Friday’s live chat transcript #iubb

Things were a little busy around here on Friday afternoon and I spaced on posting this to the blog. Enjoy.

QUESTION: MODERATOR: Good morning, and welcome to today’s IU sports chat. Thanks for being here.
Mike, Andy, Jeremy: How are you doing today? Ready to get started?

JEREMY: Good morning, moddy. It’s Friday, and I’m ready to chat.

MIKE: Doing well this morning, ready to chat. Of course, I have one eye glued to my phone in case the next IU basketball player to leave decides today is the day. One eye on my phone, one eye on the chat. Let’s do this.

ANDY: I’ve spent most of the past week in Oregon with family, cut off from the Hoosier heartland and officially out of the loop, so what do I know? But I will, nonetheless, chat with aplomb.

QUESTION: Hey fellas,
As of writing this, Stan has decided to transfer leaving the Hoosiers over-signed by just 1. Of course, with Indiana still recruiting a big man, this is still a very fluid situation. With this practice, known popularly as Spring Creaning, I thought it would be very ironic if the tables were turned. I’m not saying Crean should stay or go, I can see it both ways, but wouldn’t it be ironic if Fred Glass over-signed the head coaching position? Granted this is purely for comedic purposes and would never happen, but what if Glass found the perfect men’s basketball coach and signed him to some head coach in waiting position. Now he has over-signed his head coach position as you could only have 1 head coach. Come July, when the CTC buyout drops, Glass is then able to tell Crean that he might have a better opportunity elsewhere. The irony.
From your favorite,
I like soup!, Blooomington

JEREMY: soup,
Signing three head coaches and having to pick one by August would make for unprecedented intrigue, although still having a roster to work with might be problematic.
Anyway, there is at least one more player to go, and based on recruiting, it seems likely more than one.

MIKE: Hey Soup,
That would be something, but it would never happen because Brad Stevens is going to Alabama. Heard it on the internet.

Don’t be a stranger, Soup.

ANDY: Soupmeister:
Thy mind works in mysterious, often perversely entertaining, ways. Not that I’m complaining, mind thee, about thy comedic purposes. And thee, unlike so many, know the proper meaning of irony.

QUESTION: 1. Has Crean heard the word ‘perception is reality’? I dont neccessarily believe he is “Creaning” players as the saying goes but when many people including the local indy media use it and it’s a definition in the urban dictionary, it’s not the best perception even if it’s completely untrue.

At this point it would behoove Crean to stop oversigning and taking on players in spring like April and Priller who are 0 star recruits and just bank scholorships. At the very least he needs to be telling recruits he doesnt “Crean” because if its found out Crean is going against the student athlete ‘bill of rights’ and nudging people out the door IU is headed for big trouble. When you always hear from him ‘these things have a way of working themselves out’ and then players at the bottom of the roster are constantly transferring Crean is feeding the verbatum that he’s running people off. I’d like to have him come out and flat out say “I dont run people off the team” if he doesn’t or if he does he needs to stop for the health of the program and not to violate the athlete bill of rights.
2. Hit in the eye with a Whiffleball as Wilhite was on the baseball team? That might be one of the strangest injuries i’ve ever heard and got me to thinking for each of you what is the strangest injury you have ever heard of from a player over the years while covering sports?
Darren, Martinsville

JEREMY: Darren,
1. I more or less agree with you. I rather doubt that Tom Crean’s discussions with his players are much different than any other coach that might suggest it’s not working out, playing time might be scarce or what have you. The problem is the setup knowing people have to go to make room, and I think the Ron Patterson situation a couple years ago was combined with the Matt Roth situation is what pushed the perception in a negative direction — having two guys that clearly wanted to be at Indiana and weren’t. Again, it’s not so much what actually happened with those guys, but the perception is clearly that they were victims of a numbers game. Of course, it’s also worth noting that it’s not just bottom of the roster guys who leave. There are early entries in the NBA Draft and what I would call mid-roster guys as well.
2. I think the strangest sports injuries almost always involve another sport or activity, like the golfer spraining an ankle playing tennis or Mo Creek rupturing his Achilles on the stairs.

MIKE: Hey Darren,
You’re absolutely right about perception. Take the Stan Robinson case, for example. Robinson’s transfer is clearly a good thing for both parties. There’s no questioning that. It wasn’t working out here for Stan, for whatever reasons, and IU needs his scholarship. But whatever the true reason — if Stan really wanted to go back East, or if he really wants more playing time somewhere, or otherwise — Crean and his program have built the perception that Stan is being pushed out the door. Whether it’s fair or not, that’s the case. When you consistently oversign, when you consistently see transfers at the end of the year, it’s only natural to connect the dots. How many truly elite programs employ this type of practice? I can’t find/think of many. It may work for Crean, but I’m not sure it’s a good look.

