Miller, Glass eyeing reboot of Kentucky series

Through conversations with former players during his first two months on the job, Indiana basketball coach Archie Miller has come to understand that one game means much more to Hoosiers than any other.

Indiana vs. Kentucky.

Does that mean the annual regular season series, dormant since 2012, will be revived under Miller’s watch? It’s very possible.

At a fan event last week in Borden, Miller said he’s willing to do whatever is good for the health of IU’s basketball program. Indiana athletic director Fred Glass took it a step further, spreading optimism that the IU-UK series will resume sometime within the next five years.

“I’m hopeful we’ll be able to feather that into the schedule in that timeframe,” Glass said.

Since the most recent contract expired after the 2012 season, representatives from both Indiana and Kentucky have disagreed on the format under which the series should proceed.

Kentucky coach John Calipari has wanted to move the series off campus and to a neutral site like Lucas Oil Stadium. For some time, Glass has wanted at least one game in every four-year cycle to occur in Bloomington.

During the spring of 2012, UK athletic director Mitch Barnhart said he did not want to agree to a deal that locked Kentucky into a series for more than two years. Barnhart also rejected a proposal from Glass that would have placed two games at Lucas Oil Stadium, followed the next year by a game at Rupp Arena in Lexington and a game in Assembly Hall after that.

Glass said he’s now willing to take a different approach.

“I’m optimistic we’ll get it back together, primarily because I think it’s a very important series,” he said. “I’m willing to compromise on some of the principles we had set out in terms of (it’s) got to come back to campus and all that. I don’t want to negotiate with my cards up or lead with my chin or whatever the metaphor is, but we’re willing to work with Kentucky to get the series back on track.”

Although former IU coach Tom Crean shared a good relationship with Calipari, it wasn’t enough to save the series. Might Miller’s connections to Calipari help a bit more? Maybe.

Calipari is close with the Miller family, with both sides hailing from Western Pennsylvania. Two of Miller’s assistants, Ed Schilling and Bruiser Flint, also previously worked under Calipari.

More than anything on the Indiana side, there seems to be a firm belief that the revival of the series is of great importance.

The Hoosiers have won two of the past three meetings, beating the Wildcats, 73-67, in the second round of the 2016 NCAA Tournament. It was the first meeting between the programs since Kentucky upended IU, 102-90, in the 2012 Sweet 16.

The Hoosiers and Wildcats have not met in the regular season since Indiana’s 73-72 upset of Kentucky on Dec. 10, 2011 at Assembly Hall.

“Kentucky is the one that everybody wants,” Miller said. “There have been conversations that Fred has had, that he’s had with me. I think there’s a great agreement that it needs to happen in time. How it happens? I don’t really know how to pull that off. … In general, I think in time maybe something could happen.”

At the same time, Kentucky’s Wildcats aren’t the only Cats that could appear on future Indiana schedules.

Miller says he and his brother, Sean, the coach at Arizona, are also trying to agree on a regular season matchup between the two programs. Arizona is ranked No. 1 in ESPN’s updated look at the preseason top 25.

“I think that’d be a great series,” Miller said. “There are a lot of people who want us to play each other so they don’t do it to us in the tournament one day — get it out of the way so it’s not uncomfortable. I think it’d be a great series.”

In looking at Indiana and Arizona, Miller sees similar fan bases and tradition, as well as outstanding homecourt advantages.

The latter seems to be a sticking point in negotiations for both sides.

“I think there’s a disagreement on where it’s gonna start right now,” Miller said. “I was told it would start in Bloomington. (Sean) told me he’s not playing in Bloomington first. See, the thing about scheduling is everybody wants the schedule to be perfect for themselves. When you have 350 coaches all wanting a perfect schedule, it doesn’t always work that way.”

36 comments

  1. I wonder if Calipari is aware that there is a university, of sorts, in Lexington? With students and everything.

  2. Don’t think my opinion will be required, but unless it’s neutral, home and home, not sure it will be worth the effort. Two yr agreement needs to be home & home. Like the potential with Arizona.

