Hoosier Morning

Northwestern Indiana basketball

Indiana’s Jordan Hulls fouls Northwestern’s Michael “Juice” Thompson during the Hoosiers’ loss on Sunday. Chris Howell | Herald-Times

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28 comments

  1. I would say defining why the Hoosiers experience inconsistent play is simple. The hard part is waiting for them to get old enough to eliminate it.

  2. Agreed Hoosier Clarion. Yes as Tom Petty says “The waiting is the hardest part.”

    What we should keep in mind is that normal teams go through ups and downs and have off games. Dustin pointed this out a bit on the blog on Sunday. Well, that a a bunch of other things too….and Dustin said he wasn’t a talker (Vince Vaughn from Old School reference).

    PB

  3. Why isn’t anyone talking about who is consistent? People seem to be just taking it for granted that VJIII, a skinny 3-star sophomore, is looking like all-conference material (on offense), and has scored 20 points 7 times already.

    Watford is the freshman of the year so far, earning the title that Creek would be taking if he weren’t injured.

    Come on now!

  4. because 4 losses in a row trump individual performances

    This team is extremely undisciplined and out of control. Dumes has free reign. Rivers could turn the ball over 5 times in a row and still not come out.

  5. Another defining moment for Steve Alford the former IU player and current coach of New Mexico Lobos: this season his team reached 20 wins before February which was a first for the Lobos and highly anticipated.

    If that happens, it would mark New Mexico’s third straight 20-win season. Alford’s 65 wins in his first three seasons in Albuquerque are more than any previous Lobo coach. It also would be the 11th 20-win campaign in Alford’s 18 years as a head coach.

    When it happened this is what the Albuquerque Jornal wrote:

    FORT WORTH – Twenty!

    While it’s no longer the magical mark for wins in a college basketball season, it’s still impressive.

    Especially when it comes before February.

    The University of New Mexico men’s basketball team has already reached the 20-win plateau, and in just 23 tries.

    And the fact it’s come against a pretty salty slate makes it that much more impressive.

    For coach Steve Alford, the Lobos’ 73-57 romp of Texas Christian University here on Saturday marked the third time in as many seasons he’s hit the 20-win threshold at UNM.

    It’s also the earliest – not in total games, but by the date – that New Mexico has reached 20 victories. It breaks the previous mark by more than two weeks.

    The fewest games the Lobos ever needed to reach 20 wins was 1967-68, when they started 20-1. In 1977-78, they opened 20-2.

    Now New Mexico plays UNLV (23). A test of maturity for Steve Alford’s relatively young team and for him as a coach. Go Alford! Go IU!

  6. Husky Tom’s comment nails it. You can’t rush experience and you can’t bring it off the bench when you don’t have it on the bench.

    Like strong relationships, good careers and sound investment strategies, elite basketball programs are rarely the result of quick fixes.

    For those of you who don’t have the patience for this, I suggest that there is a question for you to ponder. Is it easier to spot a fair weather fan when a team is up, or down?

  7. In my opinion, starting next year, Rivers may not be long for the starting lineup. He is a huge liability on offense, and if Crean starts to rely on only two guards in the starting lineup, can anyone tell me with a straight face that Rivers/Jones is better than Creek/Jones? When a team has regular four minute droughts on offense, you have to know that being a great defensive stopper means nothing. I don’t care how good of a defender you have, if you don’t score, you don’t win. Hell, at this point you might even be better off playing Hulls more. He needs the experience more than Rivers does.

  8. MaimLarry you have a good point.
    Also, lets not forget about VJIII what a good season he is having. The future does look bright for this program and Coach Crean will be here.
    Go Hoosiers!!!!

  9. how many ncaa tournament games has alford won? o yeah. i believe its 3? hahahahaha and crean won 4 in one year?!? ahahahaha yeah alford for president.

  10. Rivers is our best ball handler, on the ball defender, rebounder and defender yet we should bench him? Rivers is an nba caliber point guard in the mold of Rondo and Kidd. He’s gained confidence in his mid range game.

    Who between jones and creek will handle the ball? Hulls was schooled on D by NU’s point guard all day yesterday. The same people wanting to bench Rivers are probably the ones who said Elston deserves more playing time and we’ve seen how well that worked out.

  11. Twenty wins at New Mexico is so impressive that, if I recall correctly, a 23 win season recently got them an NIT bid.

  12. Glad to see everyone is getting along as usual…..NOT!! It seems like we are experiencing another losing season,,,, so with that being said I think it is very important to remember what one wise man once said, “For those of you who don’t have the patience for this, I suggest that there is a question for you to ponder. Is it easier to spot a fair weather fan when a team is up, or down?”
    Well put tripletime, well put.

    And by the way i really like Rivers, you can tell he has put a lot of effort into his free throw shooting and all around outside shot and yea you could (I guess) see him fitting that mold but he has a longgggg way to go. Easy on Elston to by the way, he pulls down some serious boards while he is in the game and he will one day be a monster of a player for us. Thats all, I wont comment on some other ridiculii comments. Yes ridiculii — for those you that don’t know,, thats plural for ridiculous!!!

    By the way does anyone else think Reynolds from Villanova looks like Stewie from Family Guy???? No Really

  13. 4guards. congrats the sweet sixteen is garbage. you bash crean for getting to a final 4. why can’t alford do it?!?!

