
-Areas for Improvement
As a freshman, Lander will have plenty of areas to grow as a player this season and beyond. That might sound generic, but it’s the truth. His game will grow exponentially in the months to come. Expect him to focus much of his time on getting bigger, stronger, and improving his jump shot. If he can add a consistent three-point shot to his repertoire, he has a chance to be really special next season.
Based on his talent level and Devonte Green’s graduation, Lander will be in position to play significantly this season. And if he can elevate his perimeter shooting, the sky’s the limit. But realistically, expect him to be a starter from day one who improves his consistency as the season continues. Much of Indiana’s potential this year will lie with him.
Perhaps the most interesting thing to watch will be to see how he fits with returner Rob Phinisee. Both are slated for key roles in the backcourt. Expect both to rotate early and for Miller and his staff to rely more heavily on which of the two is performing better from there. We will have to wait and see.