Photo by Mike Schumann / The Daily Hoosier

IU basketball recruiting: 2024 5-star Liam McNeeley respects Woodson’s basketball mind

When we watched Liam McNeeley a few weeks ago at the Nike EYBL event in the north Indianapolis suburbs, it was clear he was player who didn’t back down from much.

Tough-mind, physical and aggressive, McNeeley can influence the game in a number of ways on both ends of the floor with a versatile array of skills and intangibles.

At the third EYBL session in Louisville, McNeeley was give the chance to play up, and the class of 2024 5-star fit right in at the 17u level.

The Plano, Texas product averaged 10.4 points, 5.4 rebounds, 2.6 assists, 1.8 blocks, and 1.2 blocks in 23 minutes per contest playing for the Drive Nation 2023 EYBL squad in five games over Memorial Day weekend.

“It’s really fun.  It’s a lot more fun than playing 16s just because the speed of the game is a lot faster, it’s a lot more competitive, and I just like playing against high-level guys,” McNeeley told The Daily Hoosier.

“I’m just trying to show people that I can produce on any team.  I try to play as versatile as I can, so I play the one through four really.  I just try to produce for my teammates and get the win.”

The 6-foot-8 McNeeley says he sees himself as a point forward at the next level, and that’s an assessment that seems fair.  He often has the ball in his hands whether in transition or the half court, and he looks comfortable at all three levels on the offensive end.

“That’s me bringing up the ball sometimes initiating the offense, but that’s also me playing in the post when I’ve got mismatches,” said McNeeley of how he fits the point forward description.

When it comes to recruiting, schools still cannot call members of the class of 2024 directly until June 15, when McNeeley’s phone is likely to blow up when the clock strikes midnight.  Until then, he’s enjoying a bit of calm before the storm.

As one of the more versatile players in his class, McNeeley already has offers from Indiana, Georgia Tech, Illinois, Iowa, Oklahoma, Oklahoma State, Ole Miss, Stanford, TCU, Texas, Texas A&M and Texas Tech.

“We’ll get phone calls set up where I reach out to schools, but it’s just every once in a while right now,” he said.

Indiana offered in April after the first EYBL session.  McNeeley said assistant coach Brian Walsh is leading the charge.

“Indiana is a great basketball state, there’s a lot of basketball history,” McNeeley said. “It’s just a great accomplishment to get an offer (from IU), and it means a lot.”

When IU offered McNeeley spoke with head coach Mike Woodson.  He knows the Indiana head coach’s background and places value on his extensive time in the NBA.

“He was in the league more than I’ve been alive, so he knows what he’s talking about of course,” McNeeley said told The Daily Hoosier of Woodson.  “It’s just a great basketball mind, and I’m glad that he’s reaching out to me.”

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