33 comments

  1. How about some blame on CTC? His sub patterns are terrible; his game time decisions are terrible; his game prep is terrible. Same mistakes made this year as last. This should not be a job for “on the job training”

  2. I tried to tell you guys years ago that Crean can’t coach … and nothing has changed. 2 picks in the top 4 of the NBA draft and still can’t get past the sweet 16. It is like having Wade and Diener and Novak…. and getting murdered in final 4.

  3. This is an NIT team. I dont see how we finish 500 in the big ten unless things change in a hurry. Beginning to think crean is a sub park coach myself. I agree that last year we should have gone alot farther then the sweet sixeteen. Will he ever hang banner number 6? I have my doubts.

  4. Are you the same 4guards who went on and on about how CTC could not recruit. And how he could not recruit Indiana? Or is that a different 4guards.

    This is a team of freshman and two other players–one sophomore and one senior–with experience. We lost a very close game against a top ten team on a neutral site. We lost a road game against a top five team.

    We have lost one game we “should have won.” Noone can judge this team fairly until the end of the big ten season.

    Oh yeah, good coaches never let their teams lose a game that was winnable. In fact, good coaches never have down seasons. Coach Knight, for example, never missed the NCAA tournament and never had a young team fail to execute well and never had a team of any kind underperform.

  5. Spanky,

    There’s no telling if it is 4guards, or not.

    Knight’s IU teams failed 5 times to make the NCAA tournament. If you ask Coach Knight he would tell you that he had many teams underperform. I guess your evaluation of performance and Knight’s may be different

  6. Glad someone figured it out. I don’t pretend to know everything about IU Basketball, but I knew we went to the NIT at some point under Knight. Thanks Dustin.

  7. Steve has a valid point. We may very well be a NIT team. Say what you want about “Dak”, but he was dead on when he said we have no marquee win in the non-conference. Washington isn’t a quality win.

    Unless we can beat who we are supposed to beat in league play, and a couple of upsets along the way, we will make tournament. Obviously the committee will have nothing to go on in our Non-Conference. I’m sorry but blowing out cupcakes, and a close “good”loss to Connecticut won’t cut it. (Unless the NCAA considers them. I have no idea).

    I’m not giving up. I think this team will continue to improve, and mature. We were favored to beat Notre Dame, and lost. I consider it a bad loss, and much needed win. Some schools are ok with NIT, but we shouldn’t. This is Indiana. We should always have the talent to make the tournament, whether under Knight, Davis, Sampson, or Crean.

    However, I don’t, and never will understand CTC substitution patterns. Why did he take out HMP, when clearly he was playing good ball? Everyone keeps saying he is such raw, good talent, yet he never plays meaningful minutes, even when we blowout cupcakes! I don’t get it. Here is too better results in Big Ten play. 🙂

  8. This team has a long way to go. A very long way. However, we did know at the start of the season that they were going to be very green out of the gate and that we’d hopefully see them develop as the season goes on.

    I’m frustrated by the start and they have a massively uphill battle in the Big Ten this year, but it isn’t time to throw it all in yet.

  9. Year 6 and still waiting to get past the Sweet 16… How many years should it take???? I guess he has only made it past the sweet 16 once in 14 years of coaching so we shouldn’t expect it anytime soon unless D Wade can get another year of eligibility.

  10. After some reflection of this game I offer the following:

    -Kansas, Kentucky, Duke, all seem to get solid contributions from their freshman. They are highly regarded coming in, just like ours last year AND this year, and they step right in and make a big difference. I don’t hear them complaining about their youth. So why should we, and Crean, use our youth as an excuse?

    -Shouldn’t “The Movement” be moving us to wins by now?

    -Our freshmen lack of production is nothing short of poor coaching before & during the game. However, it seems Crean knows the fruit of this Year’s team will come in the next 2 years, just like we all do. We all want this squad to win and make the tourney, but in reality, we are a year or two away from the Sweet 16 again, let alone a top 4 seed in any region.