  3. It should have been written in the Indiana or IU University and State of KY or KY University Constitution long ago.

  4. It basically was in the “constitution” before Fred and Crean. Sure, Glass knows how to talk his way around every debacle….That’s what lawyers do.
    And, sure, we had our big last-second shot at Assembly to take down a UK team when Terrence Jones was playing like he was in the Twilight Zone….And we went .500 against them in NCAA match-ups.
    But the reality is that John Calipari has had way more success in the NCAA tournament than Indiana. They are getting the top recruiting classes nearly every season. Calipari has had a championship and Final Four runs while at UK. We are the program on stall. We are the program to not go beyond a Sweet 16 in the decade of Crean’s “friendship” with Calipari.
    By most observers’ eyes, they are one of the Goliaths of college basketball. We are David. ….(maybe even more like Little Big Red Riding Hood) . We should make some amount of concessions to get a shot at the Big Bad Blue Wolf.

    If it’s going to take five years to get this series back, then Archie is just another pawn as Fred continues to protect his soft ass. You have to play the perceived best, to be the best. I thought that was inherent in the meaning of “never daunted”…I thought Hoosiers never ducked from anyone…..?…unless we’re talking IU Football. Too bad IU can’t duck OSU from a football schedule….Though UK is not in the BIG, it’s pretty much the same thing as electing to not play OSU in football. UK is currently the ‘Best of the Midwest’ in hoops….and we’re planning our shots as carefully as Ali in a ring against Foreman(our version of ‘rope-a-dope’)

  5. WTF are you talking about with the above BS?

    Am I wrong? IU wanted to continue the series as is. KY insisted on neutral site. IU than said OK, neutral site followed by home & home.
    Right? Ky said no. I would rather IU continue with good kids who may stay for 2 yrs, 3 yrs or even 4 yrs than adapt the KY system.

    Somehow you than blame both Crean and Glass? Crazy talk more inline with the current national politics. Turn off cable news.

    And wait, I think I remember you saying Glass would never fire Crean. Pretty sure I remember reading that – maybe a thousand times.

    Please come up with something new. And maybe rational?

    1. It didn’t need to be home & home. UK has been the more relevant and dominant program in terms of rankings, top recruiting classes, and deeper tournament runs/championship. Why not just accept neutral site…And it’s not that damn neutral because UK was willing to play in Indianapolis. Last time I checked, Indianapolis is in Indiana. Last time I checked, a huge base of IU alumni reside in Indy. Last time I checked, Indy is only about a 40 minute drive from Bloomington.

      And here’s another little note…Maybe we wouldn’t need the marquee game in Bloomington, if Crean and Glass wouldn’t have scheduled so many patsies for 90% of all the other non-conference home games.
      The fans should never had been denied the game. If we end up waiting another five years, that’s nearly 10 years without the series. That’s beyond a travesty. Play the best on their terms…Hoosiers don’t duck.

      I did say Glass would never fire Crean…..Forever thankful to be proven wrong. Or maybe I wasn’t…? Who knows? McRobbie may have fired Crean via Fred. Of course, if it wasn’t going to be Crean’s head, Fred knew his own was nearing the same fate. The bridge of patience had collapsed. The waiting…or the ‘weighting’ was over. The grandest of apologists couldn’t save a man beyond there own aloofness and ulterior motives.
      I would have preferred Fred and Ozob left as a set. They maneuvered to come together(thanks Joey)…thus they should have been removed as a set.
      And to some extent, we’re still far from finished from his holiness(as in the giant hole in recruiting the state he left behind)…We will certainly feel the pain beyond the decade in regression(especially on the Indiana recruiting front) . Archie fully realizes he is inheriting an abandoned state …thanks to Coach Ozob. It won’t be an easy task to win those h.s. programs and coaches back.

  6. First, not all IU kids have been good kids. Secondly, several IU kids leave even if they get a sniff of NBA opportunity whether they make it or not.

  7. Good news. I know that these things can be kind of glacial in their implementation. There’s not much left for me to say that hasn’t been said about it other than to emphatically express my enthusiasm for seeing both of these teams on our schedule ASAFP.

