Crean on Chicago radio: “I love the challenge of it”

Indiana coach Tom Crean appeared on Kap and Haugh of The Game 87.7 FM in Chicago this morning and talked about the departure of Noah Vonleh and others, as well as the offseason and preparation for next year. “I love the challenge of it,” Crean said. “Because you’ve got to keep building the right synergy and chemistry in your team.”

Listen to the full interview here.

129 comments

  1. Was glancing through some coaching stats. Kind of drew my eye when I noticed winning percentages.

    Tom Crean : 15 yrs. / 291-193 ( win. pct. = .601 )
    1 Final 4 / 9-7 record in NCAA

    Mike Davis: 14 yrs. / 273-181 ( win. pct. = .601 )
    1 Final 4 / 7-6 record in NCAA

    Almost identical records and almost equally loved by most IU fans.

  2. Davis got to a championship games. Davis’s Hoosiers also defeated a #1 Duke team to eventually get to the Final Four. That was arguably the greatest comeback in Hoosier tournament history….and probably one of the most exciting games where unlikely heroes defined what Indiana and March Madness is all about.

    I’m pretty sure Marquette got completely destroyed in Crean’s only Final Four game.

    I still give the coaching props to Davis over Crean. Crean is the better salesman to recruits…(and he has certain weapons outside of coaching ability at his disposal to make that happen…But that day will also end if the tournament success begins to slip).

  3. Crean makes 3.1 million a year Davis 475,00 a year Indiana could get so much better for that kind of money but the idiot AD gave him such a buy out we are stuck with a low level coach and will be for at least 2-3 more years.

  4. This is an honest question to all the Tom Crean critics or Crean-haters out there. Do you think you’re in the minority of the majority of IU fans in your opinion/regard for Tom Crean?

  5. Well, he better love the chanllenge because he is going to get a big one, especially when he doesn’t get the big man from Temple.

  6. having listened to the interview;CTC said he wanted an “unselfish passing team”.Well CTC you have to:1) get players to move so they become a target for a pass.2) allow the center to “touch the ball” at LEAST once per posession,3) make passing a priority and a discipline NOT an artform.and lastly4} STOP THROWING THE TEAM UNDER THE BUS FOR DISCIPLINES YOU SHOULD BE COACHING and responsible for and not making them solely responsible for YOUR coaching failures

  7. Minority..Most fans are losing their passion for the game. They merely go because they want to dress up, are old and severely bored with nothing better to do, make a “We are Indiana” video, or a “Hoosier Rising” video, are the few students that don’t want to get trashed every night….

    But do they really care that much about ever seeing Indiana get back to something approaching an “elite” program? I really don’t think so..They’re all hooked into Facebook and Twitter with things constantly plugged in their ears…pretending they’re king and queen of their own self-absorbed world. It’s like 10,000 Steve Bartmans taking over the world at every Hoosier game. They probably see 1 basket out of every 10 made.

    Not a better time for Christianity because the concept of a supreme being that looks just like our own image in the mirror plays into the “me world” trend found in all the constant obsession with selling yourself. Basketball? Coaching? Who in the hell cares? This is my time, baby. This is me selling me…Just like Tom Crean sells Tom Crean in every discreet tweet.

    Unselfish pursuits to play a game as a team and win something where I’m just not the star of my own show? That day is long gone…I just come to chant O-L-A-D-I-P-O! and watch the dunks.

  8. There is a relevant narrative that is being picked up about Crean and what is going on at Indiana. Chicago radio stations have spent the last week on a few segments about him. Just today there was an interview with a MJS writer regarding the rumors of Shaka Smart going to Marquette. Crean was a follow up discussion. The particular MJS writer discussed his tenure at Marquette and his experience with covering those Marquette teams. Anyway, there seems to be for whatever reason more attention paid to this from national and major market media. Not sure that is a good thing.

    PB

  9. I would say 80% are in favor of Crean being fired and 10% wanting to keep him and 10% just don’t care.Crean should have never been hired here in the first place.He has done nothing has a head coach.One Final Four and that’s it.Davis had a chapionship game under his belt and he is coaching Texas Southern.Marq. fans were happy to see him leave…that says enough about it right there.He has done the job IU hired him to do.Clean up the mess Sampson created and get IU back a level of winning.He has done that.If Indiana is happy with being a middle of the pack conference team and a bubble team every March then Crean is the man for the next 20 years.If Indiana wants to keep a clean record and win and be a championship contender every year then Crean is not even close to being the right coach.He will never see an Elite 8 much less a championship.He had 5 pro players and could not get out of the Sweet 16.High school players today are very smart on evaluating college coaches.It is easy for them to see Crean will never coach a National Championship game.If you are a player not heavily recruited then IU might be a stop for you.Five star players will not come here.Same problem at Purdue.Painter is a nice guy runs a clean program but will never see an Elite 8.The buy out claus in Crean’s contract is around 12-14 million if they fired him today.That is chicken feed for IU.Glass knows he is the idiot who gave it to him so no way in hell he fires him and admits he was wrong.Glass is an lawyer….not an AD..and never will be.The only way Indiana gets back to being a national power is thru Bennett…Marshall..Alford..or another top 10 coach.That won’t happen folks.Indiana is no longer a top 10 job.Maybe at best a top 25 job.

  10. I love all the message board heroes and drama queens commenting on this site. You are all hilarious. Really. Comparing Mike Davis’s coaching record to Crean’s, as if they both inherited the same programs and ended up with identical records along the way. Umm, Davis started with Jarred Jeffries and a bunch of experienced quality players (Newton, Fife, etc.). Crean started with Kyle Tabor.

    Seriously, you’re all hilarious. Keep up the good work. Your message board whining is a beautiful thing.

  11. Oh well several more years of the energized bunny, who never stops running up and down the sidelines,

  12. it’s clear the Tom can’t handle the heat, as he has not really taken responsibility for this season…oh yeah he said he would be tweeting about this season in the coming weeks and months but don’t respond because he doesn’t read them anyway…what a jerk!

    I have supported Crean but i am losing it with him, i don’t mind losing Hollowell as he couldn’t even dribble a basketball! And i know Marlin and the other fella won’t be missed. but losing Austin stings. Sure he didn’t give(sub) you(sub) many(sub) points(sub)and such but he was a team guy who was a solid heady player with a good BBallIQ.

    How the hell is Jurkin still around he doesn’t even play and is eating a scholarship up! He must practice like a beast.

    I give Creaned on year that is all! it’s put up or shut up and move along. you’ve had 7+ years, that’s enough time to get something done!

  13. Good point about their salaries. I can even agree to some degree about H4H’s point about generational issues.

    To answer the question posed by Po in post 5.

    I think based on my own conversations and reading much larger national blogs on the Tom Crean subject – I would think I’m pretty close to the pulse with my numbers here.

    80-85% negative against CTC
    15-20% CTC apologists

    I have to go back to H4H’s comments to touch on the reality. Only the casual fan – who doesn’t watch every game – just sees the final score ( or as he put it – sees 1 out of every 10 baskets ) are in CTC’s corner. I think someone on another blog put it fairly well. There our those fans who truly understand he game of basketball and than there are the CTC supporters.

    I could detail literally 1000 issues but won’t for times sake. But I think it’s fair to say – that for every positive I could list for CTC – I could give you 20 negatives. He’s lack of ability as a coach was obvious during his first years. However – it was overlooked and excused due to the circumstances.

    When he got the players he needed to win ( and make no mistake – he needs a ton of talent to be successful ) – he still made a ton of coaching errors – but winning glossed over those flaws ( and the excitement of the casual fan of getting out of the cellar – so to speak ).

    I think the biggest misconception about a coach is that when you win – you know what you’re doing. Not true at all. You just may have so much more talent than your opponents – that you win in spite of the poor coaching.

    CTC will always be an underachiever. Frankly – if he coached the Globetrotters – he’d be answering questions about the losing streak to the Generals. I can almost picture him talking about a lack of ball handlers on the team. LOL. ( But – he’d need to see the film )

    Take last years debacle. The best team in the country was IU. We all know what happened in the Sweet 16. However – that was a team that should have not only won it all or at a minimum been a Final 4 team – but grossly underachieved. 29-7 final record. That team should never have lost 7 games. That’s was a 36-2 maybe a 35-3 type of team. This years squad should have been a 24 win team easily. That based on their talent and schedule.

    CTC has became a national joke. Most who are fans of other teams realize that he’s a poor coach and even more make fun of him for his sideline mannerisms. I could care less about his mannerisms – but I do care about his ability to coach.