    -Perea is getting a lot better. He was the spark at the end of the 1st half. Then no minutes thereafter. WTH?

    -Not feeding the post is almost due to these 3 things (not youth):
    1. Poor Vonleh positioning.
    2. Poor coaching. If Crean wants the ball to go inside he should make a simple rule: Vonleh touches it every trip in a half-court set! And if you fail to do it you are sitting down.
    3. Selfish guards.

  11. The movement should be getting us with buts its becoming apparent it has been one of the most overrated recruiting classes in IU history at this point. Jurkin will probably never be a factor and patterson is gone. That leaves three players and so far only one has really done anything. People keep saying crean is a great recruiter. I think he is a good recruiter but to me a great recruiter is a coach cal, coach k or bill self.The guys who are getting multiple top then players year in and out. We are still not on that level. Even though we have better talent imo we still cant beat a team like wisconsin. To me that is coaching.

  12. Even the most adamant Crean supporters have never voiced an opinion that he is a GREAT coach. Their outlook seems to be that he is an ADEQUATE coach, but the GREAT accolade is reserved for Crean’s skills as a great recruiter, great promoter of IU exceptionalism, etc.

    But shouldn’t it be expected that Crean would improve his game coaching skills as the years go by?

    Doesn’t seem to me that his game coaching skills have improved whatsoever. He seems to be the same today as he was 6 years ago. But I’m merely an IU fan, and certainly not a basketball expert, so maybe I’m just not seeing any improvements, if they do exist.

    I’d love to hear what the “expert” opinions are on this subject.

  13. CTC cant coach??? When coaches start shooting the basketball THEN you can complain that CTC cant coach.Blown dunks;Fischer missed an open layup by putting the ball UNDER the rim.Sheehey missed a trailing 3 pointer from straight on,he made those LAST year regularly.What you HAVE and what you WANT are 2 different entities.What you want is a basketball team. What you HAVE is a group of atheletes that can sprint 90 feet but cant shoot.

  14. NoMendacity, I would say you’re spot-on that he hasn’t shown improvement.

    My thoughts are that…

    He is an average, at best, in-game coach

    He is a good, but not very good, developer of talent

    He is a very good, but not great, recruiter

    He has a great eye for potential, maybe the best in the business

    Although this year will be frustrating, I’m trying to tell myself to stay patient through the bumps. Next year I will not be patient… It’s go time, regardless of whether Noah stays or not. Next season he will have an abundance of talent, an abundance of experience, an abundance of athletecism, adequate size, and added shooting… He will get no passes from me then if they aren’t a Final Four team (I guess the one caveat being injuries to multiple key players).

    If Noah does stay then I expect this team to be a front-runner for the title, with the only roadblock being if players from Duke, Kansas, and Kentucky unexpectedly stay in school.

  15. When Crean took over, his job had two stages to it:

    1) Clean up Sampson’s mess
    2) Rebuild program to national prominence
    3) Add banner #6

    Stage 1: Resounding Success. That was about as tough of a job any coach has faced. Very little of it had to do with the court. Crean had to scour the state meeting with fans, alumni, boosters, etc to convince them that although there is darkness now, there will be light. Harvard likes to poop on Crean as being a salesman. Well, in this case, it bought him some support. Hoosier fans still filled Assembly Hall to watch a JV team get pounded day in and day out.

    And better they got. Crean recruited well. It wasn’t just getting kids to come play for Indiana when they were so bad then. It’s that IU hoops hadn’t been relevant nationally for 15 years. Our freak run in ’02 was fleeting. Indiana just wasn’t a destination anymore. Tom Crean sold the future of the program and the history of Indiana basketball to kids that were in diapers that last time we mattered.

    Lastly, what can be understanded, is that they got academics back on track. More importantly from a cynical perspective, we got our scholarships back. We lost one with the self-imposed sanctions from Sampson and lost 2 because of the poor APR. Crean only had 10 scholarships to work with at first. With our APR back up, we’re at fully scholly strength.

