IU’s losing streak to Purdue hits nine after 67-58 loss at Mackey

The slide continued.

And after a 67-58 loss at Mackey Arena, it’s necessary to clarify which one you’re referring to with Indiana.

The Hoosiers have now lost nine straight in their series with rival Purdue, a painful fact for cream and crimson partisans across the state. But on top of that, Saturday’s loss sent IU to its fifth straight loss to end the 2020-21 regular season.

As an NCAA tournament played entirely in the Hoosier state approaches, including some games at Simon Skjodt Assembly Hall and Mackey Arena, it’s likely IU (12-14, 7-12 Big Ten) will not be a participant, barring some miracle run during next week’s Big Ten tournament in Indianapolis. And it will be because of damning trends that just can’t be broken.

For one, IU just can’t hit shots. Easy, open shots.

IU hit just 38.5% from the field Saturday, including 5-of-23 from 3-point range. That included a success rate of just 1-of-13 from beyond the arc in the first half.

“Our guys played extremely hard, proud of them. Thought they competed all the way through to the end. We’re just struggling shooting the ball,” IU coach Archie Miller said. “If you look at the first half, if you go 1-for-13 from 3, probably about 11 of them were good looks. You make two or three of them, it’s a different game in the first half.”

But with the ball going every which way but in the net, IU went into the half behind 29-20, posting one of the Hoosiers’ more miserable first-half shooting performances.

These kinds of efforts have just been far too common, especially at Mackey. Coming into Saturday’s game, IU had connected on just 34-of-126 (26.9%) from beyond the arc in West Lafayette dating back to 2013-14. So in that respect, this was a continuation.

On the other hand, this was far from a game the Hoosiers couldn’t win. They slimmed the lead to four points, 35-31, early in the second half following a Trey Galloway 3. Purdue pushed it back to 12 points, 43-31, and the Hoosiers rallied back to 47-42.

But every time IU rallied, the No. 23 Boilermakers (18-8, 13-6) had an answer. One big one was 7-foot-4 freshman center Zach Edey, who produced 20 points on 8-of-10 shooting off the bench. He was hanging on the rim a ton Saturday.

“If he’s not eight, 10 feet out then it’s really hard to guard,” IU’s Trayce Jackson-Davis said. “We had a big emphasis on trying to push his catches out and (double) … but at the end of the day, I think towards the end, they called a lot of touch fouls on me, so he was able to get me deeper than I really would have liked because I couldn’t play as physical down the stretch.”

Officiating was a gripe for Miller, as well, in regards to one second-half call. Immediately after the Hoosiers trimmed the lead to five points, a quick 6-0 run by Purdue was capped by two free throws following a technical foul call on IU’s bench.

Miller isn’t sure what was said, or who said it. He never got a clear explanation from the officiating crew.

“There was no warning to me and, to be honest with you, you really have to look at it and ask, at the time of that game, is that was what was needed?” Miller said. “Can somebody just tell me, or just tell the scorer’s table? Can you just stop whatever’s going on? I know it didn’t play a big role in the game up until that point.

“So with five minutes to go in the game, guys are battling hard, both teams. Very, very tough call, and going to need some clarification on what was said to him, specifically, because it looked to me like he came all the way across the floor as if someone was talking directly at him.”

At that point, down 53-42, the Hoosiers were able to start hitting some open shots. But it was too little, too late. Three of their five 3-point makes came in the final five minutes.

Maybe it would have been different for IU if some of those shots came earlier. Maybe it would have helped if Armaan Franklin, a 45% shooter from deep, was available. The sophomore guard did not play for the third consecutive game, as he sits out with a right foot injury. IU was just thin.

Race Thompson, who had a procedure Wednesday to repair a facial injury, suited up for Saturday’s contest but rolled an ankle early in the second half. He came back in, but the 6-8 redshirt junior didn’t last long on the court. Thompson asked for a sub and finished the day with four points in 22 minutes played, 16 of those coming in the first half.

While the Hoosiers had four of their five starters in double figures, including a team-high 14 points from Al Durham, they just weren’t deep enough. In large part thanks to Edey’s performance, Purdue outpaced IU in bench points, 33-6.

Jerome Hunter, starting his third consecutive game, finished with 12 points in 32 minutes. But Galloway and Jordan Geronimo were the leading scorers off IU’s bench, with three points apiece.

“I know a lot of my teammates are angry right now, but we just gotta put the past behind us,” said Jackson-Davis, who had 12 points on 4-of-9 shooting. “We just gotta keep pushing forward, no matter the obstacles.”

The Hoosiers now have a giant barrier in front of them if they want to make the NCAA tournament — that hurdle being a major run in the Big Ten tournament. Given their lack of success of late, it would take a miraculous turnaround to change their fortunes.

Miller was trying to stay positive Saturday, though.

“We’ve played two of our hardest–fought games in our last two road games, defensively, and guys are battling hard,” Miller said. “If we keep that going here, I think we’re going to find a way to break back through.

“But at some point, we’re going to have to make some open shots.”

(above photo courtesy of IU Athletics)

92 comments

  1. Purdue is going to be very good next year. Very strong recruiting class. Indiana is going to be either mediocre or bad. And that about sums things up.

  2. I turned the game off when IU was 1 of 12 from 3-point range in the first half. This is embarrassing.

    Archie will get another year due to financial concerns, but how can anyone argue that he deserves to? Will IU be better or worse next season? That depends on who stays on the team, if Brunk comes back, if TJD returns, if our transfer guard can shoot or if we somehow recruit another transfer. That’s lot of “ifs,” and obviously suggests that Archie is not in control of his program or his future.