    He reminds me of what Bob Knight used to make fun of Lou Henson ( ILL. ) and Dale Brown ( LSU ) for. That being – accomplishing so little with so much talent. I think CTC resembles that remark.

    I think CTC is one lucky guy if you juxtapose his job title and salary against his ability to coach. Forget lottery picks in the NBA – he won the lottery himself. Basically – one Cody Zeller signature and one moronic evaluation from Fred Glass and CTC is worth $40 million.

    IU may come back to be a power at some point in basketball – but it will be in spite of CTC – not because of him.

  14. I certainly was not happy with Crean’s performance this season, and if that 17-15 crap happens again next year, I’ll be joining the chorus of people calling for Crean’s termination. IU simply has too much history of achievement in basketball, and too many passionate basketball fans, to tolerate more than two bad seasons in a row (this year and next year would be the two). But having said all that, I think some people, regardless of their assessment of Crean’s coaching skills (or lack thereof) have really, really short memories. His team won the Big Ten Championship a year ago. And his team achieved that in a league that was LOADED with good teams. And very few coaches have ever inherited such a devastated program, in such disarray, that Crean discovered upon his arrival in Bloomington seven years ago. It’s for those two reasons, plus his ability to recruit, why I’m willing to give him another year before I start calling for his firing.

  15. IUGRAD89—-good writing and excellent points. I think CTC’s problems are just beginning and not going away…with every recruit signing or recruiting target ..his inabilities will be the subject of conversation amongst ALL IU fans.With every recruit signing the angst of what will be grows heavier on Crean.That Chicago radio interview ws nothing short of him circling the wagons to keep him in good with potential transfers/recruits.I made a comment after the Illinois game that CTC should be hung in effigy on front lawn of Glass’s residence;if an 85% negative in social media/blogosphere isnt a virtuaal effigy hanging…its damn close

  16. Glad the man likes a challange, as it certainly will be a challange. The sharks will be in full force, patrolling the boards. I’ve wondering what it will take to calm the fan base down next year. Just making the tournament, or at least a Sweet 16 run? I just want to make it, but maybe I set the bar to low.

  17. Wish AE the best but maybe he is looking for playing time. One thing I do not understand are the descriptions of his high BBall IQ and being a sharpshooter. This season we had three players with an atrocious TO percentage of 25% or over. The three were DD, HMP and AE. On top of it AE shot 31% from the field.

  18. Post 16 Po response:

    Let me get you closer to calling for CTC head ( if I may ).

    Let me put these couple of questions out there.

    If I asked these questions. How many NCAA Championships does Kentucky – UCLA and Duke have. Most basketball fans could answer for each correctly. If I now asked – how many SEC – Pac 10 and ACC Championships does each have respectively. How many people could answer correctly without looking it up. Nobody.

    My point is this – nobody cares about that. If IU had won it all last year for instance – I would say that if a 20 paragraph article was written on the team – somewhere at the end of the 19th paragraph would be a blip about winning the Big 10 Title. Not even icing on the cake – the little flowers on top of the icing on the cake.

    Also – giving him credit for where the program was when he inherited it is something I’m not fond of when giving him credit. For these reasons. I think literally hundreds of guys could have done the same job and 50 been even more successful. What was the down side. Was IU and its fan base going to accept being the Big 10 doormat forever? If you are in a position equal to the NCAA death penalty – as we were – there is really only one direction you can go. You can’t get worse than 6-25 and losing to Stoneybrook and Lipscomb can you? It is a Big 10 school. I mean – did someone think nobody would ever want to wear an IU jersey ever again?

    His situation is actually about as great a situation as you can have. No where to go but up and a built in bunch of excuses.

    Think about our new DC in football. I could not think of a job with less pressure in the country. When the charts and graphs and stats are in – how could he possibly not show improvement. Think about it. For instance – if we give up 60 plus points and over 600 yards to Michigan for instance. The numbers will show a 5-10% improvement. SUCCESS. LOL.

    CTC was kind of in the same situation. But better. Because of the programs history. Because of the fan base. Because of the facilities. Because it’s freaking IU basketball.

    As a salesman ( or recruiter in this case ) – I don’t think trying to sell IU basketball to a recruit is a very hard sale.

    Trying to sell a Alcorn St. – Kennesaw St. – Chicago St. – Northwest Southeast A @ T ( Auto repair @ Travel agency ) is a tough sale. Or basically anybody on our non-conference schedule this past season. Getting 5 stars to those places would be impressive. But not to IU.

    I think the apologists for him will turn on him in time. The more you know about the game of basketball – the more problems you’ll have with CTC.

    The reality is – unfortunately – if IU has success ( which we all want ) – he stays. IU would have to suffer another couple years like this season to be rid of him. Truly a Catch-22.

  19. Can Podunker say who has more Big Ten titles: IU or PU?

    PU has more. Does that mean anything?

    No. They have zero banners.

    That’s all that matters.

    Last year’s team should have won a banner.

    Dayton beat Syracuse. Crean could not. Some coach he is.

  20. Is it any coincidence that CTC was on a Chicag Station giving an interview to a friendly talk radio host and next day Glass is addressing Rotar Club in support of CTC. Can you say damaging contol “circling the wagons”.It also appears with his rotary speech that Glass has attached his wagon to CTC’s star.Columbus,Ohio newspaper carrying story of transfers.I cant help but think that a collaboration between Glass and Crean to attend these 2 seperate events to do damage control;but since Crtean went to Chicago ,I’d say the “cat’s out of the bag” on a national level

  21. Comparing Crean and Davis is defies logic. It is to completely ignore that Davis took over a program that was equipped to go the final four. Crean took over a program barely equipped to get out of the last four. Takes stupid posts to a new level.

  22. Tom Crean is holding the Indiana program back. We need to get rid of him before we waste another year. In six years only making the tournament two times is Not Acceptable at Indiana! Why dont we make a move for Steve Alford, Brad Stevens, Shaka Smart. Hell Kelvin Sampson was a better coach than Crean. Not a better person but a better basketball coach. We need help! Creans got to go!!!!!

  23. The comparison of their records isn’t the best, but it’s not as stupid as a couple people have commented. Yes they inherited their IU teams in drastically different situations, but those records include their time at other schools. Crean was at Marquette and Davis has been at UAB and Texas Southern. TSU was under sanctions from the previous coach and Davis went in and won a reg. season conference title his first year and a conf. tourney title/NCAA berth in his second year. It’s not like Davis has been padding that record easily the past 6-7 years.

  24. Hoosier Kid, problem right now going after those coaches is Crean’s buyout number this year is $14M and around $12M next year. Then paying a new coach on top of that and those guys you list aren’t going to work for peanuts. Alford just started at UCLA and IU would have to buyout that contract. Brad Stephens is getting paid $4M+ in the NBA, IU couldn’t or wouldn’t touch that number and have you seen the buyout numbers for NBA coaches. They make Crean’s $14M buyout look affordable. Smart will get more money from VCU and stay. Sampson will probably end up as UH’s coach next year. No. I think we are stuck with Crean for at least a couple more years.

  25. All Davis has showed at TSU is he has found the level of BB where he can have SOME success.

  26. I agree Crean needs to go as keeping him on another year or two is just delaying the inevitable. Look at this stint at Marquette. The final four was followed up with two NIT years. Heck we cant even get the NIT at IU. All keeping him on now is just setting the program back that many more years. You cant keeping losing all your players and bring in five or six frosh each year. His system is really flawed.

    Thanks fred glass for giving him that huge contract and buyout. Really smart stuff!

  27. I should add you are correct that Sampson was a better coach. Actually a much better coach. Oh what could of been if he just wasnt soo shady.

  28. I agree Steve. I’m sure the program would be off the chain by now. I thought Sampson was a likable guy, but just got caught. I think he really cared about Indiana, but pushed his luck too much. Oh well. 20/20 hindsight I guess.

  29. Understand folks are not happy with this years results. However, Glass is saying what he needs to say. He is standing by his decicison to extend CTC, he is supporting a coach as his boss, and I think Glass deserves some leniency on this decision. If he said anything other that what he did, he would be scaring away potential recruits as to the longevity of their head coach, he would be scaring potential future coaches if he does not show support and making CTC a lame duck in the process. Glass is all in on CTC and at the end of the day is telling CTC I am backing you, so you need to prove me right.

  30. Podunker: you are correct. The coach probably gets at least two more years to get the job done. At that point if IU has not made a DEEP run in the NCAA tournament all the friendly radio interviews and cushy Rotary Club dinners won’t do any good. If he can get the job done FINE but like they say in southern Indiana “lets be do’n it”.

