FanDuel - WFBC

April 02, 2008

Indiana set to hire Crean as hoops coach: Indiana University will hire Marquette's Tom Crean as its basketball coach and is expected to introduce him at a news conference Wednesday. The hiring comes near the end of a tumultuous six-week period in which former Hoosiers coach Kelvin Sampson resigned amid an NCAA scandal, interim coach Dan Dakich replaced him and then lost four of seven games. Is Indiana on the road to recovery?

posted by brainofdtrain to basketball at 02:09 AM - 12 comments

I've always been impressed with Crean (although i'll be the 1st to admit i don't follow him real closely), and agree with those who say that this move puts indiana back on the path of, at minimum, respectability. More than likely they'll go further than that.

posted by brainofdtrain at 02:11 AM on April 02

He definitely has quite a job ahead of him. With Dakich's dismissal of two starters last week, plus early NBA entry and graduations, Indiana is likely to have no starters returning for Crean next year. Not to mention any likely NCAA sanctions because of Sampson's misbehavior.

posted by netbros at 08:37 AM on April 02

I wish him luck... Maybe it is better that he doesn't have returning starters... Lets him start early to rebuild and not have to deal with players that are set in their ways from the old coach... Sampson, not sure about that guy... Getting caught makes you wonder about his past jobs... Dang, when is this sport thing going to change... Its all about the $$$ now... People are raising their kids to concentrate on sports and not the books... Wanting the quick riches...

posted by bruce2ww at 08:45 AM on April 02

Aren't the books about $$$? I mean, why go to school if not for the opportunity to make more money than if you did not? I'm gonna be a psychologist, so I'm studying psychology. Some of the athletes will be professional athletes, so why not let them concentrate on their sport, and leave early if the free market tells them that they can? They can always go back to school after they make those quick riches.

posted by elijahin24 at 10:15 AM on April 02

People are raising their kids to concentrate on sports and not the books... Wanting the quick riches... It's not always about the money. If anything, I see it living vicariously through the kids.

posted by jmd82 at 11:29 AM on April 02

While some schools have seemed to put books second to hoops, there are still a number of premier level programs that have maintained a high level of importance for education. Best example I can think of is John Thompson (and now his son) at Georgetown, who is said to have kept a deflated basketball on his desk to remind his kids (many of whom were All-Americans) that basketball is a temporary pursuit, and the real value of the scholarship was the opportunity for a free outstanding education. For Thompson, it was about exploiting the fact that rich white people wanted a good basketball team so that poor inner-city blacks could get free access to a superior education. There are quite a few other coaches with reputations like this, so I wouldn't declare the NCAA system morally bankrupt just yet. As for Crean, I have only really followed him the last few years as MU moved into a major conference, but to me he seems something of a confounding coach. He seems to be a pretty decent recruiter of guards but not of big men, and his game situation coaching is solid but not exactly inspiring. I don't think IU has hit the jackpot with Crean, but he will be better than Mike Davis, and cleaner than Kelvin Sampson. I just don't see him as turning them around in the same way that Pearl did with Tennessee or say what Matta did at OSU.

posted by Chargdres at 11:48 AM on April 02

Since Motta /Matta? at OSU has big ties to Indiana I am kinda suprised his name didn't enter the picture more. I could be wrong but I think Crean has recruited a couple of kids out of Indiana. Pearl is probably in a situation where he has the opportunity to make a run at the national title a couple of more times so that would take him out of the picture. I saw an interview with Pearl and in that piece it was said he was not highly paid. Being the huge Indiana fan that I am it hurts me to say that the programs reputation in the last few years also has something to do with the ability to get a super coach. I think Crean is a good coach but the verdict is out on if he is a super star. I have been impressed with his current teams but they seemed to be a little up and down at times. We all know that the NCAA is not done with IU yet, and I think that looms large. All you have know about John Thompson Jr. is where he played his college ball, and the great coach he had to know why he is more book oriented than most of the coaches in the NCAA. By the way the SI piece on him was great. As for his father, I don't think he had very many academic all Americans. I think he had great athletes and good kids but I'm no sure there was a great focus on grades. Some one help me out here, why does the AD at Indiana still have his job? If anybody can justify him keeping his job I would like to here it. I think he is more guilty than any body in this whole mess, including KS.

posted by sportnut at 03:43 PM on April 02

Punish the Monkey.....let the organ grinder go...

posted by shudacudawuda at 04:45 AM on April 03

Sportnut, John Thompson Jr. is the father, John Thompson III is the son. As for the elder Thompson, he actually had an academic advisor made an assistant coach, so that there would always be someone on trips and such to make sure players did their work. If you look through the Sports Illustrated archive, there are a few articles about Thompson and his emphasis on education. There is one story that Thompson once threatened to send Mutombo back to his father in Zaire because he missed a single class. I think if I am not mistaken, Bob Knight was another one of these coaches who recognized that the opportunity was the free education, not the basketball. It would be nice if IU could find another coach who would bring the same standards, as Sampson obviously did not. Not sure about Crean's reputation with this issue though.

posted by Chargdres at 11:39 AM on April 03

Chargdres, I stand corrected on both John Jr. and his son,Thanks. I hope Crean can restore some of that academic pride to IU. He certainly tried to establish some Indiana camaraderie in his acceptance speech yesterday. he mentioned BK, Indiana highschool basketball, IU basketball tradition, and a few other tibits. I think he got an 8 year contract so I guess he has some time, if the fans will be patient. I still think the AD should go.

posted by sportnut at 05:33 PM on April 03

Chargdres, I stand corrected on both John Jr. and his son,Thanks. I hope Crean can restore some of that academic pride to IU. He certainly tried to establish some Indiana camaraderie in his acceptance speech yesterday. He mentioned BK, Indiana highschool basketball, IU basketball tradition, and a few other tibits. I think he got an 8 year contract so I guess he has some time, if the fans will be patient. I still think the AD should go.

posted by sportnut at 05:34 PM on April 03

Bring back Bobby Knight.........

posted by 4ArmShiver at 08:22 PM on April 03

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