Hoosiers fall to MSU again, 64-58

In discussing yet another game that got away, Indiana coach Archie Miller was noticeably short on words Tuesday.

Why did the Hoosiers struggle so mightily to score in a 64-58 loss at Michigan State?

“The ball didn’t go in,” Miller said. “Period.”

Was it tougher to lose these last two games to MSU when it was Aaron Henry, an Indianapolis native the Hoosiers actively recruited, doing most of the damage?

“It was the same in the last two years when we didn’t lose to him,” Miller said. “Bottom line.”

Finally, as the Hoosiers (12-13, 7-11 Big Ten) dropped their fifth game in six contests — most likely taking themselves out of the NCAA tournament conversation — Miller was asked if his team was pressing too much in pursuit of an NCAA tourney berth, which would be the program’s first since 2016.

“Not at all,” Miller said.

Then why have the Hoosiers dropped so many of these games of late?

“We’re playing very good teams,” Miller said.

Miller got in and out of his postgame press conference in under four minutes, saying all he wanted to say. The facts of what transpired in East Lansing were otherwise clear.

In a season where so many opportunities have been lost, so many close games spoiled away, the Hoosiers now find their season almost beyond salvageable. With just one more game to play in the regular season, on the road at Purdue — a rival they haven’t beaten in eight straight contests — their late-season slide sits at four.

Familiar failures led to this end. IU hit just 32.7% from the field, including 2-of-20 from beyond the arc. Rob Phinisee was IU’s most efficient scorer, producing 16 points on 6-of-16 shooting. But with Armaan Franklin again not in uniform, Phinisee was complemented by an 0-of-7 performance from senior Al Durham, who air-balled an open 3 late. Trayce Jackson-Davis was just 1-of-5 from the field on his way to nine points.

What everyone also saw on the broadcast was Jackson-Davis’ heated words on the bench during a timeout. Frustrations clearly boiled over, as teammates like Phinisee and Joey Brunk stepped in to calm IU’s star forward. But Miller wouldn’t comment on it postgame.

“I don’t remember the instance you’re talking about,” Miller said. “If you’re asking about Trayce’s play on the floor, they did a much better job of not getting him as deep with catches. He didn’t have an easy time once he did catch the ball because of the overall bodies in and around the basket. It was a physical game.”

That much was true. There were a combined 45 personal foul calls during the game, including 24 on IU. Both teams made 20 free throws.

Despite IU’s offensive struggles, the game was tied with four minutes remaining, 51-all. It was 53-52, MSU, when Durham jacked up his airball 3-pointer that gave the ball back to the Spartans. Henry, who scored 12 consecutive points for MSU as they went to the lead, hit a 3-pointer immediately following the Durham miss to make it 56-52.

On the next defensive possession, Henry then ripped the ball away from Race Thompson on a post-up and went on to score on a drive to make it a six-point lead. On MSU’s very next set on defense, Henry came up with a rebound and was fouled, hitting two free throws to make it 60-52 with 45 seconds remaining.

Henry led the Spartans with 22 points on 8-of-16 shooting. He also had eight rebounds and five assists.

“Aaron Henry is a very good player. He deserves a lot of credit on his development with his staff. He’s physical, he’s athletic, and he can dribble pass and shoot,” Miller said, adding that much. “He’s a good player.”

Now that Henry is the least of their problems, the Hoosiers have to somehow regroup.

The biggest positive from Tuesday was probably the production of Phinisee, who showed an aggressiveness that’s been lacking most of this season from the junior. One of his early drives was an attempted dunk in the lane, which at least led to a pair of free throws. He also hit the Hoosiers’ only two 3-point makes.

Another positive was the condition of Thompson’s face, which took another shot in the first half. The redshirt junior forward, who is wearing a protective mask because of a shot he took in practice last week, had a towel pressed to his face as he went to the locker room early. But he was able to play in the second half, finishing with eight points on 3-of-7 shooting.

Otherwise, it was another miserable result for a team that has lost more than its share of close contests. The sheer volume of near-misses is startling, from Florida State to Northwestern to Wisconsin to Illinois. But there is one more to play, and it’s still important.

Phinisee was reminded that IU’s fourth-year players, Durham and Thompson, have yet to see IU beat Purdue in their careers. Regardless of where IU stands with the NCAA tourney, that’s something to play for.

“We just have to bounce back,” Phinisee said. “Tomorrow at practice, get after it, and really look on to the next one.”

(above photo courtesy of IU athletics)

80 comments

  1. All this talk in the comments and the reality is that this program is in tatters. This was the worst basketball game I have ever seen. I think I’ve said that twice this year.

    Tatters. Jon or Jeremy, did I see something right? Did TJD say “F*** you” to Archie Miller in the huddle?

    This isn’t a team just having tough luck. Something is rotten.

    1. DD, I just rewatched that segment. The incident happened when TJD missed a blockout when Bingham had the putback dunk right over his head cutting our 5 Pt lead to 3.

      The huddle was tight & encircled closely. Presumably Archie was in the center of it. TJD was taken out, not sitting with the team at that time. Galloway said something first from inside the huddle directed toward Trayce, but it looked more calming. Then TJD snapped & directed his “f.u.” toward someone to his right outside the huddle. It looked like a team mgr. perhaps. It was someone in layer 3 from the inside of the huddle.

      1. Thanks. I think he’s a good kid, so clarification and benefit of the doubt is warranted.

        He had a really tough night.

  2. DD: Yes you did here TJD say that. Like I predicted, the line was 3,…”should be more like 8-9″.
    You’re welcome.

    The Purdue visit will be remembered as the ‘mauling at Mackey’.

