Patrick Ingram dreamed of playing high major college basketball. He succeeded against other players in Indiana who had those opportunities and waited for his chance. That came in July when Iowa Coach Fran McCaffery extended him a scholarship offer.
"I knew my time would come if I worked hard," he said. "All of us at North Central (High in Indianapolis) went at it hard in June knowing we would have coaches watching us in July."
Ingram verbally committed to Iowa on Wednesday afternoon at his school. The athletic two-guard became the third known commitment in the Hawkeyes' Class of 2012.
The 6-foot-2, 190-pound Ingram visited Iowa on Monday after earlier this month seeing in person St. Louis and Loyola, his other two finalists. He joined Mike Gesell and Kyle Meyer in Iowa's current class.
Players in the '12 group can sign national letters of intent in November. Hawkeye coaches are prohibited from speaking about a specific recruit until he inks that document.
"I knew on Monday when I got home and talked with my family," Ingram said of his decision. "I believed in Coach McCaffery. The things he's got planned there in the next few years with the new facility just raised them above the other schools."
Ingram also said he was motivated by the opportunity to play with Gesell and Meyer.
"And they're also trying to get Adam Woodbury," Ingram said. "We're all going to be trying to work on him. With our class and the one above me, it could be special."
Ingram also wanted a chance to get on the court early in his college career.
"(McCaffery) told me I could play a lot of minutes as soon as I get there," Ingram said. "I plan on going up there and working hard and earning those minutes."
St. Louis recruited Ingram for two years. Former Billiken assistant Porter Moser took over the program at Loyola during the offseason.
"It was a hard decision," Ingram said. "I knew the coaches and the players at those other schools. The hardest part was calling St. Louis and Loyola and letting them know I wasn't coming."
Basketball ranks highly in the hearts of Indiana sports fans. Ingram now will have a chance to go back to the state to face the Hoosiers and Purdue in the Big Ten.
"A lot of us from Indiana don't get to go to the in-state schools," Ingram said. "It's nice to have the opportunity to get into the Big Ten and come back and show what we have. I'm excited for it."
Ingram wants to work on his ball handling and jump shot this season. He's proficient at defending and getting to the basket.
"If I can get my outside shot to be consistent, it will open up my slashing game even more," he said. "I want to be a true combo guard."
Ingram said that he hopes to study business at Iowa with an idea of going into marketing.
Scout.com ranks Ingram as a two-star prospect on its five-star scale. The service does not rank him among the nation's best at his position.
McCaffery served as Iowa's lead recruiter on Ingram.