Luke Brown, the 6-foot Indiana high school scoring legend who became something of a basketball cult figure during his career at Blackford High School from 2017 through 2021, has left the Stetson University basketball program before ever playing a game, and will look for a new college to attend, sources told HoosiersNow.com on Monday.
UPDATE (Sept. 27): Luke Brown commits to Ball State. He announced his decision on Twitter on Monday.
Brown is no longer listed on Stetson's basketball roster as of Monday morning. Stetson coach Donnie Jones, who is in his third season as head coach at the Deland, Fla., school, said through a school media relations official that he doesn't talk about players who are no longer in the program.
Sources say that Brown will formally enter the NCAA's transfer portal this week.
Stetson was 12-15 a year ago, and getting Brown out of Indiana was a recruiting coup for Jones and his staff. Because of COVID-19 restrictions, Brown wasn't able to visit the campus or meet in person with coaches, so he made his recruiting decision sight unseen.
As it turns out, the fit wasn't right.
Brown is No. 4 on the all-time Indiana scoring list, totaling 3,011 points in his high school career at Blackford in Hartford City. He passed the 3,000-point mark in his final game, a Class 2A semistate loss to eventual state champion Blackhawk Christian, which was led by Purdue signee Caleb Furst.
"My legs were gone," said Brown, who finished with a game-high 34 points. "I figured I'd airball and I didn't want to go out like that. I've never been that type of player, you know, with three minutes left and I have 40 and have to try and get 50 and keep launching away. I know some fans are going to be upset that I didn't, but my legs are just a little dead."
The only Indiana prep players to score more points than Brown are Damon Bailey (3,134), Marion Pierce (3,019) and Deshaun Thomas (3,018). He passed former Indiana Hoosier Romeo Langford (3,002) in his final game.
Blackford finished the 2020-21 season with a 25-5 record. Brown had a 77-24 record during his four-year career at Blackford, and became a small-school high school legend in the process. He scored like crazy, but also finished his career with more than 600 assists.
He had his number 25 retired at the Blackford County high school in a ceremony at the end of the season.
Part of his legendary story was where he did it, too. In the three years before Brown got there, Blackford had won only one game, going 1-69 in the process. Brown was coached by Indiana Hall of Fame coach Jerry Hoover his first three years. Grant Newlin took over last year when the 86-year-old Hoover stepped aside because of concerns over the COVID-19 pandemic.
Brown committed to Stetson in the summer of 2020. He wasn't ranked in most recruiting services because of his size, and the major programs in the state did not offer him a scholarship.
Brown played in the Indiana-Kentucky All-Star series, both wins for Indiana. He was the leading scorer with 18 points in the win in Owensboro, Ky., and he had 10 points, four rebounds and four assists in the win at Southport High School, playing on a loaded roster full of talent.
“I think it’s good,” Brown told the Indianapolis Star after the game. “A lot of us are used to being the guy and you’re not getting subbed for missing a shot or making a bad play. I think it really prepared us for these upcoming weeks of college. I love coach Osborn and think it is really going to help us in the future.”
Brown left for Stetson this summer and had been working out with the team before deciding to come home. He had also signed an NIL deal with Barstool Athletics.
This story is developing. It will be updated throughout the day.