Since Wednesday’s debacle against Ohio State, Tom Crean has been trying to strike a balance, he said, between knocking his team down a peg and propping it back up.
Practice, players said, has been more physical. There have been scrimmages without fouls and some nasty rebounding drills. The team also had to watch film of Wednesday night’s game and see exactly how ugly it was.
But Crean said he’s also made a point to show them positive plays on film, contrasting what’s happened when the Hoosiers have done things right to what happens when they’ve done things wrong.
“We don’t have a bunch of guys that had nails for breakfast with their wheaties, and then they’re going tonight and they’re gonna munch on some boulders and bricks,” Crean said. “We don’t have that. We gotta make sure that we’re not patronizing or being condescending. We’re trying to show, ‘Hey, here’s why you got beat. Here’s what it looks like when you’re doing it right.'”
In addition, of course, the Hoosiers had to watch film on an Illinois team Crean says is extremely balanced. They have five players in double figures and a great inside-outside game with guards Demetri McCamey, D.J. Richardson and Brandon Paul on the perimeter and forwards Mike Davis and Mike Tisdale inside. Tisdale stands 7-foot-1, and the 6-9 Davis is averaging a double-double.
“They can put five guys on the floor who can score,” Crean said.
Some audio follows, but we’ll have to try to put up the Crean video from Indiana’s website. The IT guys at the H-T just hooked me up with software that shrinks audio files, but even the shrunken version of Crean’s was too big to put on. I take responsibility for that because, well, I set him off on a ramble at the end.