To no one’s surprise, the top remaining uncommitted prospect in the class of 2018, Romeo Langford, has committed to Indiana.
Langford, a five-star shooting guard out of New Albany, IN, chose the Hoosiers over Vanderbilt and Kansas. Considered a consensus top-ten recruit, he becomes arguably the most important recruit Indiana has gotten over the last 20 years.
Just look at the line formed outside New Albany High School hours before the decision this afternoon.
Line forming for Romeo Langford’s college announcement at New Albany HS. In two hours. Craaaaaaazy. pic.twitter.com/7In7vXJTnG
— Gregg Doyel (@GreggDoyelStar) April 30, 2018
When we got to the actual ceremony, however, it turned into an absolute classic right out of the gates.
New Albany head coach Jim Shannon started things out by comparing his prized gem to NBA legend Oscar Robertson.
New Albany coach Jim Shannon: "He is this generation’s Oscar Robertson or Damon Bailey, he’s a McDonald’s All American and now, he’s our first Indiana Mr. Basketball."
— Zach Osterman (@ZachOsterman) April 30, 2018
No pressure there, kid.
Langford’s pastor was the second of what seemed to be 35 guest speakers to share his input on the Indiana boy wonder. And boy did he give him praise.
First we had Oscar Robertson and Damon Bailey. Next, we got Abraham Lincoln comparisons.
Romeo Langford has been compared to Abraham Lincoln and Oscar Robertson during his college commitment ceremony. I love high school basketball. https://t.co/tW7U76PEF8
— Scott Phillips (@phillipshoops) April 30, 2018
Needless to say, Twitter had a ball with that one.
One difference between Romeo Langford and Abraham Lincoln: Honest Abe was a none-and-done. No college at all. Went straight to the pros.
— Dan Wolken (@DanWolken) April 30, 2018
No word on if Abraham Lincoln will be joining Langford in Bloomington. 6-4 wing, seen as a great communicator and leader for the way he handled the Civil War, but 180-pound frame seen as a pretty significant hindrance.
— Sam Vecenie (@Sam_Vecenie) April 30, 2018
And that wasn’t even the best part of the announcement. Because in case you weren’t aware going into it, this was Tim Langford’s day to shine.
Romeo’s father took the microphone and quickly stole the show (in his mind,
probably certainly.) He started out by talking about how “we” could’ve made “our” announcement however “we” wanted to, whether it be on social media, national television, etc. But he wanted to have it go “my way” and hold it in the New Albany HS gymnasium.
Daddy Langford then talked about the list of schools he was interested in during the recruiting process, why it took so long for “them” to make a decision, and how “they” had to cut the list down to three. He followed it up by saying he didn’t want to take up too much of everyone’s time, but then continued to take more of people’s time.
He called out to Vanderbilt fans, then Indiana, then Kansas, to give an audible fan representation of those in attendance. He finished the cheer fest with the largest of all, “How many Romeo Langford fans are in the house?”
He then went down the list of his son’s flaws on the basketball court, calling out the fans/media analysts who say he isn’t tough and played against horrible competition. He talked about how his son was double and triple-teamed over the last two years, and how his two games on ESPN proved the competition was elite, begging the audience to inform him of who else had to face similar adversities in high school basketball.
All the hours he spent complaining to Coach Cal about not getting playing time in Egypt and serving as the manager for his child’s services finally paid off. He had his one shining moment. The spotlight was finally on Tim Langford.
But again, he “didn’t want to take up too much of everyone’s time,” and the event was all about his son. Sure.
When all the hoopla was over and it was time for an actual decision, Romeo very respectfully took the stand, gave out thoughtful thank-yous to those who recruited him and supported him throughout his high school journey, and made his much-anticipated pledge to Indiana. The only minute-or-so Romeo had the center-stage, things went great.
The 35 minutes of non-Romeo talking/videos/speakers? Not so much.
Good luck at Indiana, Tim! (Oh, and Romeo.)