Hoosiers hold on for 85-78 win over Hawkeyes

Indiana jumped back into the Big Ten title conversation Thursday, and in the process, earned the signature win its resume lacked.

This was IU’s answer to Saturday’s gut punch on the road, a well-rounded and focused performance befitting a team with grand postseason aspirations.

The 85-78 win over No. 4 Iowa vaults Indiana back to the top of the conference standings, securing a first-place tie with the Hawkeyes and Maryland. After the weekend loss at Penn State temporarily kicked IU into third place, the Hoosiers knew they needed a win to remain in the conference championship picture.

Through a late push and a heap of resilience, they got it.

“It’s a great win,” junior forward Collin Hartman said.

No doubt about it. The Hoosiers outrebounded (39-35) and kept pace with one of the league’s quickest and most physical lineups. Perhaps most impressively, they didn’t allow the Hawkeyes to steal their legs. Credit an outstanding effort from IU’s bench, which outscored Iowa’s 28-0.

“We got so much good play from so many people,” IU coach Tom Crean said.

Indeed they did. Five IU players scored in double figures, led by Yogi Ferrell’s 14 points. Robert Johnson and Troy Williams each added 13, while Max Bielfeldt and Thomas Bryant each finished with 10. On a night when Indiana didn’t have one of the runaway scoring outputs from one of its stars, it could take solace that a collection of players were ready to assist when help was needed.

And after Iowa erased Indiana’s 16-point first-half lead, there was plenty of assistance required.

By and large, Indiana did a better job of playing in control and with purpose after Saturday’s ugly loss at Penn State resurrected old concerns about sloppiness and direction.

Foul trouble was once again a hurdle for IU after Bryant picked up his second foul leading into the first media timeout of the night. Bryant sat for a long stretch of the opening half before being whistled for his third foul in the first two minutes of the second half.

Even without Bryant able to adequately assert himself early, the Hoosiers tore ahead to a sizable early lead. They limited turnovers, dictated pace and connected on the open shots they needed to make. On a night when Indiana couldn’t afford anything less than the best version of itself, the Hoosiers’ early play met the standard.

“It was kind of like they couldn’t key in on one guy, basically,” Ferrell said. “Everybody has strengths and everybody played to their strengths.”

IU’s lead swelled to as many as 16 points with six minutes remaining before halftime, when an exciting end-to-end stretch of play by Collin Hartman brought the capacity crowd to a roaring crescendo. Hartman denied what should have been an easy layup for Jarrod Uthoff, blocking his attempt against the glass. The IU junior then raced down the floor and sank a 3-pointer that put the Hoosiers ahead 36-20 at the 6:03 mark.

It was the high-water mark of the half for Indiana, as Iowa quickly answered and made a dent with a 12-5 run that was fanned by back-to-back 3-pointers by Peter Jok.

Credit Uthoff for helping the Hawkeyes stand in position to swing back. While Iowa struggled to execute its offense early in the night, Uthoff — the Hawkeyes’ Big Ten Player of the Year candidate — accounted for 11 of his team’s first 20 points. Uthoff finished with a game-high 24 points.
Iowa erased Indiana’s 45-38 halftime lead by scoring the first seven points of the second half, tying the game on a dunk by Uthoff less than three minutes into the period. The Hawkeyes had a two-possession lead as late as the 9:35 mark of the second half, but IU was on the verge of striking back.

“Coach Crean kept telling us, ‘We’re gonna win this game!,'” Ferrell said.

And the Hoosiers believed him.

Indiana stormed ahead with a 12-2 run late in regulation, capping the spurt with a corner 3 by Ferrell that gave the Hoosiers a 70-62 lead with 6:24 remaining.

IU coach Tom Crean used 10 players — and each one of them had a moment in the spotlight. The Hoosiers’ bench produced valuable contributions from walk-on Harrison Niego and freshman forward Juwan Morgan. Entering tonight, Iowa’s bench was averaging 20.9 points and 15 rebounds across 23 games.

“They came in and gave us great energy,” Ferrell said. “Juwan especially, he had a key offensive rebound and tip in with two minutes to go. That’s what’s so special about our team.”

The Hoosiers held their advantage the rest of the way, digging in as the Hawkeyes twice came as close as five points in the final minute. Iowa saved its last push for the final 30 seconds, getting within 79-76 on a pair of free throws by Mike Gesell.

Hartman answered with a jam on the other end — a much needed bucket as IU continued to foul Iowa on three straight possessions in the final seconds.

But even without a graceful finish, Indiana was there to claim the victory it desperately needed.

“We played with strong grit,” Crean said. “Which these guys are learning what that’s all about.”


  1. Well, there you go.

    I wish I knew what that win meant in the big picture but I really don’t have a clue. Did Iowa miss half their free throws, even though they are a very good free throw shooting team, because the Hoosiers got in their heads?

    Are the Hoosiers lucky or good…or both? Beats me.

    I’ll take it.

  2. I’m not going to state the obvious…….

    We had more rebounds, assists, FTs made, steals, blocks and 3s. I don’t think you can beat somebody with that stat summary. All in all, despite the frustrating moments of complete ineptitude, these stats were accomplished and the result doesn’t lie.