  31. The Davis/Crean comparison is absoultely accurate when you compare Davis Final Four team to last years Hoosier team. That is what we are getting at.
    Last years team was far more talented than Davis team. Understand what you are reading before telling us how stupid we are.

  32. I am so sick of listening to CTC, I really can’t stand it anymore, and it is almost at a point of turning me off on following IU basketball. I completely agree with IUgrad89, I graduated in 88, and so suspect we have an aligned view / expectation on what IU basketball should be. When contributions to IU start to drop (which i suspect they have this year) that is when Glass will wake-up. I like all the players we have a lot, I just dont we have the leadership at the top to be a consistently good team. I am just beside myself on how many steps backwards IU BBal went this year……I just dont understand how anyone can argue that point / fact.

  33. Crean’s contract buyout is no where near $12 or $14 million. That’s absurd. Unless something with his contract has changed significantly in the last couple of days, I believe Crean’s contract has three years remaining. His buyout would be for no more than the sum of his coaching salary (which is different from his total income) through the remainder of the contract term, which is no where near $12 to $14 million. And it’s probably far less than that. Think about it. If Crean had a $12 M buyout, he might try to get fired, so he could cash out, set himself up for life, and take an extended family vacation.

    Come on, research the facts before posting nonsense as if it were fact. I think Crean’s contract is public knowledge and available on line. I read it just after he signed it years ago. Someone should look it up and read the buyout clause, then post the facts. But regardless of what the contract says, Tom Crean will be IU’s coach again next season.

  34. The following was copied from an article published in the BHT in November, 2012, in which Crean’s contract extension was announced.

    “Crean’s base salary will go from approximately $2.52 million per year to $3.16 million. The deal also includes performance bonuses based on Academic Progress Rate scores, Graduation Success Rate scores and the team’s GPA. If all standards are met, Crean’s salary could increase by as much as $55,000 per year.”

    “The buyout, Glass said, would cost $8 million over the next three years, then drops to $1 million in Year 4 and drops again to $500,000 over the final four years of the deal. School officials said additional contract details will be announce when the deal is formally signed.”

    If I am interpreting the information in the article correctly, Crean’s got three more years where the contract buyout is $8 (in total). Then, the buyout drops to $1M, then to $500,000. As I said some time ago, unless he does something really stupid that gives Glass an excuse to fire him for cause (no buyout), Tom Crean will be IU’s BB coach for at least the next two seasons and most likely three. Of course there’s always the chance that some very wealthy alumni will swoop into B-town and write a huge check to get rid of him sooner. But don’t hold your breath.

  35. Podunker you are wrong…if IU fired Crean today IU owes him 14 million dollars…after next year 12 million then down each year from there.Alford has the same deal at UCLA.If they fired Steve after this year they owe him 12 million after next year 10 million then down each year from there.If Crean did not have a buy out claus he would have been fired that Sunday evening that we didn’t make the NIT.I am not sticking up for Sampson….but every infraction he got nailed on is now not an infraction at all.The rules changed right after he got caught.Sampson has forgot more about basketball than Crean will ever know.

  36. Hey Juan, if you are responding to my comment why don’t you try understanding it first. I was replying to the first comment, which compared Crean’s CAREER record vs. Davis’ CAREER record which was followed by people saying Davis inherited a far better team compared to Crean’s first IU team, which is true. However their career record is what was being compared by the initial comment. Both have had very different careers that have obviously included different caliber of schools etc.

    As for the guy saying Davis has “found a level of basketball where he can find some success”….. I don’t know where to begin with how moronic that sounds. So the Big Ten title and Final Four run wasn’t success, the Conference USA Coach of the Year at UAB wasn’t success? The NCAA tournament berths at IU and UAB? Comments like that come from people who don’t understand the game or are too busy worshipping their collection of Bob Knight memorabilia.

  37. The nostalgia for the basketball acumen and winning ways of Kelvin Sampson is a staggering display of myopia and borders on outright dementia.

    Sampson’s resume is fairly identical or worse than Crean’s, since he’s been coaching much longer. 1 FF, an elite 8 and Swt 16 appearance. He spent 21 1/2 season as a head coach. Only getting out of the 2nd round 3 times in that span doesn’t exactly translate to coaching genius.

    He also was beaten head-to-head by Hoosier fans’ poster-boy of mediocrity: Mike Davis.

  38. Have followed IU basketball since my degree in 1959 but in those fifty plus years I have never coached one minute of basketball at any level. While Mr. Crean messes with my blood pressure in most games he know a whole lot more about coaching than me. Coach’s receive far too much credit when they win and too much blame when they lose. My own way of way of viewing him is considering how many of the generally accepted top twenty BB schools would consider him as a replacement if their own coach would leave or be fired.

    However, the issue to me is the what is happening at a school I care a great deal player wise. while college player transfers in any sport are not at all uncommon, when IU, or any team, has six transfers in 15 months then I think it is a reasonable conclusion that something is wrong somewhere. I do not know enough to even speculate on causes but I would think Mr. Crean’s real “challenge” right now is to take a hard look at what is going wrong in his approach rather than some spin diversion of “synergy or chemistry”.

  39. I’m not an apologist for Crean. But I do believe in putting things into context. I also believe in fairness. Comparing Davis or Sampson’s record to Crean needs to take into account the fact Crean took a totally gutted program from the ashes, unlike either Davis or Sampson, and resurrected it in five years to the status of Big Ten conference champion. No easy task for Crean or any coach. Besides, who else has done that much less accept such a big challenge. So those years of Crean need to be recognized and his record evaluated accordingly.

    Also, at the end of five years, we all were delighted by that, even those who wanted to fire Crean after his first year. In addition, he went to the NCAA though the team didn’t perform as we expected. So impatient Hoosiers began to sound the drum beat forgetting how big a challenge Crean faced when he came to IU. Plus, some fans forgot even more. Neither Davis nor Sampson lost four regulars and a solid sub to the NBA or other professional basketball teams like Crean after those years. Yet expectations for going deep into the NCAA, after the Big Ten championship, soared beyond reality. Now, within one year, fans, including I, have become disappointed by their performance this year.

    So today, we hear a lot of bitching and moaning about Crean and what a “bad” coach he is and how he can’t recruit Really? One bad year, by IU standards, doesn’t make any coach “bad” nor a “poor” recruiter. Granted, if Crean doesn’t change certain skills and behaviors, like any leader or coach that seeks to take a team, corporation, or organization to the next level of its life cycle, he will not get us there. Then, another leader or coach with the required skill and mind-set will be needed to take us to that level and IU can perform consistently as a top sixteen team in the NCAA Tournament each year. A tall order, of course, and perhaps unrealistic too in this age of parity. Nevertheless, it’s an expectation of many Hoosier fans which Crean has to deal with, or even the next coach.

    For now, patience and fairness are needed. Neither false accusations or crude and unfair comments will help IU get better and recruit even more talented players. In fact, it probably will exacerbate the problem. But constructive criticisms do need to be offered and embraced. In fact, they need to be forwarded directly to Coach Crean at Assembly Hall so he can assess what he has done well, and what he needs to do different to make the program far better, and sustain it. Or else!

  40. The poster boy of mediocrity also beat a #1 Duke in the regional semi before the Hoosiers and Davis took it to Oklahoma at the Final Four.

    I think people claiming to be Hoosier fans never forgave Davis for beating their true mistress of love hidden in secret Establishment orgasms for Coach K-aput’ and Duke.

    And though Davis inherited a good team, he helped build that team and coach that team before Knight as axed…Do we not give Seltzer a lot of credit for finding Crean’s next Dipos from the East? Well, my friend Davis likely did a lot of leg work and living room talk for the tired old General….And let’s also not forget just how divided Hoosier Nation was when Knight was fired…Thei students were amassing in front of Brand’s residence and torching his likeness in symbolic effigy.

    Davis had zero love from the beginning and zero acceptance because of the many fans that believed IU would never recover from losing their banner “poster boy.” A huge majority of the fans wanted Davis to fail..Many(not all) IU fans turned far more vindictive than anything Crean has ever known. Crean came into Bloomington as the knight in shining armor on a white horse named Christiana….Davis came in as lucky and spoiled afterbirth claiming his duties solely as a result the undermined Hoosier king. Yeah, what a lovely situation for Mike Davis…He had no crosses to burn or villains to chase. He was the villain. He was the man that got the job to replace Jesus…Do you get that one, Crean lovers? As far as basketball was concerned, Knight was Christ. What do you think that made Davis? He took over a team rattled from losing their leader…He had to be the new leader of those men amongst a fan base and alumni crowd it was forever over…And what did Davis do only one season later..?