When I asked Lemonis what Wilhite’s deal was, he kind of smirked before he answered. When he told me, first thing I said was “You’re kidding.” He wasn’t, of course, but yeah, that was odd — if not a bit funny knowing that Wilhite will indeed be OK. As far as people I’ve covered, Wilhite’s injury is maybe at the top of the list. Going back to my minor league baseball days, for three seasons I covered Brad Komminsk, a former top prospect-turned disappointment with the Atlanta Braves, when he was managing a team in the Double-A Eastern League. I’m trying to remember how this all went down, but I seem to remember late in Komminsk’s third year there he wasn’t around for batting practice early before a game in July or August. It was odd. So anyway, he shows up in like the first or second inning and sits in the groundskeeper’s area in foul territory wearing a sling overtop his street clothes. Turns out he was biking around town earlier in the day and was either hit by a car or lost control of the bike, fell and broke his elbow. It was a strange one, but Komminsk — as he was wont to do — had fun with it. I enjoyed covering that guy. Wonder where he is now?
Thanks, Darren.

ANDY: Darren:
1. I would agree that IU’s transfer rate isn’t particularly remarkable in this day and age, which means Coach Crean perhaps gets a bad rap on the whole “Creaning” thing (which was simply somebody’s play on words once, in conjunction with spring, that should have passed its expiration date, as far as I’m concerned, pretty quickly). This isn’t to say people can’t or shouldn’t question the practice of oversigning and its potential ramifications, but it isn’t very fair to portray Tom Crean as the sole (or even necessarily a primary) practitioner of oversigning. Given the rate of transfers now, more than a few coaches indeed want to protect their roster depth by padding it a bit, lest they get caught short-handed. Not saying I agree with or necessarily like the approach, but I understand what prompts it. (Personally, I think the NCAA should mandate 15 scholarships for men’s basketball as it does for women’s, and use other means to address chronic Title IX inequities, but that’s just me.) But, as you note, perception becomes reality and any widespread use of the term “Creaning” is not a positive for the IU program. And it perhaps wouldn’t hurt him to address it, should he care to.

2. That’s a great question. I’m trying to recall a local instance, but one regarding an athlete I never covered but who got a laugh out of me a few decades back was former San Francisco Giants manager Roger Craig admitting that he’d cut his hand on the metal clasp of a bra strap.

QUESTION: At this point who do you think has the largest fan base of all teams in the state? IU or the Colts? Its definetely one of those two with everyone else lagging behind.
Mike, Seymour

JEREMY: Mike,
That’s a good question, but I’d lean towards IU just because the Colts are football-centric. The Hoosiers have more of a wide appeal across the board. But it’s probably closer than it used to be because we now have a generation that has grown up with the Colts being in town and actually being pretty good for much of their memory.

MIKE: Hey Mike,
Probably the Colts, right? This is hardly an educated guess, but I’d probably rank them: Colts, IU, Pacers, Notre Dame, Purdue, Butler, and so on. Is that reasonable?

ANDY: Mike:
Very interesting question, Mike. I’d say Notre Dame has the largest national fan base, probably. IU’s alumni base is much larger and Hoosier fandom reaches beyond alumni, obviously, but Notre Dame football and the school’s status as the most high-profile national Catholic collegiate institution perhaps trumps that. The number of Notre Dame fans in the Chicago area alone has always made an impression on me. The Colts’ success over the past couple of decades, the overall dominance of the NFL and the fact the Colts rule the roost in the Indy media market have clearly grown that fan base exponentially. If you’re talking strictly Hoosier residents, I’d say the Colts give the Hoosiers a good run for their money in terms of fan-base size these days. And nationally, again, I’d guess Notre Dame is the Hoosier institution with the most fans and followers.

QUESTION: 1. Do you think Yogi cares about his IU legacy? Might that keep him here at Indiana?
2. They had $1 hot dog day at baseball earlier this week. Rank the following: Hot dogs, Soft Pretzel, Nachos.
Fee Lane Fella, Bloomington

JEREMY: Fee,
1. Whether it’s enough to keep him at Indiana alone, I don’t know, but I do think Yogi cares about his IU legacy and I do think he has some level of pride that wants him to go out better than in the first round of the NCAA Tournament. When you look at where he ranks in the IU record book in both scoring and assists, not to mention 3-pointers, he certainly has a chance to cement himself among the most elite of Hoosier company with another season. And considering the dearth of four-year plays these days, it’s company he would likely keep for a very long time. Also, if he came back, he would give himself a shot at the NCAA record for consecutive games with a 3-pointer.
All that said, that’s really only one part of his decision. I would think who his teammates are, who his coach is and an honest evaluation of his goals and dreams are also significant factors.
2. I would go with soft pretzel, hot dog and then nachos, but if you completely reversed that order, I would not complain.

