Indiana preparing for opener against Bryant with thin front line

Heading into Friday’s 8 p.m. season opener against Bryant, Indiana coach Tom Crean’s thoughts are still almost as much with the players who won’t be playing as the ones who will.

Crean said he remains shocked about the nine-game suspensions given to freshmen big men Hanner Mosquera-Perea and Peter Jurkin for impermissible benefits — which were considered permissible until it was determined that their summer travel coach Mark Adams had donated $185 to Indiana from 1986-92 and was therefore considered a booster for life. The Hoosiers are hopeful that an appeal will lessen their sentence, but they don’t know when they can expect an answer from an NCAA appeals committee.

“My greatest concern is for them,” Crean said Thursday. “It as been and it will remain that way, because they don’t deserve this. At the end of the day, that’s really what should matter the most is the welfare of the student athlete. They don’t deserve it. Nobody deserves it, but they certainly don’t deserve it.”

Crean was asked if this situation and the Guy-Marc Michel situation have inspired him to make more of a point to make his voice heard in the NCAA’s legislative process and to bring attention his issues with certain eligibility rules. He said he didn’t plan to and wanted to keep some of his opinions on the matter private.

“I don’t think it works that way,” Crean said. “I don’t think it works that way. I got a lot of private thoughts on this, but I’m not really where I want to be at with it where it’s out public like that. I’m too close to home on this with these two guys. That’s what the biggest concern is that we’ve got two young men out there who really have no idea why, nor do they deserve it. I’d like somebody to tell me why they deserve it. Other than that, I’m just going to keep coaching them, working with them and focus on this team and leave the legislative process to others.”

Whether he gets that answer or not, he’s certainly unlikely to get an appeal back by today’s 8 p.m. game. The Hoosiers are already without senior forward Derek Elston, who tore his meniscus in late October. That’s left Indiana with very little frontcourt depth. Though sophomore center Cody Zeller and senior forward Christian Watford give them two Wooden Award nominees in the starting lineup, the only other available true post man is walk-on Jeff Howard. Freshman Jeremy Hollowell, a 6-foot-8, 217-pounder, is more of a small forward, but he will likely be pressed into service at the power forward spot at times and the Hoosiers will have to play small.

“If we play conventional our backup right now is Jeff Howard,” Crean said. “There will be some conventional and some unconventional.”

Howard, a junior  from Westfield, has appeared in just 20 games in his first two seasons and played just 39 minutes, scoring a total of three points — all from the free throw line — and grabbing nine rebounds. The Hoosiers are hopeful that the former All-State honorable mention can help in small spurts.

“He’s gotten better,” Crean said. “I would like him to believe that he’s gotten better the way that I think I do and some others think. I still think that he is not quite bought into the fact that we’d like him to play. But he will, he’ll be out there. He does some really good things. He had a couple of plays pick-and-roll wise defensively in the exhibition game that were really good. He battles every day in here. We’ll just see where it goes. I’m not ready to call him a rotation guy. I don’t know what that is. … I don’t know what’s going to happen with it. We’re just gonna go play.”

The Hoosiers say they are confident in their ability to play small. They can play small forwards Will Sheehey and Jeremy Hollowell at power forward on occasion, and Watford said he thinks he can play center, especially early in the season.

“We’ve definitely been working on that the last couple of practices,” Watford said. “With our offense, most of the guys can play most of the positions. The main thing will be we’ll just have to rebound the ball that’s the main thing we’ve been working on. … I don’t see too many people in the next five games that I couldn’t guard as a big five.”



  1. It was like old time listening to Crean’s press conference where the first minute and a half was talking about a walk-on.

  2. Crean has started with excuses.

    He doesn’t know anything else.

    Basketball is not his first competence.

  3. Reek, dude, I am sure everybody is glad you’re back.

    The sky is not falling, Crean has always been this way.

    Take it easy, my man. Is O’Sh!t your family name?

    You must have an Irish background, like Tom Crean…

  4. How many secondary violations does it take to reprimand Crean? Harris,Jurkin/Perea within the past year, Tijan a few years ago, Guy not eligible. Kicking Patterson off the team under the guise of poor grades when we know Crean could have saved him. No wonder his fellow coaches think he’s a cheat. As long as the Knight apologist Glass continues to enable Crean like most ADs and Presidents did with Knight, Crean will continue doing what he’s doing without reprecussion. As long as we win, Glass looks the other way. We fans should expect a squeaky clean program in light of the crap we went through with KS. How we even get close to a violation is beyond comprehension at this point. Better get my bible out so I can follow along.

  5. Caught this gem in the IDS today: “In Friday’s season opener against Bryant, Watford will fill in for his fellow senior in another way as well, wearing Elston’s No. 32 jersey instead of his customary No. 2.”… Gotta like the brotherhood established at IU.

  6. Some of these comments are beyond belief. The comments by Patty take the CAKE!Stupid is the first thing that come to mine and that is being kind.