    Besides everything else, AM has lost this team. Since Dane Fife is so comfortable recruiting top Indy area players every year, maybe this time, he’ll get real consideration doing it from a new Bloomington office. If he were here now we likely wouldn’t have so much animas on these pages after each game. There is absolutely no room, reason or excuse to keep the program as it is,..including $. Any poster that does, is a complete moron, masochist,..or both.

  3. One final thought. After the Michigan game, there was AM congratulating coach Howard. The visual was actually startling! He looked like a 3rd grader shaking hands with the principal. Maybe TJD is fed up listening to someone he could stuff into his pocket. Stature does matter,..physical as well as mental.

      1. Simply an observation. It’s likely far more challenging for a very small person to be in the business of recruiting and leading very large people in any athletic endeavor. AM often refers to his squad lacking an ‘alpha dog’. Maybe. But when Knight was on the sideline, one didn’t need to look very far.

        1. Since you brought up Knight …and perceptions:

          Another observation is the amount of campus/school focus on the equitable efforts and marketing of women’s basketball. The most senior journalist at HT is assigned to covering the women’s basketball program. Does any of that affect perceptions? Do the members of the Hoosier men’s team see the women as an inspiration? Does a Hoosier women’s team point guard also look very diminutive next to Juwan Howard?

          I find it interesting that Duke, Kansas, North Carolina, Michigan State….(what many would consider some of the top “blue bloods” of the last couple decades) have no women’s teams in the Top 20. Nor does Texas Tech ….with their Knight disciple, Chris Beard. Nor does Villanova have a women’s basketball program in the Top 20. Nor does Gonzaga…or Illinois.

          And only one of the aforementioned has much of a football program.

          Could you name the head coaches of any of the aforementioned women’s college basketball teams? Could you name their male counterparts in basketball coaching at those respective institutions?

          During our heyday, nothing mattered other than men’s college basketball. Nothing. Chicken or egg? The most senior/figurehead journalist (in my humble opinion) of Hoosier Scoop dedicates more hours to women’s basketball and soccer than the men’s basketball program. Perceptions? Don’t get me wrong…Equal is great. From a basketball “purist” perspective, everything done in the women’s game can be done equally well to anything in the men’s game. Often, the team play, can exceed anything in the men’s game.

  4. IU men’s basketball teams in recent years have made all America 3 point shooters no matter who and unable to guard and body up on players. Memory of IU football teams making opponents running backs into all American candidates for the week.

  5. Ok I’m going there….the refereeing in this game made it absolutely painful. The best players on both sides were denied the ability to play. I’ve seen at least 50% of all Big Ten games this season, and this by far was the worst. A ton of ticky tack crap & then no fouls when TJD was in the paint & near the bucket. I could go on and on.

    The refs dictated this game, not the players. There! I said it! But I didn’t say we lost due to the refs because we didn’t. But when there is angst & frustration on a team, these external factors take over.

    We lost because;
    1. No Armaan Franklin. We’ve lost every game & a 2H w/o him. A fragile team cannot lose its 2nd leading scorer & win on the road. Period.
    2. Durham’s airball late. That would’ve put us ahead & this Sr. didn’t hit the backboard! Wide open. Nothing but air! He didn’t hit 1 FG! This, w/o your #1 scoring guard.
    3. Trayce. His weak hurls at the basket finally cost him. He was WEAK with the ball tonight. WEAK! He may as well have been yelling at a mirror.
    4. Aaron Henry. Best player on the floor in both games when it counted. We have no answer for that. (Ref. Audige in game 1, Ayo in both IL games.)

    But I do want to give kudos where they belong; Rob Phinisee & Race T. Phinisee took 18 shots! ???? Where’s this aggression been all season?!?! And Race….most kids would’ve folded after getting hit on his broken nose. He didn’t quit, at all. Congrats to these 2. And I’ll throw in Galloway who played harder than he’s played all year.

    Enough is enough.

  6. How does anyone really know that A.M. intends to turn program around? When he first took the job yes…but it didn’t take to long finding it a challenging situation for himself and has grown to a more dire situation…and going through the motions trying to keep his head on straight and I gave it a shot… and thanks for the opportunity a millions$$$.
    A nice vacation and play (move on). Yes, A.M. (like many others) has done very well.

  7. I encourage all fans to watch Archie’s postgame presser. Finally his frustration boiled over.

    When asked what he saw regarding going 2 – 20 from 3 he simply said “the ball didn’t go in”. And he’s right. They had some wide open 3s & whiffed. Simple as that. We lost by 6 & MSU hit 2 more 3s than we did. All other stats were very, very similar.

  8. Team shot 30% from the field. I saw a stat right now that there are four Big Ten teams that are shooting a higher % from 3 than we are overall. I think this is during our 4 game losing streak.

    We just flat out stink. Rob finally shows up and TJD and Al are no shows. I just don’t get these guys.

  9. Confidence can deteriorate quickly…Confidence can be very thin on a team with such small margins for error as IU. The small margins for error are primarily due to the lack of added athleticism and depth on the inside..Trayce and Race as our only viable weapons. Without balance supplied by depth in the paint, all other weaknesses get magnified and get added pressure.

    I really don’t find any of the struggles exceedingly complicated. We were a March Madness team last year with Smith and Brunk. We are not a March Madness team this year because we simply couldn’t adjust to losing the upperclassmen maturity, size, athleticism, fouls, boards and buckets that grows exponentially inside and outside with options in the paint of four as opposed to two.

    Smith’s transfer had an immense impact. Had we been able to have a healthy Brunk throughout the season, it still only absorbs some of the loss.

    Maybe someone said the “eff you” to Smith….? To this day, I am baffled by his transfer. Whatever the case may be, there isn’t a program in the country that could take such a hard double hit to their inside play.