    Stage 2: Success. His first good team overperformed. We thought to be better, but we overachieved. The game that really set off that streak to me wasn’t the Kentucky win, it was a couple games earlier when we went on the road and beat a very good NCST team on the road.

    The Kentucky game was magical. Couldn’t have ended more story book. Glad to see the ever maligned Verdell make the pass to 2nd most maligned Watford for the swish.

    Stage 3: Undetermined, but behind. Now, all kinds of speculation will run rampant about whether Crean can hang banner #6. I can guess already which of you feels which way. Will Crean’s skills in other areas cover for being an average in game coach? We’ll see. However, the clock is officially running in stage 3. Crean has earned the chance to show what he can do with a fully loaded team. Last year: disappointing and a failure of a season. He’s going to get one more shot with this year’s and next year’s team.

  16. I agree with the CTC assessment. So what’s with the assistant coach’s? If this was ‘business’ you would hire someone who covered you’re weakness. At one time I had 30 departments generating $15M a year. I hated budget prep and the required time – I hired somebody to do that. I hated putting in intra-aortic pumps – I hired someone to do that. Made life easy. Made our service more effective. Either CTC has a ego that does not allow that interaction or the assistant do not participate to that level.?

    Of the 331 teams listed by KenPom, we play #’s 336 & 341 this weekend. After that the ‘$#@! hits the fan’. I would like to see the Hoosier roster split into two teams. Team A would be the current starting five, but with Luke in the place of Hollowell. Team B is Davis, Hanna, Robinson, Gordon and Austin. Hollowell and whoever left would be the subs. Team B plays the first half and Team A plays the second. They play bad, so be it, They’ll get better.
    Team B will get better, may take a couple of games, which is all we’ve got left. Hell, have one of the assistant coaches take over team B.

    The way the play is now, how can these guys get into flow with 41 substitutions per game? Currently one of the non starting five get into the game, first time they get the ball, they attempt to score.

    Think we all knew this would be an up and dowm year. CTC has this year to get through and if they don’t start making noise next year, thinking he will not be getting the high recruits who want to get better. Goodluck picked Vegas, I think he said he was impressed with the outcome of their past big guys. Don’t think we saw that much progress by Cody in two years. If Vohleh, Luke and maybe even Hanna do not show progress, what big guy would want to come to IU? I guess progress now would be NBA picks.

    Two games – Let the guys play! Maybe tie him to a chair and ducktape mouth except for timeouts. I don’t know.

  17. I’m not upset because I did not expect IU to win the game. I’d love IU to have another top 10 team this year, but that was never realistic given what we lost to graduation and the NBA last spring. Watching ND beat IU, I was reminded that talent does not always trump experience. IU brought much more talent to the game Saturday, but ND had the more experienced players, by far. And that experience made for the ND victory.

    IU’s players must lead the nation in having shots at the rim stuffed back down their throats. They really need to improve their judgement and execution of this important part of the game.

    Jumping into the body of a jump shooter that is taking a three point shot is really stupid. It happened again Saturday. It should never happen again for the remainder of the season. Even the best 3-point shooters in the country are only going to make that shot 50% of the time or less.

    You learn more from your losses than you do from you victories, especially those easy victories, so hopefully the loss to ND will be highly educational for this young team.

    Every time IU looses, the “Crean can’t coach” trolls come on this site and vomit up their garbage. Hey, here’s a news flash for you trolls. The last college basketball team to go undefeated and win the NCAA Championship was the 1975/1976 Indiana Hoosiers. That team was coached by the best college basketball coach of all time. He’s retired now and he’s not coming out of retirement. That achievement has not been duplicated since and probably never will be again. IU is going to lose basketball games every season and not every season is going to produce a top 10 ranking, no matter who IU’s coach is. Deal with it and stop using every IU loss as an excuse to peddle your hate.

