Colorado hire means something for IU

Fox Sports’ Jeff Goodman is reporting that Colorado will hire Northern Colorado coach Tad Boyle for its open head coaching position.

Why does this matter? Because it could affect the third assistant position.

Lead Colorado assistant Steve McClain is considered a candidate for that open Indiana job, but was pushed for the head coaching position with the Buffaloes. The only Colorado alum of note, Chauncey Billups, wanted McClain in the head coach’s chair.

Now, McClain is available for Indiana.

Former Hoosier Dane Fife is also rumored to be a candidate for the third assistant job. He also may be looking at the Michigan assistant opening.


  1. Steve Mcclain? Why would we want this guy? He got fired from Wyoming of all places.
    I thought Crean wanted somebody loyal to IU… DANE FIFE

  2. Steve Downing for assistant coach! Who better to teach playing the post! I’m sure we could pay the former IU standout center more than the pittance he earns at Texas Tech. 4guards would be tickled..Connections to Knight..Played ball in Indianapolis…Hoosier Hall of Fame inductee…Kicked Walton’s ass in a Final Four game. Have we even given him a call?

  3. Fife is a D1 head coach. He is the youngest head coach in D1. He is loyal to IU. He will be able to recruit Indiana with his midwest connections. IPFW’s best record before Fife was 9-21. He has led them to 10,12,13,13, and 16 wins in his 5 years.
    It is not sentiment, he is the most qualified for the position. If I were only basing it on sentiment, I would be saying Damon Bailey all the way.

  4. I once heard he fouled a guy on a 3-point shot and nearly cost us a trip to the Final Four. Do you think he committed that foul because he didn’t like Mike Davis? Maybe a few of those bad apples didn’t care to win against Maryland.

  5. Is Fife lobbying for the job? Does his skill set fit the needs of the position? If he does want the job, does he see it as a one year gig or is it part of his 5 year plan? Unlike 4t, I don’t know if he is most qualified or not as I don’t know what the long term plan calls for. I’d like to see the job go to whoever fills the requirements best.

  6. Why don’t you look at the won/loss record at Wyoming when McClain was there? Even though he was eventually fired, he won more games, (including a couple of 20+ win seasons) and was a head coach longer than Fife, especially when you look at his JC coaching record, which was fabulous.

    How do you know that Fife would relate better to recruits than McClain? Since I’ve never met either, I have no reason to insist one would be better than another.

  7. 4guards,

    I find it interesting that you praise Fife for such marginal improvements in win totals over the span of FIVE years.

    Yet, every day, you get on this site and bash Crean for his inability to fix IU overnight.

    Not that I’m a zealous supporter of hiring McClain, but praising Fife for making a team 6 wins better over the span of five years and then turning around and criticizing Crean for not being able to to return us to a 20-win club in two years with a patchwork roster is a bit ridiculous.

  8. He did come within a Jay Williams free throw/Carlos Boozer tip in of infamy. Dodged a bullet on that one.

  9. Casey,
    Fife has consistently improved IPFW from the gutter.
    Fife’s first five years has been the schools best 5 years.
    Crean has tanked IU. We were a tournament team loaded with talent when he arrived. We are now in the cellar of the big ten.

  10. Another thing to think about — simply having played for IU doesn’t qualify someone as the right fit for what we need out of an assistant.

    Yes, he’ll be loyal and have a knowledge of the program’s history, but can he recruit? Can he develop players and prepare them to play against top level talent? Does he have a lot of pull with well regarded coaches? Does he garner respect from recruits? Will they care who he is or that he played for IU? Does he share a similar philosophy for rebuilding the program that Crean does? If he’s an IU alum, will he be able to set aside emotion and make tough calls when necessary?

    These are just a few things to be considered.

    If someone who didn’t attend IU is the right fit, that’s fine.

    This isn’t a monarchy, where coaches can simply be iconic head pieces. We need someone who will ge the job done — not just someone with a closet full of IU sweatshirts. Personally, if he gets results and does things “the right way,” I don’t care if we hire a coach from Hawaii Technical Institute.

