Coaches will describe Logan Duncomb’s motor and it sounds superhuman for a 6-foot-9 center.
More than a few big men run the floor. But he is sprinting to each end, every single time. Most big men rebound. But he goes after every single one. Literally all of them.
“He’s a guy that will go through a wall to get a rebound,” Indiana Elite coach Mark Adams said.
But the newest commit for Indiana’s 2021 class isn’t burning himself out with his extreme want-to. If Archbishop Moeller coach Carl Kremer tries to take Duncomb out, he won’t always go down the bench and slap everyone’s hands. He just seems to linger by his coach, wanting back in.
It’s like that with practice reps, too. He doesn’t want to miss one, even if it’s during the nastiest defensive drill Kremer can think up. Duncomb is ready to go from the moment Moeller arrives at a locker room for an away game.
“I haven’t even hung my coat up yet, and Logan’s fully dressed, head to toe,” Kremer said. “I ask him, ‘Did you wear that underneath your clothes?’ ‘Nope.’ But it’s an hour, hour and 15 minutes before we play, every game, he’s got his uniform on in seconds. He’s always raring to go.”
There is a reason Duncomb is considered a four-star prospect, and it has something to do with his 6-9 frame, his 7-4 wingspan, and his ability to run the floor with ease. But the reason he is a top-100 player nationally, earning offers from IU, Ohio State, Wisconsin, and Cincinnati, among others, probably has more to do with his nonstop motor.
That’s the quality that most intrigues coaches about Archie Miller’s latest recruiting get. Duncomb hasn’t yet turned 17, but he plays with the kind of relentless energy that could make him a menace when his body fully matures.
“What he’s doing now, as a 16-year-old — when he’s 19? Holy smokes,” Kremer said. “When he’s 20 years old? When he starts to get that grown man’s body to go with that motor? And his fundamentals improve? I really think Indiana’s got a big-time player.”
Duncomb is already pretty good. He started for Moeller as a sophomore on an undefeated title team. As a junior, he averaged 13.8 points, 8.7 rebounds, and 1.6 blocks per game for a 26-1 squad, which was on its way to the state’s final four before COVID-19 closed the season.
But coaches agree that Duncomb’s best basketball is down the line. That’s just the way it is for big man prospects. And Kremer would know well, having recently coached current New Orleans Pelican forward Jaxson Hayes. He was a senior at Moeller the year Duncomb was a freshman.
Duncomb is, right now, ahead of Hayes’ development curve.
That statement isn’t Kremer guaranteeing Duncomb will be an NBA lottery pick. But the veteran coach is acknowledging how much the young center has been able to defy early expectations, forcing his way onto the court with his will.
Kremer didn’t start Duncomb as a freshman. In the summer heading into his sophomore year, he wasn’t pinned for a leading role, either. That was until the Cincinnati powerhouse matched up with one of the best teams in Michigan during a 2018 summer shootout.
Duncomb was pitted against a well-built center, who should have handled him easily.
“He’s going against a guy who looked like he’d been in the NBA for five years. Just a big five, mature-looking kid,” Kremer said. “Logan is a 15-year-old rising sophomore, and he just got up into the kid, was totally unafraid.”
Because he’s at Moeller, Duncomb hasn’t been the star of the show for his high school squad. He was the team’s third-leading scorer this past season. But he hasn’t needed to score to win. And he doesn’t need the ball in his hands to be productive, because of how he rebounds and runs the floor.
In fact, Duncomb sees a match between how Moeller and IU use their post players.
“How they have bigs run the floor hard, how they play their bigs inside, but also, with some of their bigs, have them come out and shoot and pick and rolls,” Duncomb said. “And how they stress rebounding, especially offensively.”
IU and Moeller are matched in more ways than that. Kremer has known Miller since he was a graduate assistant at North Carolina State. When Miller was at Dayton, Kremer’s son was a team manager for the Fliers. This past season, Moeller alum Michael Shipp was a walk-on for the Hoosiers.
Duncomb has even more connections to IU’s program. Hoosier recruits Trey Galloway, Anthony Leal, and Khristian Lander played on an Indiana Elite team a grade level above Duncomb. So he knows plenty about the program, its history, its future, and what Miller is about as a coach.
Miller’s no-nonsense approach should suit Duncomb well.
“Logan is a kid that just wants to be good, and he wants to be coached hard,” Kremer said.
Adams saw Duncomb’s intensity on the AAU circuit, where he was never overmatched.
“It’s a great fit. Archie will love his tenacity,” Adams said. “I can’t think of a better center in the midwest than him. Really, we played everybody and I never went into a game thinking ‘This center is better than what I got.’”
His long arms and motor just make Duncomb a difficult matchup. Adams can’t recall a time his shot has been blocked, because it’s almost impossible to reach his hook. Duncomb also has the touch to step out to midrange, with the potential to stretch beyond the 3-point line.
His fundamentals on both ends can improve because the athletic foundation is there. Adams coached the Zellers, and Duncomb moves as well as them up and down the floor. He’s a five, but he can switch off and guard fours if need be.
Adams just keeps coming back to Duncomb’s rebounding, though. He just won’t stop going for the ball.
“It’s just a trait you just don’t find very often,” Adams said. “He never gives up on getting the ball. I love his game. I love the kid on and off the court. But to find that tenacity is just hard. You can’t really teach it.”
Following a 2020 class stocked with guards, Miller needed this kind of player in his 2021 class. De’Ron Davis is graduating. Joey Brunk will be gone after next season, and it’s unknown how long the uber-talented Trayce Jackson-Davis will be around past his sophomore year.
Duncomb gives the Hoosiers their next anchor in the middle. With that 7-4 wingspan. With smarts, because he’s top 10 in his class at Moeller.
And with that unmatched motor.
“It’s not like he doesn’t have much more he can get better at. Logan actually does, and he’s working on those things,” Kremer said. “He’s working on his perimeter shot. He’s working on his double moves in the post. And that’s what I like most about him.
“I told Archie this: His upside is ridiculous.”