  3. Po,
    Good points! So many ifs! While we are dreaming, IU gets Xavier Johnson, transfer from Pitt. From the videos I’ve seen, he is superior to Rob and Durham. Parker shoot lights out. Lander, who physically looks like he should be in high school, matures and becomes a better shooter. Miller gets another transfer forward who can shoot the ball. Galloway, Leal and Geronimo make tremendous leaps, Victor style, because from what I’ve seen, they have obvious limitations. Hunter develops more speed and ball handling ability. Franklin, who is a good shooter, develops ball handling and quickness. Jackson Davis returns and has developed a short range jumper. Duncomb can play right away and is not a project. Brunk is healthy and can play 15 minutes a game. Other than that, looks like a great season. Let me add, that if Rob starts the first game next season, Miller should be canned on the spot.

  4. Yes Hopeful, what to do with Rob next season? Will it be a true meritocracy measured by the performance on both ends of the floor, or will Archie’s bias toward playing defense allow him to justify starting RP? If Archie gets another guard to transfer and Parker is good, how does RP get significant playing time? No quality transfer is going to sign with IU unless he’s very confident he’s going to be the starter.

    The silver lining in this debacle of a season is that it probably suppressed TJD’s stock with NBA teams, so I’d say it’s better than 50/50 he’ll return for a 3rd season. However, I won’t be surprised if Archie loses one or two players to transfer. These kids can’t be having any fun.

    1. Crean couldn’t bench VJ III….Do you recall that “meritocracy.” The “chosen one” was a nightly turnover mess and CharlaTom would never bench him. I recall a sequence of games when VJ got injured….and it was no happenstance how quickly improved the Hoosiers looked. We were forever stymied by his loyalty to A-Hope projects …and his ‘favorites’…until they weren’t his favorites as he ruthlessly sent them on their way because of what was thought to be career-ending injuries (e.g. Davis getting his head busted open and nearly dying on 17th St…and Creek’s gut-wrenching horrible knee cap displacement injuries). You need to get real, dude.
      All you talk about is BigTen titles courtesy mostly of Cody Zeller…while ignoring some of the weirdest loyalties and skitzo ruthless treatment of kids in the program’s history. It was beyond a mess.
      Archie is a balanced and decent man….unlike the last numbskull fraud.

  5. If you’re going to score 20 points in half you have to be good enough defensively to hold opponent to 19.
    IU men’s basketball to play at this level lacks talented physical size…not just shooters. In other words TJD needs help and a lot of help. And Brunk is not it. A healthy Brunk could play a role but even then IU men’s basketball more talented size needed. So, even with a borderline Brunk health wise much talented physical size needed for IU men’s basketball to play in this league or at this level.

    1. Come on, dudes…This is far more than Brunk’s absence. This has nothing to do with coaching and nothing to do with the AD. Here’s the slight list of tiny problems:

      No Brunk.
      No Smith…late transfer of a very valuable asset no coach could quickly reload/account.
      No Franklin (our best perimeter player and most improved player) due to injury (a measurably worse injury than must have been originally perceived).
      No 100 % Race due to broken facial bone (Illinois’ Dosunmu has taken 3 to 4 games to look anything of himself after similar injury/mask)
      Outside of all the above, our roster is one of the youngest in the conference.

      Nobody likes excuses …but when a roster takes that sort of hit to the more experienced/integral components in this conference? You can babble all you want about falling from grace but you guys made more excuses for Crean when it was one guy out of the rotation. This is three experienced major contributors completely gone from competition ( two from our inside play ) from last season and a Race Thompson (more inside play) who had his nose broken twice and is still gutting it out.

      With such a depleted/banged-up roster along with the absence of Smith (late transfer of what appeared to be a Hoosier content to stay) and Brunk, I find it amazing every game hasn’t been a “massacre.”

      You should come clean on your motives…whatever they may be. We’re all frustrated….but these kids have done their best under very tough circumstances and hits to a roster.

      1. Waaaaaa. A lot of teams couldn’t even field a team this year,…but this isn’t a ‘blip’ like at KY or Duke,…this is a pattern. You can call it bad luck, injuries, recruits leaving early, recruits not playing up to expectations,..whatever.
        What I call it is a 4 year hìstory in the league at a .434 % winning percentage.

      2. No. Basically just consequences of Myles Brand, Doninger, and others…Decisions do have consequences and in this case LONG TERM CONSEQUENCES….
        Confirmation in second half of season with Oladipo, Zeller team… where IU men’s with T.C. basketball failed to modify, make adjustments to game strategy…after being scouted…things that worked first half of season failed to work second half of season capped by March Madness tournament Syracuse loss…IU men’s basketball has never fully recovered and things have been unstable trending downhill down hill Since then.

  6. Besides the $ and ‘if this guy does this and if that guy does that’ nonsense, it boils down to one thing. Does SD believe that this program is likely to get measureably better under its current management? Considering the tailwind problems with big brother, ..my guess, No. Remember, the AD was a student team manager for Bob Knight. If this situation is nauseating for you, imagine how he feels.

  7. All offensive issues revolve around Tom Osturman. Not capable at this level. He has to go NOW then maybe Archie could do a good job. That is the firing that needs to happen first.

    1. Newby: Please explain. Ostrom’s resume, like Ryan’s looks very impressive. I doubt he’s doing anything that doesn’t get Miller’s approval. Secondly, it’s apparent that his main contribution is recruiting.

  8. They cant hit a jumper at all they stink mediocre team that cant make shots period with or without injured players

  9. I hate to keep repeating myself but basketball is a magical game when the shots are falling. Your team looks like National Champions. But when the well runs dry, your team looks totally inept. Welcome to the 2000’s era of college basketball. Like when Ayo scores 15 to close a game, Audige does something similar. Henry does it twice, IU hits umpteen 3’s to dismantle Kent St. in the elite 8, etc., etc.,

    Our best outside shot maker is out. We’ve lost every game since.

    Bitch at the offense all you want but how many open shots can we miss? Apparently over 10 per half. I counted them. Go rewatch if you doubt it. For God’s sake Leal can’t even hit a 3 right now!

