HoosiersHQ.com Tailgate Bash at The Bus

If you can’t make it to Saturday’s Indiana-Murray State game yourself, join us at HoosiersHQ.com for our first Tailgate Bash at The Bus. We’ll be broadcasting live from 5:30 to 6:30 p.m., sharing our pre-game reports and a taste of the tailgate scene outside Memorial Stadium.

Our guests for the Tailgate Bash will include Adam Ahlfeld (who attended last week’s IU basketball reunion in French Lick and whose brother is a freshman on the football team), Jane Hoeppner and Russ Richardson.

Please leave us your questions and comments here about Saturday’s game and this year’s team – or whatever else you want – and we’ll do our best to address them on our live Web broadcast.

Here’s “The Bus,” an out-of-service IU bus that some friends bought as their awesome tailgate vehicle.

The Bus


  1. Some thoughts:
    1. The quality of the blog is poor. The commentary is often irrelevant to the sport, the content of sport is very limited (soccer, swimming and diving, track and field, baseball…etc. are nearly non-existent).
    2. The blog often gets lost on the “social” minutia. Whether a student-athlete was seen at a Bloomington drinking parlor after 9pm, the party at the Bus… Your focus adds to perpetuating the idea that Indiana University is a ‘party’ school to be avoided by serious athletes.
    3. The picture of the two individuals responsible for the blog contributes contributes to comment #2. Please gentlemen, some pride. No side shots with a pose showing a gut hanging out over the Jordan.
    4. Your analysis seldom reveals deep thought about the sport. It is true that Indiana played a better game in the first than in the second half. Think along: Once Lewis’ running yards are accounted for, the running game accumulated 109 yards amongst three backs sharing one running back position (divided by three players)…not a bad day. Some of those backs may be better than others. The coach will figure that one out. I doubt if your analysis ever will.
    5. You are calling for immediately playing high school players who come in with a newspaper reputation. That too should be left to the analysis and action of professional coaches. Your opinion, and that of other bloggers is simply that and no more. All it shows is that you learned to read sport pages. And, as a well respected former coach once said, “Most people learn to read by the third grade and move on to more important challenges.”
    6. From your game preview: “Damarlo Belcher — How often will we see him on the field? …Look for him particularly in goal-line situations — then watch him leap.” Belcher caught one pass in five opportunities. I assume he carried out other responsibilities. But, 1-5 is not nearly enough to declare him the next Hardy or even a solid Big Ten receiver. Give him a chance, let him be evaluated by his performance and coaches. Lay off the hype.
    7. You are missing some good stories and failing your readers. Is Greenspan still around? When is his reign over? Is he still active in administering the athletic department? What range of authority does he now have? What control does he have in policy and over personnel? What steps have been taken to monitor over compliance to insure the integrity of IU athletics? What limits (if any)have been placed over Greenspan’s control of athletic policy making? Has an adequate explanation ever been given for the promotion of former members of the compliance staff to higher administrative positions? Come on boys!…it is called journalism and it involves far more than swigging down some beers on top of a bus! Journalists–in the tradition of a Bob Hammel- report, think and analyze…do your jobs!!
    8. You have a regular blog participant who identifies himself as BobKnight. It is not Knight. This makes you complicit to identity theft, a serious felony. Please identify the fact that it is not BobKnight and request he change his id. Respect the blog, the sport and the University.

  2. Some thoughts on an errant and obviously-unsatisfied-with-anything poster:

    1. A poster who uses the name BobKnight is clearly not Bob Knight and is not engaging in identity theft. If that’s the case, people who dressed up in costumes as Bob Knight (as IU employed someone to do a few years ago during a football halftime show) would be guilty of identity theft. Identity theft involves impersonating someone for monetary gain – clearly the BobKnight on here is not making money from it.

    2. Chris and Doug can pose however they damn well please. Insulting them is immature and irrelevant. I happen to like the picture.

    3. Blogs are obviously opinion. Obviously. I say it again because you act like most readers don’t understand that. We do. More importantly, Chris and Doug have been covering IU for years. I trust their opinion, as a lot of readers on here do, something else you are obviously ignorant of.