    We came to play and so did the crowd. Congrats to both; the team and the crowd.

    I won’t get on to @ MSU until who knows…..

  3. Was this game part of that late season swoon that happens to every Crean-coached team? Didn’t look like it. Let’s see, we beat the #4 ranked team in the country with our best player having a really, really bad shooting night and the refs calling phantom fouls on our big man. Our bench scored a bunch of points and Iowa’s bench scored almost nothing. We’ve won 20 games and are tied for first place in the conference. Just lucky I guess, or maybe Iowa is not as good as everybody thought. It has to be something, because everybody knows that our “walk-n” coach is a “clown.”

    We’re not going to win the Big Ten title, but 23 or 24 wins before the conference tournament won’t be terrible. And who knows, maybe the “clown” will find more luck and win a game or two at the big dance.

  4. A great win against a great opponent! It wasn’t easy; it wasn’t pretty; it was in doubt until our 5 point lead went to 7 with only seconds left; everyone contributed including Juwaun and Harrison; IU made plenty of mistakes and bone-headed plays; but Indiana, and it’s home crowd, fought hard for the full 40 minutes! The game was exactly what Hoosier fans expect-beat the “big boys” when they come to the Hall! Nothing is over! 5 more W’s to go!

  5. So I held my tongue after the PSU loss. As much as I wanted to over-react I knew 2 things – 1) I’ve been to an IU game @ PSU and that is just a terrible atmosphere to try to get up and stay up for for a game. It’s just a big empty gym with zero energy and very few fans; and 2) We were due for a clunker. Crean was due for a clunker, and the boys were as well. It’s just difficult, unless you are a truly great team to maintain the level of play they had been at for 20-30 games in a row. So I let that game pass…

    This was going to be the test to see if they had actually firmed up some of these new habits and traits. I honestly believe that Crean’s hand was forced (JBJ), and the success is mostly due to happenstance (More OG and Buckets and Morgan = less ego and more defense/rebounding, with the same essential perimeter shooting). But still the team has proven a lot with that win… They can beat good teams without playing their best. They can fight through losing bigs leads, which shows they believe in themselves. They can make winning plays down the stretch. They can make FT’s in the clutch. Our half court D can be stifling even against experienced and well-run offensive teams. And they can control their emotions in a crazy atmosphere when terrible calls go against them.

    The bad:
    – more weird subbing patterns, although they essentially paid off. But I can’t figure out the Niego minutes, or why Bryant came back with 2 fouls for 5 minutes at the end of the 1st half (and basically handed the other team lay-ups), or why Morgan was first off the bench in the second half instead of Max or OG, or why he in at the end when he hasn’t played clutch minutes before. But it’s a little tough to criticize when they all essentially worked out.
    – more ineptitude against 2-3 zone… We just look lost.
    – more ineptitude playing zone… Not only was it brutal against PSU, but it was bad in the few possessions we played it last night, and then we got confused when switched back to man and gave up a wide up 3 to their best player.
    – terrible, horrible, no good, very bad transition defense. And too many times we just decided not to get back and allow transition opportunities where there shouldn’t have been.
    – Troy.

    Obviously very happy with that win, and excited to see what they can do against Izzo. Friggin hope…. They got me.

  6. Po – just as a rebuttal to your comment, the swoon isn’t a 2nd half of the season swoon… It’s a 2nd half of the B1G season swoon, when they start seeing teams for the 2nd time and they make adjustments and we don’t. This was the first time Iowa played us, thus…

    However, I do think that this team’s success, which for the first time ever under Crean, is built through tough halfcourt defense and high-quality, experienced PG play, is built to withstand that.

  7. Does anyone else think Yogi’s legs look a little tired in the last 2 games? Doesn’t see to have the same spring on the jump shot and they all seem to be coming up short. Doesn’t seem to blow by the defenders with ease. Can’t help but think all those minutes (some of them meaningless blowout minutes) of chasing around the other teams’ best guards and having to create offense for himself and others is starting to take a toll. He had several wide open looks last night that he was hitting a few games ago. Hopefully I’m wrong and its just a small shooting slump. Harrison’s play while Yogi rested was huge last night. Hope he gets some more spot minutes in the coming weeks.

  8. It’s better to be lucky than good but the Hoosiers were a little bit of both last night. Let’s reserve judgement on the coach’s ability until this season is finished rather than pop off every time the Man does what he is getting paid to do, or in some cases make excuses for him when IU loses.

  9. You make a very good point, SIHoosier78…..

    Crean’s teams have always been very athletic and very well-conditioned teams. Much of that athleticism, heart, and motor generates even more energy with the push of our great homecourt fans….But when the season progresses, and March comes calling(a time when many teams are capturing a new energy) , a balance is needed between pure advantages from earlier athleticism blasts right “out of the starting gate” and astute tactical management of a team.