    Is the IN high school 3 Pt line the same is college? Plz set me straight.

    And the refs…..wow….these dudes get paid for this? Unreal. Elbowed in the face on a rebound with no foul NOR REVIEW??? Phantom technical??? 7-4 guy literally draping his arms over our rebounders like a 1950’s prom date? WTF?

    I’m beginning to think Archie has a hit out on him like his brother. Recall when a Pac12 ref offered a bounty for techs called on Sean? It happened! I have a ton of “if I were Archie’s” but today it would’ve been getting tossed & letting my team know that I have their back & Im not going to stand for losing & getting dirt thrown over my coffin.

  10. Game turned when we cut it to four (was that after the very rare Galloway triple?)…Don Fischer quickly perked up…He’s been doing this a long time. He understands how games seemingly one-sided can turn on the dime. A kid nobody expected to hit triple…Could the team capture belief in such a moment…? Slam! Door shuts. We subsequently come up with three empty possessions. Doors open briefly in games….That Galloway triple was ‘momentum shifting’ knocking at the door. She’s like a ghost….Do everything right in those instances in which comebacks and game hinge and she’ll change your fate, the outcome, and take you as her host. You can ride her wings to victory….But you must respect her. Do not be foolish with the opportunity. Do not disrespect the shifting momentum at the door.

  11. I’m going out on a limb here (hee-hee, not really) and predicting Illinois to win the national championship. It won’t be Michigan. It won’t be Gonzaga…It won’t be Baylor…It won’t be Kansas.

    Illinois is your next national champ. I think Kofi Cockburn is still toying with everyone.
    That man will be unstoppable…Add the plethora of shot-making speed in the Illini backcourt to his dominance inside? Nobody is going to stop the Illini….

    Are you still out there, Chet? Recall what I said about Brad Underwood a few years back?

  12. Not to mention the Illini have a better back-up center than many team’s starter…..Of course, they’ll only need him while Kofi needs a sip of water and some time to clear his throat of the pieces of paint he’s been eating up.

  13. The Hoosiers were the 11th seed last season in the B1G tournament. It looks like a 10 seed this season. In the four seasons during Miller time they have finished 9th, 10th ,11th and 10th. Do those results taste too good to hurry through?

    1. Right on, Scwartzie. Archie Miller is not merely a coach, he’s the CEO of a big time enterprise in Indiana Basketball. In most any other industry/business, he’d be run out of town with his track record. I see no reason why IU should keep him. The program is in disarray, and he’s the head of the mess, so its his head that gets the chopping block. Great exchange recently between Jeff Goodman and Robbie Hummel. They both like Archie, but stated that Indiana is the iconic program of the Big10, in which players and coaches come under more scrutiny than any other program. It takes special players to play at Indiana and a special coach to lead them. I think Archie is a good guy and a good coach, but is not the leader the iconic IU basketball program needs. The program needs a more charismatic, dynamic, outgoing coach. With its facilities, fine academic institution, history, and rabid fan base, there is no reason why Indiana can’t elevate back to relevance and once again be a leader in NCAA hoops. Archie Miller IMHO is not the guy to take them there.

      1. Because I trust the opinion of a Purdue grad turned broadcaster…..on the topic of IU hires and IU trajectory? Thanks so much for your concern, Robbie “Boiler Up” Hummel.

        I would also like to thank Dan ‘The Grudge” Dakich…for his rational and heartfelt concerns after his lifelong grudge stemming from Knight dissing him and his 10 year conflicted addiction to have a wrestling match on radio airways with ‘Mr. How IU Effed Me Over’ by not making me the head coach after Kelvin.

        You guys have some wonderful sources of concern for candy stripes. Do you ever ask yourselves why they were so in love with Tom Crean?

        Do you ever wonder why Bill Walton has never uttered the name of Steve Downing in his entire broadcasting lifetime….Is it because he’s had zero opportunity to ever discuss IU Basketball?

        Do you people actually live in this “outright objectivity” fantasy world and those on the airways or writing for sports media outlets live by such standards where personal bias has no control of an opinion or easily disguised agenda?

        Personally, I wouldn’t trust a word out of Hummel’s mouth because of the simple fact he’s from Valpo. That’s my own personal bias….Valpo was a huge h.s. sports rival town 7 miles to the south of tiny Chesterton (my stomping grounds). We always saw them as about as hick as Hicksville could produce. Their storied coach of year’s past at Valpo was making guys get crew cuts 20 years past their fashionable and militaristic era. Though we both played in the Duneland
        Conference, Valpo had three times the size graduation classes of Chesterton. Their teams were very good by virtue of class size…but they were also as mechanical and usurped of personality as Hummel on the airways.

        1. I don’t know why I bother with responding, because I don’t feel like you are going to listen because you’ve made your entire identity around this point, but VERY few people were “in love” with Tom Crean. A few were, but it was very much the exception to the rule. But there was a giant swath of people who were just “let’s wait and see, and let’s stay positive, hope it works out and let’s get behind Indiana Basketball.”

          People hoping Crean succeeded does not mean they loved him. If he pulled it off and hung a banner, of course people would have loved him. And that drives you crazy for some odd reason.

          A lot of people were critical of the huge contract extension that Glass gave Crean before he’d had a chance to prove that he could hang banners.

          1. Those so-called “critical” people were not on Scoop…Maybe in your circles, but not here.

            I know why he was beloved…It had nothing to do with basketball. It was his demonetization of Sampson recruits and endless thumping of Christian ideologies on public forums. He built his armor early…to protect himself from honest critical eyes.