    Davis could coach circles around Crean. I was at the IU vs Duke game when Davis made the halftime adjustments to propel the Hoosiers back from a 17 point deficit. And despite Dane Fife almost effing up a secured victory by fouling on a 3-point shot with a four point lead, somehow Mike Davis beat Bobby’s surrogate son of the Establishment East, the chosen one who still experiences fainting spells due to how lucky he was to ever sit next to Bobby, the Joe Paterno of round ball, the real Mike not the godawful imitation Mike Hoosier fans were stuck with to take them to a championship game. You privileged pontifical Establishment blowbags turn my stomach.

    And we wonder how we got Sampson and eventually to this pious level of self-rightmost protectionism of a charlatan clown? He plays to your shallow brains and ears…He pretends he wants Bobby forgiven and sells you the same bag of goods you took to Brand bonfire and the Sampson witch hunt…Your losers just like Tom Crean.

  41. Never heard of “Late Night Hoops, but since its on the internet, it must be true. I copied and pasted the information in #38 from BHT’s article from November 2012. You can choose which source is most accurate in reporting the facts of Crean’s buyout.

    Regardless of whether the buyout amount is $8 M or $14 M, Crean is going to be IU’s coach for a while longer, so all this noise about firing him and trying to decide who IU should hire to replace him is a waste of time.

    By the way, Crean’s winning percentage over the last three seasons is .702 (includes the 17-15 debacle from this past season) with two Sweet 16 appearances, a Big Ten Championship, and three NBA lottery picks (if you believe projections for NV) and three of the highest rated consecutive recruiting classes in IU history.

    We all want to see another banner hanging from Assembly Hall, but let’s try to keep our perspective.

  42. let’s do some repairs on that last paragraph…

    And we wonder how we got Sampson and eventually to this pious level of self-[righteous] protectionism of a charlatan clown? He plays to your shallow brains and ears… He pretends he wants Bobby forgiven and sells you the same bag of goods you took to Brand’s bonfire and a Sampson witch hunt. [You’re] losers just like Tom Crean.

    There is no dollar value you can place on incompetence. This is Indiana. Crean’s contract should be bought out immediately and a message should be sent throughout the Establishment land.. Crean shot clock has expired!! Indiana fans have awakened! The most expensive and rare Studebaker in the world up for auction!!! Beautiful white leather interior made from the skins of virgin sheep. Engine only missing a few parts!! Tops out at 55 mph! Was stored in a Hoosier Barn and waxed with Land O’ Lakes butter for the last seven years….Glass intact(some windows won’t roll down). Wisconsin license plate still original!…’Stud 666′..Hurry on down to Double Down Auto Auction World! This one will go fast!!!

  43. Give it up, Double Frown…

    You’ve just witnessed “it factor.” Go take it out on a couple hairy babes.

  44. Hoosier1987- I don’t think the main issue with Sampson was the potential sanctions he brought over from Oklahoma where the NCAA was already breathing down his neck for violations concerning telephone call limitations (turned over last year). The telephone call sanctions against him were compounded by his lying to investigators over the issue (while at Oklahoma and again when he met with the investigators once at IU)…AND by continuing the same behavior of phone calls (and involving his assistants in the practice) once at IU. Take the entire set of violations, repeating them and lying to the investigators and it clearly spelled CORRUPT. Now that’s going to get you (deservedly) a punch in the mouth…especially when it was public knowledge that he was leaving Oklahoma just ahead of the posse’s arrival.

    And Indiana’s administrators- particularly a Board member and then AD Greenspan- he who later gave us Lynch for football- were just plain stupid at very best; complicit at worse; and meekly and cowardly genuflecting (to the Board member who pushed the Sampson appointment) in-between. They knew (was there anyone in the US who did not?) what Sampson was about and what he was bringing. I suspect some interest with tentacles extending into the Board through a member had a personal- perhaps business or political- interest in seeing Sampson named, while the rest of the Board was bullied into pushing it along. Just as they had done when they dismissed RMK for former President Brand who was later rewarded with the Executive Directorship of the NCAA, (which had moved to Indianapolis in 1999).

    As nearly as I can tell no one has ever done a solid investigative piece in the relationships that impact Indiana University athletics; the influence of the various interest groups in key, strategic, locations such as Indianapolis or the politics of Indiana; the extension of the tentacles to and from the NCAA, etc. Then again, we don’t know what we don’t know and I’ve yet to see the names of the key Board Trustees, the political figures, the civic groups and power wielding corporations and businesses that deal with the franchise that is Indiana University- Bloomington athletics in a deep, well researched story.

    (There was a gentleman who seemed to know quite a bit about the ‘behind the curtains’ stuff surrounding the firing of RMK and who was pretty candid about it, but I lost his name and contact point with him. He obviously had a very clear understanding of the ‘machine’ but sadly (I still kick myself over it) I misplaced his point of contact and as I write this, I wished I had taken it more seriously then.

    Doubt if I ever will know…don’t see a journalist out there who isn’t affected in the day-to-day of their own access and status, or who can count on the support of his/her own media organization or simply has the interest and the ‘innards’ to take the risk.

    Wish it were different. Indiana, my beloved Indiana, deserves more.

  45. Wow…Death to all Native Americans who effed up America!!! We all knew the history! Red Man never care about classroom. Red Man should have been left on reservation at Montana U. This is my America!! My parents traveled farther!

    Brand and his conspirators brought Red Man to Bloomington. Big business want to screw Indiana for firing white kind named Bobby. Big business smoke too much peace pipe and landed peace pipe leaf smokers in basketball kingdom once clean of peace pipe loafers…

    Blah…blah….blah. Give it up, Tsao. Your conspiracy theories are far weaker than the spin of the Christian Right that’s taken over B-town.

  46. Uh oh, looks like happy hour with $2 Wild Turkeys came early up in Northern Indiana. Harvard’s gettin’ all feisty. I hope someone brought his leash before he starts gnawing on the furniture, craps on someone else’s front lawn or, on 9 hours of sleep and his pen is ready to explode, he starts humping an innocent bystander’s leg.

    Maybe he’s been a little too feisty to do basic reading comprehension, I’m afraid. The line I said was, “He also was beaten head-to-head by [b]Hoosier fans’[/b] poster-boy of mediocrity: Mike Davis.

    Point being: there is a strong contingent of fans that believe that MD was mediocre. I happen to think otherwise (but understand and support why he was let go). Most of Hoosier Nation would think otherwise, though. That was the point of the reference.

    Yet somehow you managed to write 6 paragraphs plus two additional posts, one of which you quoted yourself in a comment just above your next comment, tying what I said to east coast conspiracies, Coach K, Joe Paterno, and other incomprehensible arcane references. At first I thought these rants were the result of being under the influence of Mary Jane, but it was far too aggressive of a stream of consciousness for such a substance.

  47. Bottom line is Sampson isn’t a monster. The man could coach. I don’t condone the cheating, but he knew basketball. I don’t know why the fan base goes up in arms when he interviews for prospective coaching jobs in the college realm. Everything he did at Indiana is now allowable.

    Tsao, I would listen to Harvard. I can’t count the number of times I thought Harvard was way off, but somehow always nails it. Fantastic basketball mind.

  48. Double Frown-

    I do like your boldness….’[/b] hee-hee ’[/b]

    But again…What is really going on here?

    a) Much like Crean, you have no “it factor.”
    b) Whenever the apologists can’t accept the fact that Crean is miserably failing at teaching the game of basketball, how do they react? Answer: Sampson…Davis…Sampson….Davis…Sampson… Davis.

    They used to throw “mediocre” Alford into that mix and under the same bus…He was going to be forever stuck in the Mountain West because that’s how far his “skill set” could take him. Where is he now? His team is still playing and it’s almost April. Where is Crean now? Blowing spit on a radio show concerning all his “challenges.” I do believe that’s the more politically correct term: ‘challenged.’ Tom Crean is most certainly challenged.

    Ben- Thanks for the compliments. And you are 100% correct. Sampson could coach circles around Crean. I have video.

  49. For the record, I was a Davis supporter and suspicious of Sampson from the get go. I’m a Crean supporter insomuch as I think he deserves– and will get– at least one more year to get things back on track. (He’s had built-in excuses for much of his tenure here– including this year– and had achieved marginal success. In the two years he didn’t have those excuses, we had pretty decent success overall, despite falling short if expectations last year. I think we’d all be pretty pleased overall if expectations weren’t so high, but his most vocal critics continue to give him zero praise for the team’s successes and all the blame for the failures.) like so many of the other rational fans on here, I reserve the right to change my mind if the downward trend continues, or if we seem to have plateaued over the next couple of years.

