Men's Basketball

    Hoosier Basketball Inks Top Five Recruiting Class

    Go Hoosiers! Coach Tom Crean and his staff announce their 2009 recruiting class
    Go Hoosiers!
    Coach Tom Crean and his staff announce their 2009 recruiting class
    Go Hoosiers!

    Nov. 13, 2008

    Bloomington, Indiana - Indiana University men's basketball coach Tom Crean has announced that six student-athletes have signed national letters of intent to attend IU and play basketball for the Hoosiers. With just seven months on the recruiting trail, along with NCAA restrictions, the Hoosier staff has hauled in one of the top recruiting classes in the country. The Hoosiers are ranked fifth nationally by Rivals.com and seventh nationally by Scout.com. The Hoosier class is the highest rated among Big Ten schools.

    Bobby Capobianco, 6-8, 225, Forward, Loveland, Ohio, Loveland High School
    Maurice Creek, 6-5, 195, Guard, Chatham, Va., Hargrave Military Academy
    Derek Elston, 6-8, 212, Forward, Tipton, Ind., Tipton High School
    Jordan Hulls, 6-0, 170, Guard, Bloomington, Ind., Bloomington South
    Bawa Muniru (bah-wah muh-nee-roo), 6-11, 250, Center, Mt. Zion Academy, Durham, N.C.
    Christian Watford , 6-7, 215 lbs, Forward, Birmingham, Ala., Shades Valley High School

    CREAN ON THE RECRUITING CLASS
    "Our coaching staff of Tim Buckley and Bennie Seltzer and the recent addition of Roshown McLeod, along with the rest of our staff, show what can happen when you believe in something and are not afraid to work hard to make it better even when you are hamstrung with restrictions. Our coaches worked extremely hard to build on relationships that we already had and to build new ones and continue to show people why Indiana was a perennial power year-in and year-out. The tradition of Indiana and the opportunity to play right away, the Big Ten conference, the national television schedule we have is only replaced by the fact that young students can come in here and get a world-class education. Our coaches did a tremendous job of showing that and we wouldn't be anywhere near having this kind of class without the hard work of these gentlemen that represent Indiana."

    Bobby Capobianco, 6-8, 225, Forward, Loveland, Ohio, Loveland High School
    Rated as the #100 prospect in the 2009 class by ESPN.com as well as the #33 power forward in the class ... averaged 21 points and 11 rebounds as a junior at Loveland High School after putting up averages of 18 points and 11 rebounds as a sophomore ... coached by Tim Partin ... played AAU basketball for Indiana Elite One for Coach Kenny Blackwell... son of Bob and Barbara Capobianco.

    CREAN ON CAPOBIANCO
    "Bobby is someone that we've know for some time. We saw him in the Indiana Elite program and then saw him at Loveland (Ohio) High School and it became clear to us, even back at Marquette that we wanted to offer him a scholarship. He personifies toughness. He can rebound the basketball and score inside. I love the fact that he has developed into a guy that is a reliable jump shooter from the perimeter and loves to play. One of the things that really stands out about Bobby is how much he loves Indiana and we are excited to have him."

    Maurice Creek, 6-5, 195, Guard, Chatham, Va., Hargrave Military Academy
    Scout.com ranks Creek as the #9 shooting guard in the 2009 class and #45 in the class overall ... Rivals.com has Creek ranked as the 59th best prospect in the 2009 class overall and the #16 shooting guard in the class ... ESPN.com ranks Creek as the #15 shooting guard in his class and #61 in the class overall ... averaged 21.5 points, four rebounds and five assists as a junior at South Kent Prep School ... also played at Oxen Hill High School in Maryland before transferring to South Kent before his junior season ... played for Triple Threat on the AAU circuit for Coach Keith Stevens ... son of Michael and Pammy Morgan.

    CREAN ON CREEK
    "With Maurice Creek we were very fortunate to get on him at an early age. (Assistant Coach) Bennie Seltzer was the first one to see him back when we were at Marquette and we offered him a scholarship as a 10th grader. We recruited him like he was a senior the last few years. He was someone that, when we got to Indiana, he showed great faith in us as coaches and in our style of play. He chose to commit to Indiana with us before he had ever seen the campus. He's a prolific shooter and he can get to the rim. He's developing a pull-up game and as his ball-handling catches up with his ability to shoot the basketball, he will be an outstanding guard. He's a long and athletic guard and we feel he will be able to create a lot of havoc defensively. He is someone that loves the game and has been well schooled and well taught and we feel excited to have him."

