Thanks to #16 overall prospect Hanner Perea for doing the interview with us. Perea recently participated in the North vs. South All-American Championship game and committed to Indiana last October. He attends La Lumiere School in Indiana and is a power forward who stands at 6’8”, 210.
What’s your favorite and least favorite part of being recruited?
Well, my favorite part is that everybody gets to know me and who I am but my least favorite part is when people and the media make up things about me that aren’t true.
Why did you choose to commit to Indiana?
I was looking for a place where I can get the education that I need and where I can play good basketball and that’s what I found in Indiana. Indiana is a great school and I have been around it for a long time now so I know the coach and he is one of the best coaches for me. I know he is going to help me a lot and because I know that by the time I get to IU they will have a great program going on and I think it will make everything easy for me to make my dreams come true.
I play basketball because it is a sport where I can be myself and since I’m really good at it it’s going to help me and my family in the future.
How has playing basketball affected you off the court and in life?
Playing basketball brings a lot of new things into my life like new people and new places to live since I’m not from United States but basketball is the reason why I’m here.
Who has helped you the most in the recruiting process?
Well, I would say that my guardian has helped me a lot since he is the one who takes care of me here and my high school coach has helped me a lot too.
Is there anyone in the NBA you model your game after?
I want to play like three people from the NBA, as I keep getting better I want to play like LeBron James since he is my favorite player right now. But I also like Dwight Howard and now I like Blake Griffin too so I think I play like him because of our similar jumping ability.
What’s your favorite memory playing basketball?
My favorite memory is when I came to the United States and played my first basketball game. I knew it wasn’t going to be easy but that made me want to get better more and more every time I play.
What do you need to improve upon and what are you doing to get better?
Well I really need all the help that I can get from my coaches and right now I’m about to start individual work outs with my coach to improve more on my game.
Why do you think you are a highly touted prospect?
Because of the way I am and how serious I take the game of basketball and because I’m a person who is thinking about getting better all the time.
Do you have any interesting or funny recruiting stories?
Yeah, what the Baylor coach tried to make me do but I think you know what that is. (Explanation: A Baylor assistant coach sent a text message to Perea’s coach implying that if he did not commit to Baylor Perea would be deported, Perea committed to Indiana soon afterwards. Here is what the text message said from Baylor Assistant Coach Mark Morefield to Perea’s coach: “I guarantee u if he does [commit to another school] he will be in Colombia for the spring and summer and next year. Don’t forget it.”)
We post our interviews with the top prospects every Monday so look every week to check them out.