    Another note, I’m enjoying Archie’s candor. When he opens his mouth, he has something to say. Thoughtful guy.

  8. “Everybody needs a little KFC”……but not so much a greasy little NBA bucket of Calipari.

    We’ve already had the soggy fries discussion….but with far less on our NCAA tournament resume under this AD, we tend to look more the soggy chicken.

  9. It kills me how a certain naysayer keeps throwing Fred Glass under the bus. The improvements to the IU athletic department under his watch have not been trivial and are aimed at keeping IU athletics on the map. Glass was fair to Wilson, who was a good hire but clearly ended up being rather misguided. The handling of Wilson was fair, and the hiring of Tom Allen was a home run. Glass was also fair to Tom Crean. You don’t run off a coach who won out right Big10 titles and was named Coach of the Year in the league. Alas, when it was clear that Crean wasn’t going to take IU to the promised land and Crean had another off coaching year (it seemed he was either on or off), Glass made the move he had to. Give Crean an ounce of credit, he inherited a mess. He made the program respectable, but obviously Crean is too arrogant and alienated a lot of the high school and AAU coaches in Indiana. Glass just made a home run hire in Archie Miller, who’s prepared and positioned to guide IU back to the upper echelon. Glass does a good job with what he has to work with. IU is a PT boat compared to the aircraft carriers of Ohio State, Michigan, and Penn State, with their endless budgets courtesy of football revenues. Once the golf course gets taken care of, Glass will have been at the helm of renovations for just about all of IU’s sports programs. And Mr. Naysayer poo poos him over one sport? The IU athletics department is more than just basketball. Obviously the hoops program is the flagship of the department, and deserves extra attention and priority. Mr. Glass is giving it and football, the two revenue sports, his all. I am curious, Mr. Naysayer, what more could Glass have done during his tenure as AD? He went to bat for the IU-Kentucky series, and Mr. Whiny Baby in Lexington wouldn’t come back to Bloomington. And given the state of the State of Indiana under Crean, it didn’t make sense to have a game at Lucas Oil Field and have Kentucky kick IU’s tail on Indiana soil. And BTW, as noted, IU held it’s own against Kentucky in the NCAA tournament. Geez, some people just can’t be pleased. It’s easy to be an arm chair coach or AD. I think Glass has done a very credible job. I’ll take the state of IU’s athletic department over the program of the state neighbors to the north any day. Oh, and the state of Indiana also has a little school in South Bend to deal with too. Think of it. 3 heavy hitter programs in Indiana. Ohio State has no in state heavy hitter competitors; ditto for Penn State, Nebraska, Minnesota, Wisconsin, Maryland, and, truth be told, Rutgers. And hey, even in Bob Knight’s day, IU didn’t hold the state in lock down. See, for example: Eric Montross, 1993 national champion at UNC. Put Montross on that 1993 team and IU is national champs hands down, though IU would have won that year had Henderson not gotten hurt. Ah, the what if’s in life. Back to the point: look at the entire body of work, and Glass has done a very good job.

      1. He oughta also try his hand at paragraphs. If they’re facts in there, they should be allowed some nice square footage and some extra surrounding white space. I won’t waste my time with apologists….Crean is gone. Fact. Now we just have to wait it out a little longer to be done with ‘Fabulous Fred.’ Debatable.
        Same old .500 records in football…with the same old “we’re getting closer” broken record. Fact.
        Nothing beyond a Sweet 16 in hoops for Fab Fred and Ozob. Fact.
        Nine other Midwestern programs reached a cumulative 23 Elite Eights. Fact.
        Archie and Allen have their work cut out for them…The money is good. Fact. The results are yet to be known. Fact.
        We hired your “whiny” UK coach’s previous assistants. They must like whiny people.. They spent a lot of time working under whiny Calipari. Fact.
        UK was willing to continue the series on neutral sites. Indy was proposed. Fact. We stubbornly refused to continue a storied rivalry game, grant concessions to the program that has had far more national tournament success in recent years, that could have been hosted in our own state. Fact.
        To wait ten years for the series to be renewed is a travesty in leadership. The fans of are the only losers. My opinion.

