Smith: Hoosier nation is going to love Robert Phinisee

By TYLER SMITH (@TylerSmith_ISL)
ISL Editor 

Robert Phinisee continues to put up big-time numbers in his senior season. (Photo by 247Sports)

Robert Phinisee continues to put up big-time numbers in his senior season.
(Photo by 247Sports)

CRAWFORDSVILLE —  The Indiana Hoosiers have a very strong recruiting class gearing up for next season.  One of the players that will be arriving in Bloomington this fall is McCutcheon point guard Robert Phinisee.  After one look at Phinisee up close, I can say with absolute confidence:  Indiana is going to love this kid.

Phinisee put together another eye-popping stat line in McCutcheon’s win over Crawfordsville on Tuesday night.  He had 36 points, nine assists, nine rebounds, and six steals.  He didn’t even play in the fourth quarter.  He made 13-of-19 from the field, including 4-of-7 from three, and was a perfect 6-of-6 from the foul line.

Earlier this season, he became the all-time leading scorer in Tippecanoe County history, and has continued to put up crazy numbers on a nightly basis.

As if his statistics weren’t impressive enough, Phinisee seems like the real deal in every category you’d like a recruit to be.

For starters, he’s very humble.  It’s rare to walk into a gym these days and see a humble star, but Phinisee fits that mold.  He was kind enough to talk with IU fans after the game and take some pictures.  He gave me some of his time to answer questions for this story.  And despite his video-game-like numbers, he never once showed up the opposition in any way.

He also seems like a great teammate.  He makes sure his teammates are in the right spots, and cheered loudly for them when he sat out the final quarter of the game.

Despite a few questionable calls going against him, he didn’t argue with officials.  He just moved on to the next play.

Don’t just take my word for it.  I can’t tell you how many tweets and texts I’ve received from people saying “He’s a really good kid,” and “Great player, even better person.”

In addition to all of this, he’s very excited to be a Hoosier.

“I’m looking forward to playing at Assembly Hall in front of all those fans,” Phinisee said. “I’m looking forward to going down there in the summer and just working hard and getting after it- Being able to play in front of Hoosier nation.”

Phinisee said he stays in touch with other recruits throughout the season as well:  “We stay updated with each other on Twitter.  We see each others stats and everything  It’s not really often but we stay in contact.”

I asked him what Archie Miller has told him to work on, and he said: “Just keep improving my game, and doing what I’m doing.  Keep working hard, and keep getting wins.”

When I asked him about the game itself, he didn’t talk about his stats.  He was more concerned with his team’s effort. “I feel like we played really well tonight.  We were hitting shots that we weren’t hitting in other games.  So hopefully we can just build off that and keep moving forward.”

It’s easy to overreact when you see a recruit play in high school.  And it was only one night.  But this one night told me everything I needed to know about the future point guard at Indiana.

Hoosier nation, you’re going to love this kid.


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