Who will start for the Hoosiers?

  • 10/08/2007 12:42 pm in

Armon BassettOne of the quotes that caught my eye this offseason came from senior forward Lance Stemler when he was asked the depth of this year’s team.

“We’re definitely going to have to compete for our spots, which is a good thing. No one can get too comfortable with as deep as we are,” Stemler said.

And that my friends, is a good problem to have. My only question now is: Who will be the five on the floor when the season tips off? I’ll give you my take and I’m interested in hearing yours.

Armon Bassett – The Terre Haute native has worked all summer on his vocal leadership and will be in charge of running the team from the point guard position. At times as a freshman, Bassett was forced to take big shots down the stretch by default. This year, he’ll act as a distributor and will be counted on to get the ball in the hands of Eric Gordon and D.J. White in key situations.

Eric Gordon – There’s no question that Gordon will be the primary focus of opposing defenses all season long and for good reason. He’s already been touted as a preseason All-American by several publications and will not be fazed by the hype. His scoring numbers may be slightly lower than some are projecting, but that’s simply because he’s a team first player who will get others involved to keep the Hoosier attack balanced.

Jamarcus Ellis – The Chipola J.C. product would be the primary option on a lot of teams, but as a Hoosier he’ll embrace his role of a distributor and slasher from the wing. Ellis told me that he’s looking forward to doing the little things that often go unnoticed like rebounding and passing. When needed, he’ll also look to score.

Lance Stemler – One of the captains along with D.J. White, Stemler will be counted on to help anchor down the paint and be a hustle guy. His ankle should be 100% when the season starts and that should go a long way in helping his jump shot return to early 2006-2007 form.

D.J. White – The best big man in the Big Ten will be in my eyes, the key to taking the Hoosiers to San Antonio. The Hoosiers simply cannot count on a perimeter oriented attack to carry them through the Big Ten and the NCAA Tournament. One bad shooting night come March and you’ll be going home. That’s where White’s stability and presence inside becomes important. Very few teams on the IU schedule will have an answer for the Tuscaloosa native.

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  • Brett Horsley

    Looks like a final four team to me! Seriously though that line-up should be more than enough to beat out the likes of MSU in the Big Ten. Can’t wait for midnight madness!

  • Brett Horsley

    Looks like a final four team to me! Seriously though that line-up should be more than enough to beat out the likes of MSU in the Big Ten. Can’t wait for midnight madness!

  • I think these five are pretty much locks for the starting 5. It is likely the best starting five we have had since the early 90’s!

    Just a quick comment – love the blog. I have been looking for an IU blog other than Terry’s on the Star page. You guys do a fine job, will add to my blogroll ASAP.

    ~MB/Evansville, IN

  • I think these five are pretty much locks for the starting 5. It is likely the best starting five we have had since the early 90’s!

    Just a quick comment – love the blog. I have been looking for an IU blog other than Terry’s on the Star page. You guys do a fine job, will add to my blogroll ASAP.

    ~MB/Evansville, IN

  • I think these five are pretty much locks for the starting 5. It is likely the best starting five we have had since the early 90’s!

    Just a quick comment – love the blog. I have been looking for an IU blog other than Terry’s on the Star page. You guys do a fine job, will add to my blogroll ASAP.

    ~MB/Evansville, IN

  • hoosier81

    I agree…these are the most likely starting 5. The only possible change I think might happen: I can see holman or thomas playing along side DJ in the middle so that DJ can play the 4 on offense (think about DJs play on the pan-am team). I still think, no matter what, dj will play the 5 on defense.

    What does everyone else think?

  • hoosier81

    I agree…these are the most likely starting 5. The only possible change I think might happen: I can see holman or thomas playing along side DJ in the middle so that DJ can play the 4 on offense (think about DJs play on the pan-am team). I still think, no matter what, dj will play the 5 on defense.

    What does everyone else think?