          1. He’s gotta be cutting and pasting from years gone by. I can’t claim to read his posts (who does?) but I do see ‘Crean’ scattered throughout.

            Didn’t he used to work at IU.

        1. I love it. “We stubbornly refused…. grant concessions to the program…”. It takes two to tango. UK obviously wasn’t overly concerned about maintaining the vaunted storied rivalry game, which Coach Cal obviously had little concern over. Respect is a two way street. Why should IU roll over and kiss UK’s tail? Grant them concessions? IU has it’s own rich history, which includes doing things the right way (with the exception of that cheating SOB Sampson, who was run outta town mid season). I simply cannot agree with your position that IU should grant UK, of all programs, concessions.

          Next I guess you’ll tell me that IU should follow Kentucky’s lead and embrace their successful exploitation of the one-and-done. Forget the notion of having players who might -Egads!- want to go to school and actually wear the IU uniform with pride. Nope; let’s follow Kentucky’s lead and be a farm team for the NBA. Big10 titles? Graduation rates? Who cares? It’s all about national tournament success!

          1. We have two assistants who witnessed all the Calipari “sliminess” and “exploitation”….They look up to him as one of their most important mentors. Hard to imagine they didn’t see things not done “the right way.”

            Repeat: Nine other Midwestern programs have gone to Elite 8’s a collective 23 times over the last 6 seasons(many went on to Final Fours). Have you noticed Crean is not finding any coaching work? Do you think any of those Midwestern programs are calling him?

            What is wrong with playing the game in Indianapolis and Louisville on neutral sites? Crean and Calipari could board a private jet to take their sons to a Bulls game(to see their prized NBA products)…..but they couldn’t get past their AD’s to bring our rivalry back? Somebody needed to call a bluff. Play the game. The only bigger travesty than having Crean as a coach for a decade was the loss of this storied series.

          2. During the spring of 2012, UK athletic director Mitch Barnhart said he did not want to agree to a deal that locked Kentucky into a series for more than two years. Barnhart also rejected a proposal from Glass that would have placed two games at Lucas Oil Stadium, followed the next year by a game at Rupp Arena in Lexington and a game in Assembly Hall after that.

            I’ll have to try and find the original story on Scoop….The above paragraph is somewhat deceptive. I believe UK was initially willing to play the first two years at Lucas Oil. I really thought that was better than not having the series. Sure, it’s great to have home cookin’ and students allowed full participation, but this series goes beyond something like IU vs. Purdue. It’s a border clash…and it did used to be(quite long ago) about bragging rights in the “tournament.” When you start having less success in March, it’s only natural we slander them because we have nothing that holds water in March Madness.

            And if you’re wanting to talk about “sliminess,” why in the hell aren’t you bringing up UNC? Ghost classes are far worse than flunking or skipping classes. Illegally fudging transcripts for classes that didn’t even exist? And what did Crean do as a guest analyst for ESPN during the tournament we were absent? All he could do was slather praise on their program. You want to talk about hypocrites? …Kelvin is Mother Teresa compared to a university allowing athletes grades on transcripts for classes that never existed.

          3. Double Down says:
            March 17, 2017 at 1:49 pm

            Ben, really? I don’t give two hoots what someone believes. I do have a problem with someone who doesn’t have their facts right. Look at all my posts in response, they’ve all contradicted (with facts) posts he made. I don’t care what his conclusion is.

            Also, I don’t need to be lectured. Childish? Egads.

            Have a nice day Ben. Enjoy the tournament.

            What he said. DITTO>DITTO>DITTO.

            The above quoted response by Double Down was made on the day of Crean’s firing. It was made in response to Podunker’s final claim(fervently defended, as always, by Ben) that IU fans’ have severe unreasonable expectations with regard to the basketball program.
            After the emotions have finally calmed down. After knowing Father Tom will no longer ever claim Bloomington to be his town, Podunker is right back into his old groove. Just a few months ago, all who knew it was time for Crean to go had caught the TCDS bug…..All but the Grand Apologist who will always undervalue the temper the greatness of what can be IU.