            Spotting a fraud from the get-go had nothing to do with agenda or not giving someone a chance. Tom Crean never gave anyone a chance…You said almost exactly the same thing about a week ago on another thread. Why would I want that to succeed even if it came with hanging a banner? My biggest fear was the happenstance and luck that may find us in a deep run with the fraud as coach. I believe karma took that possibility away from a man who treated kids as very disposable assets only of value to his own resume. Far beyond being a terrible X’s and O’s coach, I believe he backroom dealt his way into Bloomington…I also believe he was a man with zero moral fiber. He recruited kids with creepy tactics and then he’d just as quickly scholly crunch them off when his next “upside” creepy obsession would need a roster spot.

            I’m hoping IU fans learned some lessons over the past half century.

  14. Find a coach who can teach the modern game, toughness and grit yeah thats great and all but in 2021 basketball is about guys who can space the floor and shoot the 3 im all in on John Bielein for the next head coach don’t care who disagrees with me

  15. Hard to argue with Beilein as a next hire…..It is a business and if Beilein is even halfway considering a job at Indiana, it’s hard to turn away from such an opportunity. But he’s really the only name worth making a change…otherwise I stick with Archie.
    It would take a boatload of cash to accomplish in the narrow opportunity window only available at the end of this season …and that’s why it seems like pure fantasy.

  16. BC is in the running for Bielein im pretty sure even before Covid-19 they couldn’t afford him but they are attempting to try ive barely watch IU this season because they hard to watch even when healthy they struggle to score points you need atleast 4 guys on the court who can shoot around Trayce Jackson-Davis so that he has space to operate

  17. Indiana’s freshman class this year was ranked #2 in the B1G. Purdue’s freshman looked like upperclassmen and a team you don’t want to play in the NCAA this year. Indiana’s freshmen look like they all should think about switching to intramural hoops at the Hyper.

    I feel like I’m this guy in the middle that agrees with none of you all. This team sucks. I’ve never had a more joyless experience watching an Indiana team, and given the frustrations of the Crean years, that is saying something major.

    Check out Tony Adranga’s amazing post about what’s going wrong. He’s brought the most intelligent, thoughtful, detailed and full on analysis of where the Indiana Basketball Program is under Archie Miller. It develops into an inditement.

    He gives a lot of detail, stats and analysis for each point, so read in depth. Until this year, Tony had been a pretty staunch defender in giving Archie more time. But here’s his conclusion:

    I wanted to be fair in my assessment of the Archie Miller era. I looked at the situation he inherited, where the team has been, where they’re currently at, and what the future might look like.

    With four years of data on Miller’s teams, things are no longer anomalies, they are trends. The trends I see are:

    Slow-paced offense
    Long scoring droughts
    Bad shooting
    Bad spacing
    Not valuing the basketball
    Lack of development in key areas
    Regression on the defensive end
    Letting shooters get comfortable

    Again, these are trends. They are not one-year data points. That is extremely concerning and why I think it’s time to move on.

    I understand the financials behind it, I get the optics of canning a coach only after four years, but this is not what Fred Glass promised, and it certainly isn’t what Archie Miller himself promised.

    It’s time to move on.

    I’m just a fan, so it doesn’t matter what I think. My opinion is that I don’t think things are going to work out. I’m not going to call for a man’s job because what’s the point. But, I’ve heard the arguments, put the question out there and some of you have thoughtfully responded in why you think things will get better. I’m not with you. I just don’t see it. The trends are just too alarming. Add in the fact that he’s pretty much lost the vast majority of fans (fairly or unfairly), I don’t think IUBB is positioned for future success.

    1. Archie certainly wasn’t my first choice….Then again, I don’t think anyone in IU’s hiring systems care about Scoop contributor’s first choice.

      Again, he was a bit too much Wonder Bread for my taste. I took a peek at his spouse’s twitter page and was hit with the same sort of ad nauseam/sinking feeling in the gut that came with a look at Crean’s social media page. With Fred Glass, it was always about the down home apple pie image….
      But, from my observations, that usually comes with soft teams and far too many “feel good” tales to fill the void of where some tough love and disciplined focus may have been more what the doctored ordered.

      There is an edge of toughness…and in making players accountable that seems to separate the successful coaches from those less confrontational/demanding of the their staffs and of their teams. You don’t have to be the Knight extreme or be a tyrant…..(Knight only became more tyrannical as frustration mounted in his latter years at IU).

      Archie may be tougher than meets the eye behind the scenes…I really don’t know. But from simply an outsiders observations, I’ve never felt he is as demanding as many of the replacement names we float around.
      Watched Loyola of Chicago today…Porter Moser appears to be a really decent man…but there is also this very demanding side to his coaching (much like Brad Underwood @ Illinois…or Howard @ Michigan) that I rarely sense from Archie. There’s no tough love. That’s why he wasn’t my first choice…Too much Aunt B and apple pie. Hell, even Aunt B had a tough edge…so that’s probably a bad example.

        1. Floated like a butter biscuit and stung like an Aunt Bee…? Thanks for the clarification, t. Forgot it was “Bee.”

    2. DD: Thanks for the sensible, rational post. ‘Tony’ essentially is saying what I’ve been pointing out for weeks. It’s not about ‘hating’ anyone. It’s about running the show in a way that gets the job done.
      At this juncture, (after some reconsideration) at least in my humble opinion,..is someone that has turned down Michigan and Purdue, and the head coaching job at Duquesne to be an associate head coach, a Knight protege’, an assistant under Mike Davis….had a winning record at a D1 school as head coach for 5 years,…is responsible for getting MSU’s top player, Henry…and countless others over the years from central Indiana to head up to East Lansing (instead of Bloomington)..and maybe most importantly has been a close associate to Tom Izzo for years. Former IU baller, Dane Fife. He’s matured, paid his dues and would come in at full speed with a complete understanding of the culture and expectations.

      1. I thought you had just argued for the Drake coach as a “perfect fit.” Did I miss something….? Now it’s Fife?

        Understanding the culture doesn’t mean anything…They all sell that malarkey. If you’re going to make a change and look trigger happy with the “Jumpers to Nowhere” Miller after being excessively patient with the “Weaves to Nowhere” Crean, then you best go big.

