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‘Derik Queen certainly looked like the best player in the gym’: Key IU basketball 2024 target named a standout at UA Next Finals



Key IU basketball 2024 target Derik Queen was named a standout on Thursday for his play at the UA Next Finals. (@EliteHSscouting / Twitter)

The IU basketball program is involved with numerous top-25 players in the 2024 class and yet again, another one was named a standout during the first evaluation period in July.

Montverde Academy (Fla.) five-star center Derik Queen is playing for Team Thrill on the Under Armor circuit. He has had a terrific summer, both on the circuit and at other national events and camps.

On Thursday, the first day of the first live period in July, Queen wasted no time putting on a show.

More: 2024 five-star Indiana basketball target Asa Newell looking to trim list within next month

According to 247Sports National Recruiting Director Eric Bossi, Queen ‘looked like the best player in the gym’.

“Rising senior center Derik Queen certainly looked like the best player in the gym on Thursday. Yes, others put up big numbers, but the reality nobody else that 247Sports saw looked as good as the big man from Baltimore,” Bossi wrote.

Queen is ranked as the No. 9 overall player in the 2024 247Sports Composite Rankings and the No. 2 center. Indiana has been involved with him for quite some time and been one of the clear top-2 options for the standout big man.

Sources have continued to indicate that Maryland and Indiana are the clear options for Queen. The Baltimore native has the clear ties to Maryland and throughout the majority of his recruitment, he has been a Maryland-lean.

Recently, however, the main assistant recruiting Queen for the Terps left the program leaving the door open. Sources told that while Maryland is still in front, there isn’t as much of a gab like there may have been previously.

Queen has made significant strides over the last year in his game. He has nearly been one of the most dominant big men across all of high school hoops. As a junior at Montverde, Queen averaged 11.8 points, 6.7 rebounds and 2.2 assists while shooting 61 percent from the field.

He was a standout performer at the NBA Top 100 camp last month as well. He averaged 18.0 points, 10.4 rebounds and 1.2 blocks across five games. He ranked second in the camp in rebounds per game and eight in points per game. He also ranked fifth with a 65.5 shooting percentage.

“Simply put, Queen is a scoring machine around the hoop,” Bossi continued with Queen’s play this week. “He’s still working on his body and isn’t a high-flyer, but he sure is skilled and he sure has a tremendous feel for scoring on the interior. He spins, he fakes, he uses both hands and he plays with a supreme confidence that allows him to get one bucket after another. In the past, he’s had spells where he falls in love with the jump shot but that wasn’t the case while we watched him on Thursday. Rather than settling, he used the threat of being a jump shooter to make him even more of a difficult cover around the basket.”

The IU basketball program received an official visit from Queen last fall.

There is still no clear decision on when an announcement will be made regarding his college choice.

SEE ALSO: Peach Jam Notebook: IU basketball targets continue to standout midway through week

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Alec Lasley is the owner of Hoosier Illustrated, a comprehensive site covering news, updates and recruiting for Indiana University athletics. Alec has covered Indiana for six years and is a credentialed media member. He has previously worked for both Rivals and 247Sports.