Hughes joins Jayden Taylor (Perry Meridian) and Pierce Thomas (Brownsburg) in Butler’s highly regarded recruiting Class of 2021 (which so far, is ranked #11 nationally by 247 sports) and comes from entirely the Bulldogs’ ‘own backyard’:
“At first, I dreamed of playing far away from home, but when I got to Butler and went on the visit, it was a completely different energy,” Hughes said via 247Sports’ Brian Snow. “It felt like family there. I love coach LaVall and how they play. I saw that was the place for me, so I didn’t see any need to wait around and talk to other schools.”
The 6’8″, 240 pound Hughes is a 3-star power forward who had also received offers from Ball State, Duquesne, Evansville, and Toledo among other programs. Xavier and Virginia Tech were also recently expressing heavy interest. His stock was expected to potentially rise over the coming year and summer (the latter which has been limited because of the ongoing pandemic).
Hughes had been lauded for having a tireless worth ethic and has only gotten stronger–having recently put on 15 pounds of muscle to his still growing frame:
With a developing perimeter game, Hughes appears to have the skill-set as a versatile pick ‘n roll big man offensively with his ability to roll and take it strong to the rim (playing above the cylinder).
Hughes is physical and athletic, and he should provide a true forward to a Butler squad that will lose starter Bryce Nze (r-senior) and top defensive backup Christian David (senior) a year from now to graduation–although the Bulldogs have plans to play him at small forward as well:
In general, it doesn’t matter all that much to me where Butler recruits its talent–whether it’s from the state of Indiana or elsewhere. The Bulldogs should compile superior talent–if they fit their culture and ‘The Butler Way’, wherever they can get it.
Sure, it makes for a great ‘feel good’ story, but many of Butler’s best recent players weren’t from in-state: Shelvin Mack (KY), Ronald Nored (AL), Kelan Martin (KY), Andrew Chrabascz (RI), Rotnei Clarke (OK), and Kamar Baldwin (GA) among them.
If a kid can play, he can play.
That being said, the fact that Butler head coach LaVall Jordan and his coaching staff are readily tapping into Indiana locally–and specifically their own city of Indianapolis’ talented recruiting pool right now (which has previously eluded the program historically), and it’s just another pipeline for the Bulldogs to secure such prospective superior recruiting talent.
Welcome to the Bulldogs, D.J.!