    But the squeaky wheels get the grease. The vocal opponents seem to drown out the supporters (who are understandably hesitant to voice their opinions to the marauding herd in the face of so little success this year) and leads to wild speculation that 80% are in favor of Crean being fired. The facts just aren’t there to support anything close to that number. If you want to claim that 80% of Hoosier fans would want Crean fired after 1-2 more bad years or 2-3 years of sustained mediocrity, I can buy that. Most people I talk to, though- rational fans who can think things through– understand that a) firing Crean now is a) way too premature, b) could set us back a few more years in recruiting, and c) isn’t going to happen anyway. And you’re giving far too little credit to millions of level-headed Hoosier in favor of the over-reactive, vocal few. You can wail and gnash and make up stats if you want, (Just like me!) but it isn’t going to change the reality of the situation.

  50. Yup. Totally agree…”Rational fans who can think things through” know what’s really going on in Crean’s head when he’s subbing in a player or talking of challenges on a radio show.

  51. For the record, I’m not on any bandwagon. I knew Crean couldn’t coach from day one. I knew Cody was the savior of Christian happenstance hoop godliness that would buy Crean a few more years of CharlaTomism. I knew he was a fraud and I knew that when failure would come to his doorstep, the only ammunition the scholars could bring to their holsters of arrogance would be to crap some more on Davis and Sampson. How original…Almost as original as Crean chasing Meyer around only weeks before his savior declares he’s going to leave Indiana and head for the NBA(NO BANNERS AGAIN).

    I was in the irrational minority long before the irrational majority made it sexy.

  52. Harvey, just like Crean, you lack creativity, but unlike Crean, you wash your pain away with too much hooch. You sure grieve in a funny way. But I’m beginning to suspect that your dog in the same place as Manti Taeo’s girlfriend.

    Your Crean fetish is turning Richard Ramirez-ian. Never have so many words been written to say so little about one man. Did he take you out for dinner a couple of years ago and leave you with the check? Did he forget to leave a note on your pillow after a night of intense passion? I know it gets cold up there in Northern Indiana, but MItch McGary has been laid up in bed all winter. Maybe you should give up chasing Crean with the passion he did with Jeff Meyer and enjoy the, ahem, “heart” of a lion.

    My indifference to your dramatic, overweening, mawkish sentimentality of the time everyone that played at Indiana had haircuts like the 1972 Soviet team the current Wisconsin Badgers and is endless. Why don’t you just respond to the distinction I made between the two examples, instead of just repeatedly conflating them to arrive at your pre-ordained conclusion?

    Also, sugarlips, if you are sending this from your iPhone (they have those in rustbelt country, don’t they?) it should say, “Sent from my iPhone – please excuse any grammatical, spelling or auto-correct errors, logical inconsistencies, overly emotional displays of rage and heartbreak, excessive references to the Head Basketball Coach of Indiana University, or wanton personal hostility.”

  53. speaking of Harvard’s leash…harv, anytime you want some tips on making a lucky labbit foot keychain, I’m here to help. that’s what friends are for.

  54. Congratulations. You correctly identified the fraud who couldn’t coach long before you were one of the last remaining holdouts who still had hope for this team as late as mid-February. But of course their success would’ve been completely in spite of that villain-chasing clown had another of your prescient visions come true, right?

  55. DD, I typically dig your posts, but I thought that last one went a little overboard. At least the first part. You and I both love sparring with Harv, and he typically asks for it (if not outright begs for it.) It loses a bit if it’s luster, though, once people start piling it on and/or get personal. I’ll bow out as it’s past my bedtime anyway, but I hope Harv remembers that this is all in good fun. Time to finish my Miller Light and hope the old lady hasn’t passed out on me upstairs. Good night, all.

  56. Punjab,

    Sorry, every once and a while, I need to give Harvard an Yngwie Malmsteen solo, which is over-gratuitous and excessive, versus Eric Clapton solo, subtle, tasty and powerful. Point taken, as the comments weren’t really for Harvard as much as the gallery.

  57. Ha. No worries, DD. It seems the Turkey knocked Harv out before your uppercut could reach him.

    Coachv, after five readings I still can’t figure out if I’m supposed to be amused or offended by your post. There’s usually a dirty thirty of something cheap in my beer fridge. Keith Stone often helps me out with the yard work, but the throwback Miller cans were speaking to me this round. Of course there’s also a smattering of imports, micro brews, and other overpriced snobbery in there for show. Wouldn’t want anybody to think I’m unsophisticated; just that I don’t discriminate when it comes to beer. I’m a man of the people.

  58. Davis was a joke at IU, turned out to be a joke at Birmingham and the comedy central act will reappear at TSU. He complained he could not get the boys to practice hard at IU. With his piss poor communication skill it is not hard to understand, he could not even talk well. I was in error when I stated he has found his level of BB where can have some success. He has lower heights yet ahead of him. Jimbo, MD has done nothing but descend in the coaching ranks in his last 2 HC spots. He has done nothing but backup since IU and that is not success.

  59. Talking to people in Alabama, he wasn’t liked or respected much either. Regardless, nobody was going to accept him, after Knights firing. The fan base wasn’t ready, or willing to accept it.

  60. What worries me the most is recruiting. Now that people are talking about Crean sucking this is going to hurt our chances of getting good recruits in the next year. No player wants to go to a school when the coaches future is uncertain. The other day on PTI on ESPN Tony Kornhiser said happy birthday to coach crean but didnt know if Crean would celebrate another birthday in Bloomington. Once people start talking like this it makes it really hard for a coach to win. I think he has to get us back to a sweet sixteen next year or the smart hoosier fans are going to be calling for his head on a plate. Crean needs to go out and get us some forwards or centers for nexst year. Hopefully we can get Anthony Lee, Yante Maten, or Josh Cunningham.

  61. Hoosier Kid; Crean’s future at Indiana is not uncertain, His pitch to prospective recruits designed to neutralize concerns about his longevity will be, A) his contract buyout virtually guarantees he’ll be IU’s coach for at least three more years, and B) three lottery picks in the the last two seasons and another top ten recruiting class coming in next year.

    Crean is a good recruiter and he still has a lot to sell (“It’s Indiana!”) I don’t think the noise coming from a small number of critics is going to prevent him from signing some more good players. And if his team returns to a higher level of performance next year, all the current noise will be forgotten. The VO story is powerful. An unheralded High School player developed into a lottery pick who is rapidly becoming a star in the NBA. The players might not be McDonald’s All Americans, but I have no problem if Crean finds a few more players like VO or WS.

  62. Podunker and Hoosier kid. While Crean supporters look to his “buyout”as insurance against him being fired. The detractors will point out that his “excuse” for not winning last year was a “young team”,what is his plan this year when he has more freshmen playing and actually MORE “coaching” to do ( since some question his ability to coach)I dont think “We’re a young team” and “Ill have to look at the film”will fly again in the face of 16+ turn overs a game

  63. Opening Rant: 3/24

    “Some birds aren’t meant to be caged..”

    Geoff-

    Don’t know if you’ve heard this particular Cowherd show…

    http://espn.go.com/espnradio/play?id=10665566

    I remember that you once said how you really enjoyed Colin Cowherd((someone I also find very entertaining). Anyway, I caught this rant from Colin on my way home from work late last night. I think it was interesting stuff and very true. “The college system is all about coaches and systems..The NBA is about players and talent.”

    “Some chefs are held back by the Applebee’s menu.”

    So do some college coaches get too much credit for player development…Aren’t all the “birds not meant to be caged” somewhat restricted to spread their wings because of the systems and the greater deviations/levels of talent on the floor in a typical college game. And can’t the very adept/high IQ college basketball coaches design systems to somewhat nullify those “birds” from impacting a game the way we’ll see them impact it when they play at the next level? It’s one thing to recruit the talent…But it seems the great coaching minds that are always the cream that rises to the top are far more than strong recruiters…They have the ability to almost use their “birds not meant to be caged” as a decoy while exploiting all other options on the floor. Their NBA talent plays restrained enough to win within the system?

  64. Noah Vonleh..?

    Not ready for the NBA or “bird not meant to be caged?”…Or, was he a bird caught in a very bad system? Was he forced to play against teams/coaches that had stronger systems which consequently often clipped his wings and made him appear less ready for the NBA?

