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‘The winds have shifted towards’ Indiana basketball in recruitment of key 2024 5-star target



Indiana basketball 5-star target Derik Queen
The Indiana basketball program could be nearing in on its second commitment for the 2024 recruiting class with 5-star Derik Queen. (Jon Chepkevich - @JonChep / Twitter)

One of the top 2024 prospects still on the board could be nearing a decision and that could signal good things for the Indiana basketball program.

2024 five-star center Derik Queen has been on the Indiana basketball recruiting board for nearly a year and Indiana could be close to locking things up.

The Montverde Academy (Fla.) center is considering Indiana, Maryland, Houston and Kansas, having taken visits to all four. But, Indiana and Maryland are the two teams heavily in the mix. A choice will come from one of those two.

For the majority of his recruitment, Maryland seemed to be the team talked about most, with Indiana slightly behind. Now, ‘the winds have shifted towards’ Indiana basketball, according to Full Ride Network college basketball insider Trilly Donovan.

“The winds have shifted towards Indiana for the first time in this recruitment (at least in my orbit). Multiple sources indicated the Hoosiers are in a good spot after a few visits to see Queen at Montverde. Indiana’s play on the court has certainly helped them too, with the emergence of Kel’el Ware and their impressive performance over Maryland last week,” Donovan wrote this week. “The Terps are still very much in this, but the prevailing thought is if it was Maryland, why hasn’t it happened yet? Houston and Kansas are still trying, but it seems unlikely at this point it’ll be either of those two.”

The connection for Queen to Maryland is his hometown. Queen grew up in the Baltimore area before heading to Florida for his last few years of high school. And, it’s an Under Armor school — the Abu circuit he played on with Team Thrill for his high school career.

One of the clear connections for the Indiana basketball program is his high school teammate Liam McNeeley. McNeeley committed to Indiana earlier this fall and is best friends with Queen.

“We have a great relationship,” McNeeley told HoosierIllustrated of his relationship with Queen. “We’re brothers.”

The other is the clear development that the centers have had under Mike Woodson. From Trayce Jackson-Davis to Kel’el Ware this season, there is a real pipeline for developing big men under Woodson now entering his third season for the Hoosiers.

Multiple sources have indicated to that a decision could come early next month. If you’re targeting a potential date — it could come around Hoop Hall, scheduled for Jan. 11-15.

There is no firm timeline, however, but it is most likely expected to come in the next month to month and a half.

Queen, ranked No. 17 overall in the 247Sports Composite Rankings, is averaging 16.6 points and 7.6 rebounds per game while shooting 72 percent (50-of-69) from the field through seven games.

SEE ALSO: Indiana basketball 2025 five-star target Joson Sanon expected to visit IU this month

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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.