IU posts “monumental” win over N.C. State

RALEIGH, N.C. — When Indiana faced its most dire situation of the evening, coach Tom Crean was in his most peaceful state.

The Hoosiers trailed 63-56 with 7:48 to go in the second half after leading by as many as 11 in the first, but Crean said he knew the Hoosiers could pull it out because they were finally rebounding.

“Maybe the calmest I was all night was when we had I think it was three straight shots in the basket on offensive rebounds,” Crean said. “It looked like volleyball on the boards, but at least we were in there. Timeout came and I said, ‘We’re finally here. We’re finally playing.’ I looked up at the score and we were down seven and it was the biggest deficit we had, but it was like we were finally playing the game the way it needed to be played.”

And from that point forward, the Hoosiers ran away with it. Indiana out scored North Carolina State 30-12 in the final 7:48 and 10-0 in the last 1:38 to pull away with an 86-75 win in front of 16,597 at the RBC Center.

It was Indiana’s first win in an ACC/Big Ten Challenge game in Tom Crean’s tenure, with the last coming under Kelvin Sampson in 2007 against Georgia Tech. It was the Hoosiers second road win this season, but it was the first outside of the state of Indiana since the Hoosiers won at Penn State on Jan. 21, 2010. It was also Indiana’s first win over a power six conference team this season and the clearest indication yet that their 7-0 start might be legitimate.

“It’s monumental for this program,” Crean said. “We’ve never won in this game, OK, and we hadn’t been to an atmosphere like this. … It’s a landmark win for us as a program. It’s certainly one of the bigger wins in our time without a doubt because we played a really good team in a great atmosphere, a sold-out atmosphere. We had to figure out different ways to win it.”

After losing the rebounding battle 22-13 in the first half and surrendering 13 offensive rebounds, they won the battle 24-18 in the second half and allowed just five offensive rebounds.

. Junior point guard Jordan Hulls gave arguably his most commanding leadership performance as a college player. He led the team with 20 points, dished out five assists, and hit three 3-pointers. He hit all five of his free throws, extending his school record streak to 52, and three 3-pointers, including arguably the shot of the game. He came off a pick and roll and drilled one late in the shot clock to give Indiana a 79-75 advantage with 1:38 to go, and North Carolina State never recovered.

Freshman forward Cody Zeller had 19 points and seven rebounds, with 13 of the points and five of the rebounds coming in a dominant second half.  Many of those points came after Zeller’s parents left to see his older brother Tyler play at North Carolina.

“Tough luck,” Zeller deadpanned to laughter in the press room. “Maybe they shouldn’t have come at all. We would’ve won by 20.”

Watford, meanwhile broke out of a funk that carried over from his 2-for-10 performance against Butler on Sunday through the first half. He recorded 11 of his 16 points and seven of his nine rebounds in the second half.

“He hit huge shots for us,” Hulls said. “Got to the rim, got to the free throw line. We know what C-Wat’s capable of when he puts his mind to it. He did that for us, that’s really why he won the game. He got huge rebounds at the end of the game.”

AUDIO: Jordan Hulls, Christian Watford and Cody Zeller

AUDIO: Tom Crean


  1. Wow, just wow. Down 7 with 7 minutes to go, playing away from home, last year that story was not uncommon but the final score always ended with a 15-20 pt defeat. Tonight, IU showed the world that they are a very different team this year. Those guys played with HEART. We made quite a few mistakes and our rebounding was horrible, but we found a way to win anyway. It almost seemed like we wore down the opponent by the end of the game. Can you believe that? IU wore down a tough opponent, instead of the other way around.

    I would call this the biggest victory in Crean’s tenure due to it being a road game. I’m a Top 25 believer for IU at this point…

    Oh, and that last dunk by Oladipo — good enough to win a dunk contest.

  2. Great win for the Hoosiers. Coaching reminded me of Knights tenure when we would win the close ones. Just one thing Coach Crean, please don’t back up Cody Zeller with Tom Pritchard use Derek Elston instead. Keep up the good work HOOSIERS

  3. Great win for IU and IU fans. There were some mental lapses(I guess it comes with a young team) but all in all IU played smart, aggressive basketball. I especially liked the hustle & quick tempo IU pushed from the start. When NCSt came back & went ahead IU answered right back. Hulls hit it dead center about Watford saying “when he puts his mind to it”. Let’s hope C-Wat continues putting his mind to it because he will be the key to any success IU has this season. His defense and rebounding were great! Go IU!!

  4. I hate to say it because I feel like fate always comes back to bite us IU fans, but I’m starting to get that warm fuzzy feeling about IU Basketball again. The country is talking about us again, we’re playing with heart and determination and we’ve just proven to ourselves we can win close games.

    Dec. 10 is now circled in bright red on my calendar; we haven’t had this big a game at Assembly Hall since at least Duke in ’05.

  5. Lets just hope that Jones suffers the same fate as Dumas and Rivers. If that happens this team can be really good.

  6. I am not a big VJ fan either. I have nerve seen a player spent more time on the floor from tripping over their own feet then VJ. Seems like any little bump and the ball come out of his hands.

  7. What a fantastic, legit win. (Here’s hoping VJ3 and Pritchard get lost on the way to Assembly Hall that night…)


  9. Regarding VJ3 and TP…. I think Crean needed Jones at the point so Hulls could get free for 3’s. I don’t like VJ3 on the floor much these days. His game has not matured to blend in with the others. His biggest downfall is his inability to see what goes on. Why he dribbles into 2 & 3 defenders is beyond me? Coaches need to tell VJ3 stop stop these bad habits or sit the bench! I was impressed by Remy Abel, let him play the point. I’d like to see more production from TP but he gives Zeller a chance to rest & he hustles and plays OK. I swear a classic hook shot would help him greatly!!