  65. Cody? More built for an Applebee’s menu or “bird not meant to be caged?”

    Noah? More built for the college game or “bird not meant to be caged?”

    Troy? More built for the clapping supervisor at the 9-to-5 assembly line or “bird not meant to be caged?”

    Is it easier to restrain five birds not meant to be caged to play as a team within a specific coach’s college “system” as opposed to getting too consumed and complacent with a couple birds that you believe can carry your college team on their wings?

  66. Florida vs. UCLA?

    Has there been a bigger game in Alford’s coaching career? If his team wins will it be any less a fluke than Davis inheriting Kngiht’s recruits and defeating #1 Duke during a regional?

    I’m going with UCLA…

  67. and for all the Crean supporters: Dayton is starting 3 freshman….seems like Dayton’s freshman “learned” from “coaching”

  68. Pretty impressive first year on the job for Steve in Los Angeles; would have gone farther but ran into a team that has had UCLA’s number this past decade.

    Harvard, I like your new name; you’ve inspired me to change mine too.

    Alice in Chains’ “Nutshell” is playing in the coffee shop this morning and it’s 50 degrees outside. Will the bird of spring finally be “let out of it’s cage”? Will the daffodils finally be allowed to thrust upward from frost-hardened soils without fear of residual arctic winds?

  69. Geoff, You’ve exposed what I’ve thought for sometime and that is TJ will even bend the facts(lie)in proclaiming his bias about IU under Crean.

    I have posted less during this transition period for IU as the rantings of the emotionally distraught bleed on profusely. I do not hold positive the loss of JH and AE because they were recruits of Crean’s and did not produce to expectations. But it has been my experience you have to reset as soon as you identify you’ve made a decision less than adequate and the loss of those 2 means they will be replaced by better talent. Now if next season does not turn out as positive as I expect I too could be considered an emotionally distraught bleeder.

    How is Junior?

  70. Geoff and Clarion I was REPEATING the lineup as was given by the TV Analysts….perhaps they DID start the “experienced” lineup but AT the time they had 3 freshmen on the floor..Still it seems their freshmen learned more ..at least in the teamwork area

  71. Clarion as you will recall TALENT doesnt translate to wins….given the rankings of the previous 2 recruiting classes

  72. Sean Connery in “Rising Sun”: On why he leaves the door to his bird cage open- a reference to the freedom he gives his lover…”Always leave the cage door open…so the bird knows he may return [to it]”- now that’s a great system! The happy, freedom loving bird will explore, fly to unknown horizons and always return to the trusted, secure, cared for cage.

  73. RAM- not so sure. A mistake us just that, it does not mean it was made with purpose or even consciously. There is no admission of judgment. While a “decision less than adequate” notes some thought, calculation of outcome and awareness of consequences thus taking (assigning)ownership of the judgment(s) made,… thus accountability. I would suppose this is exactly the issue surrounding the discussion about Indiana basketball. Hopefully, whatever is decided, will involve some judgment [by all concerned] before making a decision and not the making of a ‘mistake’ …either way.

    This was also exactly the issue Coach Kevin Wilson faced when the ‘nannies’ started their moans and oh, so predictable sobs after the loss to Minnesota in football sobs demanding Coach Mallory’s dismissal. CKW, however, resisted the cries and thoughtfully, correctly and responsibly considered a number of issues that were involved, not the least of which would have been the reputation of ‘losers’ weighing on the Indiana football program, the impact on attracting the kind of coaching talent that could end the cycle of impotence it was living in and making a statement as to how his ‘vision’ would approach it in the future.

    Having done that, he acted. His professionalism in making a decision reassured supporters (mostly) and created confidence in the future.

    The leadership responsible for the outcomes at Indiana needs to approach the basketball situation we face in the same exact way.

    And we, the most interested and therefore affected fans need to think through the questions we raise and how we raise them. Not act like hysterical ‘nannies’ screaming at the moon because they made a mistake. English is such a beautiful and logical language, isn’t it?

    Whatever we do, we can’t ‘like’ or ‘dislike’ this or that, this one or that one. We need to think not soil in our pants in embarrassment.

  74. Tsao Tsug You seem like a smart man. Could you help me out here? Is IU a public or private university?

  75. Glossary of basketball terms

    D

    downtown
    Well outside the three-point line(courtesy: Wikipedia).

  76. As confirmed by Jeremy Price to serve as Scoop’s chosen representative, and formerly speak from the hearts of all Hoosier fans, I would like to send this personal greeting to Anthony Lee</a>.

  77. So it’s my understanding we’re going after a post player that the explosively vertical and high-flying Watford once served some very famous lunch?

    I have heard he’s a gospel rapper….Goes by the name “Polo?” Well, if he’d been playing water polo against Watford, he would have drown with his his lunch via a Christian rejection served upon his Temple.

  78. Know dat God’s in yo life
    Know dat he gonna get dat sound
    Know dat he died on da cross
    Know dat he’s about tuh do it now
    Give you with dat blessing…
    And I’m out

    (courtesy: YouTube/Anthony Lee: Temple Forward/2:28 mark).

    I’d say we got his one nailed down. Welcome to Bloomington, Anthony.

  79. No need to dot the i’s and cross the t’s, we’ve got this one.

    Joyce Meyer quotes and shared photos abound on Fresh Start Faith Center’s twitter page(Anthony Lee’s parents, James and Cecelia Lee, are pastors there)!

  80. Wow…Just like McGary last season, the Hoosier Wolverines(starring McGary, Robinson, Albrecht, Dakich, and…?) have themselves another Indiana kid lighting it up…Zack Irivin, 2013 Indiana Mr. Basketball, is really coming on. He just hit back-to-back triples and is becoming a very dangerous dynamic to an already solid lineup coming off the bench. Certainly not playing like a freshman….Beilein seems to have the magic touch when it comes to finding Hoosiers that really grow up on the hardwood fast(coincidentally, just in time for March Madness)…

  81. Walton..? Isn’t he also a freshman? CBS announcers just praised Beilein for how he’s grown up bigtime for a freshman…Totally different player than early in the season.

  82. Harv, I wasn’t sure if you’re aware of this, but if I’m not mistaken there are a couple more native Hoosiers playing a basketball game later tonight. If you wouldn’t mind, could you please give us an update on how they’re doing?

  83. Tsao,

    Fans screamed for Mallory’s dismissal, because of very obvious reasons. Many of the bloggers here agreed canning him mid season would be a mistake. The man is fired. Case closed. Fans get what they want, and Mallory gets a fresh starts, and the university reaps positive PR.

  84. I agree with post #17. People seem to forget where we were, and now you want a national championship?

    They lay of the land has changed. Kids go to a school, because the think it will help them go pro (Duke, Kentucky, Michigan State, etc.). No one cares about IU history. These days, that’s bullet point 5 of 5 on the “Why come to IU?” marketing communications plan.

    It’s tough to field a team these days that has experienced, or freakish freshman talent, or under the constraints that your best players will only be around for a year. Izzo, Ryan, “Ski” at Duke, they’ve been doing it for almost two decades! Calapari, just says; “Hey, want to go pro, come to Kentucky.” One singular focused message. It works really well today.

    I wish Tom Crean luck, and hope we stay “clean” under all this pressure and anger.

  85. Are you talking about MSU…? Sure thing. Always thought we should have went after Brandoen Dawson(Gary Wallace), but he’s from Northwest Mars and might not proclaim to be a loud enough follower(if you get my drift). Gary Harris…? Yeah, he really sucks too…

    Sorta torn on who to cheer for in the MSU vs Michigan game…/I really like Virginia’s coach.

  86. Big Ten now owns at least of quarter of the Elite Eight. Go MSU!

    Against my better judgment, now, I’m gonna play the what if game. It’s tough watching a team like Tennessee storm back not only from the wrong side of the bubble, but from down double digits late to nearly make the Elite Eight. We were a couple of second half meltdowns from giving ourselves a chance to make a run like that. Tennessee is no more talented than we were, and didn’t show until the SEC tournament that they were a team that even belongs in the discussion. What if we could inbound a ball vs PSU? What if we hold on for just one or two of those second half collapses. What if we hit that one extra shot against UConn, or at Illinois in regulation? We played pretty well down the stretch– at least well enough I still held faint hope we could pull off a run like UT. Until we took another steaming dump in the BTT, that is. It wasn’t unexpected so much as it was…well… just sad. What could have been. Again.

    We can lament and blabber on about the coaching all day, but those Tennessee boys decided it was on themselves to make it happen. And they came damn close.