  7. IF anyone believes that all the transfers during the RMK years were voluntary they are clueless! In almost all of the transfers Knight would push them out to cover either recruiting mistakes or that the player refused to let him take his shot away,Bailey,Fife,Hillman or that he could not break them down or they entered his doghouse for whatever reason,Recker just to name a few! All of this was fine until RMK couldn’t win or recruit! Then in RMK’s defense all the previous incidents became public and after thirty years of it’s ok! They chose to impose sanctions on him for the same issues that were his to handle before and made it impossible for him to continue as before end of story! It’s sure is funny how Ron Patterson was able to qualify to enter Syracuse and not I.U.! We have had players over the years that have had tutors for four years and we couldn’t help Patterson?We oversigned! Something had to happen.And 2013 will be worse as we are now loaded and trying to sign another player! This is not CTC’s first rodeo! I just hope the Indiana kids are not the ones hurt!We have great talent here in Indiana and we need to keep them at I.U.!

  8. Steve— All we got from Knight-worshippers was excuses when his teams sucked the past 6 years in the Dance…and before that even. It was NEVER their God’s fault.

    IU10– Thanks awesome. Thanks for telling us.

    TJ — Exactly, but the sheep will still think Bob was more pure than Jesus. Not only that, he let known pot-smokers stay on the team with no penalty.

  9. Laffy, where have you been man.

    Denver, can’t smoke tobacco but pot is now legal.

    Maybe Mr. Knight was just ahead of his time. If he bought an Edsel that would be proof.

    (I think I can tell when Dustin is tired of my comments when I have to dig out the calculator)(failed on my third try, guess it’s time for the “new math”)

  10. Only 5 year old kids “never apologize.”

    It’s one reason why the Republican Party is so screwed up.

    Grow the hell up.

  11. The Republican party is as screwed up as you are. Or almost.

    You are a Thumper. The biggest around.

  12. It’s a great compliment to be called “screwed up” by a Knight-worshipper. If you idiots ever respected me, I’d shoot myself.

  13. Laffy….I’d suggest a .32 caliber, less messy. We’ve been trying to show some respect and, mostly, succeeding. So, how about some love back to those of us who admire many qualities in Coach Knight?

    Some way you can take Patty with you. Since we’re good friends now Laffy… Patty meet Laffy; Laffy meet Patty.

    Ohh wait! No Petinos on first date!….

  14. Tom Crean was voted among his peers to be one who would and will cheat when he can. He’s now shown that to be true multiple times while at IU and it’s time for spineless Freddy to sit his ass down and explain that IU can’t have another Kelvin Sampson or Mike Davis.

    But then, many of us understand that Crean was on the way out at Marquette just as Sampson was at OU when Spineless Freddie hired the POS.

    Tom Crean is a side talker…one side of his mouth at a time.

  15. Hate to break it to ya, but the country went to hell during Georgie’s reign. We were losing 700,000 jobs a MONTH when he left office.

    And Righties have done NOTHING but block everything to help the country. Indie experts say Obama’s job bill would add at least a million new jobs but Righties block it because they are more loyal to their Party than America.

    The housing collapse happened when Bush was “in charge” and every expert said he’d take a decade to fix because he screwed the pooch sooooooo bad.

    To blame it on “liberals” is as dumb as blaming 9/11 on Clinton when he had been out of office for 9 months and Georgie ignored 1,000 warnings that a major attack was coming at any time.

    Not only do you guys have a different Bible than everyone else (acting like Jesus said “I hate gays and screw the poor”), you also have a different history book and act like the country was kicking butt when Obama took over and crashed right after he was sworn in.

  16. Evansville – Drama queen! If %8 unemployment and poor people driving Civics and Explorers with refrigerators full of Bud Lite is “in the shitter,” then I’m sure most countries in the world wish they were as “screwed up” as we were.

    As for blaming Bush, do you expect the Iraq War and the untimely, irresponsible 2003 tax cuts to simply evaporate into the mist in our collective memory just because the current president is “liberal” (note: Obama would be considered conservative in just about any other Western country)? Is that how it works? Does history start over each time there is a regime change?

    Last but not least, you are wrong, this is the best sports discussion forum about IU sports, and maybe the best sports forum anywhere, of all time – precisely because of the tendency to go off-topic. Try going over to “Inside the Hall” for a day and you will experience the blogging equivalent of lawn bowling.

  17. You guys are actually more stupid than I originally thought. Georgie had a thousand warnings huh? How about lybia? Our ambassador calls for help multiple times, warns the gov that terroists groups have been organizing for weeks but our pres does NOTHING AND LET HIM AND FOUR OTHERS DIE. It’s fine though just lie about it then sweep it under the rug and everyone will forget about it. Let’s go with its all bushs fault ok then Obama said himself if I don’t fix it it’ll be a one term proposition. Instead we elect him because the liberal media makes it their full time job propping him up even though all he’s done has made this country worse. You’re seriously proud of 8% unemployment? Lefties constantly road bush for 5%. What are you even talking about poor people driving civics and explorers with bud light in the fridge?….what?? Those are the people Obama has in his back pocket anyways. You guys need to pay attention to what’s going on

  18. Da’Coach, Not only is your dirty pink slip showing but so is your stupidity. Freddie did not hire Coach Crean from MU. You are an ass talker.

  19. Don’t even get me started on obamacare. And I meant to say the ambassador and three others were killed, four total

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