  11. 4guards:

    That “tournament team loaded with talent” had 19 “F’s” for that semester when Crean arrived. Many were using drugs, many were not attending classes.

    Seriously, Dakich and Crean had no choice but to do what they did.

    Again, you are basing your choices on sentiment alone. If Dane Fife had never played at IU, would you be insisting that a head coach of IPFW, who has increased the win total of the program by 7 games over 5 seasons, was the “most qualified” to be an assistant at IU?

  12. 4guards,

    Please define what it means to “consistenlty improve.”

    Your take on the state of our team when Crean arrived is so watered down and over-simplified. If you can’t realize that on your own, there’s really no point in me trying to convince you. You make it seem as if Crean stepped in the door and had a willing and ready team of upstanding, loyal and eager kids ready to take the NCAA by storm.

    We all know that was not the case.

  13. Fee-Fife-fo-fum,
    4guards smells the blood of crimson red,
    Be he alive, or be he dead
    He’ll have the bones to grind his Crean bread.

  14. IPFW wins before Fife:
    IPFW wins after Fife:
    As far as recruiting Indiana, he has been developing relationships within the state with high school coaches. For example, he has 2 guys on the team from Muncie Central.

  15. …and the score of record…Posters 3,717 to coach4disreguards -941…and the trend continues…

  16. 4guards:

    That’s improvement, but keep in mind that Fife was helped by a move to Division I after the earlier dismal years. But it isn’t a spectacular improvement by any means.

    “Developing relationships” is also nice, but Crean has been too, and I don’t see you giving him any credit for that.

    Again, yours is a sentimental choice, not necessarily the BEST choice.

  17. so you guys would really rather have Mcclain than Fife? Or are you arguing just for the sake of arguing? If you would really rather have him then why?

  18. In Crean I trust, he wants to win more than anyone else…give him the time he needs without second guessing his every move!!!

  19. The advantage McClain has is more coaching experience, and thus is more of a known factor. He likely has more credibility among coaches as a consequence.

    As for the intangibles, McClain has more of the same high-intensity approach to coaching as does Crean. Perhaps their personalities would mesh better.

    If Crean hires Dane Fife, I will be supportive and back the hiring. I just don’t see any reason to insist he’s the “most qualified.”

  20. What we need to understand is how coach4disreguards sets up his facts for argument. IPFW had just entered D-1 competition in the seasons prior to Fife’s arrival. Fife’s predecessor in a lower level of competition had some success, much like the “Diviner of Albuquerque” does in the MW.

  21. 4guards,

    I don’t think either of us said we wanted McClain. Nor did we say we didn’t.

    I’m arguing because you seem to think that this hire MUST be a former player, and that having played for IU qualifies someone to be an assistant coach at IU.

    Based solely on his body of work, I doubt you’d even consider Fife qualified for this job. You hold such high regard for the head coaching position. You should exhibit a similar reverence for the assistant coaching positions.

    Fife is the youngest D-1 coach at a relatively new D-1 team. I commend him for cracking the ranks at such a young age, but he hasn’t necessarily had the time to develop himself as a coach. I just have doubts about whether he’s ready to make the jump from preparing players to face opponents in the Summit League to getting IU’s guys ready to go up against the likes of Michigan State, Purdue and Ohio State.

    Likewise, his experience on the recruiting trail will probably be the least of any of the candidates. That could be an issue.

    I’m not saying I’d rather have McClain. The fact is, none of us has enough inside information and knowledge to say who is most qualified. What I’M saying is that Fife shouldn’t get such a leg up simply because he played here.

    What about his ability to develop players? What happened to wanting an assistant who will help our bigs improve? Is Fife good at coaching big men?

    I think the answer to most of these questions is “we don’t know.” THAT is what makes me hesitant to support the thought of bringing him on. He just has so little experience that we can’t really know one way or the other how hiring him would turn out.

  22. Terry – great pic of 4guards, laughed my a$s off, then grabbed the Preparation H.

    There is really no limit to the puerile predictability of 4tards.