    Iowa is a very good team….but I don’t see them approaching anything of the athleticism that you see in a team like Syracuse(even in their current rather down year). Our guys play with tremendous heart for their fans and coach…In terms of athleticism, hops, wing spans, etc….we stack up against the best of the BIG….But those advantages are a bit of fools gold as teams do wear down heading into March. Heart can only take you so far…Legs tire…Legs tire and long perimeter shots suffer right in stride with that fatigue…

    So what begins to separate the teams that reach beyond the athleticism and gifts that can be great for NBA Draft nights but fade in pressure cooker moments? It’s a thing called savvy. It’s balance…It’s letting the game come to you…It’s calm management and clever ways to exploit the opposition beyond simply running them off the floor. It’s all rather fascinating stuff.

    We looked far more athletic than Iowa. Iowa appeared tired and frustrated by our superior athleticism….But then we often see a different Iowa team in the Big 10 tournament….They have this constant pursuit sorta motor….and then that coaching thing kicks in. It’s the science of hoops and it goes far beyond track meets and alley-oops in the college game. Jordy was like a broken down engine against Syracuse….He struggled against VCU….Remy bailed us out against VCU…But what if we would have played Remy more in earlier contests? Sure, a few more losses…But more balance in the end and a key component of our team’s perimeter threat with much fresher legs in March.

    And when a coach has supposed “heat” on his job security status, is he managing a team for the long haul or is he simply pushing his guys to the limits get W’s at any cost without concern the absence of teaching moments and physical stamina/balance? And then we get in a contest where the game slows down…..We stand….We look confused…We look the product that spent itself against weak teams to have nothing left for the Syracuses of the tournament

  10. That game probably locked up a tourney bid no matter what happens the rest of the way.

    It’s interesting how expectations have lowered as the season has progressed. Back in December several folks (including myself) thought CTC would need a Final Four run to maintain his job security considering the abysmal way our last couple seasons finished.

    Now, it seems like winning 20+ games and finishing in the top 3 or 4 in the conference appears to be adequate to placate many. It probably will be enough for CTC to keep his job even if they once again crash and burn in the post season.

    Is this the current standard for success in Bloomington?

  11. Only have to play MSU, Purdue, and Maryland once ..Two of those games are at home supplying the same energy evident last night.

    Crean’s job was saved by a unprecedented soft schedule…..Most claim that the BIG scheduling was simply the luck of the draw…Glass is very closely tied to Delany(Jersey roots and UNC grad) and the thrust to include the eastward movement of media influence, conference expansion, bowls, etc. Crean has always been very closely tied to recruiting with that same ‘pipeline’ to the East focus. Vitale whispered his opinion concerning where he felt Maryland truly belonged.. “ACC BABY……”

    Glass removed UK from the schedule… ….The non-conference opponents delivered to Hoosier fans have been beyond a joke. No marquis games against historic rivals….. They’ve made it all look “successful” as they’ve molded us into a form of Midwestern basketball jello…A very favorable BIG schedule that just by more coincidence and “happenstance” fell into Crean’s “hot seat” lap three or four years after “Everything Hinges” carried our team into back-to-back Sweet 16 land when things were all hunky-dory.

    I don’t see any of this as a resurgence…It’s protecting of jobs and selling out the BIG…It came with some temporary awards…But in terms of the long term picture….? A UNC with East Coast ties loves bozo hoops at Indiana…A UNC grad runs the BIG 10. I’m pretty sure they would be very content to continually set things up soft for Crean(Glass and Delany alike) only to see Hoosiers remain uninspiring in March.

    Other than the banners, it all looks great on paper…More wins for Tommy. More money for the BIG 10 Network….But who really built the relevance of the BIG(especially in terms of hoops) with FIVE banners? What other BIG program even comes close…..? And they just assume keep us there…And those running our programs don’t mind as long as they keep printing the money and selling success as placing a few guys in the top tier of an NBA Draft night….Yippee.

  12. This year’s scheduling was engineered soft because those running our Athletics Department knew all success in Crean’s 8 years can mainly be tied to one recruit. They knew that momentum was going to fade quickly….As soon as Zeller left…Fischer got home sick…Noah Vonleh decided to test waters he was not ready…There was no reason to stay because the key component to Crean’s success(much like his one key component at Marquette) decided the NBA was more attractive than more years under this coach. Zeller knew banners were not possible under Crean. Glass isn’t stupid…He knew the hot seat would be coming. He built soft and he used his great business mind tied into the head man of the BIG to exert more ‘soft’ defeatism upon our program. Now we simply duck from the best to sell it off as success. And we got three of the most traditionally strong basketball programs from our conference delivered on a soft silver platter(MSU, Purdue, and Maryland).

    Notice how Cody was in the stands for the Iowa game? Pull out all the stops for Tommy now….And then when it’s once again uninspiring in March, they’ll be sitll telling us it was a great season as we live decades in the stagnancy of “Almost Banners.”

  13. And it’s very disappointing to me to see so many naive fans supporting this sort quest to deliver soft success. They are ruining Indiana Basketball one Watford buzzer-beater at a time…They sell these homecourt wins over teams often prematurely assessed as the year’s ‘powerhouse’ offerings as the measure of success….But it’s all in the backdrop of other wins accumulated against teams barely having a foot into Division 1 status. And our teams inevitably head into March with too big of heads.