        Fife is not going “big.” It’s boring and safe. Any IU guy from the past is boring and safe. I’d bring Crean back before hiring Fife. At least we have some amusement.

        1. Your ‘takes’ are amazing and all over the place. Beilein, Crean or keep Archie! That’s pretty solid!!! Yes, their are a number of current coaches (and staffs) that would do a much better job than what we have now under contract. As was pointed out, Schilling and Flint saw the writing on the wall, and bailed. You indicate that Fife would be boring. Did you think Archie’s hire was ‘exciting’? The stark reality is this, ‘boring’ or not,..Fife has been successfully cherry picking recruits from Indiana for years [see number 0,..Henry], this year, from Ben Davis + a couple of other guys currently picking up steam as the dance convenes. He was a warrior while playing at IU; Had a winning (league record) with little to work with in the Summit League as a head coach. Most importantly,…pay attention,…he has been groomed by the most successful current Big Ten coach,…a coach, like Fife,…that absorbed everything from his predecessor, Jud Heathcoat. Whether you know it or not, Fife has turned down a half dozen D1 head coaching jobs since going back to MSU + associate head coaching jobs at Purdue, Michigan and likely others.
          Unlike Beilein, he’s in his prime..and unlike the Drake coach isn’t ‘married’ culturally to the state of Iowa. Then again,..you’d rather have Crean who’s again being exposed, again, this time
          at Georgia or a guy in his 60’s.

          1. They’ve all cherry-picked and cherry-picked the hell of out Crean…

            Have you heard of Gary Harris…Zach Randolph…Branden Dawson, Nic Moore, Mitch McGary….Glenn Robbinson III …?
            Trey Lyles? That just a few off the top of my head. While Crean was bringing in a slew of A-Hope toe-trippers, the best were jumping the borders. Get real, dude.

            Fife was lucky as hell when he stupidly fouled a prolific 3-pt shooter when the Hoosiers had a four point lead with seconds to go…(against #1 Duke at a March Madness semi). …Williams missed the free throw and A.J. Moye made an unbelievable block on a potential game-winning put-back from Boozer.

            Very lucky, Dane. He could have ended up the Steve Bartman of IU March Madness.

          2. And they’re not all over the place…

            a. I keep Archie until he can develop his own underclassmen into upperclassmen. Considering March Madness was cancelled last season (most thought we were a lock) and then a subsequent pandemic season with no fans as “sixth man” in Assembly, I believe it would be a ruthless disgrace to fire him now.
            b. If the brass wants a quick change (risking disgrace), it should be a home run (Stevens, Beilein, Beard)…or someone beyond transformative (breaking barriers…e.g. Teri Moren).
            c. Last resorts are all primarily boring hires who will not be viewed by recruits as game-changers.
            d. I’d bring back Crean before any boring “last resort” not seen as a home run. Nothing wrong with admitting we made a mistake. We’ll call it Resurrection 2.0

    3. “I feel like I’m this guy in the middle that agrees with none of you all. This team sucks. I’ve never had a more joyless experience watching an Indiana team, and given the frustrations of the Crean years, that is saying something major.”

      I’m with you, DD. I’m part of that middle. This team does suck, and I can’t only fault the players. A few games back Greg Doyel wrote an article about how Archie threw his players under a bus, which is so detrimental to the idea of “team.” Certainly the opposite of LEO. Others write about Crean, and I wasn’t a fan of his either. But he came at a time when we were at an all-time low and brought us back from the dead. Archie came here under different circumstances and has totally under performed. We absolutely need to make a change.

      1. The Cleveland Cavaliers thought they had hit the jackpot with Beilein. I think he was canned about 1/3 of the way into his first season. Big names cost big $ with no guarantee. Glass found a ‘blue light special’ on aisle 5 with Archie. Young, short track record in a marginal conference.

  18. DD, agree because who’s to say if it’s not one thing it will simply be something else. It is relevant to head coach and all of coaching staff and program that the head coach surrounds himself with….and it does include recruiting and team development. It includes having enough depth that players can step up, being prepared to take over when and if called upon. That’s why there are usually 12 players on a team. A player here and there won’t do it at this level and even with talent coaching players and team development still have to be implemented. IU men’s basketball picture simply does not look like this.

  19. Aside from the obvious flaws in this team that have been overly documented on this site, one of my concerns is that I don’t even know the assistant coaches by name, aside from Mike Roberts. Is the staff really tier 1, elite program qualified? Roberts was supposed to be the bigs coach but he wasn’t exactly the most prolific front liner we ever had. Not even close. He played hard but that has nothing to do with inside footwork and moves. I’ll go do my research on the whole staff but I have always had comfort in knowing there were quality coaches behind Knight, for example. Look how many went on the greatness. But now ???

    The head coach must surround himself with all of the pieces of the puzzle; recruiters, counselors, & offensive & defensive geniuses. Isn’t that the idea? Our offense does create good shots, but I’m not sure those would be the shots this team (or last year’s) should be shooting.

    A lot of you continue to point to Juwan Howard as doing so much in so little time. But the key thing that he did was build a premier staff led by Phil Martelli who was unceremoniously fired by St. Joseph’s after 20+ yrs. That guy can coach! St.J hasn’t smelled the top 1/2 of their league since he got the axe.

    In conclusion, I sense our staff is weaker than an IU staff should be and it is inferior to other Big Ten programs. Loyalty to guys who helped you win at Mid major level is likely not the recipe at IU.

    1. Doesn’t hurt to be following Beilein…Doesn’t hurt to have the happenstance of Moe Wagner’s brother following in step with the building blocks of your early success. Nothing truly happens in a bubble ….