  10. I’m so proud of the team. Somebody above said it right–down 7 with 7 minutes left isn’t unfamiliar but this outcome is uncharted territory. And we dominated them down the stretch on the boards, on defense, shooting, everything. It’s kind of like in football when you commit to running the ball early and don’t gain much, but then late the defense is worn out and you just grind them down. Well, we played D and hustled and ran the court and down the stretch, Cody, Watford, Pritchard and everybody else sealed off the lane at both ends. We had the livelier feet down the stretch and the effect of depth and Cody just leaning on people and Watford forcing a big guy to run around on the perimeter was very apparent.

    Great job team to the team, coaches, everybody. I’m so proud to not have to come to work and talk about how IU ‘hung tough for a while but faded late.’ Now let’s go out and tattoo Stetson and be ready to battle against Kentucky.

  11. Incredible win. I could only listen to ESPN radio and get updates only after the commercials. So, I was unaware they had gotten down by 7 late, my news (updates) went from NCS 65-62 to IU win 86-75, thinking what the f happened? All good!!!

  12. Good W on its own merit but is especially sweet for being a road win in ACC country. 3 cheers to Coach Crean and staff.

  13. Amazing! At the 7 min mark I thought ok, here we go…but Crean called a huge time out and coached. Anyone that doubts his coaching abilities is off their rocker. It seems obvious to me. This team is a Hulls/Zeller lead team. Everyone else needs to learn that they are supporting them. The big glaring need is stil big bodies to bang around down low. Couldn’t we get some football players to walk on?

    Hulls – What a gamer. I think I was watching the best maestro in the Big Ten…wishing he’d red shirted his freshmen year…I could watch the Zeller/Hulls tandem another 3 years.

    Zeller – His calm demeanor and basketball IQ rubs off on everyone else. This guy will be a top 5 IU player of all time when its all said and done.

    Watford – Some good defense and some big shots, but he has got to leasrn that he is not Lebron James. He’s not going to beat anyone with his quickness, nor is he going to go through people. He’s a 6-9 streak shooter who is pretty much worthless down low.

    VJ3 – Needs to step away and let Remy Abell/Sheehy take his spot. Nor more than 12 min a game.

    Sheehy – Looked lost, wth?

  14. I’m guessing that Remy is going to ‘grade out’ pretty high when they review the film. I don’t know that for sure but he looked pretty good all around. That should affect his PT. I would also guess that, despite all the stuff we see him do poorly, VJII must be grading out better than we would think and that’s why he’s playing so much. There’s just so much that coaches grade on and everyone does it differently. I’d bet that CTC and Izzo look at the same criteria. If Remy shows better understanding in practice and grades well he’s gonna play. He is such a physical specimen. Another great CTC ‘under the radar’ recruit. Makes me excited about Jurkin (and you can’t compare it to Tijan, etc. We were settling for scraps then). From what I understand he’s very athletic. Working with Cody everyday could turn him into something special, too. Bill Walton’s backup at UCLA, Nater, was a 1st rounder who had a long NBA career. They say it was because he faced Walton every day in practice. The critics need to quiet down about CTC’s eye for talent.
    What ifs…? What if Mo never gets hurt and Jordy’s running the point with Mo at the 2 with this bunch? Wow. That being said, I really like this team. Hard to believe how deep we’ve become.
    CW’s jumper really bugs me. He’s got such a hitch in it and he brings the ball back so far (he’s gonna get blocked from behind by a defender off the ball any time). As long as he hits it, I suppose…

    It’s a good day in Hoosierland.

  15. Boy, today’s comments remind me just how high IU fan’s standards are for basketball. I guess that’s a good thing. All valid criticisms aside, IU came from behind and beat a good team on the road and they are now 7 – 0. They’re getting better and last night’s win will increase their confidence while still providing TC with ample material to drive improvement. Some tough games approach, but being 11 – 1 entering Big Ten play would be special.

    IU basketball is back!

  16. HforH, to continue our Hulls discussion here… I don’t have a difficult time putting him in the elite category of B1G PGs. I wouldn’t trade him straight up for anyone other than Taylor. My point is that to crack all-B1G teams you have to stand out, and there is a decent crop of players that will be on tournament teams this year and next that will also be putting up numbers. There was, and maybe still is, some question whether IU willbe a tournament team, but if Jordy leads them there he deserves 3rd team no question. I just don’t see him overtaking Taylor or Craft because of their Individual and team profiles… those two will constantly be in the spotlight and fighting for 1 or 2 seeds in the NCAAs.

    After seeing him perform last night, I guess it isn’t too far-fetched to think he can play at near-all-American level, but to think he would get consideration is still laughable (although what Hoosier fan really cares as long as the results are there) . the only way he gets consideration is if he does what he did last night 80% of the time and the Hoosiers win 25+ games.

    Cheers to that!

  17. Great win! What validated it for me was hearing Dan Patrick’s first comment opening his radio show this morning. It was something to the effect of “How ’bout those Hoosiers!”. He went on to give some love to CTC and Zeller.