    Tom Crean with Don Fischer in the postgame interview(paraphrasing a bit):

    “The loss against Penn State hurt…We came within an eyelash of getting to twenty wins faster than any team in the history of Indiana Basketball.”

    If that isn’t a complete indication of how his mind works, I don’t know what else you need. It’s a numbers game…and not a teaching game.

  14. Some of you good people seem to have selective memory about IU’s basketball history. Sorry Chet, I don’t intend for this post to be an attack on you, but your post referencing that “standard” begs a response. That “standard” you asked about represents about the same level of success that Bob Knight’s last seven seasons at IU achieved, and many of his IU-coached seasons prior to that! One of the greatest basketball coaches of all time did not lead IU to a Big Ten Conference championship during his last seven seasons at IU. Knight’s IU teams’ best finish in conference during that span was 3rd, and that was in a smaller conference. One of the greatest college basketball coaches of all time did not lead any of his last seven IU teams to more than 23 wins in a season. His last seven IU teams went 21-9,19-12, 19-12, 22-11, 20-12, 23-11, and 20-9. And six of those last seven Bob Knight coached IU teams did not survive the Round of 32 in the NCAA tournament. I don’t recall too many people calling for Bob Knight to be fired years before he ran afoul of IU’s PC President or questioning the “standards” that we expected him to maintain? Or was the standard you referred to set by Mike Davis, who aside from one magical year, never lead an IU team to more than 21 wins in a season? In fact, in his best season at IU, 2001-2002, his IU team only tied for the Big Ten Championship, after which they finished 6th, 9th, 9th, 4th, and 4th in conference. Clearly Kelvin Sampson did not establish any standards IU basketball hopes to live up to. An effective floor/game coach, his standards brought the roof down on our heads and decimated the program. Forget about the NCAA rules violations, how about a bunch of his players flunking out of school? So, the only basketball coach to lead IU to win an Outright Big Ten Championship since 1992/1993 is Tom Crean. And assuming he wins a few more games this regular season (including the Big tournament), he will have lead IU into the NCAA tournament in four out of the last five seasons. His teams have defeated 5 of 6 top ten-ranked teams at home in the last few years. This Tom Crean team has a chance to win the Big Ten Championship. At this point in the season, what more can IU fans expect? Maybe Crean’s IU teams are not good enough for those nostalgic IU fans living 30 and 40 years in the past, but as the data I’ve presented confirms, those days, and the coach that produced them, are long gone! Yes, IU basketball could be better, and we all long to return to those halcyon days. But as we’ve also witnessed, IU basketball could be a lot worse. Tom Crean did not diminish IU basketball’s standards, and IU fans should be careful not to allow “perfect” to become the enemy of “good.”

  15. I can’t argue with any of that except the part where you say IU fans were content with Knight’s performance as coach during his last 7 years. None of my IU friends thought he was doing anything other than phoning it in at that point and his personal behavior just made him even less desirable as a coach for the Hoosiers. The game had obviously passed him by. High school players simply didn’t want anything to do with him and he wore his frustrations on a jumbotron.

    Indeed, the prevailing sentiment I heard was something along the lines of, “Is this what IU basketball has sunk to? It’s time for him to go.”

    Let me ask you this. Do you think CTC would have any chance of staying on as head coach if he produced the same results at UNC, Duke, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisville (OK, they’ll tolerate anything), or any of the top teams that feel like they have a shot at the Final Four every year?

    Don’t you think, at some point, the Hoosiers need to show they can do something other than beat up awful teams, have an occasional upset, and crash and burn every single year in the post season (sorry, taking the loaded with talent top ranked team to the Sweet Sixteen is not being successful)?

    Like many, I love the occasional upset, but I don’t believe we stand a snowballs chance in hell of making a splash in the post season. I hope I’m wrong.

  16. Bob wouldn’t shake Bozo’s hand….The irrelevant Bob of dwindling “final years” numbers was pursued by Crean like he was the Messiah.

    Tell your InTompetent to leave Bob alone if he was so damn irrelevant…And quit boosting your own ratings by bringing Bob’s Hoosier teams back to your clownish locker rooms for more handshakes and reunions.

    The only people living in the glory of the old forgotten banner days are the two dimwits that can’t accomplish anything on their own….Crean can fade into his Final Four droughts just as soon as he chooses after he brings three banners to McCracken….Hell, he go stagnant from 2020 to 2035 for all I care if he can get 1/10 of the accomplishments of the coach Podunker now choose to mock in apology for the marketing clowns.

    Mike Davis did pretty well with Knight’s final recruiting class. Maybe give Davis some credit for doing something Knight couldn’t do in his last seven years…. Davis didn’t get spanked by 30 points against a #1 Duke. What did Crean do against a Duke team now struggling to even break back into the top 25?

    This is how these defeatists operate…The chase Knight for validation and then they’ll be the first to piss on his grave. You are a bigger clown than THE clown.

  17. [They] chase Knight for validation and then they’ll be the first to piss on his grave.

