After months and months of hullabaloo five-star shooting guard Romeo Langford has announced that he’ll play his college basketball for Archie Miller at Indiana University. This decision is huge for the Hoosiers, both in the short and long-term, for a multitude of reasons.
Let’s start with the short-term effects. The New Albany native instantly becomes a guy that the Hoosiers can rely on to put points on the board and fill the role of the volume scorer that’s been empty since James Blackmon Jr left to pursue a pro career. This should help bolster an Indiana offense that was 11th in the Big Ten in points per game last season, averaging 71.9 as a team. He can score from inside and out, and that second part will be huge for this Hoosier team. Last season, IU hit 32.2 percent of their threes. The only team in the conference that show worse from downtown? The rutger Scarlet Knights. Bringing Langford into the fold should give Miller & Co. a much needed weapon on the offensive end of the floor. If Juwan Morgan returns, many expect that he will, this addition seemingly makes next year’s Hoosier squad a Big Ten contender and an NCAA Tournament team.
Those short-term effects are important and good for Indiana, but the potential long-term effects could be even bigger. Langford, 247’s fifth-ranked recruit, is the biggest recruit to choose Indiana since Cody Zeller back in the class of 2011, who was 247’s tenth-ranked recruit nationally. After seeing players and fans buy into what Archie Miller is building, Langford’s commitment shows that elite recruits can and will buy in too. Depending on how Langford’s expected one-and-done year as a Hoosier goes, this could open the door for recruits like Trayce Jackson-Davis, Keion Brooks, and Trendon Watford to choose Indiana as their college basketball stop.
This entire process has been a long road for everybody involved, from the fans to Langford himself. With this decision finally out of the way, everybody can get back to worrying about basketball and what’s to come for the Hoosiers. After several instances of Langford’s name being chanted in Assembly Hall, the next time it happens he’ll be wearing cream and crimson.