  18. I’ve been an Hoosiers fan since B.K.’s beginnings. I don’t want to drag up skeletons (so I won’t), but despite all the best efforts of the anti-Knight faction (and I’ve a lot to say about that), IU is pretty much back (and I don’t think I’m speaking too early!). There’s way too much of a tradition of winning and quality to be ignored. From 7-point deficit to an 11-point margin of victory in an extremely hostile and home-cookin’ environment…I AM impressed.

  19. Who?: I was just about to comment on the fact that we still can’t get an ESPN headline, but that was nice to hear about Dan Patrick. NC State was 5-1 and 4-1 at home; I think this game was a little bit of a bigger deal than it might seem.

  20. Perhaps this game was “monumental” in that it will give this young, but talented IU team confidence going into Big Ten play – IU will undoubtely beat some ranked teams this season, and may even end up in the Top 20. Go IU!

  21. By the way the players reacted immediately after the clock ran out, I’d say they thought it was a monumental win. For about 15 seconds, you’d have thought they just won the Big Ten Championship. They deserved their brief celebration.

  22. Poll Question:

    Who thinks Jordy can play 5+ years in the NBA once he graduates from IU? Are all at this dude ranch of the same soft faith in his skills as Geoff? I would be interested to also hear the opinions of Ryan, Dustin, and Andy(a.k.a The HT Bee Gees ).

  23. More Questions for Geoff and other dudes at the Harvard ranch:

    If he is on the trading blocks with Jordan Taylor, does this mean he’s a not our point guard once Yogi arrives? Will his role be substantially reduced since he’ll have to share minutes with Sheehey, Oladipo, Remy, Creek?…other recruited shooting guards, etc…?

    Should he seek playing his final year at a different college(possibly a smaller school with a traditionally strong b-ball program) where he gets more PT, and potentially more looks from NBA scouts?

    Can a freshman point guard lead this team to a banner?

    Will we take the heart out of Jordy by sitting him in his senior year? Will we take the leadership out of the team?

  24. Harvard,
    Since you asked, I’ve decided this. I’m not going to attempt to pigeon hole Jordan Hulls as anything anymore. My thought when I first saw him was that he had the opportunity to be a great backup point guard in the Big Ten and would be a star at a mid-major, but that if he were starting, IU was in trouble. In my defense, I hadn’t seen him play in high school because I wasn’t here yet, but I was more than a little wrong about that. Logic tells me it’s not easy for a 6-foot kid who’s admittedly maybe a step slow and not super athletic to play in the NBA, but Hulls’ basketball IQ is extremely high so I’ve decided I don’t know what I can put past him.
    There is the issue of defense. Try as he might, he’s still not locking anybody down, but he has a brilliant understanding of what to do with the ball. I’d probably still take Jordan Taylor over him, but Jordan Taylor is really, really good. I don’t think he’ll be an All-American or an NBA draft pick but I’m also not going to declare that there’s no chance. Craftiness is taking him further than I thought it would, so I won’t try to figure out where the limit is.
    As for what happens next year, speculation on lineups is fun, but I think it would be crazy for anyone to make assumptions that you’d have to wager something meaningful on. Yogi will play, a lot, but Hulls won’t be chained to the bench either and they definitely can play together. I honestly have no clue how they’re going to divvy out minutes on that team, especially if Creek is healthy, and that could be Crean’s biggest challenge. Really think about it, you’ve got Ferrell, Hulls, Creek, Oladipo, Sheehey, Hollowell, Patterson, Abell, Etherington, Watford, Elston, Perea, Jurkin, and Zeller. One of those guys won’t be there, but that’s it. How do you cut that down to five? How do you cut that down to an eight-man rotation? I have no clue and I’m not trying to guess now.

  25. Remember Reggie Jackson’s line, “I’m the straw that stirs the drink”? That’s Jordy.
    You can’t quantify everything he does on the stat sheet. That last three will just go down as a three. But it was a cold blooded, ‘we’ve got a one point lead with a minute left and I’m gonna stick this in your face’ three.
    He’s not going anywhere. He runs that team.

  26. What you’ll see next year is Hulls starting at point with Ferrell backing him up. CTC will ask both of them to push so hard & quick that they’ll need a rest. I think the result will be little or no let down in point play. While Ferrell may be talented, Hulls brings a toughness, grittiness & basketball IQ that can’t be measure on a stat sheet. No way possible Hulls contribution will be diminished next season. I think what we’ll see is the Hurrin’ Hoosiers…. (with the emphasis on the hurrying). Go IU!!

  27. You’re probably right..There’s still some crazy part(and that’s a big chunk) that holds onto his making it to the next level. You mentioned craftiness…Hulls is also a phenomenal passer(aided by his court vision) and his marksmanship is unquestionable. Does that translate into having a shot in the NBA?..I think he’ll get serious consideration..And let’s not forget he’s only in the infancy of his junior year. I’m saying he makes it on sheer determination.

    I’ll catch a lot of flack for this, but I hate to see the kid have his momentum killed next year. I wouldn’t have recruited Ferrell..Seems hard for Jordy Hulls to run a team coming off the bench…Difficult to get All-anything votes unless you’re putting substantial minutes on the floor. If Hulls would have been in a situation to have all the duties running the show in his senior year, I think he had a plausible shot at one of the All-American teams…especially if he was leading a team to a deep tournament run or a Final Four.

    I would be selfish. I would seek a program where my opportunity seemed greatest to utilize my experience and improvement in the spotlight of running the show. Jordy won’t do that. He’ll put Indiana first.

