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INDIANAPOLIS -- For Hyron Edwards Jr., humble is cool, if not necessary. What choice does the point guard have? Sometimes, you see, father does know best.
Hryon Sr.'s message is clear: Don't let the recent outpouring of attention and national ranking rise (ESPN.com has him in the top 15 nationally in the Class of 2015) ruin what has the makings of a very good basketball opportunity.
Humility can teach what ego can distort, and Edwards, who is set to enter his sophomore season at East Chicago Central, has bought into the message. National rankings, media attention and a growing number of high-profile coaches at his July travel ball games aren't relevant.
“My dad always says stay humble. I don't worry about all that outside stuff. I want to better my game. Just worry about that.”
It's working. Edwards has emerged as a potential major college point guard, the 2015 version of 2012's Yogi Ferrell, who is set to debut at Indiana in November.
Edwards is a 5-10, 160-pound full-throttle player who controls games with his scoring and passing. He can create instant offense when it's there, switch to a patient probing of the defense when it's necessary. He pushes the pace, handles the ball, finds the open man and hits the open shot.
His Indiana Elite/Team Indiana U15 coach, Mark Adams, has praised Edwards' quick feet, knowledge of the game, knack for playing defense and overall speed. Edwards rivals, if not surpasses, Indianapolis Cathedral's Jalen Coleman as the state's best point guard for 2015.
Indiana coach Tom Crean has noticed. So has Purdue coach Matt Painter. Both offered Edwards scholarships while he was still a freshman at East Chicago Central. While those remain his only two offers, Illinois, Notre Dame and Michigan are taking a long look at him.
That's fine, Edwards says, because he's in no hurry to commit.
“I'll take time, go to games and go to the campuses,” he says. "I still want to work hard to get to the next level just like everybody else is," he said.
East Chicago coach Abe Brown saw this coming. Edwards played with the East Chicago varsity as a seventh grader. He averaged 14.6 points and 6.0 assists as a freshman. He's benefited from the tutelage of working with his father, who was a strong high school guard at Gary Roosevelt.
Brown has praised Edwards' maturity and basketball IQ, attributes Crean emphasizes during recruiting. Brown has also called Edwards, “the total package for his age.”
This total package has a high motor that isn't worn down by a hectic July schedule. Indiana Elite/Team Indiana, which was rolling until a surprising quarterfinal loss to the Colorado Hawks during last weekend's Adidas Invitational in Indianapolis, is set to play in Minneapolis this week and Las Vegas next week.
“Fatigue isn't an issue,” he says. “I have some great players beside me. When I get out of the game, my teammates finish the job.”
One of those teammates is Carroll standout Chandler White.
Counting the spring, Indiana Elite/Team Indiana has only lost twice, the other coming in the finals of the Best Buy tourney in Chicago at the end of May. Edwards is expecting a strong finish this month.
“It's going to be challenging,” he says. “There are some great teams out there. We have to play hard and work as a team. We'll see how great we are as we keep going.”
Edwards says he hopes to take unofficial visits to Purdue, Indiana and Michigan after the travel ball season ends at the end of the month. Those three have recruited him hard for a while, while Illinois is making a strong late push.
Crean is no stranger to offering scholarships to young players, even younger than Edwards. He just offered DeRon Davis, a 6-8 Colorado forward who has yet to enter high school, and who at least one publication ranked as the Class of 2016's No. 3 player. Crean earlier offered another eighth grader, Eron Gordon, the brother of former IU standout and current NBA player Eric Gordon.
Edwards goes to the same high school that produced former Purdue basketball standout E'Twaun Moore (now with the Boston Celtics) and current Purdue football standout Kawann Short. Edwards says he's talked to them both about what it takes to excel at the college level.
That's for the future. For now, Edwards is focused on improving his play, winning games and staying humble.
Not necessarily in that order.