  • hoosier81

    I agree…these are the most likely starting 5. The only possible change I think might happen: I can see holman or thomas playing along side DJ in the middle so that DJ can play the 4 on offense (think about DJs play on the pan-am team). I still think, no matter what, dj will play the 5 on defense.

    What does everyone else think?

  • hoosier81

    I agree…these are the most likely starting 5. The only possible change I think might happen: I can see holman or thomas playing along side DJ in the middle so that DJ can play the 4 on offense (think about DJs play on the pan-am team). I still think, no matter what, dj will play the 5 on defense.

    What does everyone else think?

  • i think this will be the starting 5 at the start of the season. but i think as we move into big 10 season, you might see DJ play his more natural position at the 4, and then move either eli or DT into the center spot. DJ excelled in the PanAM games playing the 4. i think we would be pretty magnificent if we could get eli or DT to play the middle, allowing DJ to play to his strengths.

  • i think this will be the starting 5 at the start of the season. but i think as we move into big 10 season, you might see DJ play his more natural position at the 4, and then move either eli or DT into the center spot. DJ excelled in the PanAM games playing the 4. i think we would be pretty magnificent if we could get eli or DT to play the middle, allowing DJ to play to his strengths.

  • Tom

    IU will have a starting 4 with the 5th position rotating between the rest.Stemler will get the 5th spot or M.White early on, if Bassett stumbles it could become a starting 3.

  • Tom

    IU will have a starting 4 with the 5th position rotating between the rest.Stemler will get the 5th spot or M.White early on, if Bassett stumbles it could become a starting 3.

  • Zach

    I agree with this starting lineup being the initial one, but one of the new guys (Thomas or Eli) will be the center in the lineup and DJ will be the 4 in place of Stemler by the new year.

  • Zach

    I agree with this starting lineup being the initial one, but one of the new guys (Thomas or Eli) will be the center in the lineup and DJ will be the 4 in place of Stemler by the new year.

  • McD

    Surprised to have not seen Jordon Crawford mentioned. Armon will start the season, but I believe he’ll replece Armon or at least split time KS style by B10 season opener. He is much more of a true PG than Armon with more size and athleticism.

    End of season lineup will be Crawford, Gordon, Ellis, Thomas, White.

  • McD

    Surprised to have not seen Jordon Crawford mentioned. Armon will start the season, but I believe he’ll replece Armon or at least split time KS style by B10 season opener. He is much more of a true PG than Armon with more size and athleticism.

    End of season lineup will be Crawford, Gordon, Ellis, Thomas, White.

  • Gary Crawford

    My early concerns are about Depth. With AJ out and unknown for the 2nd semester and with Holman’s eligibility in question, we are pretty short of people.
    Lack of depth makes us subject to injuries and academic fallout. Worst case has us with 9 scholarship players available. It is not likely we will get through 31 games without some injuries and sickness leaving us very short handed for some games. Mike White is a role player and will be productive in situations, but, will not get a ton of minutes. McGee is a true freshman and unless an emergency does occur, will not get minutes in competitive situations. The seven player rotation that remains for competitive games, will be pretty worn out by the time we reach games 34-40. (We all hope we might get to a game 40?) By the middle of January we will sure wish that AJ and Holman are available and that Holman has been integrated enough to be productive. Plus, new players like Ellis, Thomas and Crawford must live up to their hype and integrate completely by January. They are part of the 7 man rotation.

  • Gary Crawford

    My early concerns are about Depth. With AJ out and unknown for the 2nd semester and with Holman’s eligibility in question, we are pretty short of people.
    Lack of depth makes us subject to injuries and academic fallout. Worst case has us with 9 scholarship players available. It is not likely we will get through 31 games without some injuries and sickness leaving us very short handed for some games. Mike White is a role player and will be productive in situations, but, will not get a ton of minutes. McGee is a true freshman and unless an emergency does occur, will not get minutes in competitive situations. The seven player rotation that remains for competitive games, will be pretty worn out by the time we reach games 34-40. (We all hope we might get to a game 40?) By the middle of January we will sure wish that AJ and Holman are available and that Holman has been integrated enough to be productive. Plus, new players like Ellis, Thomas and Crawford must live up to their hype and integrate completely by January. They are part of the 7 man rotation.