  28. i’ll take this opportunity to remind everyone that as freshman i compared hulls’ development at that point favorable to john stockton, whom i saw play occasionally in college while i was coaching in san francisco. i still stand by that. they even have the same shoulder release when shooting. i think hulls has a decent shot at the nba.

    also 2 years ago, when all were concerned about watford leaving early for the nba, i said he had no chance, i was right about that as well.

    it’s good to be king.

    well, i guess crean CAN coach. i was wrong about that. guess i’m just the queen.

  29. I think Watford could go to the NBA after this season. Ferrell is no Isiah Thomas. Get the spelling right, Queen Bee.

  30. Harvard,
    Ferrell’s good. Way too good to pass up. There’s actually more Hulls to him than you realize in terms of Basketball IQ. And having two good point guards isn’t a bad thing. I think you want to recruit point guards like quarterbacks. Get one every other year so that one teaches the next one and you always have a good backup. There’s three years of separation there, and if you’re Hulls, you can’t ask for there not to be another good point guard in the program while you’re there.

  31. I’ll agree with ‘t’, Monumental is a very exaggerated word. This was a very good win important to recovering the ‘It’s Indiana’ feeling but should stay there as a solid first step. The only “monumental’ thing we’ll see for a little while is the hard road we have to hoe to earn ourselves the respect lost over the last 3-4 years. DD is also right in regards to Hulls. There is no doubt about his determination, his willingness to take on the challenge and we should be more than happy by his willingness to play above his level. Still, to be fair to him, we need to be aware that (as DD points out) he is a step slow and that definitely shows on the defensive end against quicker and faster talented guards. I say fair because the day will come when we will have to be as supportive of mistakes as we are swooning over his success.

    There is no doubt Coach Crean can spot great potential, a great quality when you multiply it by his ability to recruit those who are [already] unquestionable budding top level players (an in Zeller’s case). The Oladipo-Sheehey class has as much natural talent in just the two as many other legendary classes. Remy is way up there as well, though it may take a bit longer to show fully because he will be sharing more time with others when Sheehey and Oladipo benefited from playing a lot earlier because of the lack of talent.

    There is much to appreciate in Pritchard’s play- he’s all grunt and you can’t have enough of those ever, and Derek Elston reminds me of Ted Kitchel. He could become the final and most surprising ingredient in this stew

    One more…I still think we will eventually (when God sees his Hoosiers are really back, He’ll pay lots of attention to the details) see a great basketball guard in Maurice Creeks. Now, that would be Monumental.

  32. Dustin-

    Your analysis is filled with reason…mine is filled with sentimentality and fantasy.

    coachv was right. There were a ton of doubters when Jordan came to IU. Do you think he’s a future Stockton? Steve Nash? Anyway, I was likely one of those doubters of Hulls….not as extreme as many, but I thought he was picked for mostly being the hometown favorite; a political choice by Crean to get the old local establishment soundly behind him. It didn’t take me two years to know I was wrong. I was enlightened when he started to get minutes.Glory, game, guts, and gumption..I’m sure you remember..Different time, different screen name.

    I’m not sold on Ferrell. I don’t know why, I’m just not. And what a storyline it could have been for Hulls…a hometown product that picked Indiana when the program was at its lowest low leads his team to a shot at a banner. I just think a young workhorse, unselfish, unassuming kid that picked Indiana before the big time “savior” recruit and the “dominoes” began to follow in order and sign, almost deserves such a fate. Hey, anything is possible. If VCU can get to a Final Four, maybe this year’s Hoosiers can squeak into the tournament and pull a rabbit out of their hat. Stranger things have happened and this team has real sleeper potential.

    Welcome back, Tsao.

  33. Really, you think that speaks for itself? I can’t believe NCSt fans are so hung up over that (IMO) obviously intentional/flagrant foul. If the players would have let that go and focused on the game, maybe they wouldn’t have lost by 11.

    The bottom line is, IU gained a whole 1 point from that call. Not a game changer unless you let it get in your head.

    Classless dunk? I’d call it the best dunk I’ve seen in ages! There’s nothing wrong with celebrating what was arguably the biggest win in 3 years. You could argue that it’s pathetic that a win against a non ranked opponent on the road is the biggest win in 3 years, but hey, IU has been pathetic for 3 years. And if you said the win was not worth celebrating, you would be putting down your own school : )

  34. When a guy has such a cool nickname like “Yogi”, why are you calling him by his last name?!?

    With Hulls around his freshman year, I don’t see Yogi making an immediate impact (other than maintaining momentum while Hulls is resting), but I think he will surpass Hulls as he matures and gains experience over the years. Seems to me that it takes a while for a point guard to learn the system, more so than a big man for example. I’d love to be wrong.

    It’s nice to have enough talent that freshmen don’t have overwhelming pressure on them to immediately put up big numbers. We have time to let them marinate in the future.

  35. billhillie,

    why ask dd if hulls can be another stockton? he’s not old enough to have seen stockton play.

    yogi WILL have an immediate impact. as to the discussion about whether yogi will supplant hulls at point…there is no reason they can’t play in the backcourt side by side in crean’s drive and kick system. worked pretty well at kentucky with their 2 point guards recently.

  36. If Yogi is as talented as he looks I just can’t see JH starting. We are talking about a true pg here! The main reason is everytime you read up on Yogi the words (great defender) are in the conversation somewhere. JH is a great shooter no doubt but he’s not a pure ball distributer and we all know he’s just not a good defender. He has the heart of a lion but his size can’t get it done on d. Anyone on here that really thinks JH will get the nod over Yogi just isn’t thinking things through. I love the JH as a player. A bloomington kid playing at IU but give me the 5* #3 pg in the nation anyday! Also i’ve never seen a 5* player not start.

