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Monday, April 25, 2011

Brandon Wood Update

Wood on the drive
Disclaimer: I will do my best to stay objective in writing any updates regarding Wood's future.  I do wish him the best with whatever decision he arrives at.  Much of what you are about to read comes from message board posts and personal messages I have received from Anthony Wood, Brandon's father, who has graciously given me permission to write about Brandon and the process he is currently going through.

The odds of Brandon returning to Valpo are quite bleak at the moment for several reasons.  There is no question about Brandon's offensive capabilities.  He has led Valpo in scoring the past two years, he was tied for the team lead in assist this past year, and is clearly capable of scoring from anywhere on the court.  He has proved those things and, according to Anthony Wood, these are not qualities that are in question about Brandon by the NBA people.  What they want to see is how Brandon is at "matching up defensively against bigger, stronger and NBA ready players is the number one concern along with the ability to play with and against other NBA ready players on a night in and night out basis."

What the scouts want to see
This is red flag number one.  I don't really see how this is possible in the Horizon League next season.  With Norris Cole being gone and the possibility of Shelvin Mack leaving Butler that really only leaves a guy like Ray McCullum Jr. as the best player at Brandon's position.  Playing in a major conference like the Big Ten would put Brandon up against these bigger, stronger, more NBA ready guards on a more consistent basis.  Valpo and the Horizon League just can't offer the same competition next season.

Ready for red flag number 2?  It's a big one.  In a message from Anthony Wood received late Monday (4/25) evening, Brandon is in the process of scheduling "Official Visits" with both Purdue University and Michigan State University to take place in the next week or so.  For this to happen, it tells me that there is mutual interest from all parties.  I'm told the visit with Purdue will probably happen first this week, and the visit with MSU will most likely take place next week.

The Valparaiso coaching staff has not issued Brandon any kind of deadline for making his decision on whether or not he will transfer, but I'm told Brandon is taking this is into consideration and will not drag things out longer then need be.

My two sense.  The NBA is full of guys who only have one job, score points (Kyle Korver, Mike Bibby, Eddie House, Mike Miller these are just the first few that came to mind that would play a similar position as Brandon).  There aren't many guys in the league outside of a few big men who are in the Association because they can defend.  With that being said, Brandon can prove to the NBA scouts that he is an offensive force by staying at Valpo.  He would be the focus of every team's defense that VU would go up against, and if he could score 20-25ppg that would mean more to me (the furthest person from an NBA scout) then would scoring say 8-10ppg at a Big Ten school where everything will be new (again trying hard not to be too biased).

Whatever decision he comes to, I do wish Brandon the best and would like to thank him for the couple years he spent at Valpo helping this program succeed in the Horizon League.  Please feel free to leave any comments, and if you'd like an email alert when a new post is made at please put your email address in the space provided above this post and click submit.


  1. I'm not familiar with the depth charts of Purdue and Michigan State, how would he fit in if he went there? Are there obvious openings that he could fit into with either of those teams?

  2. I think the better fit is probably MSU out of those two. MSU is losing Lucas, Kebler, and Summers to graduation and Lucious is gone via transfer. All of those guys were listed as guards. I'm also pretty sure that MSU has a scholarship available but they only want to use it on a one and done type player. If he goes, I think Wood will probably pick MSU.

    Purdue should only be losing Moore and Johnson both to the NBA. Purdue is closer to home for Wood, but from what I've read from their fan boards is that bringing on Wood may hinder the developement of some of their other guys.

  3. Hope he stays, he will continue to be a big fish in a little pond and will stand out more. Good read.

  4. Thanks for the info. I agree that MSU sounds like it would be in the lead if they were going to offer a scholarship.

    It's an interesting situation for the VU coaching staff because you don't want recruits to think that you are a school that you can build up your rep and leave in the dust. At the same time they need to be congnizant to the players needs/wants.

  5. Hank Curry, Wood won't hinder the development of Purdue's Terone Johnson and Anthony Johnson as long as he remains a team player. He wants to go to a Big Ten school and have NBA scouts come to more of his games, but that doesn't mean that he will have to put up 20-25 shots every game.

    If he wants to shows scouts how he can defend NBA type-guards, Purdue is a good place to go as they have been one of the better defensive teams in college b-ball under Matt Painter for the last 4-5 years. Plus, he would get to play against those type of guards there: UI's Brandon Paul, UM's Darius Morris and Tim Hardaway, Jr., NW's Drew Crawford, OSU's Aaron Craft and William Buford, UW's Jordan Taylor.

  6. Admitedly I don't know much about Purdue's team. Like I said above that is just what I've read from other Purdue fans off one of their message boards. Seems like the fans of both Purdue and Michigan State are pretty much mixed on whether they want Wood or not.

    No doubt he would face better competition on a nightly basis playing in the Big Ten, that is not even debatable.

  7. That's okay. I wouldn't expect a Crusaders fan to be that interested in the Boilermakers.

    I believe Brandon Wood could be a big part of Purdue's team next season and would have good enough teammates surrounding him (Robbie Hummel, Lewis Jackson, Ryne Smith, D.J. Byrd, Kelsey Barlow, Terone Johnson, Anthony Johnson, Travis Carroll, Donnie Hale) to make them a team that can win or greatly challenge for the Big Ten title and reach the Final Four of the NCAA Tournament. They would just need another forward or center to step their game up some and help out Hummel to do that, which isn't out of the question. Wood might also help with Purdue's perimeter defense, which kind of had a bit of a down year last season after 4 years of having Chris Kramer in the backcourt.