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Indiana Basketball Recruiting Roundup: Where things stand with top transfer targets



Dec 22, 2022; Lawrence, Kansas, USA; Harvard Crimson forward Chris Ledlum (4) shoots against the Kansas Jayhawks during the second half at Allen Fieldhouse. (Jay Biggerstaff-USA TODAY Sports)

The Indiana basketball program came into this offseason knowing it needed a big haul in the transfer portal to remake its roster for next season. Thus far, Mike Woodson and his staff have been extremely active.

Already, the Indiana basketball program has secured multiple in-home visits, zoom calls and now two on-campus visits.

Indiana has already landed one commitment in the transfer portal with Ball State 6-foot-9 forward Payton Sparks.

The Indiana basketball program has four open scholarships for the 2023-24 season. It is still awaiting a response on the medical hardship waiver for point guard Xavier Johnson.

Here is a look at the key transfer portal targets for Indiana and where things stand.

Kel’el Ware (7-0 center; Oregon)

One of the newer names for the Indiana basketball program is Oregon transfer Kel’el Ware. Ware is taking a visit to Indiana from April 6-7 and has emerged as a high-priority target.

Sources told coming into the visit that Indiana was a team to watch. Since the visit began, sources have indicated that Indiana is in a good position.

Ware is an extremely athletic center with great length and size. Ware has a good ability to finish at the rim with his athleticism, but doesn’t have great touch and is still raw offensively. He has the ability to step out on the perimeter but hasn’t been consistent thus far.

His high motor and terrific rebounding and shot blocking ability is elite.

Chris Ledlum (6-6 forward; Harvard)

Ledlum is someone that Indiana has been connected to for quite some time. Indiana already had an in-home visit with the Harvard transfer and he is also on campus from April 6-7 as well.

Indiana is making a big push for Ledlum. At the moment, he has a visit to Tennessee set up after his Indiana visit.

Ledlum is a sturdy-built hybrid forward who won’t blow anyone away with his athleticism, but is terrific getting into the lane and using his length and strength around the rim. His off-ball skills are great and his IQ is terrific. He’s a fantastic cutter and slasher.

Dalton Knecht (6-6 wing; Northern Colorado)

Another newer name for Indiana is Dalton Knecht. Knecht had a zoom call with Indiana earlier this week and that was step one in the process. A visit would be the next step. At the moment, there is potential for that to happen.

Indiana needs shooting and needs high volume shot makers. Knecht has taken five 3s per game in 67 career games. He is a versatile offensive option who can create both off of the dribble and in standstill opportunities.

At the moment, Knecht looks to be the top option on the perimeter for Indiana.

Kadin Shedrick (6-11 center; Virginia)

Shedrick was a name that popped up immediately as someone who would be a strong Indiana basketball target. The Indiana staff had a zoom call a day after he entered the transfer portal. According to sources, Indiana is still in a good spot for Shedrick and an on-campus visit is being discussed. He is still in the process of narrowing down the schools that he is interested in and still in the zoom call phase.

Duke is a program emerging, however as a real threat in this recruitment.

Shedrick is a versatile forward who is looking to showcase that at his next location. He is a terrific rebounder and rim protector and has shown the versatility and athleticism to see an expanded offensive role.

Jalen Deloach (6-9 forward; VCU)

Deloach has emerged for Indiana as another front court target. Deloach told that he will be visiting Indiana April 14, after the second dead period. Deloach named a top list of Indiana, VCU, Florida State, Miami, Penn State and San Diego State. The only visit set in stone is to Indiana. He is looking to visit all programs involved, however. At this time a decision at the end of the month is expected.

Deloach is the third on the front court priority list at the moment, behind Ware and Ledlum. He brings athleticism to the front line and is a very good defender and rebounder. He is still raw offensively and isn’t a major post presence on the offensive end.

Nick Timberlake (6-4 guard; Towson)

Timberlake was one of the first names to be connected to Indiana but things have become a bit cold over the last week. Timberlake had an in-home visit with Indiana quickly after the conversations started, but has taken a visit to UNC and is set to visit Kansas this weekend. He has set up another visit to UConn as well.

