Teri Moren ready to build a legacy at Indiana

This isn’t about black and gold, or where she’s been. She doesn’t want to be known as a former Purdue player, or as a flight risk to return.

For Teri Moren, the opportunity to come to Bloomington represents the realization of a dream.

She was raised in Seymour, holding a special reverence for the Indiana basketball brand. She watched Bobby Knight stalk the sidelines of Assembly Hall, and watched as guys like Ted Kitchel and Steve Alford raised banners to its rafters.

Now, Moren wants to seize the opportunity to create an IU legacy of her own.

Moren was officially introduced as Indiana’s new women’s basketball coach on Wednesday, marking the most recent rebooting of a program that has been teased and tortured for many of the last few decades. Moren, hired from Indiana State in early August, inherits a program with momentum — albeit one that was rocked by the sudden and unexpected resignation of former coach Curt Miller on July 24.

Sustaining that momentum is one of the bevy of challenges that await Moren in her first year in Bloomington. She recently filled her coaching staff during a difficult time on the college basketball calendar, settling the first bit of business on the job. Now, she must retain the strong footholds in future recruiting classes that Miller established in his short time at Indiana.

But for at least a few moments on Wednesday, Moren was happy to exhale and share the excitement with her new opportunity.

“This is a dream come true for me,” said Moren, a former Purdue player and Indiana All-Star. “Quite frankly, the goal is to make this successful and this be coach Moren’s last stop. I’d like to retire here and, at some point down the road, leave this place in really good shape.”

Moren started her coaching career as an assistant at Butler, before taking the same role at Northwestern for two seasons. She won 130 games as the head coach at the University of Indianapolis before taking the Indiana State job in 2010. Moren went 69-57 in four seasons in Terre Haute, guiding the Sycamores to a share of the regular-season Missouri Valley Conference championship last season.

With a roster full of Miller’s players — young women recruited to fill needs and roles in his high ball screen offense — Moren says she isn’t looking to stray too far from what helped Indiana tie a school record with 21 wins and reach the quarterfinals of the Women’s National Invitational Tournament last winter.

Moren’s teams at Indiana State ran the motion offense, while pushing tempo and dictating pace. On the other side of the floor, Moren’s Sycamores developed an identity as a rugged defensive team, something she wants to bring to IU.

“We decided when we took this job, one of the things that we weren’t going to do was reinvent the wheel,” Moren said. “I’ve said that from Day 1. This is a team that has been very comfortable in the old system offensively and we feel like we can have that still, but also still bring in some of the things we’ve done at some of our other stops and add to it. One of the things we will tell you is that our focus is not just gonna be on the offensive end. Our focus is gonna be on the defensive end as well.”

The current roster is heavy on guards, including sophomore Larryn Brooks, who was named the program’s offensive player of the year after leading Indiana in points (16.3 per game), field goals (179), 3-pointers (67), 3-point percentage (.379), free throws (129), free throw percentage (.832) and assists (4.5 per game). Added to the core group are freshmen Tyra Buss, Maura Muensterman, Amanda Cahill and Jess Walter — perhaps one of the most heralded classes in program history.

It’s a young team on the books for this season, one that features 11 players who are either freshmen or sophomores. That’s not including a player like Claire Jakubicek, who hasn’t played since 2011-12 when she was named the Mid-American Conference Freshman of the Year at Northern Illinois. Jakubicek sat out two years ago due to NCAA transfer rules and missed last season with an ACL injury.

With youth, comes an opportunity to build the program in Moren’s vision.

The Hoosiers got a head start under Miller. Now it’s Moren’s turn to sustain that success and make it her own.

“This is a really great group of girls,” she said. “They want to put the past behind and move forward. They made that very, very clear. They’re just excited about what the future holds for us.”

2 comments

  1. I don’t have a twitter or facebook to communicate, but wondered who would be the recruiting coordinator, the “associate” head coach….What responsibilities are each assistant given?

  2. While watching this team last year in person for 23 of their games, I was witness to an exciting offensive team which was pleasuable to watch. With coach Moren’s defensive approach, I hope that this will make for a more complete team. With the very talented incoming freshmen, we have an oppritunity to advance to a higher level than last year. The problem will be our insdie play, we will be very small. I would hope that Jacubicek, Cahill and Anderson can produce inside for us. If they can, this team will be very exciting to watch. It was very incouraging to hear coach Moren say that she will continue the style of offense that benifitted this team last year! If the defense can pick up and we can rebound at a decent pace, we will be very hard to handle. As I have stated before, the real key to the future of this program and it’s continued improvement is the recruiting which coach Miller and his staff have elevated to the highest level in years! If coach Moren can duplicate that, we are in business!! Go Hoosiers!!

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