  14. Alford didn’t have 3 nba players on his roster and still lose in the final four with D Wade.
    He had nobody.

  15. The guy who posts as “stevealford/4guards” is not worth commenting on-to-or about, but to root openly against the real Coach Alford to lose in round one in the tournament is horrible. The guy helped hang a banner. Maybe you were rooting for the Hoosiers then. Why root against the guy when he is on the far side of the country? Husky you are beginning to reach “stevealford” status (for me at least)

    I’ll waste no more time on this nonsense.

    PATHETIC.

  16. First..there is a reason why crean had those players. he recruited them…nobody gave him dwyane wade.

    Second..you know how many great college basketball teams don’t win titles? having 3 nba players (2 of which are not good) doesnt mean much. how about 1999 duke. shane battier, elton brand, corey maggette, trajon langdon. 4 nba players. coached by mike Krzyzewski. They didnt win anything. does that mean mike Krzyzewski is a bad coach?

    Steve alford has been coaching division 1 for 15 years and has won 3 ncaa tournament games. stellar.

  17. How could you not be happy for Alford? He’s doing better than ever before. Who feels his position threatened by that? Nobody. We’ll get better, Alford will get better. Why would a Hoosier fan never want to see both happen? Come on Steve Alford! Go Hoosiers and Tom Crean! I just want to see Washington Apples spilled all over the floor and crushed by, I don’t know… Golden Bears would be nice!

  18. “Rivers is our best ball handler, on the ball defender, rebounder and defender yet we should bench him? Rivers is an nba caliber point guard in the mold of Rondo and Kidd. He’s gained confidence in his mid range game.”

    Rivers is a good defender, and I didn’t deny that. However, looking at this team, obviously defense is not getting in done. Looking to next year, we will have a lot of guards. Obviously, the front runners to start will be Jones, Rivers, Creek, and Hulls. If Crean goes with a 3 “bigs” system, that means two guards will start. You would assume that Jones would have to get one of the two spots. He is right now the team’s leading scorer at nearly 15 points a game, is near the top in shooting percentage, decent free throw shooter. Obviously we saw in the NW game how talented he is. That leaves the question of who will play the other guard.

    First, let’s discuss the ability of Rivers as a ball handler. He turns the ball over approximately once every 10.2 minutes, tied with Devan Dumes as the worst ratio amongst those players who have logged more than 200 (9 in total). On the other hand, Watford is next at 11.5, Jones and 11.6, Creek (although against less opposition) at 16.9, Pritchard at 18.8, and Hulls at 24.4. Yes, you can argue that some players have played less minutes than Rivers, but Jones has a better percentage having played the most minutes on the team.

    Rivers is a very good rebounder, however, look at it this way. Rivers averages 6.4 points a game, and gets 5 rebounds a game (certainly not Rondo or Kidd numbers by the way). He also shoots 38% and is a 54% free throw shooter. On the other hand, at the time of his injury, Maurice Creek was averaging 16 points a game, 4 rebounds, with a field goal percentage of 53% and a free throw percentage of 76%.

    So, you’re telling me you would sacrifice nearly 10 points a game for “better defense” and one extra rebound? In the clutch you want a 54% free throw shooter over a 76% free throw shooter? The guy who scored 6 points against (now) #2 Kentucky or the guy who scored 31 (as a freshman).

    It boils down to the fact that the most “experienced” player on the team has one of the worst free throw percentages and the highest rate of turnovers. I think Jeremiah may start at the beginning of next season, especially as the team finds out the condition of Creek, but if Creek is healthy, I see it being a temporary thing. Creek is (or was at the time he got injured) starting to explode. Jeremiah is probably at or near his top.

  19. By the way, just as a small comparison, in Jason Kidd’s sophomore year (his last year in college), he averaged 16.7 points, 6.9 rebounds, 3.1 steals, and 9.1 assists. Meanwhile, Jeremiah Rivers averages 6.4 points, 5 rebounds, 1.5 steals, and 4 assists a game. Kidd more than doubles Rivers’ totals in every category except for rebounds.

  20. As good a college player as Alford was he has never shown the ability to recruit good talent and coach them to a Final Four.

  21. Alford would be able to lock down the state at IU.
    It’s a little different at SW Miss St, Iowa , and NM.
    And one could argue that Wade fell into the tanned one’s lap. He was prop 48 and most programs wouldn’t touch.

  22. 4guards,
    Have you ever wondered why May and Wilkerson only played for 3 years at IU? Buckner played 4 years but was in the same class. I believe you will find that both May and Wilkerson were non-predictors, as freshmen.
    Would you say that they fell into Knight’s lap? Drop the Wade argument, it does not have any credence.

  23. “Alford would be able to lock down the state at IU”.

    I believe that is the point. SA’s coaching stats only go up in lower level conferences. Alford’s ability to recruit better than he has shown in the past maybe could only happen if he was at IU. Coach Crean has demonstrated the ability to recruit well at IU, Marquette and East Lansing and coach a team to the Final Four. Steve just couldn’t cut it coaching in the top echelon and the result was relinquishing the HC position at Iowa. Hence his over achievement at N.M., SWMS. and Manchester demonstrates where he can be most successful. Apparently he figured this out but you haven’t.

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