Indiana gets No. 3 seed, will travel to Georgia Tech in NIT opener

They simply wanted to keep playing.

The Hoosiers will have the opportunity to do so Tuesday in the National Invitation Tournament.

Indiana learned Sunday night that it received a No. 3 seed in the NIT and will open the consolation tournament with a 9 p.m. matchup against No. 6 Georgia Tech at McCamish Pavilion in Atlanta.

Typically, the higher-seeded team hosts games on campus in the NIT, but Indiana declined to bring a game to Assembly Hall this week with students — a large portion of the ticket holders — on spring break. An Indiana spokesman said the school would be able to host a game, if still alive in the tournament, as early as March 20.

It’s not the postseason direction this team wanted to take after beating No. 3 ranked teams Kansas and North Carolina, and peaking themselves at No. 3 during the season’s first month.

Both the Jayhawks and Tar Heels earned No. 1 seeds in the NCAA Tournament, making the Hoosiers the first team to beat a pair of top-seeded teams and fail to qualify for the field of 68, according to CBS Sports.

But the Hoosiers have accepted the reality of their season and feel they’ve authored their best basketball of the year during the past couple weeks.

Now, they’re ready to seek a lasting stay in the NIT’s field of 32.

“We just want to play,” point guard Josh Newkirk said. “We just want to keep playing. We’ve been playing a good brand of basketball right now. We’re playing together and more connected. Any opportunity to play, we’re ready.”

The first four teams left out of the NCAA Tournament, California, Illinois State, Iowa and Syracuse, each received No. 1 seeds.

Indiana was placed in the Syracuse quadrant, where a win over the Yellow Jackets would produce a matchup with either No. 2 Georgia or No. 7 Belmont.

The Yellow Jackets, who dropped their Atlantic Coast Conference Tournament opener to Pitt and lost seven of 11 games since Feb. 1, went 17-15 in their first season under coach Josh Pastner.

Ranked No. 82 by the KenPom.com metrics — Indiana is No. 42 — Georgia Tech had the ACC’s least efficient offense this season. Defensively, the Jackets held conference opponents to a league-best 47.3 effective field goal percentage, while also pacing their conference in two-point field goal defense (44.2 percent) and block percentage (14.5 percent).

Freshman guard Josh Okogie leads Georgia Tech with 15.5 points per game.

Indiana can blame its poor play in late January and early February for putting the team in this position. After delivering one of their best performances of the year in an 82-75 win over Michigan State on Jan. 21 at Assembly Hall, the Hoosiers lost eight of their final 11 games of the regular season.

The Big Ten placed seven schools — Maryland, Michigan, Michigan State, Minnesota, Northwestern, Purdue and Wisconsin — into the NCAA Tournament.

Indiana wasn’t good enough to make the cut, but the Hoosiers believe they have a chance to salvage something from the season, making up for lost time in the process.

“I think we really are in our stride still,” IU forward Juwan Morgan said after Friday’s Big Ten Tournament loss to Wisconsin. “There’s a great basketball team in this team here. I feel like whatever tournament we get into, we’re definitely going to make something happen.”

38 comments

  1. The I U Athletic Department knows that the I U Fan Base is presently has a VERY LOW Interest in I U Basketball and could be reflected with a real low fan attendance. That’s why the game is in Georgia.

  2. Indiana decline to host the game. Wow.

    Syracuse is on spring break, yet they are hosting. Something amiss in the offices of Assembly Hall?

  3. Playing a good brand of basketball?? So why did they just get thumped by Wisconsin. They are delusional.

  4. As far as the out of state venue I would suggest it is to not indulge any advantage and it is part of the orchestration to encourage Crean to move on.

  5. HC, I don’t see any other way to read it. There have been countless games at AH during breaks so why is this different? I’m guessing FG wants this to be as neat and painless as possible and having a few thousand fans booing a lame duck coach is neither.

    I’m pretty sure CTC is on his way out the door.

    I’d also suggest he will be an upgrade for Missouri. The bar is pretty low.

  6. Read an article and experimental rules for the 2017 NIT games change breaking games into approx. 10 minute segments and change in the shooting of free throws possible no one and one’s . Most interesting will be a 20 second shot clock. Will the 20 second shot clock, slow down IU’s dribbling? Will the ball stay on the perimeter and little passing into interior and the guards can blast away

  7. IU refusing home NIT game: 1. Does this mean T.C. is fired or leaving 2. Does this mean T.C. is fired 3. Does this mean IU wants to sweep this season and much of the mediocrity past and below mediocrity tournament play past under the rug 4. Is it a combination of all the above?