  37. Can’t imagine someone professing to know great Hoosier players from the past not remembering how to spell the first name of arguably the best point guard to ever wear the cream and crimson. I mean how many times was his name in newspapers, programs, and Hoosier headlines? Are you sure you’re not a Kentucky fan?

    Maybe coachvenom should spend another six months telling the readers of Scoop how Creek’s form on his jump shot sucks. That’s all I remember about your posts from ions ago. And I do remember the thorough criticism of the coaching staff for not recognizing such horrible form and taking corrective measures. And wasn’t there more comments about his performance in the Kentucky game being a fluke?

    “why ask dd if hulls can be another stockton? he’s not old enough to have seen stockton play.”

    I can remember watching guys play in the NBA when I was 10 years old. If Dustin’s been a fan of the game since he was a little tyke, he may have a few memories of some stars of the game when he was getting bit with the love of sports. Stockton played until 2003…He was probably still a pretty decent player in the late ’90s. I’ll guess that Dustin is in his mid twenties…If Dustin is 26 years old, that would mean he was 13 years old when Stockton was still playing respectable ball in 1998. Would that be so impossible to have recall if you’ve been a fan of the game since childhood?


    Ask Andy Graham if Jordy could be the next Steve Kerr.

  38. GoPack, I didn’t see Houston fans whining like that when you were GIVEN the national championship on the most obvious offensive goal tend in history.
    Wow, you think a call that gave us one point would reverse an 11 point win? You do realize that most of the calls went to the home team, right?
    You’re in for a LONG season.

  39. What a lot of you are missing out on regarding Hulls is that with JH the sum of the parts is greater than that of the Hull, pun intended. Seriously though, By next season he may have gained a step but his knowledge of what CTC wants done, his leadership, BB IQ, etc., etc. will keep him as a starter. In college basketball senior leadership is beyond value. That is why you see mid-major programs like Northern Iowa from 2 yrs ago and to some extent, Butler, advance into the tournament. Jordy will be just fine next year, and Yogi will see a lot of playing time as well. He will be groomed for down the road. Go Hoosiers!

  40. …”I wouldn’t have recruited Ferrell…I am not sold on Ferrell”… ? …unbelievable…who then would be the top notch PG going forward?

    Even with the variables YF offers we have to consider all the 3 point shot attempts from 22′ to be taken by our PG next year. Who do you want taking those? Senior Hulls or Freshman Yogi? JH needs to take at least 70% of those available.

  41. Nice, there’s a lot to talk about here. My pesky job has gotten in the way of me checking in on the site over the course of the days this week. I will not allow that today!

    HforH, I consider you a poster of sentimentality as well, so I am glad you are able to reflect so accurately upon yourself. I wouldn’t go so far as to say fantasy, as that would be throwing all caution and reason to the side – and you’re just too darn smart for that. I did like the typo saying you hadn’t heard from coachv in “ions”. It’s like a Freudian slip diminishing his posts.

    As far as Hulls and Yogi goes – I don’t think Yogi takes many minutes away from him. It has to impact Jordan’s game in some way though, it could be positive as he sees more open looks with a true penetrator running the point when they play on the floor together. I actually see a lot of that. I think that, if Perea is as good as I hope, by the end of the season a back line of Zeller/Perea allows for a slightly smaller back court of ball-handlers/decision-makers/FT-shooters in Hulls and Yogi throughout the game and then down stretch of tight games.

    I think it will be difficult for Yogi to supplant Hulls as the starter. I just can’t see it happening, unless they move Hulls to the 2. But, I can definitely see a scenario where “The Movement” comes in at the 14 minute mark and a line-up of Yogi, Hulls, Hollowell, Parea, and Zeller get a few minutes together, with Sheehey/Dipo and Watford coming in at the 11 or 10 minute mark for Hulls and Zeller (moving Parea to the 5 – hopefully he can handle that). Those are some exciting line-ups to think about – what a difference from the past few years.

    I don’t see any scenario where Hulls sniffs the NBA. I keep feeling like I’m being put in a position where I have to put this kid’s talents down… and I love him, but you have to quell the tides of craziness at some point. No measure of success this year will change my mind about this. I can see an All-B1G 3rd team selection this year. I can fantasize about All-America Honorable Mention this year and next. But under no circumstances can my mind accept him on an NBA roster.

    The Nash/Stockton comparisons are ummm, funny? They have 3 things in common – whiteness, shooting ability, and intangibles (leadership, toughness, IQ) – so maybe 5 things… But only one of those is actually skill-related. First he is about 2 or 3 inches shorter than those guys. Second, Stockton has really long arms and enormous hands, and Nash (in his prime) is as quick as anyone in the game – athletically Hulls just isn’t in the same stratosphere as those guys. Two other areas where he falls short are passing and ability to penetrate or break down a defense. I am sure that Hulls is an above average passer, but how many times do you see him make a truly special pass? He settles the team down and makes good decisions, but he raaaaarely gets into the paint or draws additional defenders. In the NBA against bigger, quicker, longer players, that are generally more disciplined defensively off the ball, he has no shot to do the things Stockton or Nash ever did. His very best case situation is that he is a far better catch and shoot guy than I think and he comes off the bench as a Steve Kerr type in special situations. But I don’t think he can do that either. Oh and he has absolutely no shot at guarding NBA PG’s… Stockton was very quick, long, and strong so he’s a completely different story, but the only reason Nash get’s away with being on the floor is because he’s an absolute basketball SAVANT offensively.