    Smith and Brunk mean at least six more wins for this team. It means far less pressure on every component. It means far more fouls to give and provides more of confident edge when your primaries don’t have to play every defensive and offensive possession with such foul-averse focus.

  10. Hurts, but feels like this program is nothing more than a laughing stock at this point. A complete afterthought of college basketball. Sad.

  11. Overall just sad. I thought we hit a home run when we hired Archie. I thought we had a basketball guy for the next 30 years. I will say that the B1G from top to bottom is so much better than 30-40 years ago but other coaches have adapted better than Archie. Now situation is toxic and he has to go. Players telling him —-FU in huddle is unacceptable. We need better than this.

  12. I don’t think they are a laughing stock. I just think there are irrelevant, an after thought to a meaningful, winning program. Jackson Davis was visibly frustrated, but so is every IU fan. Jackson Davis will be gone next year. I see others on this site that want Durham and Brunk to return, as if that’s the answer to IU’s woes. Please tell me why you think IU will be better next year? Because Crean got nine years, you obviously think Miller deserves the same. It is exactly that thinking that will keep IU mired in the lower rung of the Big 10.

  13. I think Archie will return next year simply due to the financial ramifications of Covid and his huge buyout.
    Can’t just find money under a couch somewhere.

  14. Can you come up with the ten million bigal? 🙂
    Everybody keeps saying there’s plenty of money, but I’m personally not convinced.
    Assistant football coaches all getting big raises, it just doesn’t look economically feasible to me.
    But stranger things have happened!

    1. Archie’s buyout is not a lump sum payout of $10.3 million. He would continue to get paid much of what he’s getting now, less any income he gets from other employment (TV commentator, consulting, etc.). If he were to be hired by his brother as an assistant at AZ, the money he makes from his AZ salary would be deducted from what IU owes him. And, Archie is compelled by the terms of his contract to seek employment. He would not be allowed to take a three year vacation and just continue to collect big checks from IU.

      The buyout would be painful for IU’s budget, but it would not be financially catastrophic. The question is, how “expensive” will it be for IU to keep Archie on for a fifth season. Some people believe that it can’t get any worse than it is right now, but I assure those folks that it can. Consider this scenario: TJD leaves (either NBA or transfer), Brunk chooses not to return for a sixth season, we’re losing a good starting guard and recruiting is completely dead, making the IU job a lot less attractive to high quality coaching candidates. Oh, things can get a lot worse!

  15. JUST to remind the commentators on this page; Archie was hired to recruit Indiana players (Fans thinking that was a reason Crean was mediocre) and Archie has done that. Rob Phinisee was recruited to be a point guard and NOT a shooter ( add to that his aggressive playing has been “muted” maybe because of his concussions. The Shooter he did recruit was Jerome but he had to sit a year ,that was no ones fault. The players he recruited this year ; we have seen Landers “shot” and a shooter he will never be UNLESS he over hauls the mechanics of his shot. He was recruited to be a point guard as well. Galloway, Leal, and Geronimo COULD be shooters but they are freshmen. a Transfer Guard to come in that will be upper class man . Archie needs to recruit another big man Transfer Upper class . Durham wont return because I think he wants to play closer to home after 4 yrs here and Brunk ( Im afraid) suffers from ” Ted Kitchell Back” 50% time on disabled list. A Name from the Past to demonstrate the “quality or lack there of ” of Indiana High School Players —— Demizi Anderson.. watching him shoot on his video profile and we ALL wondered how he was going to get that LOW Launched shot off in College…. he transferred to a DIV II School ( and he was highly regarded by recruiting services) Archie like some other coaches got sold a Bill of goods on some of these players,,,including Romeo! Fans wanted a shooter but he was a slasher Driver and even the Celts set about working on his shooting mechanics ITS time to REALLY step back and evaluate the Coach, his recruits, the players make ALL Accountable because SOME of these kids will NEVER be what we want them to be OR can be—— Even if John Wooden Coached them.

    1. I’m pretty sure Archie was hired to win Big Ten games…. nobody cares about where recruits are from if you’re winning. It all lands o him and his inability to develop and prepare his team properly. They have a low offensive IQ and awareness… that stems for poor coaching and not getting the right ‘fit ‘ for the position. We can’t win in the Big ten with this offensive style and the Big Ten has figured out how to play against the ‘pack line’ defense (just be patient and drive at the right time). Keeping him is the definition of insanity. Agree, costly buy out , wish we could find a way around it but….

    2. Sorry TJ, but it’s well past time. People got excited because Archie signed a few of the best HS players from inside the state, but that hasn’t made IU a successful program. I agree that IU should sign the best Indiana HS players, but ONLY if they’re good enough to be effective Big Ten players. IU fans have to take their parochial blinders off and look at how IU’s recruits and the entire recruiting classes rank relative to other elite programs. That information is the earliest indication of how good a program will become, and Archie’s recruiting has never really been anything exceptional. Those recruits don’t all have to be five-star HS players, but they have to have ample upside, and it’s a coaching staff’s job to recognize that upside potential in players and then to cultivate it. Victor Oladipo was far more effective at IU than any player on the current roster. Juan Morgan was more effective than TJD is now. OG Anunoby obviously had huge upside and was very effective until his leg injury. What IU wouldn’t give to have Thomas Bryant on the current roster! Yet none of those players were from within the stat of Indiana. If IU’s top in-state recruit is ranked as the 105th best player in the country, maybe (with emphasis on maybe) he’s NOT good enough to play for IU! Then IU fans have to evaluate how IU’s coaching staff develops/improves the player’s key skills. And obviously, Archie and his assistants have not demonstrated the ability to improve their players’ shooting ability.

