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Mark Smith suddenly a hot commodity in the class of 2017

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With new names at the forefront, the search to add to the 2017 class continues.

Mark Smith (#13) of Edwardsville drives to the hoop in recent action

News, notes, and any other tidbits dealing with Hoosier targets and recruits

  • For as bland of a name as Mark Smith is, his game is anything but. The former Mizzou baseball commit has the full attention of top schools everywhere, and after being pretty much unknown less than a month ago, his recruitment is soaring. Indiana offered a week ago, and Butler, Utah, and Cal have now followed suit, with a number of other high-majors checking in on the 6’4”, 225 lb point guard. Smith is averaging nearly a triple-double, and his size, vision, and smooth passing ability are drawing spectators and coaches from all over to the middle of nowhere in Edwardsville, Illinois. And leave it to Tom Crean, who lacks the physical ability to suppress negative emotions in his face, to embody the true image of what it feels like to spend your night off in a gym in Edwardsville, Illinois.

  • There’s yet another new name on the Indiana recruiting front in Jordan Walker. Standing at 5’10” and 160 lb, Walker hails from The Patrick School in NJ, and is a close friend and AAU teammate of IU-commit Al Durham. Walker’s stellar play as of late, including MVP game honors at the Hoophall Classic, has brought his recruitment into focus. Also of note, the 3-star 2018 guard is considering a move to the class of 2017. For what it’s worth, when recently asked about the possibility, he said “If I find a school that fits me in 2017, I’ll definitely go no matter what.”

  • As Indiana and Villanova wait on Jordan Tucker, the 4-star 2017 SF doesn’t seem to be in any rush, as two more schools have jumped into the picture. Georgia Tech, located near where Tucker plays his high school ball at Wheeler HS, has welcomed Tucker to its campus for multiple unofficial visits, and now Oregon will receive an Official Visit from Tucker, too. Dan McDonald of YellowJacketsOnline.com caught up with him a few days ago, and Tucker had this to say about Indiana:

On Indiana and Villanova: “It’s been pretty quiet with them lately because they already know where they stand. They are just waiting on me for a decision. They stay in touch, but there is not much for them to preach to me because I’ve already heard their pitch.” (Source)

  • Al Durham had himself a Senior Night. In a season chock full of maturation on the court, the 6’4”, 170 lb CG out of Berkmar HS (GA) put it all together in a dazzling display last week in which he scored in a variety of ways from all over the court, finishing with 25 points, including the highlight reel dunk below. Then, Durham followed that performance up with a buzzer-beating jumper to seal a 49-47 win for Berkmar over visiting Meadowcreek.

  • For those looking for a Clifton Moore update, here’s a good article from Teddy Bailey of the Indy Star. In it, Moore’s literal ascension - he went from 6’3” as a freshman to 6’10” as a senior - is charted. The Pennsylvania product has a very strong support system, and is making a conscious effort to bulk up in preparation for competition at the next level. On the court, the 3-star Moore continues to play at a high level, consistently putting up 20 point games for Hatboro-Horsham (PA).