Sources have indicated that while Indiana is still a team involved, it is a step down and a lower tier than some of the other programs involved.

Timberlake is a knockdown shooter who can produce off of the dribble or catch. He has good athletic ability as well to attack the rim and either finish through contact or hit in the mid-range.

Follow Hoosier Illustrated on Twitter @Indiana_FRN to stay up to date on all of the news, updates and coverage of Indiana University athletics. 


2024 top-25 wing Tyler Betsey sets Indiana basketball visit



2024 top-25 wing Tyler Betsey has set an official visit date with the Indiana basketball program. (@EliteHSscouting / Twitter)

Top-25 wing in the 2024 class Tyler Betsey of St. Thomas More (CT) has set an official visit with the Indiana basketball program.

Betsey will be on campus from June 14-16, he confirms with 247Sports had the initial report. Betsey will be on campus alongside 2024 five-star guard Boogie Fland, who has officially set his Indiana basketball visit for June 13-15.

Betsey is a 6-foot-8 wing who is ranked No. 22 in the 247Sports composite rankings for the 2024 class. He is rated as the No. 8 small forward.

At 6-foot-8, Betsey is a versatile wing who is known as a shooter. He is a high-volume shooter who is very good off of the catch. He’s improving off of the dribble as well and has shown more of an ability to create plays for himself.

Playing for NY Rens on the Nike EYBL circuit and is averaging 11.6 points this summer in 16 games. He’s shooting 35.1 percent from three on 2.5 made 3s per game. He’s 40-of-114 this summer from three. He’s had four games with at least four made 3s. Betsey plays alongside current Indiana basketball target and five-star guard Dylan Harper on NY Rens as well. Harper visited Indiana in the fall.

247Sports National Recruiting Director Eric Bossi broke down Betsey’s game from earlier this summer.

“At nearly 6-foot-8 with smooth athleticism and a good-looking jumper, it was pretty clear that he has all of the tools to make a move towards the top of the class and he’s one of those kids who seems like he could end up ranked as high as he decides he wants to be.”

Currently, Betsey has offers from Indiana, Duke, Alabama, Kansas, UConn, Cincinnati, Auburn, Rutgers, Michigan State, Providence and others.

SEE ALSO: Indiana basketball recruiting beginning to click on all cylinders: ‘I wanted to be able to sit at the table with the best players’

Make sure to follow Hoosier Illustrated on Twitter @Indiana_FRN and YouTube to stay up to date on all of the news, updates and coverage of Indiana University athletics. 

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Indiana basketball extends offer to 2025 top-30 prospect Jasper Johnson



National top-30 2025 guard Jasper Johnson received a scholarship offer from the Indiana basketball program. (Jasper Johnson - @BruhJasperJ / Twitter)

The Indiana basketball program has extended a scholarship offer to 2025 top-30 guard Jasper Johnson of Woodford County (Ky).

Johnson is ranked No. 23 in the 247Sports composite rankings for the class of 2025. He is also the No. 3 combo guard in the class.

Part of Team Thad on the Nike EYBL circuit, Johnson is playing two divisions up in the 17U division. Through 16 games this spring and summer, Johnson is averaging 12.3 points, 3.2 rebounds and 2.5 assists per game. He is shooting 51 percent from the floor and 40.3 percent from three (27-of-67).

Johnson had his best game of the summer last weekend in Memphis — scoring 21 points on 8-of-12 shooting and 5-of-6 from three. He was 12-of-21 from three in four games last weekend.

Travis Branham of 247Sports broke down Johnson’s performance.

“In a three-minute span, Johnson scored a dozen points including three triples and a dunk in transition that took a three-or-four point lead and stretching it to double figures.,” Branham wrote. “Johnson has continued to grow as a player this spring. His confidence and aggressiveness are continuing to elevate along with his improving handle and jumper to create offense for himself and others.”

Johnson and the Indiana basketball program had a relationship prior to this offer. Johnson has mentioned to that the NBA pedigree of head coach Mike Woodson is appealing.

He visited Indiana twice during this past season. He was in Bloomington when Trayce Jackson-Davis had a triple-double. Johnson has also visited Kentucky, Louisville, Cincinnati, Ohio State, Tennessee and Xavier in addition to others.

