It’s easy to see why Iowa wanted Wisconsin prep Brady Ellingson. The Hawkeyes ranked 11th in the Big Ten in 3-point percentage at 30.5 percent, just barely above last-place Penn State.
Perimeter shooting was a primary reason why the Hawkeyes didn’t qualify for the NCAA tournament last year. Several last-second shots didn’t fall, especially on the road in league play, so Coach Fran McCaffery sought an outside shooter for his 2014 class to compensate.
Shooting is Ellingson’s forte. The 6-foot-4 shooting guard, who committed to Iowa on Tuesday, averaged 21.3 points a game and put up more than 80 3-pointers for Sussex Hamilton High School, which is in the suburban Milwaukee area. Ellingson led the Chargers to a 21-3 record, a co-Greater Metro Conference title for the first time since 1979 and a spot in the WIAA regional tournament. According to the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, Ellingson shot 51 percent overall and 48 percent (86 of 179) from 3-point range.
His profile on wissports.net touts him as a “solid all-around player who can score off the dribble or from beyond the three-point arc.” He was an all-conference player as a sophomore and was his league’s player of the year as a junior.
“I really love Coach McCaffery and his staff,” Ellingson told Hawkeye Report. “I felt comfortable on the campus, it’s close to home, and I think their style of play fits me really well.”
His AAU teammate, point guard Riley LaChance, will visit Iowa this week. The two competed against one another in January for opposite high schools; Ellingston for Hamilton and LaChance for Brookfield Central. Ellingson scored 24 points, while LaChance put up nine in the showdown. The duo played for Ray Allen Select.
Ellingson is the first commitment for one of Iowa’s four available scholarships for the 2014 class. He’s listed as a three-star recruit by Rivals. Ellingson visited last weekend along with guard Scott Lindsay, forward Tory Miller and former Dominique Uhl. Lindsay committed to Northwestern on Sunday night.
Ellingson is likely to compete for playing time at the off-guard with Josh Oglesby (who will be a senior in 2014), Mike Gesell (a junior in 2014) and Peter Jok (a sophomore in 2014). Ellingson’s other finalists included Oakland (Mich.) and the University of San Diego.
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