Indiana coach Mike Woodson made his first class of 2023 scholarship offer on Thursday night. And the offer went to a priority position in the incoming high school junior class.
Illinois based point guard Jeremy Fears, Jr. announced on his Twitter page he had received the offer from IU upon concluding an unofficial visit in Bloomington.
After a great un official visit and experience with coach Woodson and staff Blessed to receive a scholarship offer from Indiana University. @IndianaMBB #bigten @247Sports @Rivals @michaelsobrien @chilandprephoop @scottybscout @TravisBranham_ @VerbalCommits pic.twitter.com/YPXMYoi7ic
— Jeremy Fears jr. The Floor General (@jeremy_fears) June 11, 2021
Fears, Jr. is a 4-star recruit in the class of 2023, hovering near the 5-star line. 247Sports lists him as the No. 23 overall player in the class, and the No. 7 point guard. The 6-foot-1 Fears, Jr. hails from Joliet, Ill. and attends La Lumiere in Laporte, Ind. For AAU basketball he plays up a year with the U17 Nike affiliated Brad Beal Elite program.
The Fears family arrived in Bloomington on Thursday intrigued by Woodson and the Indiana program.
They left with the offer and a strong impression of what the first year head coach is putting together at his alma mater.
“We were impressed with the overall day, just everything really,” Fears’ father Jeremy Fears, Sr. told The Daily Hoosier.
Today was the first day that Indiana held on the court team workouts with Woodson and the staff, and Fears, Sr., who played college basketball himself, liked what he saw.
“Coach (Woodson) was just really, really hands on while the guys were working out today,” Fears, Sr. said. “Really engaged, real detail oriented on what he wanted. He was teaching the game.”
Whether on the court or off of it, Woodson’s demeanor struck a chord with the family.
“His personality, just the way he was talking to us. It was impressive how down to earth he was,” Fears, Sr. said. “You would never know his resume. He is real nice and humble, but he means business. He’s real knowledgeable and experienced to the highest level, and then he gets on the court and displays the same type of actions.”
Although they arrived with a favorable impression of Indiana, that was based more on tradition and reputation than actual first hand experiences.
“We didn’t know what to expect. None of us have ever been to Bloomington. All of the facilities in the Big Ten are nice but those were top notch,” Fears, Sr. said.
The family toured the customary facilities such as Cook Hall, Assembly Hall, the weight room, and dining areas. But what really hit the mark was the housing for the basketball players next door to Simon Skjodt Assembly Hall.
“The living conditions were something that I’ve never seen before. For young athletes, we couldn’t have been more impressed with that. Next level,” Fears, Sr. told The Daily Hoosier.
The family also arrived with a good sense that Fears, Jr. was a priority recruit for IU in the class of 2023, but they felt that with personal touches during the visit.
“The presentation they put together was next level too,” Fears, Sr. said. “They put together a presentation with coach’s future style of play, what he wants to do, what he expects, and how my son could fit in. It was definitely something that they didn’t just throw together. They definitely put the time into it, and we definitely felt the warmth.”
Fears, Jr. previously visited Illinois and Missouri this month. On each visit he is focused on three priorities, and IU checked all the boxes on Thursday.
“He said it was big time,” Fears, Sr. said of his son’s reaction to the day. “The coaching staff is next level as well. You got Thad Matta, Rosemond, Hunter, and Fife.
The overall, with the three most important things — the coaching staff, the opportunity and fit, and then facilities, he said it was impressive for sure.”
In the end, Indiana confirmed their strong interest with the offer on Thursday, and overall they left the family with a strong impression of the program.
“I felt like it (that Fears, Jr. was a priority) but after getting there, the presentation they did was 100 percent, and good things can come from that, believe me,” Fears, Sr. said.
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