  8. My sources tell me it was scheduling conflict. It’s my understanding that this week had already been set aside for the resurfacing of McCracken with balsa wood. Because it’s soft.

  9. Glass came out today and said that giving up the opening round NIT home game was 1) due to students on spring break and 2) made two weeks ago.

    Wow, the administration was planning on playing and NIT game 2 weeks ago when IU was still meandering around the weakest bubble in the history of the tournament. And, the students haven’t showed up since Feb. Also, are you telling me that people would rather watch IU play 7 games against Holy Names Univiersity and the like vs Georgia Tech?

    Crean is gone. No way this is the behavior of an administration that is supporting the program. Of the 16 teams hosting games in the NIT, IU is the only one that deferred to play it on the road.

    Egads.

  10. Chet you just knew AD Glass being a lawyer wouldn’t miss laying a lick on an obvious opportunity.

    Lily Donahue you may want to change your major(like most journalism students should)as you don’t have a clue to the depth of the subject matter you wrote so lazily in the link posted by lillyd. Unlike AD Glass you whiffed on an obvious opportunity. Whiffed so bad it really is humorous.

    1. Well she obvious didn’t realize that the two school systems in Bloomington are on Spring Break as well, so I would say about half the town is gone. Also, I don’t think that many would come from Indy to see a team that has cashed in the season. With JBJ and TB’S “people” interviewing agents for their next move, I think the team is ready to move on as is the fan base.

  11. Morale on this team has to be very low, so I’m not expecting IU to go very deep, if they even win the first game. But I guess I’m wondering why Fred Glass would allow/encourage IU to accept an invitation to the NIT in the first place if he has plans to fire Crean in the immediate future? If Crean is to be terminated in the next few weeks, like so many people on this site believe he will be, playing additional games that mean nothing, for a “lame duck coach,” creates risk with no value. Why risk a key player getting injured? If IU is to have a new coach next season, these extra games are not going to improve team chemistry, so why do it? Is there money involved? Unless it pays for Crean’s buyout, it’s not enough to justify risking an injury to any of our players?

    And if Glass is going to fire Crean, why not fire him today? The NIT is of no consequence relative to IU finding its next basketball savior, the one man who will lead IU back to the final four.

    Here’s a thought for you guys. Sean Miller has coached Arizona for eight seasons. Before that, he coached at Xavier for five seasons. He’s yet to lead any of his teams to the final four. And yet, listening to all the talking heads on sports radio and TV, Sean Miller is considered one of the best coaches in college basketball. But according to the standards that some of you Crean-haters have stablished, Sean Miller is not qualified to coach at IU.

    I don’t understand all the whining coming from Oregon fans! Chris Boucher’s season-ending knee injury had nothing to do with Oregon not winning the Pac-12 tournament or the team’s prospects in the Big Dance. Injuries to key starters happen all the time, to lots of teams, and any well-coached team should not be affected by the loss of a key player. I guess Oregon needs a new coach too, right guys? LOL!

    1. If you’re asking about why IU would participate in the NIT, that decision had to be made in early December. Then the decision as to whether it would host an NIT game had to be made about two weeks ago, so the time frame wasn’t all just over the weekend.

  12. brownbomber
    How was the surf yesterday? Did you wax your board? You sound like Patrick Swayze from the movie Point Break.Radical dude!

  13. You’re comparing Tom Crean to Sean Miller? Egads, ok, let’s let the fact checking machine run again.

    Sean Miller has missed the tournament twice, while like Crean, had to rebuild. He turned around a program in what ended up being an incredibly messy transition at Arizona (Lute Olson had an undetected stroke and almost crashed what he worked so long and hard to build–super sad). Either way, the Arizona basketball program was in shambles. Unlike Crean, he had Arizona in the tournament the next year. Oh yeah, and won the Pac 12.

    At Arizona, he has FOUR Pac 12 Championships in eight years. His lowest finish was 4th (his first year). He’s been to the Elite 8 3 times, Swt 16 4 times. Two losses in the Elite 8 came to Wisconsin back to back and were down to the last shot. This year, Arizona started with out half it’s roster. They still managed to win 30 games. Sean Miller has complained about injuries exactly zero times.