    4. Have you ever actually tried to write a story? On a deadline (of an hour or less)? About IU Athletics, one of the worst-PR-run and closed organizations I have ever heard of? I have. It’s tough. These guys have to do the job of ten journalists, and they have to do it quickly and with skill on a university that has a ton of sports to mention. They blog before the game, DURING the game and after the game, then go churn out three or four stories, sidebars, photos, videos, etc., about the game. I highly doubt these guys don’t take their job seriously (a job you demean by accusing them of just swigging down some beer). The problem of newspaper downgrades is bigger than the HT, but unfortunately the HT is being affected by it – less journalists mean less coverage of IU athletics, which means the sports that do get covered are the ones most people read about. It is not Chris and Doug’s fault.

    5. A party is a great chance for loyal readers to say hello to other readers, Mrs. Hoeppner, Adam, etc. And saying this blog gets too social – that was a one-time comment posted to see what other people thought of athletes out at Kilroy’s two nights before a game.

    6. I have seen Doug and Chris reveal deep analysis several times, especially when asked about how the game is going, what they think of a certain player, etc. (See their columns on why Coach Lynch was the right man for the job.) Of course they don’t know as much as the coach. They are not the coach. Again, that’s obvious.

    7. Here’s the great part about the internet – you can start your own blog! You can research your own articles, write your own “in-depth analysis” and offer up your own opinions on IU sports. Just be sure to come back and post the URL, so we can all be as critical of you as you are of this blog.

  3. TTG,

    A few thoughts. This is primarily an Indiana basketball and football blog because those two sports have by far the biggest audience following them. We’re not going to change that. We do report on other IU sports, but typically those reports run in stories on HoosiersHQ.com, not on this blog. If you ever have a suggestion about an Olympic sports story that deserves attention, but that we haven’t covered, I’d love to hear it.

    It’s our job to give our opinions – and most sports readers seem to enjoy reading opinion, as well as objective news coverage. You’ll see the same thing at most newspapers and sports Web sites. If you disagree with our opinions, that’s OK. And if you don’t care to read our opinions, that’s OK, too. My opinion, for instance, after watching Demarlo Belcher in quite a few practices is that he’s good enough to play. That’s not based on hype or anything other than observation. IU’s coaches seem to agree with that observation, by the way.

    Yes, Greenspan is still around. We’ve reported that he’s continuing in his job – with full responsibilities and authority – until the end of the year. That hasn’t changed. Sports journalism has changed a lot since Hammel’s day, particularly in the ever-shrinking access that reporters are allowed at IU and other major universities. We aren’t allowed to interview Greenspan or other athletic officials who don’t care to talk about the issues such as changes in the compliance department, but we’re still trying to answer the questions you raise, which are good ones. Greenspan hasn’t agreed to a one-on-one interview with us in more than a year, and we’re prohibited by a written IU policy from contacting other athletic department staff to ask these questions. You may have noticed that much of our reporting on the NCAA investigation and its repercussions has been through public records requests because that’s often our only productive avenue. I’d also mention that I grew up in Bloomington and greatly enjoyed the work of Bob Hammel, but I don’t think that his strength was tackling the stories the athletic department didn’t want to talk about.

    As to the crack about us swilling beer atop the bus, you don’t think that’s us in the picture, do you? It’s not. We’ll be doing a pre-game broadcast with The Bus as our background. Again, having a tailgate show with people talking about the game, the team and the pre-game gatherings among fans is hardly unusual among media that cover football. I don’t get your problem with it.

    Finally, you’ve got to be kidding about the identity theft point. The BobKnight participant isn’t portraying that he’s actually Bob Knight. and nobody thinks he is Bob Knight. That’s not identity theft. You’ll see people using the names of their favorite players and coaches on sports message boards all over the Web. I don’t think it’s generally a problem.

  4. I really don’t think TTG was serious.

    It was fun though hearing you guys defend the bloggers and the bloggers themselves. He is like the schoolyard bully… when you respond to mularkey you are only inviting more mularkey.

    You guys do a great job of giving opinion – which is the intent of a blog in the first place. It isn’t supposed to be a gem of editorial brilliance, I would never expect it to be.

    I say do not even acknowledge comments from sh*t-stirrers like TTG. I think he was just looking for a response, and you likely made his day by giving one.

  5. You know what I think TTG needs?

    A beer.

    In all seriousness, I’m proud of the reporting we’ve done on this beat. No one has dug nearly as deep as we have. Do we want to write better stories about the Greenspan administration? Absolutely. But if anyone on the inside dares to speak to us about what’s happening in athletics, they’ll be fired. When the atmosphere changes over there, the stories will come out.