            Until OkieHoosier, this was the last person on Scoop(and there ain’t too many) who used “Egads.” Not a lot of people use Egads.

  10. I like the hires of both, T.A. and A.M. However, in reality how can you hit a home run before you bat, even one time?

  11. Fred Glass has done a very good job building up the facilities of the IU campus which isthe main job of ADs today. The coaches are responsible for the products put on the field and courts. Both football and basketball have improved from where coaches started with their teams but it was clear a change needed to be made and Glass made those changes. He was criticized for Wilson’s “firing” while half praised him and half criticized him for Crean’s firing. He has now made what looks to be very good hires at both jobs but we won’t know how they fare until a couple of years go by. No one is perfect but Fred Glass has done an admirable job over all with IU’s athletic programs.

    1. Would Crean have any interest in the Butler job? Would Butler have any interest? Seems they keep hiring young coaches who end up doing well. Crean would be a change in that direction. Believe Butler has a decent recruiting class coming in.

      1. Can’t see it. If Butler was far, far away…maybe. Too much history, too close to home.

        Plus, as you said, it’s not the Butler MO.

        1. My daughter just invited me to camp with her/family in Delores, Co. next weekend. My Florida son moved to Utah couple of months ago. Four kids, ex-wife & 8 grandkids out there.

          1. Hey, that’s close. We go through Delores on the way to Telluride. The Lizardhead Wilderness is just north of there. Beautiful area. Keep me posted.

  12. OkieHoosier, good posts and I applaud your efforts. But in case you’re new to this site, you’re wasting your time trying to debate “Mr. Naysayer.” And as you may have noticed, facts simply don’t matter. It’s all been done before, going back several years. What you may not understand is that “Mr. Naysayer” lives in an alternate universe where up is down, left is right, and night is day. And in that bizarre universe, facts simply don’t exist. Mr. Naysayer is simply incapable of recognizing or acknowledging facts. Some have speculated that he was suffering from a severe case of Tom-Crean-Derangement-Syndrome (i.e., TCDS) and that the condition would begin to dissipate when Crean was no longer IU’s Basketball Coach. But obviously Mr. Naysayer’s condition is much more serious and his TCDS was just the tip of the iceberg. I have long since ignored his posts, but based on your comments posted above, it appears that Fred Glass is now the target of his deranged rants. It has to be somebody.

    Welcome to The Scoop. I look forward to reading your posts. My advice to you, if you want to enjoy The Hoosier Sports Report, is to ignore Mr. Naysayer, as you would ignore a person on the street who is there day in and day out talking the same inane gibberish to himself over and over again. It’s simple; don’t read his posts and don’t respond to them (they’re basically all the same anyway). In short order you will master the technique of scrolling past all posts made by any of his many infamous screen names. Good luck, and once again, welcome aboard.

  13. I’m certain that the 9 Midwestern basketball programs who have gone to a collective 23 Elite Eights compared to our fat 0 over the last six seasons are not shocked that Hoosier fans now look a lot like Purdue fans. Next to Indiana, Purdue is the only program from this state to have been just about as mediocre on the big stages of basketball….Somewhere the oil rubbed off on you people. I’m sure Purdon’t fans still forever judge their program on those BIG titles under Keady. Somewhere along the line they hijacked Hoosier Basketball like a train bandit and put us on their track of heading to the town of Podunker ….It’s where all apologists go to live a life of putting makeup on a lizard head.

    In the category of a ‘Minimum Elite 8 Appearance’ from 2010-17

    Conference Midwest Elite: 23
    Indiana: 0

    That’s a goose egg. It’s a golden egg laid by Fred…He has Egg Proficiency Syndrome. All envy the Golden Zero Egg. It’s in a crate headed for West Lafayette with a team of Hoosiers who drive the train from the caboose….The egg is being watched very carefully. It is oiled daily..It is a gift from the Apologist God of Comb-Over….What do Hoosiers now comb over? You guessed it: Mediocrity.
    The egg will incubate for 50 plus years and hatch into a 3-banner dinosaur somewhere around the year 2067.

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