  • Ahfeld will start over Gordon by the time Big Ten season starts.

    What? I’m serious!

  • Ahfeld will start over Gordon by the time Big Ten season starts.

    What? I’m serious!

  • I think if Crawford plays good defense, he’s got a chance to take minutes from Bassett. That’s a big if though. Sampson was really impressed with how Bassett improved defensively last season. My personal feeling is the point guard spot is Armon’s to lose.

  • I think if Crawford plays good defense, he’s got a chance to take minutes from Bassett. That’s a big if though. Sampson was really impressed with how Bassett improved defensively last season. My personal feeling is the point guard spot is Armon’s to lose.

  • Tim

    I agree with the starting five to start the season, but I’m reserving the right to change my opinion until after HH and the exhibition games. As of right now though, I expect big things from DJ and EJ, of course, but also from Armon and Jamarcus.

    I’m curious how often the Hoosiers might go to a four-guard lineup with Bassett, Gordon, Crawford/Ratliff, Ellis, and DJ White. That lineup would really be able to get up and down, shoot, and could provide some really nice mismatches in midgame situations. Of course, if Stemler gets his shot back you would have that style of lineup without giving up as much size.

    I’m also excited to see how Stemler, Mike White, Holman, and Thomas battle each other out to get minutes. They all have their own strengths and weaknesses, and I see each one coming in during different in-game situations.

  • Tim

    I agree with the starting five to start the season, but I’m reserving the right to change my opinion until after HH and the exhibition games. As of right now though, I expect big things from DJ and EJ, of course, but also from Armon and Jamarcus.

    I’m curious how often the Hoosiers might go to a four-guard lineup with Bassett, Gordon, Crawford/Ratliff, Ellis, and DJ White. That lineup would really be able to get up and down, shoot, and could provide some really nice mismatches in midgame situations. Of course, if Stemler gets his shot back you would have that style of lineup without giving up as much size.

    I’m also excited to see how Stemler, Mike White, Holman, and Thomas battle each other out to get minutes. They all have their own strengths and weaknesses, and I see each one coming in during different in-game situations.

  • jaime gongora

    I agree as well but in the later part of the season I can See Eli Holman taking significant minutes away from Lance. It all depends who the hooshiers face because I would like to see D.J. White play the 4 or 5. DJ should always defend the best offensive 4 or 5 of any opposing team. I think Crawford is going to have significant minutes at the point, because the following year I can see Basset taking the shootoing guard spot if Ej leaves after one year ( of course it depends on the recruiting class we haul). It’s going to be interesting to see what role A.J. is going to play, and if deandre thomas and mike white could provide signigicant minutes if and when our team gets in foul trouble. It is going to be an awesome season. Ej and DJ are going to be great and it depends how Sampson develops Ellis and basset to determine if we win a national championship.
    jaime

  • jaime gongora

    I agree as well but in the later part of the season I can See Eli Holman taking significant minutes away from Lance. It all depends who the hooshiers face because I would like to see D.J. White play the 4 or 5. DJ should always defend the best offensive 4 or 5 of any opposing team. I think Crawford is going to have significant minutes at the point, because the following year I can see Basset taking the shootoing guard spot if Ej leaves after one year ( of course it depends on the recruiting class we haul). It’s going to be interesting to see what role A.J. is going to play, and if deandre thomas and mike white could provide signigicant minutes if and when our team gets in foul trouble. It is going to be an awesome season. Ej and DJ are going to be great and it depends how Sampson develops Ellis and basset to determine if we win a national championship.
    jaime

  • On The Dot

    Big A,

    Sounds good, but seems like a pretty small team.

    Quickness wins many games and this team won’t get outquicked too often, but rebounding might be a problem in some games, especially if the Hoosiers run into a team with a couple of 7 footers.