    I’m the last person who would ever say we don’t have serious flaws or a long way to go to be what we hope to be, but I hardly see a Saturday tailgate Web cast — which will include interviews with significant figures in IU sports — as any sort of detriment. I seriously doubt IU’s reputation as a party school will sway based on what the local newspaper does. Especially because it is one. As are most colleges. Even the ones who recruit “serious” athletes.

    Thanks for the definition of journalism, though. They somehow forgot to teach that at the Columbia Graduate School of Journalism.

    Oh, and as a respected scribe once wrote, most people stop calling themselves Bobby and throwing tantrums by the third grade, too.

    Have a good weekend. Hope to see you at the tailgate.

  6. TTG,

    If you were serious about the identity theft concern, you’re much less informed than you apparently think you are about that issue and probably many others.

    As to the content of this blog, well, the H-T guys just write about what people mostly care about. If swimming, diving, track, etc. garnered more interest, they’d be more heavily represented. And I do remember several articles about the baseball team’s success in the Big Ten tourney, the various IU athletes who were Olympians and the soccer team’s early season contests. I’d say the content of this blog is proportioned among the various sports according to the interest level in those sports among the readers, which is textbook journalism.

    Finally, if you think that a school’s reputation as a ‘party school’ is anything but a boon for recruiting, you’re living on Neptune without an oxygen supply. Athletes are like all other college students. To varying degrees they want an education, yes; but while they’re there, they want to party like it’s 1999, er, 2008, or whatever year it is that they find themselves on campus.

    Go Hoosiers!!!

  7. You guys and ALL the Bloggers do a GREAT job covering and discussing Hoosier Nation Sports and everything in between. I personally think that Tsao Tsu Gonzalez needs to take a chill pill. Hey, maybe someone in this world also has the name Bob Knight, the last time I checked you can’t get a copyright on a personal name. Go Hoosiers!!! Beat (another KY School) Murray State!!!

  8. Doug, Chris and staff,

    It’s not like you dont know it or need a pat on the back from me, but you all do a helluva job and are by far the best source for IU sports. No matter where I am and what pressing news may be happening in B-Town, the latest scoop can always be found here. With a good bit of wit to go with it. Thanks guys.

  9. Holy smokes I hope that TTG was just kidding, but I am afraid he wasn’t. I appreciate what you guys do on here, and the blog and chats in particular. I’ll try to make it by the tailgate Saturday. I do love that RMK line though!! Travis, Louisville…. By the way, where exactly will “The Bus” be?

  10. Thanks everyone. Having some folks who disagree with how we do things come with the territory, so we accept that. But it’s still always nice to hear a few words of support. We really appreciate your participation in this blog.

    The bus will be located near the intersection of Dunn and 17th Street, across from the convenience store. Please drop by and say hello if you’re at the game and are so inclined.

  11. I for one left another free blog from a newspaper in Indy after 2 years because it was not updated enough and the writer was way way too opinionated and knew nothing of IU sports, especially tradition. I also find the people who post here to be much more knowledgeable on sports as a whole. I love the way this blog is updated so quickly! I have really enjoyed my time here and hope the blog stays!

  12. Doug and Chris,

    The work you guys do on this blog is exemplary. The blog is the best possible source for all news on everything related to IU athletics. The information is presented in a timely manner and is done objectively. The homers that cover the University of Memphis here in the various media outlets, especially The Commercial Appeal, which is the daily newspaper here, could learn some valuable lessons in journalism from this site. I only hold one complaint at this time and it pertains to Jared Poertner. Jared: most of us IU fans and alums don’t care that you are a fan of the Michigan Wolverines. In case you didn’t get a chance to see Michigan last week, they struggled to gain a first down last week against Utah, so you can temper your enthusiasm there. IU is who we are about and what we believe in, so you don’t have to compare every football-related item to OSU. Those two schools have enough homer rags in the national media thanks.

  13. I am depressed. No matter what happens today, we are looking at a guaranteed loss against Ball St. The Hoosiers are incapable of preventing an early-season letdown, which has become their trademark. The Western Kentucky game showed that they had plenty of holes – the fact that they were (man)handled by WKU in the second half shows that we will once again be looking at 6 wins as our ceiling with a 2-6 Big 10 record at best.

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