    This is getting too long… (sure I’ll get agreement on that)

  42. While an auto accident cut his career short, I believe Jordy is bigger than Bobby Hurley. He doesn’t possess his whining skills, though.

  43. Not a typo. Just a complete brain fart. Did I ever claim to have one eon of credibility, anyway? Nah.

    The Hulls Discussion:

    This guy is bigger..this guy is faster…this guy is quicker..this guy can get in the paint…this guy has bigger hands..this guys is a better passer…blah..blah..blah. Hulls is in the NBA. You’re selling this gladiator short. His improvement over the last two years has been on one of the steepest slopes I’ve ever witnessed in a college player. Then again, how much do we really witness? Do we honestly think we see these guys with 20/20 ability to relate to their level of mastery the sport they play?

    Very interesting discussion with John Feinstein was featured on NPR radio’s “Fresh Air” program last night. The interview was conducted by Dave Davies filling in for Terry Gross …Feinstein was plugging a new book: One on One
    Behind the Scenes With the Greats in the Game
    . I would consider it almost mandatory listening material for all hopelessly addicted fans of sport…Please take the time. Here is the link.

    How is this relevant to Hulls? When I listened to one particular segment(begins at the 31:24 mark), I couldn’t help but think of how our perceptions are so far from truth just how skilled all these guys are. We armchair quarter back, but we really have no idea. I can’t be as eloquent as Feinstein…but I’m convinced Hulls possesses much more than meets our eye. It’s ridiculous to call a kid starting for a major college basketball program slow or short on anything.

  44. Tsao – love this quote regarding Jordan… so true

    “I say fair because the day will come when we will have to be as supportive of mistakes as we are swooning over his success”

    Dustin – it’s never too early to start projecting next years minutes and line-ups, especially now the dudes are signed. So I’ll start the discussion.

    Starters: Hulls, Dipo, Sheehey, Watford, Zeller

    Sub Rotation and order:
    – Yogi for Sheehey/Dipo, depending on hot hand or match-up
    – Parea for Watford
    – Hollowell for remaining wing Dipo/Sheehey
    – Elston for Zeller
    – Dipo/Sheehey for Hulls

    End-Game Line-up: Yogi, Hulls, Dipo, Watford/Parea, Zeller

    Wild Card: Creek – even if he’s healthy, is he too damaged or rusty to really contribute? If he is back, he takes some of Hollowell’s minutes.

    Out of the Mix: Etherington, Abell, Patterson, Jurkin. Etherington, thank you for all your recruiting. As a senior you may be able to contribute, but next year you are our 5th or 6th best wing. Abell becomes our 3rd best PG or 4th or 5th best wing – either way he’s a real transfer candidate because it will be difficult for him to ever be a starter here. Patterson is the least heralded recruit, and stuck behind a lot of talent, but I hope he stays patient because I think he becomes a major contributor as a soph and starter as a junior. Jurkin will be the only one to get regular non-blowout minutes, but only against tall teams and when Zeller gets in early foul trouble.

    Commence debate…

  45. I will take a listen… However, I am not saying that Hulls is short or slow (you may not be directing that at me…). I am comparing him to the guys you mentioned in post #36 and the rest of the guys playing his position in the NBA. He is shorter than Nash and Stockton. He is slower than 95% of NBA PG’s and a lot smaller than the slower 5%. Nash and Stockton were both first round draft picks. Jordy isn’t currently ranked in Chad Ford’s top 200 NBA draft board – there are 36 PG’s that are. You can make any argument you want, but I’ll take whatever bet you want to make that Jordy doesn’t get drafted, and double-or-nothing that he doesn’t make a roster.

    I obviously was never the player that Hulls is, or all of you would have heard of me, but I do know a little about being a 5’11”, white, college PG who is a better shooter than driver. Unless we are EXCEPTIONAL at an NBA skill our ceilings are limited because of size, athletic ability, and maybe most of all, perception. I love Hulls, he is the wet dream of the player I wish I’d become… But he won’t make it in the NBA.

    Now stop with the comments insinuating I’m a hater… I am just firmly planted in reality.

    To comment on the Alford thing, he was a little bigger and had an EXCEPTIONAL NBA skill… and he still couldn’t make it off the bench.

  46. nice eon spelling, redneck, while calling me out for spelling.

    i think it is important to remember to compare hulls to how stockton played at the beginning of his junior year, not as a 28 year old pro. that, in my opinion, is favorable. i would not compare hulls to nash.

    i think hulls is a fine point guard and we will see more evidence of that over the next 2 seasons. last year hulls frequently penetrated the paint only to have no one to pass to as the rest of the team stood around. now with teammates moving into passing lanes and spotting up on the perimeter, big guys who can finish, hulls is starting to shine.

    i think we will continue to see hulls’ rapid improvement and the player we will be watching at the end of his senior season will be much better than the hulls we are watching now. no way yogi forces him to back up status, as good as yogi is. they both play.

  47. Geoff, you reminded me of, when I was a kid, I’d play pickup games with guys like Mike Flynn and Darrell Griffith back home. They may as well have been another species, especially Darrell. Mike was known as a great passer and defender at Kentucky and with the Pacers but against mere mortals he could score at will from 28 feet on in. We look at Jordy and say ‘a step slow’ but, if we were on the court with him we’d be five move behind.
    Of course, forty years later, I’m much quicker.