    Holman would add some significant height and defensive shot-blocking, which Sampson, as a defensive oriented coach might want in the line-up (assuming, of course, that Holman qualifies).

    Ben Allan’s last minute departure makes the center position more problematic. Holman and DeAndre Thomas are the listed Centers at Scout.com. Thomas may weigh as much as some centers (although word is that he is doing a fantastic job of dropping some of that), but he would give up 5 or more inches in height.

    And at some point, this team will need and hopefully have AJ Ratliff for his sharp-shooting, experience and maturity.

    There are still some question marks in my mind.

    On The Dot.

  • On The Dot

    Big A,

    Sounds good, but seems like a pretty small team.

    Quickness wins many games and this team won’t get outquicked too often, but rebounding might be a problem in some games, especially if the Hoosiers run into a team with a couple of 7 footers.

    Holman would add some significant height and defensive shot-blocking, which Sampson, as a defensive oriented coach might want in the line-up (assuming, of course, that Holman qualifies).

    Ben Allan’s last minute departure makes the center position more problematic. Holman and DeAndre Thomas are the listed Centers at Scout.com. Thomas may weigh as much as some centers (although word is that he is doing a fantastic job of dropping some of that), but he would give up 5 or more inches in height.

    And at some point, this team will need and hopefully have AJ Ratliff for his sharp-shooting, experience and maturity.

    There are still some question marks in my mind.

    On The Dot.

  • On The Dot

    Big A,

    Sounds good, but seems like a pretty small team.

    Quickness wins many games and this team won’t get outquicked too often, but rebounding might be a problem in some games, especially if the Hoosiers run into a team with a couple of 7 footers.

    Holman would add some significant height and defensive shot-blocking, which Sampson, as a defensive oriented coach might want in the line-up (assuming, of course, that Holman qualifies).

    Ben Allan’s last minute departure makes the center position more problematic. Holman and DeAndre Thomas are the listed Centers at Scout.com. Thomas may weigh as much as some centers (although word is that he is doing a fantastic job of dropping some of that), but he would give up 5 or more inches in height.

    And at some point, this team will need and hopefully have AJ Ratliff for his sharp-shooting, experience and maturity.

    There are still some question marks in my mind.

    On The Dot.

  • On The Dot

    Big A,

    Sounds good, but seems like a pretty small team.

    Quickness wins many games and this team won’t get outquicked too often, but rebounding might be a problem in some games, especially if the Hoosiers run into a team with a couple of 7 footers.

    Holman would add some significant height and defensive shot-blocking, which Sampson, as a defensive oriented coach might want in the line-up (assuming, of course, that Holman qualifies).

    Ben Allan’s last minute departure makes the center position more problematic. Holman and DeAndre Thomas are the listed Centers at Scout.com. Thomas may weigh as much as some centers (although word is that he is doing a fantastic job of dropping some of that), but he would give up 5 or more inches in height.

    And at some point, this team will need and hopefully have AJ Ratliff for his sharp-shooting, experience and maturity.

    There are still some question marks in my mind.

    On The Dot.

  • On The Dot

    Big A,

    Sounds good, but seems like a pretty small team.

    Quickness wins many games and this team won’t get outquicked too often, but rebounding might be a problem in some games, especially if the Hoosiers run into a team with a couple of 7 footers.

    Holman would add some significant height and defensive shot-blocking, which Sampson, as a defensive oriented coach might want in the line-up (assuming, of course, that Holman qualifies).

    Ben Allan’s last minute departure makes the center position more problematic. Holman and DeAndre Thomas are the listed Centers at Scout.com. Thomas may weigh as much as some centers (although word is that he is doing a fantastic job of dropping some of that), but he would give up 5 or more inches in height.

    And at some point, this team will need and hopefully have AJ Ratliff for his sharp-shooting, experience and maturity.

    There are still some question marks in my mind.

    On The Dot.