  18. And Crean has no clue to what is a true taste of contempt from a fan base….Davis was stamped with ‘put on the bus’ the moment he had to take over a program stripped of the man CharlaTom chases like the Messiah. Crean has no idea what true job pressure feels like in comparison to the spit Davis had to endure…And Davis took that spit to go all the way to a Championship game while going through a #1 Duke team in Rupp Arena of all places.

    But this is how they operate…Instead of granting one ounce of credit to Davis for doing what Knight couldn’t do in his previous seven years, they’d rather piss on Bob to elevate Crean to his throne. Crean will never fluke us to one Final Four…And that’s how most labeled Davis’s run. Heaven forbid elevate Davis to throne status while pissing on Bobby and his seven year itch.

  19. That’s what irks these defeatists more than anything…Bobby looks right through them with the same abrupt discernment he gave the dimwit frat rat that got in his face with only provocation and nothing to back it up.

    Knight understands it’s nothing about forgiveness , or respect, or thanks…It’s about their “me world.” Harvard calling Crean a clown means nothing. But when Knight looks at them in the truth his penetrating eyes and sees Ringmaster Fred and his sidekick, they are forever damaged goods looking for their next villain to blame their losses.

  20. The game had obviously passed him by. High school players simply didn’t want anything to do with him and he wore his frustrations on a jumbotron.

    Not sure how much of that is true, Chet….He obviously had a bit of a recruiting resurgence as evidenced by a lowly coach like Davis taking Bob’s commits to a Championship game. If the Crean apologists point to the stagnancy of Knight’s final years, then how do you explain Davis taking those Knight recruits to a Championship game? That was a hell of good team Knight had assembled(many of which were from within the Hoosier borders).

    But maybe the game had past him by….And where did it leave us? Prima donnas that wear bigger britches than coach when they are juniors in high school…Kids that need creepy levels of adulation…A coach sends out a tweet expressing how he’s been “thinking about you a whole lot”…..And then we have that game flying by Knight so fast that it parked a pimp mobile outside Louisville where hookers wait for kids not old enough to legally drink a beer. And then we have the NBA camps a Lexington and the refusal by egomaniacs to give a UK vs. Indiana rivalry game back to the fans….Yup, I’m convinced Knight was the bad seed on college basketball and everything wholesome in the game had just powered down those tracks and left him at the station.

    A ton of ass-kissing gets you to the point of needing hookers to play a game of basketball…Do you really think something so wonderful was leaving him behind? Did you see the interviews with those Hoosiers from the ;76 team? They seemed like pretty stellar human beings….The only thing that has passed us by is respecting ourselves enough to tell some prima donna to shove it up his kazoo if he can’t decide between hookers and IU.

    One of Knight’s final recruits now sits a couple spots down from Izzo. He was on that Final Four team that is undeserving any credit given to Knight or Davis….Knight picked the pocket of Michigan to put him in a Hoosier uniform…Now it’s the opposite…Most the cream of the crop from our state goes to play for MSU or Michigan.

    After his senior season in 1998, he was named Mr. Basketball of Michigan over runner-up Antonio Gates,[4] and was also named a McDonald’s All-American and Parade All-American. A blue-chip recruit in basketball and also a star quarterback, Fife was recruited to play both sports in college. He ultimately committed to play basketball for Indiana University under head coach Bob Knight.

  21. Harvard,
    Maybe it’s just me but half the time I have no idea what point you’re trying to make.

  22. oops…[passed] him by…

    I look around the Big 10 and I see a lot of coaches that come off as giant asses……I also hear of programs like UNC that invented classes that didn’t truly exist and invented the lovely grades to go on transcripts…I’ve also heard of rumors that a guy once had a someone else take his SAT exam so he could play for Memphis….And now we have the hookers story at Louisville. . What did you say has passed us by? I do know ingeniously designed basketball passed us by…? and 3-way calls passed us by…? and recruiting the best of Indiana while robbing Chicago, Ohio, and Michigan of the occasional stud has passed us by….What was the other modern day redeeming quality that Knight couldn’t keep pace?

    A far from perfect man, but I don’t think that train that left him at the station is exactly role model stuff. We do pray at halftime….Yippee.

  23. Point: How can one claim Knight had grown so irrelevant when his final recruiting class made it to a Championship Game(albeit under a very lousy coach in Mike Davis)….? And now one of those recruits sits a couple chairs down from Izzo.

    Point: Whatever passed him by? Is it really so much better today? Do his former players act like people a world has passed by? I believe many of them seem far more intelligent and modern than many prima donnas looking for creepy tweets to play game…Do they really care about being taught anything or is it just hookers…and Denver hotel maids…and getting to say you were a lottery pick….Is it old-fashioned to believe ta great deal of those Hoosiers that played under Knight are often more modern and inspiring then what I see as kids that more often feel entitled before they’ve accomplished or worked to be a true student of the game? Do many of them even care to be a true student of the game?

  24. oops…

    [than] what I see.