  18. Po – I’m fairly well known as a Crean apologist… Do I have your blessing to go anti-Crean next year if we can’t get past the Sweet 16 with a roster of:

    Yogi
    JBJ
    Troy
    Noah
    Luke
    (That would be my starting 5)
    Stan, Jeremy, Hanner, Devin, Johnson

    If he can’t do it with those pieces, I’m just not sure how he’d be able to pull off it off…

  19. I mean that’s 5 top-50 recruits starting… 3 McDonald’s AA’s… With 4 top 100 recruits and Davis coming off the bench. If he can’t organize that type of talent into a serious contender then he isn’t the right guy. I’m not saying he can’t… He got to the FF a few years back before running into a really good Kansas team. But I just don’t know how much better he can do than those 10 guys… So at what point do I get to say, “it just ain’t clickin with this chicken”…?

  20. This is why the lowest common denominator, “Blame the coach for everything,” posters kill any constructive dialog. Every coach can be criticized for things they do. There is constructive criticism that can be discussed (which I’m sure will lead to a variety of conclusion for people) all the time. But I often feel like holding back those criticisms becauses it feeds the anger of the mob who are solely focused on running Coach out of town.

  21. Geoff, in an attempt to address your question, let’s examine Calipari at Kentucky. He has won one NCAA Championship in his career as a head coach. But how many years has he signed a top five ranked recruiting class? How many top 20 players has he recruited and coached? Is Calipari a crappy coach because he can’t produce more championships with all the talent that he attracts to Lexington? How about the scum bag down in Louisville? He’s in his 60’s, has won a few, but relative to the talent he has signed, he’s an under-achiever. How about Syracuse? One championship in over 30 years of coaching! How many top five High School kids has Syracuse signed in the last 30 years?

    Now, in contrast, Bob Knight proved that you don’t have to sign the highest rated players in order to win national championships. And often, even when you do have the best athletic talent on the roster, you don’t win the championship (IU’s 1975/1975 team) anyway.

    It’s kind or ironic that the more highly ranked players Crean signs, the more critical some people are of his coaching ability.

    My point is, the ranking of players coming out of High School are speculative at best, and often total BS. The best basketball player in history, Wilt Chamberlin (in my humble opinion), playing for one of the all-time best college coaches, was not able to produce an NCAA Championship while playing for Kansas. A North Carolina team, loaded with future Hall-of-Famers was defeated by IU, when IU’s own DD was required to guard Michael Jordon. Was Dean Smith a bad basketball coach? Look at all the talented Duke teams Coach K has had that did not win a championship.

    It takes a lot of talent, playing together as one unit, with some luck, to win an NCAA Basketball Championship.

  22. Keep in mind this is a message board. No wrong or right answers. Every fan has a different prospective. Speaking of prospective, haven’t heard from Harvard lately…

  23. There’s no point at all in recruiting talent if you can’t develop that talent into a team of five guys playing great ball together. RMK understood exactly how to do this
    from his close observation of West Point’s strategies.
    CTC likes to develop stars – – he gets a big ego charge from that – – but it doesn’t build a team in sync with one another.

  24. Po – I like your response…

    Here’s what I would say…

    Cal – not enough consistency on the roster since he has been able to attract this type of talent. Regardless of HOW he acquired the talent, and WHAT they did to stay eligible, when he has had a consistent roster he has produced results. His players blew the championship at Memphis with terrible FT shooting… He’d took an experienced team at UMass to the FF, and went to back-to-back FF’s with UK.

    Basically he has proven he can take talent deep into the tourney. Pretty tough to say he’s a crappy coach when most of his relevant roster turns over each year. The best you can say is that it’s a philosophy that produces inconsistent results. I don’t have any doubt that if his current roster stays for 2 more years that they would win a title… But that’s not going to happen, so it’s a crap shoot every year.