The 6-foot-2 guard has offers from Kentucky, Arizona State, Cal, Cincinnati, West Virginia, Louisville, Ohio State, Memphis, Xavier and others.

SEE ALSO: 2024 five-star point guard Boogie Fland eyeing Indiana basketball visit

Make sure to follow Hoosier Illustrated on Twitter @Indiana_FRN and YouTube to stay up to date on all of the news, updates and coverage of Indiana University athletics. 

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IU basketball recruiting beginning to click on all cylinders: ‘I wanted to be able to sit at the table with the best players’



Mike Woodson won't 'accept no for an answer' when it comes to recruiting and building his IU basketball roster. (Rich Janzaruk/Herald-Times-USA TODAY NETWORK)

When Mike Woodson took the job as the head coach of the IU basketball program two years ago — his message was clear. He wanted to get Indiana back into the national conversation by competing for Big Ten and National Championships.

The only way to do that was to bring in high-level talent. Not just local, but from around the country.

The message has always been that Indiana has the best talent in the country — but recently, that hasn’t been the case. The previous staff did a good job of recruiting the state but failed to land top talent from outside of Indiana — or even the midwest — on a regular basis. That resulted in IU basketball failing to make an NCAA Tournament for six years.

So, when Woodson stepped back on campus on day one, it was about getting the best talent in the country — no matter where — to come to Bloomington.

“When I took the job, I made it clear to my coaches that we deserved to sit at the table with the best players,” Woodson told reporters on Wednesday. “We kind of squabbled a little bit early on because they didn’t think we were in that position to be able to do that.

“Well, back in the day, it was always that way.”

Last year saw four scholarship players from Indiana. The year before was five.

Next season will be quite different. There will only be two players from the state of Indiana on scholarship.

A main reason for that is because of what Woodson stressed — and knowing what he wanted for his roster.

“I thought we were based on Indiana basketball and the history of it,” Woodson said. “So, I didn’t accept no for an answer and I told ’em (my staff) that I wanted to be able to sit at the table with the best players and compete with the Kentucky’s, the Kansas’, the Duke’s, teams like that.”

While Woodson just wanted a seat at the table, he’s done more than just sit there.

In the last two years, Woodson has landed four five-star prospects either from high school or through the transfer portal. It resulted in having two McDonald’s All-American’s on the roster this upcoming season for the first time since 2016.

In addition to the two five-star commitments in the past two months, the IU basketball program has also seen a one-and-done five-star prospect move his way into a projected lottery-pick in the upcoming NBA Draft in Jalen Hood-Schifino. That is notable to recruits — and Woodson knows it.

“It’s done a lot, you know,” Woodson said on Hood-Schifino’s development. ” … Not to say he was a one-and-done, but he put himself in that position and was able to do a lot of nice things for our ball club and you know, our program benefited from it.”

A large reason for the (recent) uptick in the national relevancy for IU basketball in the recruiting world is because of Woodson and his NBA pedigree — yes. But, it’s the entire staff that he’s put together that has built their reputations on relationships and honesty — something hard to come by in today’s recruiting world.

“I got a wonderful staff and, you know, we are beating the phones down and when guys come available, we are trying to get in front of their parents and whoever’s their representative and we are doing all the necessary things to get ’em to campus and close the deal,” Woodson said. “And this has been a great, great summer for us in terms of recruiting and, again, I give a lot of credit to my staff and them getting me in front of the people that we’re trying to recruit, the player and we’re starting to pay off. It’s starting to pay off for us.”

And in recruiting, in order to get a yes, you’re going to get a lot of no’s. But, that’s okay and what’s needed in order to reach the next level as a program.

“All they (recruits) can do is tell us no, but we gotta get there and we’ve been able to get there some, so it’s kind of nice.”

SEE ALSO: IU basketball senior guard Xavier Johnson gives update on his health: ‘I’m 100 (percent)’

ake sure to follow Hoosier Illustrated on Twitter @Indiana_FRN and YouTube to stay up to date on all of the news, updates and coverage of Indiana University athletics. 

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