    Final Point: It’s pretty sad to prop up Crean via tearing down Knight. It’s no different than tearing down Sampson and painting every troubled kid with vicious stereotypes(as if their lives can never be turned around)…to prop up all of this “soft” basketball now being played at Indiana. More irony…A Sampson recruit know takes up space on Crean’s bench.
    And if you’re going to tear down Knight for being so damn irrelevant when he was sent packing his bags(even if fully deserved due to his own arrogance and ugly behavior) then where is your admiration for Davis to take his team to a Final Four? There is none …because it’s all about tearing the past down to prop up Prayer Boy.

    Are those enough “points” or do you need more?

  25. They came to Indiana. He only got Texas A&M to be slightly above average in his best year and he could never draw high caliber recruits. If it was all about playing for Bobby Knight he could have gotten the same quality of player at A&M.

  26. Bobby Knight tore down Bobby Knight. He didn’t need any help. I don’t recall my name on any of the press releases.

  27. So the team Davis took to a Championship was composed of guys that came to IU because they didn’t want to play for Knight.

    What Knight did at Texas Tech(A & M?)has no place in a comparison to apologists tearing down the past to prop up Prayer Boy. Knight had been fired…Crean could walk out of IU on grand terms as a hot commodity and do less at Texas Tech than an old man that had been fired. Now if Knight has that final recruiting class handed to Davis….if he gets that team just as far as Davis…and is then sent packing? That’s a different world, Chet…That’s a different world even for a coach that probably could never fit anywhere but Indiana.

    Indiana is the only place Knight could live with his style…His demands …His acting a tyrant were present from the first day he took the job. Nobody forced those kids to keep signing …and I don’t think there were hookers in barns along the drive down 37.

    Who’s the coach that left Kansas St….(replaced by Weber)? I wonder what he’s like in practice? He sure seems intensely modern.

    Just remember…When you win,…..the power of the microscope dials up….Hand to the microscope to the Establishment tired of Knight shellacking their asses, and they go even more high-powered dirt digging.

  28. Chet, schools like UNC, Duke, Kansas, Kentucky, and Louisville did not allow total mismanagement and gross underfunding of their storied basketball programs for decades, and suffer near-total devastation like IU Basketball did in 2008! And that’s the point. IU has not been in that elite category of basketball programs or maintained those standards you reference for decades! The problems with IU Basketball began long before Tom Crean was hired, and long before Knight was fired. The mismanagement of IU’s Athletic Department dated back many years. Knight probably should have been shown the door after the 96/97 season. The cowardly and public way Knight was fired (that zero tolerance bull) was the kill shot that finished the job of diminishing IU Athletics in the state and across the country. Put it this way, long before that debacle, the “standard” for IU basketball had already been greatly diminished. Do you think Mike Davis would have been hired, even after he lead Iu to the Championship, to replace the head coach at any of the schools you mentioned? Of course not. Same mistake was made when Hep died and IU’s clueless administration gave Lynch a multi-year contract extension. Lynch and Davis were both fine and good men, but neither was qualified to lead a Big Ten team. And then IU’s Administration doubled down on the Davis mistake when they hired Sampson in spite of the smoke signals coming out of Oklahoma. After the meltdown of 2008, IU could not have hired any of the men now coaching UNC, Duke, Kansas, Kentucky, and Louisville, no matter how much money IU was willing to pay them. IU Basketball had become a train wreck that was decades in the making.

    And that, Chet, has been my point in response to IU fans whose memories have faded and continuous blame everything on Crean. He’s not the best college basketball coach alive. He may never lead IU all the way back to achieve those lofty standards that you refer to. But Crean’s not responsible for diminishing those standards, either, and he has lead IU basketball a long way back, establishing the program as relevant again. In fact, over the last five seasons, Crean’s been as successful, if not slightly more successful, than any IU coach in the last 23 years. Firing Crean any time soon would be extremely expensive, and therefore counter-productive to a school with the second lowest athletic budget in the Big Ten conference.

  29. Wow…I agree with the cloudy day…Zero tolerance was complete “bull.”

    But even amongst all the turmoil, Knight still assembled a team with enough talent for Davis to take to a Final Four…and a subsequent Championship Game on Monday night. That Championship appearance under Davis(with Knight recruits) is no less “elite” than the lifetime achievement for Crean getting barely in the door of his one Final Four and subsequently getting blown out by 33 points(13 years ago this March)..

  30. Well, yeah.

    If you come to a program like Indiana and the best you can do after 8 years is a couple Sweet Sixteens then you don’t have a strong hand when your performance review comes around.

  31. Without Zeller erase being within a solar system of any Sweet 16. One “elite” post player from Indiana that finally didn’t go to Duke or UNC gave IU a sniff at being “elite” again. Hell, IU could never even corral May, Harangody, Matt Howard, first two Zellers, Plumlees…McGary, etc, etc etc. Now PU has two quality 7-footers from the state and The Haas Thing from Alabama…,

    How do you become elite when you can only grab one quality big from dozens that have gone elsewhere….? And then that one “savior” that saved Crean’s butt only stays two years. How much would we have to cheer over the past 8 years of Crean without that one “Everything Hinges” moment? No Big Championship…No Sweet 16’s ….No magazine covers…No #1 ranking…No extensions for Crean…Most of you have no idea just how irrelevant it would have become…The last seven years of Knight would have looked like the Gold Rush in comparison.