MIKE: Hey FLF,
I do think he cares to a point, but I doubt it would be a big factor in a potential decision to transfer or go pro.
Nachos, soft pretzel, hot dogs.

ANDY: FLF:
1. I would imagine he cares. Most kids do — just as most people take some pride in their work — and he’s an Indiana-raised kid. I think Yogi plays with a lot of pride, actually. But I don’t think thoughts of IU legacy will be much of a determining factor in his decision-making process. I think there are more practical and immediate considerations that will carry more weight.
2. I stick with your listed order: hot dogs, soft pretzels, nachos. Never have been a big nacho guy. Not sure what that says about me.

QUESTION: MODERATOR: That’s all the time we have for today’s chat. Thanks for joining us and apologies for the delay in the chat. Moddy’s email was acting up.
Anyway, thanks Mike, Andy and Jeremy for your time. Be sure to follow IU sports onHoosier Scoop blog and app. What is on the IU sports beat think weekend?

JEREMY: Apparently, Max Hoetzel transferring just became part of the IU beat this weekend. We’ll chase that, any other potential departures and generally enjoy college basketball’s silly season while Indiana spring football gets going. Thanks for chatting.

MIKE: Sorry for disappearing here at the end. Max Hoetzel is transferring out of the basketball program. I gotta go. Thanks, everybody.

ANDY: Just saw that Max Hoetzel will transfer from IU. Too bad. Liked that kid’s story, and I think he’s got good potential. But we all knew further roster changes were forthcoming.
Thanks to all who chatted and/or checked in.

10 comments

  1. How can anyone call SR and MH leaving “creaning”. Why in the world would CTC want two guys that contributed this season, and should next year, to leave when you have two guys (JA and TP) that sat on the bench the entire year. Now if THEY were leaving I could see being called creaning.

  2. I have been talking “perception is reality” since last year!!! I have been saying that because IU and particularly CTC have no control over what’s being talked about in the AAU circuit tourneys, the “twitterverse” amongst other recruit players, their families and coaches. All that is uncontrollable gossip and rumor helped along by “perception is reality”. Here is a thought on the perception is reality thing. Is it possible that CTC gave up on SR and Max at some point and intentionally withheld playing time??? especially in Max’s case. There’s some “grain to grind” in the ol’ rumor mill.

  3. IU is just so far away from looking like the teams that are still competing. I just have taken a while to cool off after my rants on CTC and just started to watch for the pure enjoyment of the game. Overall, we are just don’t play like a team. I don’t know if it is chemistry (lack of) or coaching but IU is just so weak on all levels including leadership and heart. I know there are only a few elite coaches (Izzo, Petino, Coach K, Self, Coach Cal, Donovan) so unless you get one of them, I don’t know what you do. I do like how Glass is handling this situation because the speculation would only hurt recruiting for future years. In the end, I hope Wiscy can bear UK. Izzo is awesome. They looked horrible in December but every year he puts them in a position to make a deep run. Go B1G because I don’t think IU will be at the top for quite some time but I don’t like to see how players like Max and Fischer (last year) are leaving so fast. I think they both could have been good foundation players to build upon. IU —–quit going for the quick fix and build the foundation.

  4. Good deal.

    Hey, do you know if ND had a timeout to burn before that last shot? That was an awful last shot with that much time to go.

  5. One ND bucket away from having all of my Final Four picks correct…Damn…so close.

    Thought Brey really mismanaged the final minute…You don’t let UK run that clock so far down on the final possession of a tie game….Put one of their mediocre foul-shooting bigs on the line with at least 20 seconds to go. Gave UK just what they wanted with Harrison driving and at the line with such little time left…I would have rolled the dice by fouling early and giving myself one, or possibly two, more possessions to either tie or go ahead.

    The absence of a timeout was really not the issue..You are right there against the most hyped team in 20 years..Make one of their lower % free throw shooters hit the pressure-packed offerings from the charity stripe…And foul with enough time on the clock to give yourself plenty of time on a potential final possession..

    Oh well…Really liked that ND group…Looked like a really nice group of kids…Zach Auguste was a delight to watach…Really fluid. Kept his composure when the refs slapped him with a couple early ticky-tack fouls.
    Sad to say, but the game almost seemed fixed….The TV ratings would have dropped off the table without UK in the Finals…

  6. How about when Duke was handed 2 free throws on a foul called with 0.7 seconds left as the Utah players were walking off the court which just allow them to meet the spread?

    Nothing fishy about that.

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