Its been a while since the Creighton Bluejays had a kid from Nebraska come on the team and make a significant impact. A few years back the Jays trotted out Bellevue West High School product Antoine Young and Central High's Josh Jones - both arriving for a Dana Altman coached Jays squad in 2008. The left handed Young was Creighton's point guard in the final years in the Missouri Valley Conference while Josh Jones played either 2-guard or wing during that same span. Jones was forced out of basketball in the middle of the 2012-13 season due to a heart condition and since then the Jays haven't started a Nebraska native in its starting 5.
Well, that's all about to change. Justin Patton, a 6'10 All-Nebraska center from Omaha North High school has all the intangibles to crack the starting lineup next year. Weighing in at 215lbs, Patton showed in his senior season that he's the absolute real deal. According to this article, Patton was a relative unknown his junior season. Word began to spread during the AAU circuit that summer, and by the time the beginning of his senior season rolled around he was a top 50 recruit in the nation and ranked #8 among centers.
Greg McDermott recognized the skill Patton had before the hype train could take him away to Raleigh or Durham. McDermott locked him up in the summer before his Senior season, making sure that these sorts of amazing things (no. 0 in blue) would occur with Patton in Creighton blue and white.
The versatility that Patton offers is readily available in highlight videos and scouting reports but it's the fact that he wants to play in his hometown that gives Creighton a heaping load of hope. Unlike Akoy Agau, the 6'8 power forward from Omaha Central High School (Central High is a stones throw away from Creighton's campus) who chose Louisville over Creighton and then transferred to Georgetown instead of Creighton, Patton has the opportunity to become a hometown hero on a relatively young Creighton team. With a devoted fanbase cemented in downtown Omaha, the opportunity for Patton to transcend greatness and become a legendary player is definitely there. How good can Patton be? Let's talk in 4 years and see if what sort of history he has written for the Jays.
Justin Patton's Senior Season Stats