Hutton: All-area teams always include tough choices
By Mike Hutton 648-3139 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Twitter:@MikeHuttonPT April 6, 2013 11:28PM
Crown point guard Thoma Bardeson drives the lane in a IHSAA boys sectional game Thursday Feb. 28, 2013 in Michigan City, Ind. |Joe Raymond ~For Sun-Times Media
For the complete Post-Tribune All-Area teams, see pages 42-43
Updated: May 8, 2013 7:09AM
A behind the scenes look at selecting the Post-Tribune All-Area team, and a season ending high school basketball wrap-up.
What was the hardest omission?
Probably leaving Tom Bardeson off the team. He was like the 16th guy.
Bardeson had a phenomenal final game against Michigan City, when he scored 29 points in the Bulldogs’ 69-54 loss to the Wolves in sectionals. I really believe the 6-5 senior is a Division I player, but his shooting (38.6) and 3-point percentage were low (32.6).
Here is where it gets doubly difficult. It was low because the Bulldogs just weren’t that good this season and he was pretty much the guy. He was double- and triple-teamed and still got his points, yet it just wasn’t quite enough for him to be one of the top 15.
Another tough call was leaving Hyron Edwards off the team. Again, East Chicago, relative to expectations, struggled and when I watched Edwards play against West Side, he didn’t have a good game. Plus, there were plenty of point guard candidates, from Munster’s Mike Schlotman to Andrean’s Nick Davidson to Tye Wilburn at Lake Central to Bardeson to Portage’s Jordan Collazo, who might just be the most underrated in the area.
How about Coach of the Year?
A staggeringly difficult call to make. There were four great candidates and all of them were worthy.
Carson Cunningham at Andrean, T.J. Lux at Merrillville, Marvin Rea at Bowman and Mike Hackett at Munster. Ultimately, I chose Hackett, because, relative to expectations, the Mustangs performed better than any team in the area over the course of a season. I had the Mustangs ranked second in the area to start the year but they easily could’ve been third or fourth, with Andrean and Merrillville starting ahead of them.
The fact that they went undefeated during the regular season for the second time in three years, beating teams like Merrillville, was a deciding factor. Andrean and Penn on the road, was the “wow” factor that separated Munster from the other three teams, which all had great seasons. Lux was just as good. Bowman pretty much did what everyone expected the Eagles to do and if Andrean wins at semistate, the call would’ve been different.
Who are your top five?
Ok, this is where I get to be totally ridiculous.
If I get to take my five to the YMCA tomorrow, I go with Merrillville’s B.J. Jenkins, Bowman’s Davon Dillard and Justin King, Davidson and Lake Central’s Tyler Wideman.
Jenkins, because he can shoot from anywhere and beat just about anyone off his first step. Dillard, because he’s the most physically gifted player of the bunch. King, because he has a nasty streak, in a good way, that allows him to take control of games. Davidson, because he’s big and strong and does lots of stuff well. And Wideman, because he’s the one inside player that other teams have to gameplan against most. We’d be tough to beat.
Who played his way
onto to the team?
Definitely John Mosser of Valparaiso and Skyler Moss of Andrean. All of them played their way into the top 15, but Mosser was outside of it to start the season and Moss was definitely on the radar, but not a sure thing. Mosser’s final game, when he dropped 22 against Merrillville in an overtime loss in the sectional championship, was big. Moss was really consistent this year after dropping some weight and getting into good shape for the 59ers.
Who are your top five
teams for next year?
Bowman, Munster, Bishop Noll, West Side and Lake Central.
Bowman, with Dillard and King returning, will be one of the best Class 3A teams in state. Munster has Drew Hackett and Luke Wuchenich returning, along with a loaded junior varsity and freshman team. Noll gets Larry Crisler and Tyreon Gates back, while West Side has Arnold Wilson returning. Tyler Wideman and Tye Wilburn return to lead Lake Central.