    Not sure how you can say Pitino is an underachiever… He’s won 2 titles and been to 7 FF’s with 3 different schools… His team last year didn’t have a single 5-star recruit or McDonald’s AA on it…

    I don’t know what kind of patience I would have had with Boehiem… The thing with him is that he IS the program. He was an assistant coach on the schools FIRST FInal Four team… There was no tradition of excellence prior to Boeheim. It’s not a situation similar to my expectations for a coach at IU. Beyond that he has been to 2 title games and 4 FF’s, regardless of how long it took him to get there, he is the only reason that fans at Cuse even have expectations of success.

    There’s no reasonable fan that can demand a national title every single year, but the fans at Duke expect they’ll be competing for one. They are disappointed when they don’t, but K gets a pass because he’s WON 4. He’s been to 11… ELEVEN!!!… Final Fours…

    I’m not demanding a championship next year, but I will lose faith that Crean is the right man for the job if he can’t get the roster of talent in post #21 to a Final Four… At that point it’s a crapshoot. All the teams are very good. All the teams are hot. All the teams are talented and/or cohesive and/or experienced and/or well-coached.

    If you gave any of the coaches you listed last years team and the team from #21, I have no doubt that all of them would take at least one of them to the Final Four. If Crean goes 0-2 with those rosters then I just don’t see him as the guy.

    But hey, that’s a long way off… And I haven’t lost faith yet.

  25. Geoff, I expect great things from the Hoosiers next year, as well. But I wouldn’t necessarily say anything less than a FF is a failure. You never know how the seedlings shake out. Seldom do you have four clear-cut #1 seeds. More often than not you have a region with two teams with arguably interchangeable seeding at the top– call it 1 and 1a– but somebody has to be the 2. (Take Gonzaga-OSU last year, or MSU-Mizzou and UNC-KU in 2012.) Or you have a team like Syracuse last year that hit a rough patch and lost several games due to injury, but got healthy, recovered, and were much better than their record/seeding says they should be.

    My point is, you’re likely to meet some very good teams in your own region. It’s way to soon to know who the top teams will be 16 months from now, but we’re likely to be at or near the top. Losing to, say, fifth-ranked Arizona in a well-played, highly-contested regional final at the buzzer — even if we’re technically the higher seed– shouldn’t be considered a failure of a season. Nor should it be the death knell for Crean.

    Sadly, for some it would be. And they’re probably the same ones who’ld be griping about the next coach. And the one after that…

  26. Punjab… In a vacuum I agree with your statement that it’s not a complete failure, but for me it’s Crean’s last pass. It’s more circumstantial. There have been more talented teams than next years IU team, assuming Vonleh’s on it, that haven’t made a FF… But I’m saying Crean needs to prove something. He simply can’t underachieve with 2 championship-calibre teams. Not at IU. If he doesn’t it won’t be the end, and I won’t be screaming non-stop for his head, but he will have lost me.

  27. Geoff, you made my point for me. Yes, those other coaches might be able to get IU’s talent to the final four. But they’re never going to be coaching at IU basketball. They’re more experienced and more accomplished coaches. Given their accomplishments, they’re better coaches than Crean is. But they’ll never be coaching at IU. And that’s my point. If you dump Crean, you better make sure you hire a coach that can lead IU to the final four. Their are no guarantees, so the default question becomes, “what is IU’s bottom line?” At what level of achievement, or lack of achievement, does Crean lose his job? I assure you, it’s not the level of achievement that he’s been at for the last three seasons, or the one he’s at right now. If he just keeps doing what he’s done the last two seasons, he’ll be around a long time.

  28. Right… And will you be happy about that? My point isn’t that I think he’ll get fired… It’s that I want championships… I don’t want to plateau at the Sweet 16.

    So again, I’m not saying that will happen, but I will lose faith in Crean if he doesn’t progress next year.

    Whoa! Just had a Sampson sighting! It’s amazing how small he looks next to Kevin McHale.

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