      Can Archie turn his program around? I have serious doubts that he is capable of that.

      1. It’s too bad the big guy in the middle for MSU, a Ben Davis product, found Dane Fife’s recruiting pitch more inviting than Archie’s, because he did more damage than anyone.

  16. With the swoon in the men’s basketball has added more new posters to the site has added some new voices. I don’t buy the comment, about players being freshman, look at your next opponent, Purdue their freshman center scored 22 points in 18 minutes playing, time againstWisconsin. Coach Miller must be feeling like Captain William Bligh, the Captain of the HMS Bounty.

  17. Many teams have injuries and issues. That’s why the phrase next man up is important. You have to have enough material prepared, confident and good enough to keep rolling. A.M. has lost several first choice recruiting battles though he has gotten a couple Indiana first choice. A.M. has a poor assistant coaching staff by looking at team play. Landers is a high school player period. Just a mistake trying to cover inadequate ability to recruit.

  18. Witch hunts always bring the roaches out…It’s the beast of the hour in this world we now live. Many are old Crean apologists who now lick their chops for some retribution. Where were these new voices when we were upsetting Iowa twice?

    TJ in Texas- Spot on. Archie did exactly what the fan base wanted…He hit the recruiting of the state hard to the tune of THREE Indiana Mr. Basketballs.
    And recruiting outside the borders to adjust for quick premature exits (Romeo) , a slew of injuries over the last two seasons (Phinisee, Hunter, Brunk) and the rather unexpected and abrupt transfer of a talented and developing forward (Justin Smith) was very constrained due to this little thing called the worst pandemic in a hundred years.

    Archie honored every Crean recruit he inherited by not running them off the team…That made for a very rugged first two seasons. Green was simply a longer term version of a showboat…Next level…next level …next level ..on the brain. Good kid but there was nothing of steady purpose in his game.
    Romeo was another heralded Hoosier “savior” of the program where thousands lined up at his high school as if it were a better than Zeller moment. Archie bought the “bill of goods”…If our own in-state recruits care more about paydays than truly developing their games and restoring Indiana University Basketball, then maybe we’re all a bit to blame. We elevate this high schoolers for what reason? The NBA obsessions have taken over everywhere…and Indiana kids are no different.
    It’s difficult to be relevant when the only reason the most highly regarded in the state choose us is for excess adulation from all being sold the “bill of goods” and to use McCracken as a 1-year audition of their athleticism and potential for the next level.

    So I’ll conclude with this statement and follow-up question….Many are crawling out from under the woodwork and their basement bunkers. They now begin to form their line to running Archie out of town….I suppose, that’s fine. But here’s my question: Why were many of these same devout Hoosier fans lining up at high schools for future “everything hinges” and “breakthrough” stars who bail on the program after one or two seasons? How can any coach bring Indiana back when those we give so much of our hearts at high school games, newspaper coverage, commitment day parties, etc. have so little desire to put NBA dreams on hold for the chance to make lifelong dreams on the college stage come true while embracing memories of teammates and brotherhood on fostered rosters …which will manifest in a manner of making Indiana relevant again?

    1. H4H: Integrity/winning/adjusting/development/smart recruiting are not mutually exclusive. Coaches all over the country have been doing it far better over the past 4 years than in Bloomington. When famed high school recruiter ‘Slugger’ bailed, that was an early sign that things were going south.

  19. It appears those Archie supporters who continued to post supportive comments just a few weeks ago have now gone totally silent. Do they no longer support Archie? Have they finally been convinced that he doesn’t have what it takes? If not, I would sincerely like to read any comments from those who still want Archie to remain as IU’s BB coach. I would sincerely appreciate knowing why they believe Archie can turn his program around. Come on guys, it will make for an interesting debate and many of us would appreciate your perspective.

    1. LOL! It’s already established that I am a “complete moron” (because I would post in support of Archie.) But I’m not stupid. This board has made up its mind. Nothing I can say is going to sway anyone’s opinion.

      This is the internet. I’ve better things to do with my time.

    2. I’m here….I will never see Indiana as being in a darker period of time than the nine years preceding Archie.
      I’m still forever elated and thankful we did not make a lifetime commitment to the narcissistic and individualistic basketball trends embraced and manipulated by any slippery tongue with that sort of “style.” I thank the Lord above to rarely, if never, speak of “upsides” and “next level”…and wing spans.
      I thank the Lord again for not filling half a roster with projects and every next Hanner ‘Hakeem the Dream’ Perea only for purpose of a coach to sell his own resume of how he found the diamond in the rough or the distant star via his great NBA eye …no other telescope could find.

      We play basketball again…for the game and a quiet redeeming purpose. Win …or lose, we are not disgracing anything. We are honoring the banners and attempting to preserve what little of a humble team game remains.

    3. I want Coach Miller back next year. Yes he can turn it around with the maturing, improving Frosh. Franklin and JH tougher and more polished offensively. There you heard it 1st.

  20. And if recruiting outside the state is the answer, then why do we flock to high school gyms and high school games ….Isn’t there always a part of us that feels the ‘Indiana pride’ along with the hometown pride? We make every future star relevant by giving our hearts and passions to the stages they have performed from first middle school game until day of graduation….When Indiana University is “relevant,” then we sort of feel our high school game and our undeniable statewide roots and contributions to all of basketball and March Madness remains relevant.

