Cody Zeller named 2011 Indiana Mr. Basketball

He’s the most popular Indiana Hoosier before he has even put on the cream and crimson. The most important piece of Tom Crean’s recruiting efforts to rebuild a decimated Hoosier program is stronger because of this man. Sunday, Cody Zeller won the 2011 Indiana Mr. Basketball award to join his brothers who also won this distinguished honor.

Cody’s two older brothers, Luke and Tyler each won the award in 2005 and 2008 respectively. This puts a cap on a tremendous high school career for Cody. He averaged 24 points and 13.5 rebounds per game in his senior season, leading Washington High School to their third IHSAA Class 3A State Championship in his four years.

The youngest Zeller received 198 or 283 votes, nearly 70% of the votes. Warsaw’s Nic Moore was runner-up with 21 votes and Marquis Teague of Pike and Bloomington South’s Dee Davis each had 16.

I am surprised Zeller didn’t receive even more votes because there wasn’t a kid in high school that did more for his team. Cody constantly battled double-teams and when he wasn’t scoring, he used his tremendous passing skills to find an open teammate. Zeller was special because he made his teammates better – and that’s saying a lot. It’s not just about raw talent, but what you do for your team and school.

Many IU fans expect him to come in and be the difference maker next season and he may be. But the grounded Zeller will continue with his calm yet tenacious demeanor on how he approaches every practice and every game. One of the biggest reasons Cody choose IU was for the challenge – the challenge to restore Indiana to prominence. Indiana will benefit not only from his 6-11 length, but his active defensive, shot-blocking ability, and passing skills. He is truly an all-around player that very well could be the X-factor for the Hoosiers.

Cody is ranked 11th in the 2011 class according to ESPN and 20th by rivals.com.

This award came at no surprise because Cody Zeller completely won the award and displayed his skills all year long. It’s great to see such a young talent get praise and awards for being himself and not getting caught up in the circus.

Zeller will be the 26th Indiana Mr. Basketball to play for the Hoosiers.

Future Indiana teammate Austin Etherington is expected to join Zeller on the Indiana All-Stars roster. As usual, the seniors will scrimmage the junior all-stars twice, then battle the Kentucky All-Stars in a home and home matchup. Below is the schedule.

June 6th – Junior/Senior – at Washington (Daviess), 6 p.m.
June 8th – Junior/Senior at Kokomo, 6 p.m.
June 10th vs. Kentucky at Bellarmine University, 5:30 p.m.
June 11th vs. Kentucky at Conseco Fieldhouse, 5 p.m.

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