  23. We need someone who can develop Bigs period. In my mind Crean is the recruiter so recruiting and relationships are secondary. I don’t care where the next assistant comes from I just want to see some progress.

  24. Seriously, you cannot proclaim to be a Knight Acolyte and then bash Crean for cleaning house when he got here. We saw plenty of Knight’s players jettisoned for exactly the same reasons as Ellis, Bassett, et al. We simply won’t let you have it both ways. Its nonsense, even coming from you, and that says a lot.

  25. Husky-

    You’re a great sport. The ability to laugh at yourself and partake in the tiny joy a bit of silliness separates you from the rest. Hemorrhoids are manageable..Boring a**holes are forever. You’re not boring. Glad you liked the pic.

  26. “Does anybody think Crean is balking at Fife due to future job security?”

    Ah, at last the agenda is coming out.

    First of all, you don’t even know if Fife really wants the job.

    Second, you don’t know if Crean is “balking” at hiring Fife.

    And even though you have completely failed at demonstrating that Fife is the “most qualified,” you keep insisting that he is, simply because he played for IU.

    I guess this is just your way of trying to get one of your “favorites” into IU via the back door. You can’t get Alford, so you think this is the next best thing.

    Look, whether Fife is hired or not, it has nothing to do with Crean’s “job security.” It’s not very likely that Fife would be hired in Crean’s place if Crean were fired years down the road.

    We can’t make hiring decisions based upon whether they make you feel good about the “good old days.” We have to look at qualifications, records, reputations, coaching, etc.

  27. Only 4tards would excrete such nonsense as I have seen in his last few posts…

    In a few years, he’ll be clamoring for Kory Barnett to take over the program, with Adam Ahfeld as assistant coach.

    There’s real magic in those Indiana boys, ain’t there…?

  28. Larry G broke down the 4guard playbook exactly.

    Clarion, there is a rumor floating around that something earth shattering is going to happen for the good. Do you think what you heard about J. Davis is part of this rumor?

  29. Why are you so anti-Crean 4guards ? I have had the chance to meet,and talk with him a couple of times.Seems like a great guy.
    Lighten up!If he’s not producing in a few years,then start looking.

  30. steve,
    Crean very well may be a great guy, he is just not a very good coach. We don’t have a few years to waste. We are getting to a point we will not be able to recover from.
    That earth shattering rumor, I actually posted as a possibility over a month ago.

  31. “Does anybody think Crean is balking at Fife due to future job security?”

    OK, let’s put our thinking caps on and try to remember where we have seen this sort of manipulative, leading non-question before. Just think, it will come to you. I’m not giving the answer, just a clue. Whoever does it is not trying to find an answer, they are just trying to put words in peoples’ mouths.

  32. The Head Coach gets to select the person HE wants to fill out his staff! He is judged by the final product, not the internal process. But I do agree that we need someone to tutor our Big Men! Is it possible to bring in an “advisor” for such duties? Steve Downing would be great but I doubt he has any interest. Mel Daniels (the old Pacer) would also be great. Kareem Abdul Jabbar would be great. DJ White is still on a roster in the NBA, but he would be great. I am sure that there are many others. Is this a possibility?

  33. I love “not very good” coaches who only win 196 games in the Big East vs. 90-something losses.

  34. then you love mediocrity and should stick to Washington (your favorite team) where you will find it….

  35. 4guards,
    I’m not here to debate whether Fife should be the man, however, I do think the idea that McClain got fired from Wyoming is misleading. First of all, McClain led Wyoming to the second round of NCAA Tournament in 2002, one of the team’s best finishes in years, and was named coach of the year. From 1998 to 2006, he amassed a record of 157-115.

    Now, let’s look to Steve Alford, a man I know you admire. At a Big Ten school with much more prestige than a school like Wyoming, from 1999 to 2007 (an identical period to McClain’s), Iowa amassed a record of 152-106, just slightly better than Wyoming. Yes, the competition in the Big Ten is better, but McClain also had much less to work with.

    Also, McClain compiled a 91-16 record at the junior college level. Shouldn’t these accolades be enough to at least give him a chance?

