COLUMBUS | Sometimes the story is on the basketball floor, between the hardwood lines of America's game. Often, though, it is not.
Bowman Academy junior Davon Dillard was unsure about his future at the school before his Junior All-Stars took on the Indiana All-Stars at Columbus North High School on Wednesday night.
The 6-foot-6 superstar is being recruited by almost every college in America. But with one year left of prep ball, his phone might be ringing from someone else.
“I'm still deciding if I'm going back to Bowman,” Dillard said before the game. “My mom and I will sit down and make a decision. We'll make a decision at the end of summer. I'm not worried about it at all.”
In two years with the Eagles, Dillard has taken his team to two state championship games, winning one.
Purdue has offered both Dillard and E.C. Central's Hyron Edwards, also a Core 6 Junior All-Star. The Cardinals sharp-shooter hopes he and his buddy end up at the same college.
“We always talk about that all the time,” said Edwards, who said that UNLV and California have picked up their recruiting of him of late.
Both were also talking about what the Juniors must do to slow down the Indiana All-Stars, who dropped 140 on the Juniors on Monday night in Logansport.
“We have to have better helpside defense,” Dillard said. “We have to find a way to stop them.”
Mr. Basketball Trey Lyles of Indianapolis Tech did not play on Wednesday due to an injury, along with Plymouth's Mack Mercer, also injured. But it didn't matter as the All-Stars won 124-102.
The Seniors led 55-34 at halftime, with Park Tudor's Trevon Bluiett, whose father played football at Lew Wallace, scoring 20 first-half points. Bluiett, whose teams beat both Bishop Noll and Bowman in Class 2A state championship games, scored 44 points on 19-of-26 shooting.
Marion's James Blackmon Jr. had 28 for the Indiana All-Stars, who are showing that this group is an offensive juggernaut.
“We just have to keep doing what we do,” said Lake Central's Tyler Wideman, who was solid in the paint again, scoring seven and grabbing seven rebounds.
Edwards had 12 points for the Juniors and Dillard chipped in eight, with six coming on awe-inspiring dunks. Penn's Jordan Geist led the 11th graders with 13 points
Indiana All-Star assistant coach Clint Swan of Crown Point said both games against the Juniors were to prepare the All-Stars for Friday's game against Kentucky in Lexington and Saturday's game at Bankers Life Fieldhouse.
Nothing more. Nothing less.
“The Kentucky games are what this is all about,” Swan said. “Kentucky is very athletic and talented. We made some mistakes against the Juniors that we can't make against Kentucky.”