    It’s not just our coach’s failures that are eroding our relevance….There is little appreciation for the decades you, the fan, has given to the game. Your relevance is negated and trivialized. You have no 5-star ranking as the best fans in the world who have filled countless high school gyms and packed Assembly Hall through thick and thin. When you cheer in unison by the thousands each game, you are the team behind what you hope to be a team. Our relevance in basketball fades because those on the stage have grown to believe you’re not important to their success and their love for the game. No coach makes us “relevant” …or “irrelevant.” Our values…our appreciation…our manner of saying thank you…our commitment to patience and process of a game that must be nurtured ….our desire to achieve something beyond a monetary end goal…..are all the building blocks of relevance. We coddle the individual athlete and see those who have supported the game and their teams for decades via putting their butts in seats as insignificant.

    Why are we lining up at high schools…..? Who is saying “thank you” for loving what you do as a fan as an equal part of an equation to their own individual relevancy? Is there any “community” in basketball or statewide pride left in the heart of a recruit to foster relevancy?

  21. Rich, it’s precisely because a lot of scoopers appear not to have made up their minds that I requested an alternative perspective. The only reason I can see for keeping Archie is that it would be expensive to fire him at the end of this season.

    If you think this board is made up of people who have made up its mind, you should plug into a few of the other boards. The solidarity they exhibit is pretty intense.

    1. People love to get on board with the torch crowd….Torches for Myles Brand…Torches for Kelvin…Torches for Mike Davis….Torches for Kelvin. Enter savior. Savior died for our sins on a cue card cross. Now more torches…More vengeance. More undermining because we fired the preacher blowbag. Torches for Archie. And, guaranteed…Torches for the next guy.

      Kudos to Archie for staying true to himself. Kudos for not using faith ideologies to give himself the cover of thicker impenetrable armor. Kudos for not using Indiana’s name as tweeting tool for faith doctrines. Kudos to a man who tried to keep it about basketball.

      1. H4H: I would suggest that EVERYONE on here + thousands of others ‘got on board’ (maybe with some trepedation) when little Arch was hired. Unfortunately, he has not met the challenge. Like someone else posted, this is a business like anything else. Your continuos ‘pleading’ for more time holds little in the way of evidence.

        1. Brad- I’m really not pleading. Hire Teri Moren as the next Indiana Men’s Basketball coach.

          I am forever content…simply based on the fact we finally removed the charlatan. I knew Archie would struggle. Any hire would have struggled via honoring what was left in the cupboard. The next hire will struggle as well.

          If greatness was simple, everyone would be great. My liking Archie has more to do with his apparent genuineness. He, for the most part, seems to wear the disappointments (as well as some of the few ‘highs’ this year) on his sleeve. But he doesn’t go overboard in either direction. He’s pretty humble as far as extremely highly paid coaches go. I don’t really have a dog in the fight.

          Some of our current roster members don’t really do it for me….I don’t see them being as “all business” as their coach. Is that on the coach? I don’t know. They often play hard..and then they don’t play hard. They often play focused…and then they inexplicably unravel.
          Some are often far too happy or seemingly aloof in odd juxtaposition to a given moment matching such emotions. Is it simply how kids are being brought up? Is it the product of the new basketball “style” emanating from changed values at home ..or in sports in general?

          I don’t know. I don’t know the answers for Hoosier Basketball, Brad. I simply believe it is far more complicated than any quick fix a coaching change will be sold as achieving.
          For the most part, I like Archie….But I suppose “liking” doesn’t pay the bills. He seems to have more honest bone than most. He seems pretty genuine …You can see his disappointment. It’s obvious he cares.

        1. And based on the flack that I’ve taken for months, it isn’t any easier to be one of the first to start exposing reasons to be concerned.

          1. Well hell no it isn’t when you’re famous statewide for crying wolf and the sky falling over and over and over for a decade +.

    2. Remember the days of HH and Crean? The continuous never ending Crean comments. Well, you are the reincarnation. Po & Miller.

      1. Ron- That’s not completely fair.
        I provided countless one-of-a-kind fabulous pieces of doctored images….worthy of museum pieces:; artwork to add some comic relief to the pain and mockery caused by an inept coach who was stamping a storied basketball/teaching institution with a dunce cap.

        We knew better, Ron. I had some fun with the obsession because I wanted to tell the outside world (in my little insignificant way) that I wholeheartedly believed most passionate Indiana fans are bright people and know a snake oil salesman when they see one. We had no choice or voice because the coach and the AD were in cahoots.
        Comedy can serve as enlightenment and perspective. It was my hope to provide some comic relief to the anguish and the puritanical nonsense we were being force-fed. Does Podunker give you this: https://i.ibb.co/9Hy4sc3/Planes-Trains-and-Automobiles-FINAL.jpg

  22. I think being a good 3 pt shooter in high school does not translate directly to the Big Ten. The speed at which a defender responds is an order of magnitude faster, especially upper class man who’ve had a yr+ to develop.

    I’m still trying my best to see what is wrong with Phinisee’s shot. Too quick? Confidence? Gaps in muscle memory?

    This team has potential to beat anyone as evidenced by Iowa 2x, Maryland, OT vs. FSU (ACC champ), OT vs. WIsc., etc…. I believe the issue is youth & inexperience. And face it, our upper class guards just haven’t been consistent. They cannot be counted on. Last night at times we were playing 2 So. & 3 Fr. aside from the occasional anomaly that is a recipe for losses. Race & Hunter have only played 2 yrs. due to injuries.

    I do support this team & its coach. I see the POTENTIAL. The gaps have been well chronicled on this blog. (PG & inside depth).

    Did you negative-nellies see that 3 of the 5 most improved Big Ten scorers are ON OUR TEAM??? Don’t tell me these kids aren’t developing & improving. It simply isn’t true. Do we need improvement?!?! HELL YES! Do we need more talent?!?! Same answer!

    1. AW, I sincerely appreciate your sense of optimism, but few points in response.

      First, it’s a dubious honor to be recognized as one of the most improved scorers when you were previously terrible. If a person increases his time in the 40-yard dash from ten seconds to seven seconds, he may be the runner who improved his speed the most, but he’s still too slow.

