LAS VEGAS – Almost criminally underrated for much of his recruitment, Valparaiso four-star combo guard Brandon Newman has seen his stock soar this spring and summer. Purdue and Indiana have prioritized him for their 2019 class, but they aren’t short on competition.
Earlier this summer, Newman announced he was leaving Valparaiso for Montverde Academy, a prep school in Florida.
IndyStar caught up with Newman on Thursday at the Fab 48 to discuss top schools and potential visit plans.
Newman said Purdue, Indiana, Ohio State, Maryland, Kansas (no offer), Kansas State, Baylor, Xavier, Creighton, Seton Hall and DePaul currently stand out in his recruitment. He hopes to significantly trim that list after July wraps up.
On Indiana …
The Hoosiers offered Newman during an unofficial visit June 25 and have quickly pushed him toward the top of their 2019 board.
“We speak weekly, daily. Texts and calls,” Newman said of his relationship with Archie Miller and his staff. “They see me as a guy who can make shots and defend. A two-way player. A guy that’s vocal.
“I like the way they play, really. I really enjoyed myself when they beat Northwestern by like 20. They’re fast, they like to run. They have guys that can make shots.”
Newman said Miller sees him as a combo guard that can also run the point when necessary.
On Purdue …
Newman said, among his list of interested schools, Purdue is recruiting him the hardest. Matt Painter or an assistant was at every single one of Newman’s games last week in Milwaukee, and Painter was courtside for Newman on Thursday morning.
“I do (feel like a priority),” Newman said. “They’ve been at every game last weekend, every single game in Milwaukee. I would expect more of the same this week. They’ve really been at every game, calling me, texting me, things like that.”
On Ohio State …
The Buckeyes offered Newman on July 5 — nine days before they landed five-star point guard D.J. Carton. That didn’t end their interest in Newman, though.
“Their assistant, coach (Ryan) Pedon, reached out to me as soon as D.J. committed and said I’m still a priority for them,” he said. “I’m still a guard they want to recruit.”
On Maryland …
Newman said his relationship with Maryland started a couple weeks ago, when coach Mark Turgeon called him. This relationship will be interesting to watch develop, as the Terrapins already have an in here.
Newman played high school ball with current Maryland forward Trace Ramsey. Newman was a sophomore when Ramsey was a senior.
On Kansas …
The Jayhawks haven’t offered Newman, but he said he’s in regular contact with assistant coach Norm Roberts. He has also spoken with Bill Self.
What do they need to see from him to extend an offer?
“Just more of the same stuff. Just being consistent, making shots, playing defense,” Newman said. “Really being a two-way guard.”
Whether Kansas offers will also likely depend on what happens with the rest of its higher-priority 2019 targets.
While he doesn’t have any visits scheduled, Newman knows he wants to take an unofficial to Xavier because he’s never been on campus. He also said he’d like to take an unofficial to Ohio State — maybe even two.
And, yes, he wants to visit Indiana and Purdue. He knows he’s being prioritized by the in-state schools. As an Indiana kid, he said that’s big.
“It means a lot,” he said. “They’re the top two programs in the state. For them to extend an opportunity to play at their school, it definitely means a lot.”