      Where is Indiana’s brief success and the Zeller momentum without Austin Etherington….? .Etherington was likely more instrumental to those “outright” Big10 titles and “numerous” Sweet 16’s than any recruiter, insider or coach on the bench. And how was Austin rewarded? He didn’t even get to graduate from Indiana….Austin is the guy who should have had the locker room/lounge named after him.

    2. For the record, on my end, I want to make it clear about my stance on Juwan Howard. I have no idea if he’s going to be a great coach or not. Looks really great this year.

      I just think it is interesting that the narrative around the hires of Archie was universally praised, while the narrative around Howard’s hiring was held as dubious at best. Juwan Howard might turn into Mike Davis. Who knows?

      In short, I just think that we don’t know much. Our powers of predicting the future are not very good.

      BUT, you are SO right in saying that having Martelli on staff was huge for Michigan and Howard’s program (I went to high school outside of Philly — I’m a huge fan of…um…Phil). Archie’s assistants have been less than impressive. Bruiser Flint was a great recruiter and ditched us for UK. Once he left, our recruiting sucks. Also, what happened to Ed Schilling? That was the guy who gave AM a huge leg up in recruiting battles in Indiana. When he left, AM started striking out in-state. Langford came to IU because of Schilling.

      Love your posts. They always are thoughtful and have my brain thinking in ways I don’t see.

      Are you actually in AZ? Where at? I lived in Tucson as a kid for a bit. My folks are back there now. Love the desert.

      1. A bit odd how so many are ignoring the job Underwood has done….Hear a lot of fawning over Holtmann and Howard. He has such a lock on the Chicago recruiting market that he may be our greatest impediment to banners.
        Michigan and MSU have repeatedly pulled some top recruits out of NW Indiana and Indianapolis area. What’s left in basketball hotbeds of the Midwest? By making Illinois steadily more renewed and relevant, Underwood has created additional limits and battles in areas we may have pulled the occasional top recruit.
        Obviously, it’s been a while, but Isiah Thomas was from Chicago.

        Simply think of the added competitiveness now present with big upticks happening at OSU, Illinois….and, to some degree, Purdue. Beilein had Michigan in beyond good shape so I don’t consider reaping the rewards of a very healthy program as anything wholly transformative.

        How much does our possible coaching change cause any slowdown at OSU or Illinois? How much does it affect quick changes in the Midwest recruiting landscape and the ability to attract top talent from Illinois (Chicago) or just across borders? Does it slow down Kentucky’s attractiveness to the one-and-done’s and 5-star pools? Do we have any choice (due to the immense uptick in nearby Big10 programs) than the hope in landing kids in our backyard?

        Bottom Line: The competitive landscape in the Midwest (on the courts and on the recruiting trails) has never been tougher. It may be a bit naive to believe our singular moves deteriorate their strong inroads since Archie’s attempt to rebuild a program which had all the “hysteria” slowly die out its 9-year mega balloon of empty hype. If it’s not a total home run hire (Stevens, Beilein, Beard), your expectations of anyone delivering more than Archie may be given a rather rude awakening.

      2. Thanks DD for the compliment. Indeed I live in AZ SE of Phx. The desert’s great (except for June – Sept) when I escape.

        1. I gave you a great compliment a week or so ago and got nothin’…..I’m hurt.

          Then again, I’ve never been part of the cool kids club. That’s how I roll…lol.

          Come to think of it, that might be Archie’s major problem…He just doesn’t fit in with the coaching cool kids and the cool kids donors.

          https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SSCzDykng4g

          1. Did I miss compliment that Harv? Or is that when Brad intercepted our “bromance” as he called it? <3

    3. AZ: Spot on. Just like what Allen’s in the process of doing,…you have to have guys that can recruit and actually instruct at a high level.

  20. The staff does a good job teaching an that gets good open shots. Players are simply not sinking enough of them. Turnovers are near an acceptable #. D is damn good. Coach Miller was a good shooter at NCST. But he’s out of eligibility.

    1. I said besides development,….RECRUIT. As in knowing talent not just reading their press clippings.

  21. OK, so I’m assuming Archie will be back next season unless they work out some type of agreement in regard to departure and money IU would pay to him. Doubt that will happen. So, the question I’ll pose is; what happens if the team turns it around next year and are decent, say 18-12, 20 -10 (not sure how many game they will play next year) and make tourney. Does Archie remain coach for sixth season??

    1. I think Archie will have to win a lot more than 18 games next season in order to keep his job. And a lot will depend on the perceived quality of his recruiting class. But even if Archie produces 20 + wins next season, he should not, under any circumstances, get a contract extension. Let him go into his sixth season knowing that he has to produce a blow out season in order to keep his job.

        1. Recent results prove that Archie is not recruiting effectively now! He whiffed on all but one of his priority targets for the Class of 2021 and signed only one player. And signing another high quality grad-transfer would just be putting a band-aid on the problem. An 18-win season is not going to allow Archie to sign a top-20 rated class for 2022. A year from now, I’d put my money on a new coach with the right pedigree. Look at what Howard has done at Michigan in two seasons! Look at his 2021 recruiting class! Howard is blowing Archie away in every way a coach’s performance can be measured.

          What’s the difference between Archie going into the sixth season of his 7-year contract and the speculation surrounding him right now? After next season, Archie would still have two years remaining on his contract, giving IU another year to see if Archie’s has hit his ceiling. Extending him after four mediocre seasons and one terrible season would be a huge risk for Dolson’s career and a far bigger mistake than when IU extended Crean’s contract. At least Crean had won an Outright Big Ten Championship before IU extended his contract.

          I’m amazed that so many IU BB fans have become so tolerant of mediocracy.

          1. Last year about this time there was some “fire Miller” sentiment expressed. I can only assume that there was more of that in other places. I’m sure that boosted recruitment!!