    He’s recruiting like a champ and has Arizona in the hunt for the best HS players in the country year in and out. They have had a top 5 recruiting class in 4 of the last 5 years.

    Sean Miller has work to do in Tucson to hang banners, but the program is on solid ground and he’ll break through. He’s VASTLY more accomplished coach than Tom Crean.

    1. Yup. Pretty much. Also, very thoughtful article. Human beings aren’t very good at retracting an earlier position after new information is revealed to them.

      Refreshing read vs the tribalism that is typical in discussing this topic. “Haters vs supporters! Who ya got?”

      I’m gonna go have a pork chop, wake me up when this is over.

      1. CTC will leave and Fred Glass will orchestrate this to be in the most amicable way possible.

        The non home game is a part of the process.

  14. Wow, you guys just keep moving the goal posts! I thought getting to the final four and winning NCAA Championships are the only criteria that matters for IU’s basketball coach. Sean Miller has yet to do either, so according to the criteria you guys have stablished, Sean’s not qualified to be IU’s coach. Two Outright Conference Championships in four years; who cares! Making it to the Sweet 16 three times in five seasons; no big deal. Being named the Conference’s Coach of the Year; not good enough. Right? Isn’t that what all you guys are saying in order to justify your demands that Crean be fired? At least Crean has lead one of his teams to the final four, and he did that in only his fourth year as a head coach. Maybe this will be the year Sean Miller makes it. Not that it matters, because there’s no way he’s leaving Tucson for anything less than $6 million per year for a 7-year contract.

    I guess we’ll have to wait for Dayton to lose before Glass can announce Crean’s firing. He can’t let Crean go without making sure he has Archie Miller locked in.

  15. Dunno why I even bother with Podunker. Fabricates numbers, distorts facts and is impervious to any idea not of his own.

    You’re putting up Crean’s 3 sweet 16s vs Miller’s 3 Elite8s? Twice as many conference Championships and is one of the best recruiters in the country. Crean is neither. And COY? Wow, I stand corrected. In a year where we played the 5 top teams only once, land as a lowly 5 seed and Crean gets conference kudos. So impressive. Big year for Tom. No big ten team made it past the sweet 16.

    Crean hasn’t even sniffed the final four at Indiana. His recruiting class next year was listed on the back of a milk carton. Miller is a far more consistent coach. He’s doing all the right things that will lead him to FFs.

    No one is thinking Sean Miller will leave Tucson. I’ve yet to see anyone on here claim that. So take your goal posts and put them in your room of made up numbers and other distortions. Although, that room looks pretty full, so they might not fit.

    1. Yep.

      Let it go. He’s toast. The only way CTC stays is if FG is tired of being the AD.

      Quit trying to twist the data to claim he is a combination of John Wooden, Coach K, and Dean Smith with a dose of Bobby Knight on Prozac thrown in.

      He left the program better than he found it. Good for him.

      He led IU back to mediocrity. Yay. He’s Lou Oliver Watson.

      Let’s see if we can do better.

      1. Heh, when I saw Lou, I thought “Lou Henson.” Funny, either it was my freshman or sophomore year, but Henson was retiring from Illinois and Bobby Knight gifted him with a rocking chair before the game. Not a bad gift for a guy who once claimed Knight came in and “raped his state.”

        Oh the days, when the Empire was expanding, rather than contracting.

  16. Refusing a home game? Being sent to Georgia to play as a #3 seed in the NIT….?

    Sounds more like this sort of seed.

  17. I see the reading comprehension is not improving. Try to stay with me guys. I’m not suggesting that Tom Crean is a better coach than Sean Miller. I’m just saying that according to the criteria that so many of Crean’s critics on this site have established for IU’s Basketball coach, Sean Miller does not make the grade. That’s according to your previous comments, not mine. You want a proven winner, who has demonstrated the ability to lead a final four and who can win championships. Well, Sean Miller has yet to accomplish that, right! He’s better than Crean, but according to Crean’s critics, he still does not meet criteria established by those Hoosier fans who demand we have a coach who can return IU to the blue-blood status of yesteryear. According to the arguments of some on this site, Sean Miller would not be adequate. And so my point is, if Sean Miller does not meet the criteria established by so many devoted Hoosier fans, and Sean Miller is considered one of the best coaches in the country yet to lead a team to the final four, than who is qualified? Which coach will meet your lofty (an unrealistic) criteria? For those of you who are so emotional about this that you’re struggling to apply reason, the point is, if Sean Miller does not meet your criteria, than no coach who is available to IU will meet your criteria. This is relevant because it will cost IU $1 million to fire Crean in a time frame that allows IU to hire a qualified replacement. If there was not significant cost to firing Crean now, I’d say, “sure, go ahead, next man up.” But there is a substantial cost, and I assure you that cost is a factor, especially when there is no guarantee that Glass can hire someone who is assured to be a major upgrade. To emphasize my point, and leaving all sarcasm aside, it should be obvious that there is no candidate available to IU who is guaranteed to satisfy the unreasonably high expectations established by so many Hoosier basketball fans and who is a sure bet to lead IU back to the promised land.