      Todd Leary would disagree with you about this roster’s shooting woes. Check out his opinions about the shooters on this IU roster on his blog. Bottom line is, according to him, these IU players have a lot of bad habits and display really bad form.

      “These kids” may be “developing and improving,” but its obvious they’re not developing and improving enough. IU Men’s BB is falling behind in the Big Ten Conference. Look at Archie’s Big Ten record in his four seasons at IU. How can any Hoosier BB fan tolerate that record. Furthermore, where is the evidence, aside from blind hope, that things will get better? IU BB could get a lot better next season and it would still not be good enough for a program with IU’s history and ambitions. I don’t see any evidence that Archie’s even close to getting the program where most Hoosier fans want it to be.

      1. Is this the same Todd Leary arrested at Assembly Hall…? I’ll never forget that beyond bizarre evening. Redemption is possible for all, I suppose. His jumper was pure and straight …His ethical standards …? Not so much. NC has ghost classes….Leary sold ghost mortgages…if my memory serves correct?

  23. The difference between the IU men’s and women’s basketball programs at this time?
    The men have a coach.
    The women have a visionary program builder.

  24. The issue is not youth and inexperience. The issue is talent and IU does not have enough of it. There are plenty of young players on other teams that are major contributors. On another subject, there are those on this site that feel that somehow because they want Archie gone it is because they viewed Crean as a better coach. What nonsense! Crean was terrible at making game adjustments, defending and executing out of bounds plays, solving zone defenses, etc. I don’t know how anyone thought he was a great coach. That in no ways absolves Archie of his poor performance, and make no mistake his performance has been bad. He has not been able to put together a winning team, and next year looks worse. Because of the buyout burden, he will get one more year. Does anyone know why Justin Smith left? Wouldn’t surprise me if Jackson Davis transfers, assuming he doesn’t get drafted by NBA, although I have to believe he is 2nd round material for some team.

    1. Hopeful, please name one person who posts on this site that said Crean was a “great coach.” I certainly have never said that. But I have said that Crean was not a terrible coach. The only “great” IU BB coach in my lifetime has been Bobby Knight, and Crean didn’t come close to Knight’s performance.

      Your comments imply that you believe Archie is a better coach than Crean was. But after the same number of seasons in charge, the record clearly suggests otherwise. Compare how Crean’s 2011/2012 team performed in his fourth season at IU (27 – 9) with wins over the #1, #2 and #5 ranked teams in the country to how this season has turned out. Compare Crean’s 2012 recruiting class to Archie’s 2021 class. Will Archie lead IU to the Sweet 16 this season and lose to the eventual National Champion? Will ESPN name Archie National Coach of the Year? Before coming to IU, did Archie lead a team to the final four? Do you really believe IU will be ranked #1 in the nation for ten consecutive weeks or win the Outright Big Ten Championship next season, as Crean’s 2012/2013 IU team did?

      IU BB fans’ disdain for the style of play Crean coached has caused many to develop amnesia regarding Crean’s accomplishments at IU. I suggest that the style of play Crean coached was the primary reason IU fired Crean. What else could explain why IU fired firing a coach one year after leading his program’s second Outright Big Ten Championship, making it to its fourth Sweet 16 and being named Big Ten Coach of the Year? I submit that to many IU fans, the style of BB IU plays is far more important than the results the program achieves. And since I’ve always cared a lot more about results than style of play, I never developed Tom Crean Derangement Syndrome (i.e., TCDS).

      I’ve never considered Crean to be a great college BB coach. His faults, some of which you listed above, drove me crazy. But when IU fired him, and well before Archie was named his successor, I and many other Hoosier fans said it was a mistake. To me it was a classic example of hubris! Only time will tell who was the better coach, but as time passes, the losses mount and the recruits fail to sign, it’s looking more and more, that in spite of the style he coaches, Archie is not capable of leading IU BB to the heights that IU BB achieved under Crean. Hope I’m wrong.

      1. Blind loyalty is a derangement syndrome….Are you currently loving his “style” at Georgia?

        There was no basketball “style” which brought Cody Zeller to Indiana. One look at Cody’s twitter page during the Crean recruitment of the “everything hinges” one and anyone with half a brain could figure out why Cody came to Indiana. And without the singular surge from his recruitment, no amount of chasing Jeff Meyer and all other invented demons would have saved a horrifically bad basketball coach.

  25. TJD did appear upset and it’s happened in a number of games. Does appear the team is ‘together’ in supporting each other. Hate to see IU go through the new coach, new staff and the re-build that would be required. But would hate to see another year of the current.

    If the coach / team dynamics is as bad as it seems I hope CAM would rather keep his dignity and move on. Man, I would love to see him pull it altogether if he is still here next season. And again, who would want the job at this point?

    1. Ron, I doubt there are any Michigan fans who are feeling bad about their new BB coach or his rebuilding program. It doesn’t have to take a highly effective coach a long time to turn a well-supported program around.

  26. How about some coaching stats for fun? Click through to see the graphic on strength of schedule each IU team has faced.

    “In 121 seasons of IU basketball, Archie Miller has somehow managed to face the No. 1, No. 14, and No. 16 hardest schedules all-time at IU. Crean’s 3 hardest seasons were No. 23, No. 28, No. 32, according to College Basketball Reference.”

    https://twitter.com/Nick_Baumgart/status/1367554002213343233

    Knight faced all but two of the #2-13 hardest SOS in IU history. None of those seasons where national championship seasons. Davis faced the #4 hardest season of all time and lost in the NC game.