  32. You have always appreciated Cody more than have I. He was a nice player. VO was a much better player.

    Maybe you’re right. I just never saw Cody as being any better than Yogi or Vic or Noah (OK, he’s better than Noah) or some others. Com’on, he wasn’t some transcendent talent. He was a pretty darn good player. There were a couple dozen better players in D1 during the same period.

  33. If Zeller stays four years, Crean would be regarded as a better coach than Knight….We likely have a 6th and 7th banner….and the momentum could have even brought more. If Cody plays the role of Frank Kaminsky, Tom Crean is the best coach in college basketball hands down. ….

    While Cody sat in the stands of the Iowa game, I wonder if he ever contemplated the type of Peach Basket Jesus and legend he could have truly become in the state of Indiana…? There is no way Fischer gets homesick …and on way Vonleh leaves….and the recruits just would have kept on coming.

    Maybe God has a different plan for Tom Crean…..Maybe he’ll prove he can do it without the loyalty some other coaches have had the fortunes to be granted.

  34. it’s not that he was necessarily better, Chet…it’s simply what you need in the middle…And the symbolic importance of dominating the paint for four years would have catapulted Crean beyond this mediocrity we define him. A moment of hard truth from even this far too harsh of critic.

  35. Don’t get me wrong…I would have rather had Mitch McGary….I like a post player that turns to face the basket and pause for that needed split-second…Everything is timing…..and Mitch had that split-second decision making and a love for the big stage. You gotta love the big stage to put teams on your shoulders(I’m talking March Madness and not the stuff of all those Big 10 banners that hang from Mackey)…

    Steve Downing was also a big stage performer….He went up against Walton and gave the big redhead all he could handle.

    Nonetheless, I do believe Crean has a banner on his resume if Cody simply stays one more season. He’s stays for all four years and Indiana Basketball would have been back with the family of “elite” programs. …A dominant game in the paint is that important.

  36. Soooo, you think that we would have happily embraced CTC, and felt he was RMK’s superior, had a single college player embraced him for a couple more years.

    OK, I guess that’s possible.

  37. If this team keeps up the level of tenacity, it very well could be Yogi’s shoulders carrying the Hoosiers into a Final Four….And what secured Yogi’s recruitment. What was the deciding factor/pivotal moment that put him in candy stripes?

    Bryant is not chopped liver…He’s far better than I imagined he would be at this stage….

    Geoff likes to ride Troy’s ass, but he’s another explosive “it factor” type guy that is just enough to get you over the hump with adequacy in the paint(Bryant) and a point guard evolving into one of the best in the country. Yup…I said it…Yogi is one of the best point guards in the country…and he has the skill to carry this team when the chips are down. That’s a great piece of the puzzle to have in your arsenal when the rest of the team hits that one flat stretch that usually means elimination in the Big Dance.

    Hartman is coming on…I was behind that kid(during his early recruitment and first year) when many were throwing him under the bus on here. Zeisloft and Bedfelt …and OG….Johnson. They are all monumentally better because of Yogi and Thomas Bryant’s surprisingly high level of savvy and mature moves inside.

    Yogi is the last piece of the Movement.. There is a different hunger this year… I think we’ll stun MSU this Sunday. We may even blow them out of their own gym.

  38. Soooo, you think that we would have happily embraced CTC, and felt he was RMK’s superior, had a single college player embraced him for a couple more years.

    I do, Chet. The man is trapped in the tragic chapters his own Shakespeare play. Much of the tragedy evolves from his own hunger to be validated and respected by his peers. He has treated many of his top recruits with an investment in belief they may have never found elsewhere. That belief and full investment of heart contributed to the basketball evolution of those young men…..Yet, Tom Crean sits in a very lonely chair when it comes to someone truly believing in him….and someone willing to risk losing something very big for him..

    Isn’t that always the “clown?” Many of us play the clown because it simply hurts too much to think of all those that just didn’t fully invest in believing in us. . Yogi coming back meant the world to Tom Crean…It’s nice when someone believes in you.

  39. Symbolic Interactionist Perspective….I tend to find some hope is such theories.

    I also believe Crean has surrounded himself with some upgrades in the right sort of demeanor/minds from the bench. I really like Chuck Martin…

    And as noted above, all it takes is ‘one’ to relieve believe in you…(or maybe change that ‘Looking Glass Self’)..I honestly feel Yogi’s return has meant the world to Crean….When has he ever had a long term leader to truly anchor a team and give him the vote of confidence? All it takes is one seed of loyalty and belief to blossom in the heart and reach to the heavens like a giant oak(or maple if you prefer the b-ball metaphor).

  40. Yeah, I hope he is learning on the job. Nothing would make me happier than for him to have a basketball epiphany in conjunction with an upgraded staff and lead the Hoosiers to the promised land.

    I think we will learn a lot more tomorrow when they play a very imperfect (7-5) MSU team on their home court. If they can string two solid performances together against decent teams it will give cause for hope.

