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If he chooses to transfer, during his first on-campus visit to a prospective suitor, he will say "OK, the gym is nice. The facilities are nice. The locker room i nice. The campus is nice. ... Isn't it about time to bring the hookers and strippers?"
I presume this was in conjunction with Quinones visit.
Sam Story - Juwan Morgan And Jonny Jager helping with a recruiting visit for a guy the two would never play with... I think it says a lot about their character and their love of #IUBB . Very cool to hear about. Go Hoosiers!
Incredible self awareness. Ripping me for being uninformed (you don't know me), and yet you're so easy to dismiss Quinones simply based on where he goes to school (a program that churns out great players in many different sports, by the way). And by the way, that "pompous response" was in response to you ripping a current IU player when you didn't have all the facts of that player's situation. That was you being...critical, which apparently is also a fault of mine.
I am a big TJD and Franklin fan; I think they will both have varying degrees of impact next season. However, it seems ignorant in my mind to dismiss our last remaining 2019 target, whose best skill is a huge area of need for our team next year.
Chad Lindskog - Evansville Courier & Press
Khristian Lander was your everyday teenager nearing the end of a pedestrian freshman year at Reitz High School this time last spring.
Those locally may have already heard about his tremendous basketball potential by then. Maybe they simply knew him for the highlights in his poofy hair — or perhaps they'd seen his highlight reel. Lander has always been a kid who plays hard and does the little things, but he was still young, something of an enigma.
He received his first college scholarship offer from IUPUI last April 23. Then Illinois offered July 31. Purdue and Indiana came calling next. By the time his sophomore season started, he held offers from Kansas and five Big Ten Conference schools and found himself on Kentucky's and Louisville’s radars, among others.
The spotlight now is fully focused on Lander, a do-it-all 6-foot-1 point guard considered a five-star recruit. He is ranked No. 13 nationally in the Class of 2021 by 247sports, No. 16 by ESPN and No. 23 by Rivals.
He was named co-MVP of the Underclassmen All-American Classic last month. He then attended the Team USA Junior National Team Minicamp during the Final Four in Minneapolis.
Lander also isn't close to achieving his goals.
“Just how your life changed in a matter of months, it can go back to Khristian Lander being nobody,” his trainer, Cardell McFarland, will occasionally remind him. “You have to stay humble and keep working.”
Lander's widespread attention ranges from the country’s best college coaches to the rest of us in Evansville.
They’ve taken notice of how good he already is at the sport he truly loves. He’s probably the most famous 16-year-old in Southern Indiana considering basically every time he posts to Instagram, he generates more than 1,000 likes.
“It’s kind of fake love, whatever you want to call it,” Lander said. “They weren’t trying to talk to me before and now they are. I know who the real people are in my life and who the fake people are as well. I can tell if they like me for me or for what I do, like, sport-wise.”
What many don’t see are the three-hour training sessions three-to-four days per week or the shootarounds when it’s only him inside the gym, determined to improve.
Indiana coach Archie Miller has made multiple visits to Reitz, including two weeks ago, on the first day the recruiting dead period ended. Illinois came to see him Tuesday evening. This weekend, Lander will be in the Dallas area with his Indiana Elite AAU team for the adidas Gold Gauntlet, which coincides with the first weekend of the spring coaches are allowed to evaluate in person.
He is growing into his body after starting high school at 5-11. Lander is a quick left-handed guard who doesn’t overdribble and can explode toward the rim. He admits his shot needs to be more consistent, but he’s working on it.
“People think that the kid just woke up one day and automatically started drawing interest and getting attention from college coaches,” McFarland said. “He puts in the work.”
Lander increased his production across the board and jumped from 13.7 to 22 points per game to go along with 4.3 rebounds and 3.7 assists for a 12-12 Panthers team with just one senior.
McFarland was a standout at Bosse and then a Division II All-American before eventually going on to have a professional career overseas. He serves as one of Lander’s mentors along with his parents, Keith and Brandie.
Not many who have come before him have received this much attention. Lander already is one of the most highly regarded players ever from Evansville. The last was JaQuan Lyle, who once was ranked the No. 8 Class of 2014 recruit and is still playing collegiately at New Mexico.
“It’s not a common thing to make it out of Evansville, so I’m trying to be one of those rarities,” Lander said. “I think I could go to the league someday — the NBA — if I stay grounded, get stronger, stay in the gym and on my schoolwork.”
Back when Lander was still in seventh grade, he occasionally made his way to Reitz to practice with some of the Panthers. He held his own and he acted like he was a leader.
By eighth grade, his buzz picked up on the grassroots circuit after he made a game-winning shot against the Milwaukee Spartans’ big man Michael Foster, now considered the No. 5 player in the Class of 2021. Lander has shown he won’t shy away from any challenge.
This summer, he’s the only person on his AAU team, Indiana Elite 2020, playing up a grade. He wanted to be the youngest guy because in college he’s going to be a freshman going against seniors, so he might as well acclimate now and further his comfort as the floor general.
The irony in all of that?
“He’s a pretty shy kid, he’s a quiet kid,” McFarland said. “If he knows you, he’s outgoing, he likes to joke around and have fun. He likes to be with his family, but other than that, he’s just a laidback kid.”
He’ll be an upperclassman next year and – if he wasn’t already – he’ll be the best player in the city on a Reitz team with potential seemingly as high as Lander’s. They’re basically all still growing into their bodies and will come of age together.
Lander has goals greater than himself.
“I feel like we can be really, really good,” he said. “Even though we’re young – we were young this past year with one senior – but this next year, we have a good chance to go far in the tournament.”
Remember, Khristian Lander is still your everyday high school sophomore. He enjoys music, fashion, his family and, of course, basketball. He and his father have matching tattoos of their initials. Except, dad has a king crown and son has a prince crown.
Lander is going to continue to develop as a player and mature as a person. Meanwhile, he’s trying to make the most of every opportunity, because he knows how much life can change in a summer.
“It feels like a dream to be honest because I never thought this early in my high school career I would be at those blue-blood schools,” he said.
What about other grad transfers? They wouldn't impact '20 scholarship availability and we have certainly have room and needs to fill. Are we set with Brunk or do you see the staff pursuing others in the grad transfer market?