Indiana basketball’s recruiting class of 2021 has risen to respectability in the national rankings thanks in large part to the rise of recent addition Tamar Bates.
The Kansas City, Kan. product jumped from No. 60 to No. 26 in 247Sports’ final rankings for the incoming freshman class. Bates remains a 4-star prospect according to the recruiting service. His updated rating makes him the eleventh highest rated player to sign with Indiana during the recruiting service rankings era. Previously, Bates had never been ranked inside the top-90 by 247Sports before a late surge over the last six months.
Fellow IU 2021 classmate Logan Duncomb is also a 4-star. He was slotted at No. 62 in the final 247Sports rankings.
Indiana is eighth in the overall team rankings in the Big Ten, but that measure is heavily influenced by the number of players in the class. Indiana only has two players in the class, while every team above them has three or more including top ranked Michigan with six additions.
When examining quality rather than quantity, the league rankings take on a different look. Based only on the average rating of each team’s incoming players, IU has the third most talented group of newcomers, trailing just Michigan State and Purdue by slim margins.
Nationally IU’s 2021 class is now No. 35 overall and No. 9 based on average player ranking according to 247Sports.
247Sports national analyst Eric Bossi described Bates this way when discussing his fast rise up the rankings:
“Affectionately known as “Scoop”, Bates is a 6-foot-5 two guard with wiry strength, scoring ability from deep and ability to get to the rim,” Bossi wrote. “Playing for a program filled with ranked players, Bates was often the best player on the floor and there is never any question about whether or not he’s going to show up ready to compete. He’s high energy all of the time and will undoubtedly be a fan favorite in Bloomington.”
Rivals, one of the other main recruiting sites, is also signaling Bates’ rise when that outlet finalizes its rankings next week.
“Every member of the Rivals rankings team seems to be in agreement that Indiana’s prized signee should slide up a little when the rankings refresh,” Rivals’ basketball recruiting director Rob Cassidy wrote this week. “All that’s left to determine is the size of the jump. Bates has developed as both a defender and a shooter over the last year and is now able to pair those things with good length, a motor that doesn’t stop and high-level passing ability that sometimes goes under-celebrated.”
Bates is currently a 4-star and the No. 57 overall player at Rivals, and that site has become an outlier. He is No. 23 at the third major ranking site, ESPN. Duncomb is No. 72 and No. 87 at Rivals and ESPN, respectively.
Indiana head coach Mike Woodson echoed the sentiments of the recruiting analysts on Bates when the school formally introduced him upon signing a couple weeks ago.
“He brings a high level of energy on the court and is regarded as an unselfish teammate,” Woodson said. “He is an outstanding defender who makes 3-pointers at a high percentage, can attack the rim, has great vision and the awareness to make plays for others.”
The Hoosiers will also welcome transfers Xavier Johnson, Miller Kopp and Parker Stewart to their 2021-22 roster.
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