Recruiting report: O'Neill sharpshooter Justin Appleby taking aim at college scholarship

The 6-foot-2, 180-pound Appleby leads O'Neill in scoring (20.4), assists (4.5), steals (2.2) and is second on the team in rebounds (6.2).

After having his senior football season cut short due to a knee injury, O'Neill's Justin Appleby is taking advantage of his time on the basketball court.

The 6-foot-2, 180-pound Appleby leads the Eagles in scoring (20.4), assists (4.5), steals (2.2) and is second in rebounds (6.2).

He currently holds a basketball offer from NAIA Morningside with interest from fellow GPAC schools Hastings, Concordia and Dakota Wesleyan.

Division II UNK has shown some interest and Appleby's academics are helping with the recruiting process. A regent scholarship awaits if he wants it. That means free tuition to Nebraska, UNO or UNK.

"I am 50-50 on if I am going to play a sport in college," he said. "I want to play, and if I get the right offer financially I want to play basketball."

Appleby's best skill on the court is his long-range shooting ability. He is shooting 41 percent on 133 attempts, three points better than his career average.

"Ever since I was in kindergarten I have been in the gym and most days in the offseason I am always in the gym," he said. "I started as a freshman and that gave me confidence. I don't take days off during the season."

Appleby is a self-proclaimed gym rat and his game after one of the NBA's best guards.

"I really like watching Kyrie Irving," he said. "He is not a tall guard and I feel like I resemble him. If I'm left open I will shoot it."

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Mike is a prep recruiting specialist for The World-Herald. Follow him on Twitter @MikeSautterOWH. Phone: 402-444-1335.