    Crean was even more mediocre than he was given credit for. The seasons he won B1G championships were pretty dismal competition wise.

    Miller’s team this year jumps to #1 because all the cupcakes were taken off of everyone’s schedule. League is still brutal this year and would put this team near the top of the list either way, but number is inflated due to non-conference cancellations.

    1. Great stuff, DD. You may…or may not recall the same arguments I had made for years. I produced the ‘gifted’ Big Ten schedule that fell in Tom’s lap in his final year of greatness (and that was even when the BigTen wasn’t nearly as brutal and upgraded as in its current state).

      On the whiplash flip side of some of those fabulous seasons/results padded in wins via soft schedules, along with the convenient happenstance of a soft conference schedule (consisting of far more double match-ups with the bottom tier) was the total shock to the system when our softened-up Hoosiers with inept X’s and O’s coach would face March Madness “alpha dogs” (e.g. Syracuse).

      1. Dude, you have to remember that I was all over that, too.

        Crean’s last Big Ten Championship came in a year that Indiana’s SOS ranked towards the bottom. #49

        BTW, after going to this site, it really shouldn’t be a ranking of 121 years of Indiana Basketball. SOS was only calculated starting in 1950. So basically 72 seasons.

        Tom Crean’s last 3 teams were ranked #50, 48, and 49 — very few people talk about the context of the schedule Indiana played. He played a terrible non-conference schedule and the B1G was down in those years (not his fault). But that was all taken into account when deciding whether he should be fired at the time. Never talked about today.

        https://www.sports-reference.com/cbb/schools/indiana/

        This isn’t to excuse AM. He has to step up. His peers are. I’m not feeling confident in the future, but I hope he pulls it off.

        1. After three seasons of watching Danny Moore lick the bottom of his sneakers, Crean (a.k.a. 4guards) got a shot of Zellerpalooza.
          After three arduous seasons of honoring backcourt recruits not his own, Archie got a shot of a pandemic.

          Whac-A-Miller-Mole! Send the hobbit back to Dayton!

        2. The only thing I remember is Mitch McGary taking tournaments by storm and starting the Final Four charge that is Michigan culture now healthy and revitalized…And then I recall you talking about sneaker tattoos to a forehead and glorious BigTen titles…..And then there was something about how wonderful it is to play in the one shining moment of the NBA instead of opening up ‘Championship Monday Bowling Lanes’ in Chesterton, Indiana.

          Other than that, you were “all over it.”

    2. Ding Ding Ding! Great post!

      The strength of this league is unparalleled. Just look at teams like OSU with 7 losses, Iowa with 6 losses, Wisc with 9 losses, Rutgers, a pretty decent club, with 10. Try getting over that .500 hump with;
      -Your best G out the last 3.5 games
      -Your 2nd best F playing with a broken nose
      -Your C out all season
      -Your 2nd best F from last season transferring
      -& no Tier 1 PG

      This team has underachieved, make no mistake. They get plenty of open shots EVERYWHERE on the floor, yet shoot it poorly. I don’t think I’ve ever seen a team miss more point blank shots. FT % is below average. Is THIS poor coaching, or poor playing?

    3. Oh, O.K., that explains it. I feel so much better now about IU finishing this season with a losing record and near the bottom of the conference.

      If Crean was mediocre, what does that say about Archie? “You are what your record says you are.”

      The Big Ten is certainly “brutal,” and Michigan’s 2nd-year coach has signed a 2021 recruiting class that will make the conference champions even more dominant. Compare Michigan’s 2021 recruiting class to Archie’s one signee and a grad transfer. Does that suggest IU’s trajectory is pointed up or pointed down?

      You can practice historical relativism all you want, but the bottom line is that Crean lead IU to two Outright Big Ten Championships, several visits to the Sweet 16, had his team ranked #1 for ten weeks, beat the #1, #2 and #5 ranked teams in the country in the same season, etc. Archie’s not even close to leading IU to such accomplishments. And his 2021 recruiting class is an indication that the program is headed in the wrong direction. But hey, as long as he coaches the right style of BB…..

  27. Sometimes the best candidate for the job is right under your nose….Why not offer Teri Moren the head coaching job of the men’s program?
    Obviously, a big hit to the women’s program…but Teri Moren could likely work in conjunction with our AD in finding a great candidate to follow in her footsteps.

    And another plus…Brad may be just fine with the “visual” of a 5-11 woman looking like a 3rd grader shaking hands with the principal (Juwan Howard). And maybe TJD is [not] fed up listening to someone he could stuff into his pocket….? And maybe stature does [not] matter,..physical as well as mental…? And we get our “alpha dog!”

    Other pluses…besides getting the best candidate who would likely consider the job.
    1. We don’t have to buy out Teri’s remaining contract. Few million in savings there.
    2. We can likely pay the next women’s coach a bit less….Couple million savings there.
    3. Teri is still very near to advise the women’s program. We get someone doing more for less…It’s the corporate way.
    4. She is a Purdue grad. The greatest compliment to your teacher is to beat your teacher. We likely start winning against Boilers again.
    5. We set the new trend as an institution truly striving for equitable treatment in all realms of employment.
    6. There would be no story more “relevant” on the college basketball scene. Indiana led the way with opening the door for African American athletes …in statewide high school tournaments and at Indiana University. Now we lead the way again by naming the first woman to be a head coach at a power 5 men’s basketball program.

    Sometimes the greatest reinventing of yourself…doesn’t require a telescope searching every corner of the universe. Reinvention can be just as near a prejudice and a beer in the fridge.

    1. Now THERE’S an interesting proposition! Kudos. I’m still partial to making a run at Chris Beard of Texas Tech. What a story that would be: former Knight assistant at TT takes over at Indiana! Alas, two scenarios that will never happen.