    Derek Elston, 6-8, 212, Forward, Tipton, Ind., Tipton High School
    Rivals.com ranks Elston as the 90th best overall recruit in the 2009 class and 24th best power forward in the class ... Scout.com has him rated as the 32nd best power forward in his class ... underwent knee surgery at the end of May and did not play over the summer ... ESPN.com has Elston rated as the #34 power forward in the 2009 class ... averaged 19.8 points and 11.2 rebounds per game as a junior ... as a sophomore at Tipton, Elston led his team to a 12-10 record while scoring 14.9 points per game and grabbing 12 rebounds per game... coached by Travis Daugherty... played AAU basketball for the Spiece Rising Stars... coached by David Hamilton.

    CREAN ON ELSTON
    "Derek deserves a lot of credit because he stayed loyal to Indiana through all the turmoil. As everyone knows, he committed to the previous staff and shortly after we got the job he came up to see us. He's the unsung hero of this class because people around the country have forgotten how good he is because they haven't had a chance to see him. We fully believe that if he had been on the summer circuit his rankings would have gone through the roof like Maurice (Creek) and Jordan (Hulls) did. He is tough and can rebound the basketball in addition to playing multiple positions on the front line. He has developed range and as he returns to full strength from the injury he should have an outstanding year during his senior year."

    Jordan Hulls, 6-0, 170, Guard, Bloomington, Ind., Bloomington South
    Ranks as the #9 point guard in the 2009 class by Scout.com and #80 in the class as a whole ... averaged 16.9 points, 4.4 rebounds and 2.4 assists as a junior at Bloomington South High School for Coach J.R. Holmes... ranks as the #106 recruit overall in the class of 2009 and the #17 point guard in the class by Rivals.com ... ESPN.com ranks Hulls as the #31 point guard in the class ... AAU team is Indiana Elite One and was coached by Kenny Blackwell... son of J.C. and Joni Hulls ... his grandfather, John, was a member of Bob Knight's staff at IU in the early 1970's.

    CREAN ON HULLS
    "Jordan is someone that has taken the steps necessary to make himself, not only a Division I player but a high-major player. It was a no-brainer there and (assistant coach) Tim Buckley deserves the credit for seeing him in Pittsburgh and coming back and being adamant. And after the way he felt about players at Marquette like Dwayne Wade and Travis Diener, there was no doubt that I wasn't going to doubt anything Tim said about Jordan. We brought him over for an unofficial before I had ever had a chance to see him play. But after seeing him once and seeing numerous tapes, there was no question that we wanted to have him in the program. He can shoot the ball with deep range and he understands the game at a very high level as well as making everyone else around him better. We feel he will be very good in the pick and roll and he comes from a great program, not only at Bloomington South High School and J.R. Holmes, but the Indiana Elite program as well."

    Bawa Muniru (bah-wah muh-nee-roo), 6-11, 250, Center, Mt. Zion Academy, Durham, N.C.
    Rivals.com has Muniru rated as the #111 player in the 2009 class and the #14 center in the class ... Scout.com has him ranked as the #32 center in the 2009 recruiting class ... ESPN.com ranks Muniru as the #32 center in the 2009 recruiting class ... averaged 16.6 points, 8.9 rebounds and 2.8 blocks as a senior at Madison (Ala.) Academy for Andy Blackston, before moving on to Mt. Zion Academy this season ... is a native of Ghana... guardians are Brian and Melinda Privett... played for AAU basketball for Kerry Johnson.

    CREAN ON MUNIRO
    "Bawa is someone that brings great size and presence to our front line right off the bat. We are impressed with his work ethic and desire to get better. And what stands out when you meet him is his great personality. He is a fun-loving young man who, when he gets on the court, plays to win. His upside is a huge plus for us, and all Indiana fans, because they are going to get a chance to watch him grow and develop as time goes on."

    Christian Watford , 6-7, 215 lbs, Forward, Birmingham, Ala., Shades Valley High School
    Ranked #34 by Rivals.com in class of 2009 ... ranked as the #9 small forward in the class of 2009 by Rivals.com ... ranked by Scout.com as the #15 small forward in the class of 2009 and #72 in the class overall ... is ranked #26 in the ESPNU 100 and as the #4 small forward in his class ... played AAU basketball for M33M ... averaged 22 points and 14 rebounds during his junior year at Shades Vally High School for Coach Mike Burrus ... son of Ernest and Belinda Watford.

    CREAN ON WATFORD
    "Christian, along with Maurice, showed the nation that Indiana never really went anywhere when it comes to getting national-level players from different parts of the country. Bennie Seltzer did a tremendous job of keeping up with Christian when we were at Marquette and we did feel like we had much of a chance (with him). And we all worked diligently to show Christian that he would be a very valuable part of our rebuilding process at Indiana. He has the ability to get to the rim and he can play on the perimeter. He is a matchup nightmare because if you go small on him he can take you down low and if you go big he can take you to the rim. He can be an excellent rebounder and what I feel, along with the other members of this class, is that he will be able to hold his own defensively for many years to come inside our program. We are really excited to have a player of Christian's caliber coming into Indiana."

     

     

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