  87. Ha. Thanks for indulging, Harv. I knew you wouldn’t let me down. But if it’s not too much to ask, would you mind elaborating?

  88. UK looks lucky to still be in this game. L’Ville is thoroughly outplaying them, but I’ve seen a few fortunate bounces where UK was able to get second chance points after some very bad offensive possessions. This may not bode well for anyone hoping for UK’s demise tonight. UK may be playing like freshmen again, but very, very talented freshmen.

  89. Dear 4guards-

    What do ya think of Branden Dawson now? Think those NW Indiana boys got a little grit?

    But let’s play Double Down…Oh, but what of the head-to-head against Cody? Branden couldn’t fit inside Cody’s jock…..if he snuggled up with Mitch…LOL.

    Big players step up for big games.

  90. Harvard for Hillbillies
    Tuesday, March 4, 2014 – 9:50 PM EDT

    All strategies have their cracks. There’s no easy formula to blend talent that will stay for the long haul and talent that will be lured to the NBA stage(whether fully ready or prematurely).

    I wouldn’t get too hung up on UK’s record as much as Forde….That’s a very good team with a post player as tough as any seen in years. They could easily win another championship.

    Yup, when Forde was writing the Kentucky team off, relishing in the delight of Calipari’s system in decline, a minority of one remained skeptical to such sensational blabber…I so don’t like being right.

    Hate all you want on UK…Those freshman delivered. Randle has unbelievable heart. I think he’s flirting with McGary’s fire, board hunger, court vision, and decision making. Wow…Did he not play solid basketball down the stretch. Beautiful moves around the basket. Fantastic use of the glass on some extremely difficult spinning turnaround moves. Wonderful composure.

  91. If I were a Louisville fan, I’m going “why the F*#^! does Luke Hancoack not touch the ball???” Did anyone hit a jump shot for UL besides Hancock? Russ Smith had a great game with layups and floaters, but horrible from the line and horrible from beyond 8 feet. Russdiculous.

    The question going into this game was which team would be the ultimate failure? A UK team with 479 McD’s All-Americans, a preseason #1, and the greatest recruiting class of all time? Or a defending champion, top 3 preseason-ranked, returning FF MVP- & 1st team All-America-having Louisville? Both teams played an opponent far more talented and playing much better than their seed suggests. One of those teams was not going to advance past the Sweet 16? Fail. Sound familiar?

    UVA was a much better team than I thought entering the tourney. Their arrow is pointing way up. I hope Bennett stays there. Nothing more tacky than a coach who’s got a good thing going and leaves it all for supposd greener pastures. I’d love to see him stick around and make UVA into a perennial contender; not bolt for the first big money offer at the next NBA or blue blood college franchise desperate for a fix. Something tells me he has a little more class than that. Hope he doesn’t prove me wrong.

    Big Ten representin’, though. Eight teams left, anf almost half are from our conference. Maybe we can finally break bannerless streak.

  92. But Hancock got a little greedy…His turnover(believe it was around 1:00 remaining)going hard into the Kentucky middle, was very costly.

    If I can forgive Cody for passing up a banner run and taking a sweet offer from the NBA, I can forgive Bennett for taking a sweet offer from IU…. Older guys are equally entitled to stick to the college of choice just as much as a one-and-done millionaire 19-year-old prima donna choir boy unable to legally drink a beer outside the grounds of his beachfront estate..

  93. Harv, I still have trouble comprehending this. My gut reaction is that, ever the sensationalist, you’re playing to the audience. You paint yourself as the angry, sorrowful villain only to arouse the villagers by sleeping with the enemy. (Had to give you a phrase you can key on so you can avoid addressing the entirety if the post.) Which is it? Are you denigrating Cody et al for abandoning a team with such promise while bolting for NBA riches? Do you hold them accountable for treasonous acts on our Hoosier Nation for desertion before banner? Should their responsibility be to team first and Hoosier glory? And if so, how do you back a collection of borderline -to- sure fire lottery picks who couldn’t give a rat’s patooty about the school they play for so long as they make millions the following year? One guy from the regular UK rotation is from the area and you parade them all around like they will forever bleed blue? They don’t care. They have no time invested. They’re rented, legal or not. They likely have the class attendance record of Jordan Crawford, with GPA to match. Yet the fact that this group of supremely talented clowns finally realized that playground basketball wasn’t the way to win NCAA tourney games just in time for NBA execs to really take notice somehow endears them to your heart? Can you explain that?

  94. I missed the Hancock TO. Was flipping between games. But if I’m Pitino, he still should’ve had last shot. Maybe that’s why I’m not making millions coaching basketball.

    (Btw, you son of a gun: well played. How’d you know I was going to address your take on Cody?)

  95. They’re all “rented.” Some just rented longer than others.

    I’d feel a lot less stung if they weren’t satisfied with failing on implicit promises to at least get us very deep into a tournament.

    And you’re diverting away from the main discussion concerning a Hoosier fan giving some kudos to UK…I don’t really care what their players decide to do with their future. Crean’s simply afraid to play them…And we can certainly see why he’s afraid…It’s not the talent he fears…A less talented team could still very well have the night of their life and beat UK..He’s afraid of the same thing we witnessed tonight. He fears being out-coached. Calipari keeps those young kids composed…He keeps them focused and his confidence and belief settles them to play up to their potential and play as a team. Crean is not capable of anything beyond the individual development level…It’s the unified spirit of a team collectively believing and playing for each other that builds champions.

    And for what it’s worth…I think those UK kids believe no less in whatever they think that jersey represents than an Indiana kid that bolts for the NBA in one or two years. The only difference is that there are simply more with such potential on a UK roster.

  96. So you’d rather have a collection of sellouts? How very multiple-class high school tourney of you.

    I’ve had to come around to the idea of the one-and-done. Maybe two. It’s probably a necessary evil and the new reality. (At least for now.) but I want a team otherwise full of players I can identify and root for from year to year. Guys who are emotionally invested. I don’t mind the occasional Vonlehs. It helps recruiting and it injects some excitement and blah blah blah.

    Guys like Cody hurt. Much of my family– and my wife’s family– are from the Washington area. Vincennes/Lawrenceville to be exact. (Hoosier fans may remember that Ron Felling came from my mom’s hometown.) They bleed Cream & Crimson, and even us young bucks grew up believing that someone like that sticks around and does all he can to deliver for not only his school, but his community. Maybe we were all just naive.

    I didn’t mind seeing Uk make a deep run in 2010(?) They had John Wall and Cousins and all those studs, but they also had a gooney hometown hero make it all possible. Don’t even remember his name– and I wish I did– but he was a seven foot senior who helped will them there. I want that. I want guys who believe in the program, and stick around. And finally make it happen. I feel bad for Will because I think he wanted that, and didn’t get/give us another chance as a senior to make it happen. But I don’t want to have to look back and say “who were those guys who helped us win a title?” I want players who leave an impression. I don’t think UK fans are getting that, and I don’t think that’s what you want, either.

  97. Punjab-

    I do respect the way you duke it out…You have some class. And you also know far more about the game(self-deprecating routine aside)than those that fall back on the crutch of vulgarity and mean-spirited tactics. I enjoy your perspectives…But what I appreciate most is your ability to remain dignified in the heat of discussions. I also admire how you don’t take the easy cheap shot.

    Have you ever seen the movie “The Boxer” with Daniel Day-Lewis…? There’s a scene in the movie where the Irish boxer, Danny Flynn(played by Lewis), refuses the instructions of his manager to keep pummeling a fighter that’s in clear danger and won’t go down…The refs have obviously been corrupted/bought off by Flynn’s corner and won’t stop the fight…Danny was never in on the plan…He doesn’t understand why the ref won’t stop the fight and this tough English lad getting his face rearranged is all instincts and will not quit until his brain is turned to mush…Lewis stops punching and forfeits the bout.

    There are many other great scenes that touch on the fine lines crossed or not crossed and small everyday battles involving one’s moral compass; choosing between the dignity of a more hopeful purpose and the selfish joys of an easier road escalate ugliness and hatred.

    Long story short…Punjab knows when to stop punching. Don’t think I don’t notice. And don’t think I’m not impressed with the character it takes to stop swinging at me sometimes(start at about the 3:44 mark..At about the 5;30 mark comes one of my all-time favorite movie scenes…”fight’s ove”).

    Gotta get some rest. Take care.

    What do you think of the name? Should I stick or go back to Harvard?