  28. Yup, injuries, SOS and youth makes for hardcourt lessons. All very valuable in the next season.

  29. Hypothetical:

    Archie gets a 5th year (very likely). Gets a few transfers. Finds his way to 23 wins and a 3 seed in the NCAA. Makes it to Sweet 16.

    How do you feel about that?

    1. …and you know Meatchicken was a better team after their transfers came in then before they did…and Belien left some good talent there on his way out the door…

  30. Five Star recruits probably not an issue? ‘Overtime’, a new league for the 16-18 yr old who do not want college may be eligible to earn $100000 to $500000 & ‘market their brand’ before the NBA. Or the current G-League for $200000 to $500000. This option while they wait for the MBA age eligibility.

    It’s a whole new world out there.

  31. The ONE BIG OPEN SORE for this team has been Rob. A Will-be senior whose playmaking and play has been atrocious. What this team of 4 Freshmen and 2 sophomores needed was upper class leadership and ROB didnt provide ANY of that. If he wasnt a senior to be I would chase him into transfer portal. Joey Brunk will last only as long as His back; once it goes out so will he…..period. I would hope Archie to Recruit an experienced Point guard and another Big Man and impress on the Guard Transfer the education of Lander to be a point guard. Remember Archie saying Rob didnt have to shoot to be affective but his floor leadership ( which translates to team leadership) was never there.

    1. TJ, if Archie signs a transfer who is a quality point guard, will he have the stones to bench his senior in favor of the transfer? Given Archie’s emphasis on defense, and the fact RP knows that defense, unless RP enters the transfer portal, I doubt Archie will be able to attract a true PG who is a significant upgrade.

      1. I remember when Crean couldn’t adjust to VCU’s press….and he took all of his frustrations out on Jordy Hulls. He put Hulls in a no-win to try and bring the ball up against double teams and guys longer and far more athletic. It was brutal to watch…There was no movement or sets to break the press. He finally yanked Hulls and inserted Remy Abell to bring up the ball.
        Just one example of a repeated theme …where guys were often left on an island because the X’s and O’s, in-game adjustments and preparation were just so, so bad.
        The Wichita State game was another March Madness example, when in a crucial end-of-game sequence, it could not be communicated to foul and stop the clock so the Hoosiers could have enough time for a viable final possession.

        Every passionate IU basketball fan …along with every Scoop contributor knew the story behind our March Madness ceilings. We watched teams worn down by excessive and needless offensive weaves (to nowhere)…We watched complete breakdowns in coaching and failed in-game adjustments.
        What good is Top-10 rankings, potential lottery picks, high seedings in the tournament, and conference titles when the ceilings were obvious? Keady could never get his glorious conference championship teams deep into March as well….Izzo has had his share of strike and misses in deep March Madness as well.
        Some coaches seem to be built for March Madness…while some are as “regular” and as predictable as a regular season. The same can be said for athletes….Some wilt when the spotlights are brightest…(can’t help but think of the Syracuse game and Cody looking completely lost in the pressure moments of a very aggressive defensive team). Some find a grit and a tougher constitution and elevate their games to match the moment. There is no regular season or draft status/ranking that can predict how any coach or player will embrace …or will wilt on the biggest stages. Steve Downing vs. Walton….No wilting there. Downing was a warrior never willing to be satisfied with regular season titles …He would never enjoy cutting down nets on McCracken after a loss. Yes, we did that under Crean.

  32. watched Colorado play tonight for a bit. They have a player that Archie recruited to Dayton but decommitted when Archie came to Indiana. McKinley Wright set career records at Colorado–it IS possible that the quality of high school players in Indiana are NOT what we HOPED or WANTED them to be. BTW Wright’s records 1700 points—681 rebounds and 650 assists for a 6 ft guard. Dont tell me Archie doesnt know talent –He did what he promised at that was recruit and lock down the borders of Indiana. The recruits have to Prove to me as well that they can demonstrate talent other than “recruitment videos”

    1. Interesting comment, TJ. But I don’t think anyone has said that Archie doesn’t know talent. The question is, can he sign enough of that talent? And the answer appears to be “no.”

      You raise a good question; “IS it possible that the quality of high school players in Indiana are NOT what we HOPED or WANTED them to be?” Perhaps Archie’s “Inside Out” recruiting strategy should have been modified to “IU will recruit the best HS BB talent in the state as long as those players are good enough to help us win championships.” Did anyone complain when Bob Knight signed Quinn Buckner, Scott May or Isaiah Thomas instead of players from Indiana High Schools? I don’t recall anyone suggesting that Kirk Haston didn’t belong in candy stripes.

      I think Tom Allen has the right recruiting philosophy. Recruit the players you need to win in the Big Ten, regardless of where that talent went to HS.

  33. Interesting comment posted on The Dailey Hoosier:
    “Most Indiana fans are not fair weather fans. That’s why we’ll turn on Saturday’s ass whipping and tolerate it for as long as we can. Yet that is the problem. We’ve tolerated being the laughing stock of the blue bloods, the laughing stock of the Big Ten, and tolerated being the wimpy little sister to Purdue long enough.

    We’re not going anywhere. But we’re definitely turning the channel sooner, we’re finding other things to do as the game gets out of hand early…we’re growing accustomed to being losers, and that’s the real problem. Fire Archie, or deal with another year of fans slowly wandering away from Indiana basketball.”

    1. Oh my. The Daily Hoosier is now the BB alter. Journalists have to write something. The more negative the better the journalist.

  34. That was not written by a journalist. It was a comment written in response to an article appearing on The Dailey Hoosier.

    I’m guessing the person who wrote it has already turned off today’s game.

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