September 14, 2011

Woodbury to Iowa

On Wednesday night the suspense finally ended and Adam Woodbury made it official. The 7-footer from Sioux City, IA announced in front of friends and family that he was committing to the University of Iowa.

The commitment from Woodbury ended four years of recruiting by the Hawkeyes under two different coaches. Woodbury was initially offered by former Coach Todd Lickliter and one of the first orders of business when Coach Fran McCaffery took over as head coach was to make sure Woodbury knew that offer was still on the table and that he would be recruiting him very hard.

That hard work paid off on Wednesday night when the four star center announced his decision.

"Fran really worked Adam harder than any other coach," said Woodbury's AAU Coach Hank Huddleson. "He was at nearly every one of our games the last two years during the July evaluation period and he built a great relationship with Adam and his family."

Woodbury came into the spring as a Top 100 prospect with interest and offers from many high D1 programs. Then he took his game to another level starting in the spring and culminating in earning MVP honors at the prestigious NBA Players Association Camp in June.

Rivals.com's basketball recruiting analyst Eric Bossi saw this development and has high praise for Woodbury taking his game to a higher level.

"The first couple of years I watched Woodbury play, I didn't really see what everybody else was seeing in his game. However, in the last year I've developed a new appreciation for him. No he's no not the most athletic or lengthy interior player, but he's got a competitive fire, high skill level and some of the best hands in high school basketball. Maybe more than any other player in the class of 2012, Woodbury has accepted what he can and can't do physically and built his game around strengths and maximized his skill. He will still have to adjust to dealing with lengthy, quick twitch athletes, but he's a skilled grinder who could develop into an All-Conference type player at Iowa."

Hank Huddleson has coached Adam the past four years that Woodbury has played with his Martin Brothers AAU program, has seen him add to his game every year and then take an even more significant leap this spring and summer, which landed him in the #42 spot overall in Rivals.com's rankings for the Class of 2012.

"He has really added something to his game each and every year. I remember hearing from the Sioux City coaches back when he was in 8th grade and he put a lot of time and effort into his game and his body each and every year," he said. "He struggled a year ago during the summer due to a bad back, so this spring and summer, people really saw what he could do. He was really exceptional this year for us."

There's a lot to like about Woodbury's game that he will bring to Iowa City starting next fall, according to Huddleson.

"He's got a great motor and he really runs the floor very well for a big man. You don't see many 7-footers diving for balls on the floor, but he is one of the first guys down there making the effort. He has really good hands and can score with his back to the basket, which to me is a lost art in the game and he can score with either hand."

Perhaps the most important aspect for Iowa Basketball is that Woodbury is a great fit for the type of basketball that Coach McCaffery would like to play. He thrives in an up tempo style of play because of his ability to run the floor.

"I think he's a great fit for Fran's system," Huddleson said. "He wants to create pressure and press on the floor and Adam could be the guy at the front on the ball or he could be the guy at the back end defending the basket. Adam has good feet and he moves well without the ball. I think he has a good basketball IQ and he's a good passer. I think those things are all good fits for what Fran wants to do."


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