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COLUMN: Hope follows Romeo Langford to IU


New Albany High School senior Romeo Langford enters the gym during Langford's announcement Monday night at New Albany High School in New Albany, Indiana. Langford announced the next step in his basketball career will be at IU.  Evan De Stefano

NEW ALBANY, Ind. — Romeo Langford is an Indiana Hoosier.

IU fans can shout it from the rooftops as loud as they want.

The Hoosiers did it. They managed to land one of the best recruits the state of Indiana has ever seen. 

IU could now have possibly one of the best players to ever wear the cream and crimson in Simon Skjodt Assembly Hall next season.

Hoosier fans are surely thinking about hanging a sixth national championship banner now, and who could blame them?

What started as a dream turned into reality. It seemed like an eternity waiting for Langford to announce his college choice, and the process finally concluded Monday evening. IU is getting a big-time player in Langford, who brings size, shooting and ball-handling to the table.

At the high-school level, Langford had the ability to score whenever he wanted to and create something out of nothing. It’s obviously not set in stone, but his ability to create could translate seamlessly while wearing a Hoosier uniform.

What’s interesting about his decision is how IU got to this point.

Langford said he didn’t really have IU in the mix of his college choices at the beginning of his senior season. This means IU Coach Archie Miller worked wonders between then and now.

It also speaks volumes to what Miller can bring to IU in the future.

Miller has already started recruiting the likes of Keion Brooks, Trendon Watford and Trayce Jackson-Davis. All three prospects are in the class of 2019, and, after seeing a player like Langford commit, their heads could be turning toward Bloomington as well.

The Hoosiers managed to captivate the heart of one of the most beloved athletes from the state of Indiana in just a matter of months. There’s no way other recruits won't look at Langford’s commitment and not be interested in what Miller and company have to offer.

Miller’s ability to lure Langford away from powerhouses such as Duke, Kansas and North Carolina could be the start of something bigger.

Bigger than Romeo Langford? The player who finished fourth in all-time high school scoring in the state of Indiana? Possibly.

If IU can land five-star talent for years to come, the hardware will follow. It could start next season with Langford.

Miller’s staff has already worked wonders from the early days of his arrival in Bloomington. From showering Langford and former IU recruit Darius Garland with admiration at Hoosier Hysteria, to improving IU's abysmal defense within his first year, it’s hard to look at any aspect of the program and not be impressed with what has been done.

Finally, IU can check off the biggest task it set out to accomplish. The focus is now on next season and beyond.

IU could return to its blue-blood status as one of the nation’s top colleges at which to play basketball. 

If that’s the case, the point of origin could be New Albany, Indiana.


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