    1. Podunker, I can read just fine. Keep it up with insults though. You’re doing a fabulous job of having a civil conversation.

      No one said you said Crean was better than Miller. You compared them. I explained, with actual data and facts, why you were incorrect. Sean Miller has the things I listed above as major things going for him that Crean as the Head Coach of Indiana DOESN’T have going for him. If I’m an Arizona fan (like my season ticket holding parents), I’m pretty optimistic. If I’m and Indiana fan (like I am), I’m not very hopeful that anything that is happening today is building the program on a solid foundation to make deep runs in the tournament. We all know Sean Miller isn’t likely to be headed elsewhere, but lets say a fairy came, blessed us and he magically became our coach. I’d be optimistic. But he does have work to do to prove that he can run deep in the tournament.

      Oh and risk is a part of life. No risk, no reward. Indiana will keep processing through until they get it right. Hoosier fans and the administration has been extraordinarily patient in letting Crean get Indiana back to the top. Program is headed in the other direction.

      You’re sticking point with this $1 million buyout is an impossible measure. We paid our football coach a little more than half of that to go away. Crean is the 8th highest paid coach in all of college basketball. It will cost something to remove him. This is why these clauses exist. What should we do? Let him play out the rest of his contract without an extension? Do you support Crean getting an extension?

      Either Crean gets an extension or he’ll move on (fired/resign). As the buzzer sounds on our season, the decision will need to be made swiftly. In my opinion, it’ll be far more expensive to extend Crean and watch Indiana Basketball slide further into irrelevance, without a ridiculously soft B1G schedule to mow through like last year.

      Read Jeremy’s article. Hoosier fans are fed up. They have the right to be. This performance is unacceptable. And I don’t agree with you that people are being unreasonable. They’ve put the same demands on the program that Crean himself has put. Unfortunately, he’s failed.

  18. Tom Crean would have to stand on his Great Grandmother’s shoulders just to kiss Sean Miller’s butt. I’m sick to death of suffering through IU games coached by Crean with his system of no offense, no defense and filled with unforced turnovers.

    1. I’ve seen nothing to indicate that that is anything other than the prevailing sentiment. Keeping CTC will cost the university a butt load more than the million dollar buyout. I’m guessing that just the people I know will account for 3% of that amount being lost in donations next year if he stays and I certainly don’t know 3% of the alumni (and none of the big hitters). No, I think the university will get off cheap if they only have to come up with one million. They will lose several times that in lost donations if he stays another year.

      He’s done. Even if he is allowed to stay for one more grim, contentious year he’s still done. He’ll just end up take Fred Glass down with him.

  19. Are all the guys who suggest paying Crean a million to go away is no big deal going to be writing a check to help out? No, I didn’t think so. It’s not just the million, it’s paying the million with absolutely no assurance that the man you hire to replace Crean is going to be any better. That’s the point. Glass will just be rolling the dice and hoping for the best. That’s an expensive gamble, and it’s not likely to result in any quick turn-around or improvement that will make IU’s ardent BB fans any happier. The money may be made available, but it is not just sitting around in some slush fund. IU’s Athletic Department does not have deep pockets, and I doubt Glass is being flooded with resumes from coaches who want the job.

    And you guys are delusional if you think IU can win a bidding war with the likes of Kentucky, Louisville, Duke, Kansas, etc. in order to retain a coach who achieves a high degree of success. Yep, the truth is, for three decades, Bob Knight spoiled us and diverted out attention. His departure exposed what had been a terribly mismanaged Athletic Department for several decades. In spite of FG’s best efforts, we’re still suffering from the hangover. Paying Crean a million dollars to go away immediately is simply repeating the mistakes of the past.

    I’m looking forward to football season.

Comments are closed.