      1. That’s such BS. 18 wins earns an extension. Hell of a lot better than starting all over with someone new.

        1. How ironic, IU fired Crean just after he completed an 18-win season. My my, how our standards have declined.

        2. I have a better chance of winning Powerball than this program, in its current state winning 18 games next season. Frankly, and I seriously hope, we never have to find out.

  22. I’m waiting for a book titled…”Season on the Brunk.”

    Gosh…That Loyola of Chicago team is a blast to watch. I’m hooked on that bunch. Porter Moser? Anyone?

    Bummer the Hoosiers have had a terrible year, but there are some fun teams to watch this March Madness. Texas Tech and Loyola …being two of my guilty pleasures. Krutwig drained six free throws in a row against a desperate Drake team making a valiant effort to comeback in the second half against the Ramblers. Major stones in the crafty Loyola center built of old school post skills and an obvious love for the game….Fun, fun team.

  23. Watching Ice-T do his ‘CarShield’ commercial….

    “When your check engine light comes on…? That’s game over.”

    Is the Hoosiers check engine light on? Is it game over for Archie’s March Madness transmission unable to find a higher gear? We should have bought ‘BannerShield’. Coaching repairs can get very expensive. By simply making $100,000 per month payments, BannerShield will protect you from those very expensive bad hire/broken coaching engine repairs…..We all know how coaching repairs can cost you millions of dollars. Need a new coach….in your Banner engine? Let BannerShield cover all those unexpected rebuilds. Sometimes you just don’t have 10 million quickly available . Call today. Operators are standing by. You deserve the piece of mind in knowing BannerShield will get you back on the road to Final Fours.

    1. HfH: Referencing your earlier comments on recruiting. Fife has been instrumental, regardless who was leading IU….and THAT’S my point.

  24. Incidentally, just ran across a statement in 2014 from Jay Bilas that, in his opinion, FIFE was, (even then), was one of the top 5 candidates in the country to head up a major program next. In retrospect, I wish Glass would have listened. Maybe Fred does as well? Another year of this , or likely worse, even Fife wouldn’t want it.

    1. Although Fife would probably be an upgrade, he is going to have to wait another year before he gets a chance at the IU job. But him still being an assistant after so many years makes one wonder.

      I’m not opposed to Fife, and he does have an excellent pedigree (playing for Knight and being mentored by another Hall-of-Famer coach), but he has no head coaching experience. Then again, neither did Howard when he took over at Michigan. Perhaps, just like Michigan did with Howard, IU starts Fife out at a lower salary and is poised to give him a big increase and extension after he proves himself.

      As for Fife’s recruiting acumen, I’m sure he’s a good recruiter, but let’s remember he’s recruiting for a storied program that is in the top-20 almost every season and a hall-of fame head coach. Fife ain’t the man, he’s just the messenger.

  25. Remember Dan Aykroyd and Jane Curtin doing ‘Point / Counter-point’ on SNL?

    “Jane, you ignorant slut. ”

    Just kidding, Brad. Fife would make a fine coach. I just don’t think he’s a home run. If you’re going to cough up 10 million (in addition to what it will take to bring in a new guy) , then I’m thinking it needs to be someone who really shakes up the order of things (puts some real notice into recruits and some real feelings of excitement in the fan base). Does Dane Fife do that? The fan base is impatient now…Do you think they’ll be ready to buy into another longer term rebuild? We’re not even willing to allow Archie to build his first senior class of recruits….

    My argument is simply for a bit more patience now….because that’s all most of you are selling in the pure conjecture of someone not even a “home run” name accepting the job and putting us through a total and disruptive reset. You’re selling more patience after a bonfire.

    1. I remember the actual ’60 minutes’ segment on Sunday nights featuring James J. Kilpatrick and his leftist foil, Shana Alexander.
      Let me put it this way….no one ‘knows’ how ‘any’ hire would do here. At least Fife played, coached and has been recruiting Indiana very successfully for years. He’s been sitting with Izzo for years. I also think he might consider, similar to Allen signing on, ‘cheap’ with built in bonuses. Right now we have a FOOTBALL HEAD COACH that makes more than his roundball counterpart. That has NEVER HAPPENED. Finally, like Allen, it’s highly possible that Fife has been sitting in East Lansing as heir apparent OR possibly, taking the IU job, if offered.

        1. The difference, among many, [re funny classic photo] ..Fife actually played on a scholarship at a national powerhouse while Cue Cards was shooting intramural hoops. Incidently, don’t know if you’ve noticed,..but Miller’s staff has been using cards of late….

      1. And TA making more money than our BB coach is GREAT News. I hope it remains that way for a very long time, because that would indicate that IU FB continues to be successful. IU’s Administration is finally putting their money where their mouth has been and investing in an excellent FB coach. I hope by the time TA is done, IU will erect a statue of him outside Memorial Stadium.

  26. I’m such an optimist (self-proclaimed) that I find myself wondering….

    …can we shoot 3s as well as our opponents this week?
    …can we hit 80% of our FTs in each game
    …can we dodge a “hero-to-be” again on the other team(s)
    …will Armaan play?
    …is there any gas left in the tank?
    …can we stop TOs such that we don’t give up more than 10 pts off of them?
    …can we break even on Rebs.?
    …can we finally beat Rutgers?
    …can we win more than 2 games in a row?
    …can we beat IL?
    …can we beat Iowa 3x in the same year?

    Taking ea. question alone, I think we can.

  27. How depressing is it to see Hoosier football stories in early March …..? Used to be early March was when we were just getting started at amping up our basketball excitement. Now we’re being told to go to bed without any next morning sunrise to anxiously anticipate..
    Every March feels like a repeated saga of feeling left out…No invitation. Nothing to look forward.

    The Big10 tournament probably just another punch to the gut….before football tells my old banners to go back to sleep. Your day is done, basketball.

