Sometimes, it isn't so easy for a talented underclassmen to show what he's capable of doing. In the case of Zak Irvin, neither playing in the shadow of 2012's No. 24 player, Gary Harris, nor returning from a knee injury have held him back.
In fact, now that the 6-foot-5 sophomore wing is returning to full health, he's thriving at Fishers (Ind.) Hamilton Southeastern in the suburbs of Indianapolis.
"There's a lot more expected out of me this year," Irvin told Rivals.com. "Strength is a big part of playing varsity basketball and so is having brain smarts and being smart with the ball. I'm doing better."
While playing with Indy-bred Eric Gordon's 15-and-under summer team, Irvin caught the eye of evaluators and coaches across the country. He blends good size, a solid base of fundamentals and jump shooting to go along with an improving slashing game.
That has translated to the high school level where he's started to carve out his own niche on a team dominated by juniors and seniors.
"I feel like I'm playing pretty well," said the sophomore wing. "I'm accepting my role on the team and doing what I can to contribute."
On the recruiting front, Irvin is still in the infancy stages but has already developed a pretty impressive list of admirers.
"I'm not in any kind of rush," said Irvin of his recruitment. "I'm just feeling out all of my options. Michigan, Indiana, Purdue, Xavier, Illinois, Miami and Butler have shown the most attention. Miami, Baylor, Indiana, Purdue and Xavier have offered."
Looking down the road, Irvin just wants to continue to build on his current success and focus on rounding out his game.
"I'm just trying to stay humble with all of this," Irvin said. "I need to focus on my ballhandling and getting in the weight room."