  48. Coachv – Stockton was the 14th pick in the draft… That is almost a lottery pick. Pretty sure Hulls doesn’t project the same way to NBA scouts. If he did, he’d be listed somewhere in Ford’s top prospects by position. Chad Ford has just about unlimited access to NBA front offices and does a tremendous job of sniffing out information. I am a NBA draftnik, even more than an NBA fan. I love studying, reading, watching the camps, doing the mock drafts, making predictions… Then when the season starts my interest fades until the playoffs. I read a lot of people and Chad Ford is about as good as it comes. Hulls isn’t even on the radar, and he will have to play a lot better than he did against NC State EVERY SINGLE GAME to cause a blip.

    two years ago a former McDonald’s all-american, coming off a tremendous junior season, playing for one of the, if not THE highest profile program in the country, who is 6 inches taller than Hulls and a pretty good athlete, who shoots it just as well, who led his team to a national championship… John Scheyer, you probably have heard of him, yeah he didn’t get drafted.

    You know who else didn’t get drafted last year… Ben Hansborough, Big East player of the year… Kalin Lucas, former B1G player of the year, and all-american PG.

    It’s a lot harder to get drafted and play in the NBA than you guys are making it out to be. Hulls ain’t JJ Barrea…

  49. The big goal for this season is to win at least 20 games and to go to the NCAA Tourney. Right? The win over NC ST is the “monumental” game to achieve those goals. Butler and ND are the other big games in the pre-conference schedule. But Butler is noticeably down and Stevens must really coach them up to make the NCAA cut (which I believe he is very capable of doing). Notre Dame has now lost their best player and must regroup to get to the NCAA Tourney. NC St has a great chance to be in the top 4 of the ACC and go to the Tourney. The NC St fans were roaring in their sold out home arena. No Big 10 arena will surpass this road test except our trip to Purdue. This sets up a game in Bloomington between two undefeated teams with KY ranked #1. It will be the greatest game in Crean’s coaching history (yes, I know that a final Four game is always big-but the expectations for victory were low and a great season was already assured) . A win will move IU up into the top 10 at least and higher if there is any justice to the rankings (as in based on actual play not hype, expectations, talent, etc.). A loss coupled with other losses could derail this IU resurgence train. Nothing is established so far except the determination of this group of players. So “monumental” is a very apt adjective!

  50. I’m seconding most of what Geoff said, in that Hulls doesn’t have close to the speed of any of those NBA guys we mentioned. But I also watched Barea, and he didn’t get drafted but he’s found a way to stick. He was faster than Hulls in college (I covered James Madison and saw Northeastern several times), slicker with the ball and a better overall scorer, but Hulls is a better shooter and more fundamentally sound. Stockton and Nash are hall of famers. Nash plays the game unlike anyone I’ve ever seen and does things that very few are physically capable of.
    So I don’t want to call Hulls the next those guys. Again, he’s not even on the NBA’s radar right now. All I’m saying is you can’t rule out guys who are that smart and work that hard. He’s made a career out of proving people wrong.

  51. I think the whole discussion spiral from an offhand comment. I don’t think many people project Jordy to the NBA. I don’t. But, just for fun, you can compare him with guys who did. Do you really think Bryce Drew, entering his junior year, was any closer to the NBA than Jordy. The NBA talent is unbelievable but every team has a guy on it that beat the odds.

  52. Just wanted to say I’m sorry for that last post that was deleted. I think there’s a lot of condescension. contemptuous remarks, and underhanded meanness on this thread. I’m sorry for instigating some of it and I’m sorry for letting it get to me. You guys are obviously the experts. I never went to college or played anything approaching college ball. Chet was right…I have issues.

  53. Hopefully you don’t consider anything I’ve written to you as underhanded meanness… I have made a few snide remarks towards OldFard, but I feel like I’ve only debated you… I have even complimented you while doing it. So while I missed your deleted remark (unfortunately) I hope there are no hard feelings.

  54. It was just ugly. It was all aimed at you, Geoff. I’m glad you didn’t see it. I’m sure you could provide Dustin your e-mail address and he could forward it to you.

    Kenporn has the Hoosiers currently at #19 just behind Georgetown. Remember when everything hinged on a Moses Abraham decision at 2:00 a.m.? Maybe, just maybe, that can shed a tiny bit of light on where doubt often belongs.

  55. Dustin – you have my email… I would love to read this deleted post… I seriously have no hard feelings towards HforH.

  56. Pretty sure it’s lost to the deep dark reaches of the internet. I just deleted it and it’s kinda gone. I could dig it up, but it’s not that huge of a thing. Nothing that would’ve been completely out of line between two dudes at a bar, but not quite something you want to print on the website of a family newspaper, which I suppose we still are.

  57. If you’re looking for some inspired or thought provoking you’re gonna be really disappointed. You really didn’t miss a thing.

  58. Geoff-

    My deleted comment was cynical and a bit nasty, but it was very tame stuff. As Chet implied, it was lame. Dustin has a right to remove whatever he sees fit. There was no intent to paint you as something laced in hate and prejudice. I don’t go there and I take a lot of offense to any implication I get extreme in that fashion. My opinions may get notched up to what is considered an “over-the-top” level, but please be assured that it’s not with intent to harm you personally. I’m going after the opinion. I’m sorry if it came off as making you look like a “hater.” I’ll admit that it was going in that direction and I should have pulled back.

