BLOOMINGTON – Collin Hartman is back and healthy. He's once again willing to dive for balls, hustle to make plays.
The concussion is in his rear view mirror. The headaches are gone. The broken nose has healed. His banged up back and ankle are fine.
For this Indianapolis Cathedral standout and committed-to-Indiana player, it's all good.
“The best part is getting back into things and not feeling left out,” he said.
Did it matter that his Eric Gordon All-Stars 17U team lost to Martin's Wolverines 74-70 in Saturday morning's pool play opener at the Twin Lakes Complex, then followed it with a 63-46 loss later in the day?
Did his 13 total points in three Saturday games (he had two points in a 79-65 win over Common Bond) indicate rust remains to shake off after missing time with the concussion?
But this is a big-picture process in the quest to be IU ready and, perhaps, state title winning material, and it starts with just getting back on a basketball court.
“With a concussion, you can't work out,” Hartman said. “You have to lay low.”
The concussion -- the result of an elbow to the face that also broke his nose during an April travel ball game -- kept the 6-6, 185-pound Hartman out of school for a week and sidelined him from competition for two weeks.
“The most annoying thing,” he said, “was kind of forgetting everything. But now I'm at 100 percent.”
A 100-percent Hartman ranks No. 110 nationally in the Class of 2013 by Rivals.com, a national Internet recruiting service, and No. 22 among small forwards.
He wants more.
“I'm working on getting bigger, stronger and faster,” he said. “I want to be able to play every position. Guard every position. I need to develop the physicality to get to the next level.”
Weight lifting has been sporadic because of a hectic travel schedule that includes a trip to Germany as part of an 11-player Team USA squad. Team USA, which included Kentucky-bound Derek Willis and Michigan commitment Derrick Walton, finished seventh in the 16-team event.
That two-week trip, Hartman said, will pay long-term benefits.
“It's a whole other world over there,” he said. “It was a chance to see what everybody else is like, to see how much bigger and stronger they are. It opens your eyes to what you need to do if you're going to go to the next level.
“It was the physicality of play. You have to use your body and get into people. They do that very well over there. It's a very physical game. You have to get knocked down to get the foul. Using your body is what I've taken from (the trip).”
The team got together in Dallas for four practices before heading to Germany.
“We met for the first time when we landed in Dallas,” Hartman said. “I felt we adjusted pretty well for just meeting each other. At that point it's just basketball IQ and being unselfish.
“In Germany it was crazy. You can hop, step and dribble around (during games). I waited for the whistle (for a traveling call), but it never came. I was like, ‘OK, I guess you can do that here.' "
One of Hartman's Eric Gordon All-Stars teammates is Devin Davis, the Warren Central standout who also is committed to IU. Even though they're more than a year away from joining the Hoosiers, they can't wait.
“We talk about it all the time,” Hartman said. “We talk about rooming together; what we're going to do; where we're going to hang out. Sometimes we argue about who's going to win (high school) state.”
Hartman said he stays in contact with Indiana coach Tom Crean and his staff. Crean has provided a list of improvements to make.
“The physicality and getting to the rim,” Hartman said. “Not just be a shooter, but being able to guard everybody. That's what I'm starting to take pride in. Guard everybody from point guards to centers. From 7-foot to 5-5. Just trying to adjust to the level it will be in the future.”
IU's return to national relevance – the Hoosiers made this season's Sweet 16 and are preseason No. 1 picks for next year – has boosted Hartman's excitement for the future.
“The staff is great. They're working every day to get everybody better. The players are putting in the work to get better. Everybody is all energy. If everybody is doing that, you can't fight it.”
Hartman has no plans to fight anything other than lack of production. And that's just a matter of time.