  98. Slight correction: Will didn’t ALWAYS get/give us another chance…

    For the most part he played his butt off, and I’m sure he’ll forever regret giving up the reigns sometimes when all we needed was some senior leadership. He’ll no doubt take that with him into coaching some day.

  99. And maybe that’s what bothers me most about the Sampson villain chasing and the endless turning those kids that made mistakes into irredeemable monsters. I think we lost our way more when we decided to just keep pummeling. It unveiled much about us…and our chosen men of leadership.

  100. Thanks, Harv. Always a pleasure doing battle with you. And for what it’s worth, I like the new name, but it t doesn’t matter… We always know who to blame.

    Got a boxing story for you you when you wake up.

    I was never much of a fighter. Held my own in a few schoolboy scraps, but never sought them out. Only one I really lost was when I got kicked where no boy should ever get kicked. My only real passionate fight was when I was defending my younger brother against one of the neighborhood bullies– I had to get pulled off of him. But most of that was because I was always bigger than most. I was always tall for my age and therefor didn’t get messed with much. I rarely had to defend myself, even against those who didn’t like me.

    In college, I lived with three of my best friends, my brother, and my girlfriend. Great party house. Maybe too great. I’ll spare you all the details, but my buddy and I got into an argument one night at a bar– Sunday night at Yogi’s, for you Bloomingtonians. I was going through a rough patch in my relationship and he was a cocky SOB going through some stuff of his own. Something happened over a game of pool. He said something about my failing relationship, and I said something in response– years later neither one of us can remember what it was, but we still laugh about it– but tensions had built to the point where we decided right then and there it was time to take it home and duke it out. Thankfully, we had enough sense to hold off until we were out of the public eye.

    We jawed all the way home from the front seat to the back seat. Finally we got home, and took our positions in the back yard. Took a couple of test swings to make sure the other was still serious. We were. Finally he grazed me with a shot, then took another swing as I dodged and counterpunched him right in the eye. He was done. Dropped immediately.

    Now granted, I had him by three inches and probably 40 pounds. He’s was a brave soul, but well overmatched. While he was on the ground, I tried to get him to get up and shake hands so we could go inside and have a beer. His stubborn ass refused. So I kicked him in the stomach, called him an unsavory name, and walked inside. He didn’t come in for another two hours.

    I forever regret that. I think it’s safe to say he’s since recovered– his black eye cleared up in a few days and no signs of intestinal problems– he’s now a successful stage actor some 13 years later. We still laugh about it. But I wished I’d stayed out there with him that night. I wish I hadn’t left him, defeated and vulnerable, lying in the middle of our backyard.

    I fully realize that it wasn’t my punch that put him on the ropes… but the gravity that you’re not invincible can be a jab like no other.

    It’s funny how such a minor, inconsequential moment in the grand scheme of things can have such a profound impact. But it did.

    I thank you for recognizing, Harv. If nothing else, it means that I learned something. Keep punching, my friend. But be mindful of what kind of impression your fists might leave. Make sure they don’t leave permanent marks. And by all means, have a beer with your buddy afterwards.

  101. coachv would not approve of Irvin’s form and proclaim that he cannot hit a shot…

    Where was all your hype of Morgan, who filled in for McGary seamlessly and anchored the defensive effort all year? Pretty sure the commentators said they were actually better off this year because of the McGary injury – it brought out the strengths in the perimeter players’ games and allowed the defensive attributes of Morgan and Horford to complement them.

  102. Harvard- How about a rotation of Arsdale/Harvard/Downing’s 5th? As long as you acknowledge the use of a rotation, you shouldn’t upset the powers that be, right?

  103. Thanks for the advice, Punjab….Unfortunately, just like you, I won’t take it. I already believe I have all the answers and I’ll be damned if the inartistic raging punches of condescension on here ever wins over my own same version of ‘eff you’ for you or anyone else suffering from the same lack of humility. Even when someone on here believes they are gracious, they exude a nauseating amount of stuffy arrogance rooted in egos too frail to know differently.

    The thing about advice is that I’ve never seen many that seek it or accept it. Doesn’t matter if it’s sports chat, love chat, marriage chat, how to mash potatoes chat, religion chat, politics chat, or best way to get from point A to point B chat. Most of us are hardwired creatures of stubborn unchanging rigidness. We are one way streets that rarely pause to even care of suffering or loss unless it’s our own. We define happiness based on selfish accumulations of mind battles and materialistic hoarding representative of such victories.

    I wish I could say I’ve met a lot of kind people, but inevitably most family and few close friends have shocked me like that kick to the gut you gave your close buddy. It’s the kick that just keeps giving. The constant taste for devaluing people, enjoying the inflicting of hurt, and the constant lack of truly sincere concern for any voice but their own, my own. We are evolution in reverse but we’re going backward down a different fork in the evolutionary road. I see far more respect and nurturing in zoo animals than in mankind. We’ll spend billions upon billions to march into a tiny country halfway around the world and take innocent lives for political gain. But if an downed or crashed airliner sits at the bottom of an ocean and is full of foreign passengers where nothing can be gained? That’s when we need to save our precious dimes.

    I sometimes wonder if it’s all a test and most of us are just miserably failing. Maybe that’s the “fairytale” version in my head that tells me some decent being made up of all the stars will warm the depths of all our coldness and forgive the sins..Does a god await to love us though even though we sure seem to hate his mirrored creations and all the other breathing creatures of land and sea placed on this small planet we’ve lost complete love and respect for…

    It’s simply an endless rerun. Mankind is stuck in the same movie and it’s always going to be a fight until theirs more winners than losers. But what’s left when there’s no one left to crush. What’s left when there is no planet that can withstand anymore our disregard and arrogance in the belief rooted in selfish faith that man is all that matters?

    I push along but really make such little noise. The battles are to find a passion and to find hope. The battle is to end the fear and keep searching for places not so dark that can lift my life beaten down from lost dreams and indifferent ears. I try to tell myself how ugly and selfish to be seeking without giving…Stuck in a vicious cycle and I’m running out of time just like the rest.

  104. ….fight until [there are] more winners than losers.

    Geoff-

    I heard those comments about Morgan vs. McGary. Morgan has played with a ton of heart. But I think that particular commentator pretty much confirms everything I said in post #122. We are just never satisfied with relinquishing ourselves to something heartwarming and uplifting. While it’s great to see the different dynamics and equations that can work in lineups…I see no decent purpose to steal what McGary achieved in his moment as a way to sell what Morgan is currently bringing. It’s not very classy. McGary on the bench may mean more than five on the floor…Who’s to really know just how infectious a decent heart and determination can multiply? It’s certainly not the first time that the arrogant with tunnel vision for a snapshot in time are enjoying playing the bank robber for success and heart they envy.

    Hoppy-
    Your new screen name is putting this tune in my head…..hoppily on the island…hoppily blogging together.

  105. Saw this post on Facebook and had to share:

    “This weekend, in the Big City, at a world class sports facility, the best and brightest of Indiana high school boys basketball players take center stage… Unfortunately they all play for the Michigan State Spartans and Michigan Wolverines.”

    I smiled and thought of you, Harv.

  106. Side note: my Bloomington North Cougars stormed back from down 30 to make it a one-possession game in the IHSAA semi-state last weekend. If there was one more minute on the clock, they’re probably playing for a state championship today instead of Trey Lyles and Indianapolis Tech. So close. Bummer.

  107. Sadly, I don’t follow the high school tournament anymore. Miss searching the papers for the small town Cinderellas, the once in decade tale of another basketball legend in the style of Scott Skiles putting a team on the back his ‘David’ heroics, and claim victory for the beauty of team play and the unpredictable nature of five vs. five.

    No interest whatsoever since they multi-classed it up and butchered what was once so rich in our traditions and identifiably Indiana. And don’t tell me attendance isn’t suffering. It suffers collectively…It suffers in small towns and consolidated mega gyms…It suffers from sectionals to regionals to semi-state to final weekend.

    And because of the asinine fools that couldn’t leave something alone that wasn’t broken, in a few more decades this state will have lost most its unique passion for the sport. We’ll still have that race, “the greatest spectacle in racing,” to watch the fast cars go round and round on one Sunday of the year…Yippee.

  108. Landward Gonad Ravisher = Top Anagram when combining Arsdale + Downing + Harvard.

    Could always just go with Van Landward’s 5th Gonad Ravisher….?

    or Landward’s Rave 5th Gonad Varnish for Hillbillies.

  109. Nah…Best stay with Harvard and the brand recognition.

    what do you get when you drop the top anagram for Park Tudor…?

    Answer: A Pork Turd.

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