    On the other hand, if the Hoosier drop a game to a team struggling to stay above .500 in the conference it will be troubling. It’s an important game that the Hoosiers really need.

  41. And let’s talk about money. Crean makes about $3.1 million a year. Look at what those coaches at Duke, Kentucky, Louisville, and Kansas, are getting paid. Calipari and Pitino are at about $6 million a year. Self gets $5 million per. Duke paid Coach K $9.7 million last year! Izzo gets $4 million per. You think IU can afford to pay a new basketball coach $4 to $6 million a year? How does IU afford to pay that kind of money to a new coach while paying Crean to buyout his contract? Or is it your theory that IU should hire some wunderkind currently coaching at a less elite basketball school? No way you can afford to give a wunderkind a big raise, but pay him less than Crean is making now? And not easy to do since a lot of those wunderkinds are either trying to build an elite program or aspire to take over one once the current coach retires. The coaches at Louisville, UNC, West Virginia and OK are in their mid 60’s, Coach K is 69 and Jim Boeheim is 72! They won’t coach forever, but the money the get paid will be available for proven replacements.

  42. I see it as mostly tenacity…because of Yogi and the young guy in the middle. Leadership and loyalty at the point guard(the all-important QB of a basketball team) and the heart-of-a-lion level of enthusiasm from the tallest man on the floor. That’s your foundation….Surround that foundation with a kid like Hartman that has a great shot and high b-ball IQ….Nick Zeisloft with the gumption and deadly marksmanship of a Jordy Hulls….Troy Williams with the explosive ability to do something extraordinary off a missed shot, broken play, or any, otherwise, blasé possession.. Add in the versatility and early maturity of OG…and the length of solid combo-guard in RJ…..? Need more insurance? Here comes Beilfeldt off the bench to settle down Bryant and offer his own version of disciplined fundamental play and poise inside..

    Where’s the weakness on this team? I think we could still have trouble with very long teams that pride themselves on team defense. Unfortunately, a team like Syracuse….A very well-coached team that is long and can equal our speed. But it could be different this time because of Yogi and Bryant….Thomas Bryant is beginning to understand the balance between trying to do too much and remaining composed enough to nearly be unstoppable..

    It’s all a chemistry set, Chet….And it all depends on some very volatile combinations and a strong nucleus…

    Yogi and Crean now function as one…Yogi has provided a calming presence on the sideline that only a 4-year point guard of his high skill level can do. And to think he cancelled his Ruth’s Chris steakhouse announcement because of tragic death of Hannah Wilson…. Something so shockingly sad…..can sure change how you see the world or evaluate your own “Looking Glass’ into your own “greatness.”

    The Hoosiers will be a very tough match-up in March. I wouldn’t want to be the squad finding them in my bracket.

  43. ^^^The above post was meant for Chet. With the other interrupting dude it’s all about size and money.

  44. Chet- Circle that 4:20 p.m. post…Put it in a lockbox…..Use it to your advantage when I go off the tracks…

    It’s actually about the best I can give you in assessing the team and its potential….I hope you learned something….but I think you already knew that this is a very good basketball team.. …and, love it, or deny it, it was built by Tom Crean(with a lot of residual push from a kid named Zeller).

  45. I think we may have the deepest collection of good basketball players in the country and, yes, the team was assembled and shaped by CTC. I hope they play to their potential.

  46. Hello Harvard. How are you. As I said before Coach Crean is a master of entropy. This was evident during the Iowa game. He gets things mixed up and then lets his players figure it out. That’s why a DWade was so important to him. That’s why Yogi … hope he doesn’t get injured… the excuses would then start to flow.

    In addition I have said it many times it’s good that things go well this season when we part ways with Mr. Crean he too needs to get a(nother) job it would be sad if he were fired after a horrible season. I’m very happy the season’s schedule has been engineered as it has since it has led to confidence for our boys. Indiana can beat anyone on a given day clearly. However it can also lose to anyone (witness second game vs Minny in Assembly Hall) since we don’t have a coach. Crean has delegated most of his responsibilities to Yogi and the rest of the players and it shows. Have you not seen Yogi in the chair leading time-outs lately? That’s a sign Mr Crean has learned and he’s getting out of the way. Sad when a coach’s best move is to get out of his players’ way but that’s what it is with Indiana these days.

    How far do you think Indiana goes in the B1G Tourney?

  47. coachw-

    I find the pointless BIG Tourney destructively boring..It takes juice out of teams that should be reserved for March Madness…It’s overkill simply built for more dollars with no concern for the extra wear and tear on kids that could benefit greatly from a few extra days of rest.

    But if I must….I like the Hoosiers chances…I think they’ll win the thing.

  48. And then this happens..Just a spineless display in the second half. Wow….I should really just stick with the ‘clown’ narrative. This reverse psychology stuff works too well.

    It’s just one loss…..but damn was it ugly. Absolutely no Hoosier heart…on VALENTINE’S day. How does this happen when a team is playing to secure a 1st place position in the standings? I give up attempting to figure out a Tom Crean team.. It’s bipolar basketball every year.

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