    Most of us know these opinions are meaningless to those we comment on. Does Jordan Hulls care what we think? I’ve had a fair amount of encounters with people, even people in family that I expect support from, make comments I would consider as intended to steal the heart of dreams…Whether or not those fantasies of mine are not founded in mapped out goals and true self-evaluative perceptions founded in a reality soundly based in my past performance and abilities, it’s no less hurtful when words attempt to cut them short. That’s all I’m saying here..People are more than a statistic. Do you honestly believe I don’t understand how slim Hulls chances are at an NBA career? But without those dreams, what is really the point? Was there not some point in his life just making a 7th grade team was possiblly a far-fetched dream?

    I’ve really enjoyed reading your thoughts. I have been more than impressed with your abundance of knowledge about basketball and other insights and experiences you’ve contributed.

    My constant love for sport has always revolved around the team or guy that proves the naysayers wrong. It’s not founded in the color of a person’s skin or the streets they’ve grown up. My heroes are not just kids from cornfields and small towns. Indiana fans are often painted with that brush and I think it’s grossly unfair. I think the implications that some bloggers quickly throw whenever the the names of Knight or Alford are mentioned are immediately spun and crudely brought down to a level that insinuates a love for some fond memories of the past because it’s rooted in bigotry. That offends me. I don’t cheer for Hulls to tackle what seems to be the impossible because he’s white, Christian, short, ugly, smart, or lives two doors down my street. I cheer for him because he’s driven to beat the odds just like a kid named Jamarcus I was hoping could beat the odds of our walling him off because lazy labels in our perfect worlds take a lot less effort than trying to put someone on a new road or truly believing they can change.

  59. Thanks Hahvahd, good post. Did you just call Hulls ugly?

    (anything to start another riff… can’t let the love last too long)

    I’m still surprised that there has literally been no reaction (positive or negative) to my post about next years line-ups.

  60. ….ugly in a grumpy, determined, gumptious, “Catfish” Hunter sorta way.

    I’ll get back to you on the lineup opinion. There will likely be sentimentality involved.

  61. How about a nickname lineup ?(inspired by Grumpy ref.) I need a couple more to be filled in. Here is what I have so far, with the help of some of you from past posts.
    1. Tom Pritchard – The Reacher
    2. Jordan Hulls – Grumpy
    3. Tan Cream
    4. Steve McClain – Shooter
    5. Verdell TO Jones.
    6. Of course, my personal favorite, Cody Freakin Zeller – FREAKENSTEIN ! Please fill free to badmouth, laugh, add to, or adjust. Enjoy

  62. Verdell “Boo Boo” Jones

    Cody “Almond Thunder” Zeller

    Jordan “Opie Taylor” Hulls..(better known as “OT” Hulls)

    Victor “Alley-oops-OH!”

    “To be, or Will not to be” Will Sheehey

  63. Danny “Super-flub” Moore

    Derek “Hatchet Man” Elston (that was for Chet)

    Remy “Recharge” Abell

  64. Okay, after watching the NCST game and KY/NC today I no longer think Hulls will really struggle with his match-up. Teague is a poor shooter. There is a major hitch in his 3, and he really jumps to get it off – even when not guarded. The whole thing makes for a slow, inconsistent release. I think Jordy can play off him just a bit and discourage the drive. Teague has so much talent around him that he is probably a little out of sorts for the first time in his basketball life. When a score-first PG, who has always been the best player on his team, is surrounded by NBA lottery-type talent it has to make them question whether or not the shot he is taking is the right one for the team. If he can’t get to the rim at will my guess is he will play more of a facilitator role and defer to the other scorers on the team. If he does get to the rim I’d love to see Hannibal Elston or The Reacher take a nice hard foul. Teague really struggles at the line.

    That being said I hope that we are the only ones looking ahead to the KY game and the team is focused on Stetson. It would be a shame to create all this momentum, a shred of national respect, and then lose it all by putting up out a big stinky deuce against the Hatters (really? The Hatters? Who’s in charge over there?)

  65. Boy…sometimes it’s just fun to follow the dialogue a while and not say a word.

    The issue on Hulls, as good as he does many things, is that he is a step slower. I have no idea how you fix that…it will always be so. But, there is a bright side to the issue (I won’t call it a problem)…as strong and determined as he is about doing well what he can control (giving leadership to this team) it makes the Hoosiers a much stronger t-e-a-m. The contrast with VJ (who is quicker) is a fair one. VJ is focused on h-i-s game; while Hulls focuses on team performance (he is almost obsessive about it and that is a good thing). That quality reminds me of Randy Wittman (who was bigger and quicker but a lot like Hulls in many other ways.

    We also have a way of looking at players for what they can do (he’s a shooter, he’s quick, he’s slow, he crashes the boards but mostly with the ball). A better measure for me is to look at their defensive weakness and how it can be dealt with. The problem on defense for Hulls will come in when his man or responsibility does not have the ball and Hulls has to be concerned with his player away from the ball (that’s when the lack of quickness will show and not allow him to stay with the assignment). Don’t ask me for the solution…that’s why they pay TC U$3M and I have to pay for my HT subscription.

    Love ‘Hannibal’ Elston. Victor let’s you think the shot’s ‘in the bank’ or the rebound ‘is a lock’ before his hand rips in from nowhere and repossesses it, thus… “Repodipo!” or “Repo!”

    Can you believe this is post #81??!! Not that we are excitable or anything.

    (Thanks for the ‘welcome back’ Harvard…good posting).

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