  28. I think it was AWin that made the point about “staff”..IF Archie is going to be “to the death” loyal to Ostrum then fire both. IF you want changes in the program then Archie has to get REAL about the job the staff is doing. I personally thought Mike Roberts was a good hire. The Archie-Tom show fromMid major Dayton is NOT translating into success at Bigger more competitive schools/ league. If Archie is Unyielding in his reformation of staff then what we have NOW is what we will have in future. Having said THAT ,,,any hire that IU Makes should have been asked about what expectations of the staff.

    1. Well, actually it was me about 2 months ago,…but no one seemed to get it at the time. Yes, Schilling and Flint bailing was the ‘canary in the mine’.

  29. Why not take a chance on Fife? I don’t believe he could do any worse than Miller. So , there is only upside. You buy out his contract, and be done with it. Life is too short to put up with mediocrity and failure. You would only disagree if you believe IU has no chance of becoming a basketball power in the future.

    1. HH: you’re not the first to mention Fife in these parts, but kudos. I’m on board. IU guy, totally gets it, worked his tail off as a player, been working hard under the tutelage of Izzo and was a head coach himself, and he’s doing a good job of recruiting. IU definitely has everything needed to once again be a basketball power. Time to put out the current dumpster fire and move on. Go Hoosiers!

  30. “Fire ARCHIE!!! We’re smart!!”

    “Hire Indiana grad who has never been a head coach for a D1 program!!! He made three pointers when he played here!!!”

    “How about that high school guy????”

    Good grief.

    1. DD: He increased win totals 5 consecutive years at IP-Ft. Wayne Mastadons with a winning record, a D-1 basketball program. Turned down HC job at Duquesne, associate head coaching offers from Beilein at Michigan and Painter at Purdue before going back to Izzo. Tell you what,…when/if AM is given one more season then you, AZ and HfH can explain why, after a likely worse season Dolson should keep him. His tenure is possibly worse than that of Lou Watson’s in the 60’s. There is nothing, I mean NOTHING that indicates otherwise. He’s .454 in conference since coming here. Top assistant bailouts, bad team, insufficient recruiting pipeline. Then again, maybe you guys love being at the bottom of the conference and sitting home during the NCAA tournament. Greg Lansing was just canned at ISU with a 182-122 record with 1/70th of the budget.

      1. Brad, I don’t know how many times I need to write in these tiny white boxes that I’m not pining for IU to keep AM. I’ve posted two dozen posts about the Indiana mediocrities and it is my view that I think Indiana and AM are in their last days. So you can just stop with that. My position is that I’m not going to call for a man’s job on the internet, because it doesn’t matter what I think, and maybe its a karma thing or something. We all have our superstitions.

        Tell you what, if we’re going to take a blind chance, I think internet commenters should get first crack at coaching the IUBB program. We’ve never called a play that didn’t work. All of our inbounds plays lead to layups. And, brother, the defense schemes are lockdown, in that when the other team scores, it is because we let them just to make things interesting. We’ve never recruiting a player that didn’t turn into a Blue Chip. We’ve never put our foot in our mouths in a press conference. We’ve also been so wonderfully gifted with boosters and famous alumni, that we even inspired Mark Cuban to pay for the entire IU Athletic budget so that we can pay the IUWBB coach a salary that would be the envy of Third World Dictators around the Globe.

        Hoosiers are back baby. 1974-1976 = 2021-2521. Pax Indiana.

        1. Sorry Harv. I think I might be on the border of plagiarizing your schtick. Just let me know where I need to send the royalty checks.

        2. Pay me $4 million guaranteed for at least five years and I’ll give it a try.

        3. DD: Just correcting your misstatement on Fife. HEAD COACH at IP-Ft. Wayne. Winning record.

    2. IU is not going to fire Archie after this season. It’s just not going to happen. The question to debate is what does Archie have to do next season in order to keep his job? Some suggest he simply has to produce an 18-win season. To me, that’s a pretty low bar for a coach with his record in his fifth season at a school like IU. I suggest the criteria that should determine if Archie has a sixth season at IU is a 20+ win season and a highly ranked 2022 recruiting class. If he produces neither, then I think every reasonable Hoosier BB fan will conclude that it will be time for him to go.

      1. Doesn’t the rampant “fire Archie” sentiment make recruiting difficult? If that’s the bar, isn’t his firing after next season a fait accompli?

  31. Yup, don’t look down. Just jump. Cliff diving gone bad. Plan your work, work your plan.

  32. So let’s assume they hire Fife. Does anyone think the current players are so in love with Archie that they jump ship? I doubt it. I don’t think any players leaves that wasn’t intending on doing so anyway. Does Fife get a better supporting staff and the ability to recruit in places Archie has been unable to? Who knows, but what is the downside of finding out. I know the argument is Smith transferred and Brunk was hurt, but neither of them were great scorers. In fact, Smith was usually in a turnover race with Green each game. Having said that, if Smith and Brunk were healthy IU probably would have won 4-5 more games this season. They would have helped with rebounding. That doesn’t excuse the recruiting issues, poor offense and woeful shooting. That requires totally different players than Archie has been able to get. Time for a change.

    1. “Smith was usually in a turnover race with Green each game.”

      Well, last season Green average 15.2 minutes per game with 1.8 turnovers per game.

      Smith averaged 30.4 minutes per game with 1.6 turnovers per game.

      So Green had twice as many turnovers per minute played. Close race.

  33. So what does it say if Smith was doing that well and was happy with the direction of IU basketball, that he transferred to Arkansas? Does anyone on this post know why? It’s never been explained.

  34. Listened to POTB today and the podcasters said as much that Buyout too large for this year and they dont REALLY expect things to change as far as player development. Shooting may improve but not enough to help TJD (if he stays). IF what they say comes or appears to be coming to fruition; I hope IU fires CAM before BIG10 season gets into full swing; because I dont think CAM can survive a full season with the situation as it is.

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