IUWBB: Liz Stratman to leave IU

After sitting out a year, Liz Stratman was supposed to bring a front court presence to a Hoosier team desperately in need of one.

That won’t happen.

Stratman asked for her release from IU Monday, meaning the 2014 Big East Defensive Player of the Year will not suit up for the Hoosiers.  The 6-foot-2 forward, who transferred from Butler to IU when Curt Miller was still the head coach, becomes the fourth player to leave the program during head coach Teri Moren’s first offseason.

“Liz informed us that her heart was somewhere else during her time here in Bloomington and we wish her the best as she moves on,” Moren said in a statement. “We currently have a great group of kids working hard this offseason in the weight room, getting stronger and preparing for the future.”

Stratman has one year of eligibility remaining and could play immediately for another team if she graduates from IU this year.

At Butler during her junior season, Stratman averaged 2.7 blocks per game to go along with 13.1 points and 6.8 rebounds per contest; she scored in double figures 19 times and surpassed 20 points five times.

With the transfers of Stratman, Larryn Brooks, Taylor Agler and Maura Muensterman, along with the graduation of Claire Jakubicek, the Hoosiers now have five available scholarships.

Sunday it was confirmed that Marquette transfer Tia Elbert visited IU. Moren has also been recruiting junior college players to fill holes in the roster.

Turnover was expected following Moren’s first season, but the roster has taken some major hits. Brooks was IU’s leading scorer. Agler and Muensterman were role players, and Stratman never played a minute for IU, but the latter’s exit leaves a big “what if” for the Hoosiers.

Stratman could have solidified the middle of the Hoosiers’ defense in 2015-16. Last season, the Hoosiers were the second-to-worst team in the Big Ten in block shots, only better than Michigan at 2.7 per game. IU was also No. 13 in defensive rebounding. She could have also helped shift the balance of a guard-heavy roster to a more forward-oriented squad, which more aligns with Moren’s two-post system.

Regardless of whether Stratman stayed, starting forwards Amanda Cahill and Jenn Anderson were set to play major roles next season, along with reserve Lyndsay Leikem. Kym Royster, a 6-foot-2 forward from Newark, Ohio, was a girls’ basketball co-player of the year in her home state, and she could see time during her freshman season. Another recruit, 6-foot-5 forward Danielle Williams from Fort Worth, Texas, adds another body to the mix but, by all accounts, she may need time to develop into a Big Ten post player.

When reached by The Herald-Times, Stratman declined to comment.

“As I stated before, we are committed to signing tremendous student-athletes who will earn a degree from one of the finest institutions in the country as we work to compete for a Big Ten championship,” Moren said in her statement. “This is a special place and we are excited for what is in store for this program.”

 

5 comments

  1. Seems like IU bb, both men and women, is as hard to build and maintain in the bb world as is IU fb in the football world.

  2. Hmmm…that one I don’t understand….Unless she’s not a good fit in the offense….

    That’s about the fourth player to transfer, but the fourth player over a couple of years to not play a minute …

    But, both basketball teams are in “roller coaster” mode right now….so Strap in….

  3. My advice Coach Moren is only sign players whom you believe will start or really contribute after 2 years in your program. There is nothing wrong with having unused scholarships next March and April when the next round of transfers happens!

  4. Seeing the side panel of women’s bball picks, that leaves Seven players for next year…I think that at least two should be carried for next year’s class, but as Norman Dale said in Hoosiers, (for now) It’s gonna be a lonely bench.

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