  36. 4 Guards:

    Why is Crean “mediocre” when he had a much better winning record at Marquette than Steve Alford had at Iowa?

    None of your arguments are making any sense, because there is no “sense” to your premise that Indiana always has to hire “Indiana people.”

  37. It sounds like he has the job now. Just another mistake by the tanned one.
    McClain was fired from Wyoming because he couldn’t get the job done. It is funny how people bash Alford for coaching in the MWC because of how easy it is. But this guy is awesome because he coached at Wyoming where it is so hard…..

  38. 4guards..back the program or get lost, your constant anti IU comments are getting really boring

  39. GFDave,

    I only know what I stated about JD and nothing more. One would start to connect the dots though, but considering what you just mentioned maybe there is two happenings fixing to occur this week. Pure speculation of course.

    Coach4disreguards you continually spew such large amounts of BS, even if right no one and I mean nobody on here would acknowledge it. You have squandered away any cred you might have had and damn sure aren’t earning any.

  40. McClain started as a JC coach and worked up to Wyoming in the MW.

    SA also worked himself up the coaching ladder till he found out were he could not compete(B10), now he settles for the relative comfort of the MW.

    SA does not have much to crow about over MaClain.

  41. Don’t worry guys, 4guards hadn’t even ever heard of McClain prior to his name coming up in this discussion.

    I’m sure he did a quick Wikipedia search, read for 30 seconds and is now acting as if he has an intimate knowledge of the Wyoming program and why McClain was eventually ousted.

    He obviously doesn’t, and is just assuming this would be a poor decision because Tom Crean had something to do with it.

  42. Casey, I am quite sure there are 11 year olds who would discipline him for his immaturity.

  43. If you want to know what the rumor is….the rumor has been floating around for about 8 weeks now….so basically, it is no news at all.

  44. I lived and watched Wyoming basketball throughout Steve McClain’s tenure at Wyoming. Steve was a great ambassador to the University and had a tireless work ethic. You can talk to any of his past/current players and see the respect they have for the guy. Many of the players on the Colorado squad were very vocal they wanted to play for Steve. He has been a winner in the JC ranks (Hutchinson), Wyoming, and was a part of turning around Colorado with young talent. I think he would be a huge asset to your staff, but I’m not saying Fife wouldn’t be either. Thanks guys

  45. Thanks, but we don’t need such positive BS around here…we’d rather have a quadriplegic from Martinsville get the job then a nice, qualified, capable coach with a winning career record on the D1 level.

  46. 4tards- hate to break it to you, but you are the “fan” of the mediocre team these days; Washington just went to the Sweet Sixteen in a rebuilding year…

    Anyways, IU doesn’t need you and would be a better institution all around if you took a permanent vacation to Chechnya…

  47. 4farts, don’t forget Knight was fired at Indiana…does that mean he didn’t do great things during his time there. Give McClain the benefit of the doubt. Trust Crean.

  48. To the 13-year old imitator that keeps stalking me: nothing you do is going to stop me from coming on here and expressing my opinion.

    Well, OK, there is one thing. If you come across some pictures of Steve Alford or Dane Fife in a speedo (or both of them together, better yet), that will keep me distracted for a while. But then, I will be back.

  49. In 2 years a lineup of
    Equals Big Ten Champs

  50. 4gaurds – Wow you cant see the forest from the trees! I feel for you as I read the above and there is no doubt in my mind you have major issues with the IU basketball team. The team consists of Coachs and players. Now if you think you can do a much better job, according to all your posts about what is bad and why. Then go coach and beat all– quit complaining about it– thats all you do on these blogs. You sound like a little child whining! Sorry but it really gets old just seeing your negative attitude. What do you do for a living–wow I sure hope your not a teacher and you have no influence on our young people??

  51. I am not a teacher. I’m in sales, but not sure why that matters.
    If you haven’t noticed, a lot of the posts on here haven’t came from me… just my username.

  52. I also go by this name from time to time. It makes perfect sense that I am in sales. I can sell a popsicle to an Eskimo.

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