Crean: “We have to have a balancing act right now”

  • 03/13/2010 10:44 am in

Big Ten Tournament: Indiana Hoosiers v Penn State Nittany LionsAfter having a day to listen to the various interviews after Indiana’s season-ending loss on Thursday to Northwestern in the Big Ten Tournament, I came across one particular question and answer that I felt worthy of our attention.

The question came from Indianapolis Star columnist Bob Kravitz, who asked the final question in Tom Crean’s postgame presser. Kravitz asked Crean to address the need for some big guys in the program and received this lengthy response:

“I think we have a lot of needs, Bob. And I think we’ve gotta develop the bigs that we have. We’ve got a very tough situation right now in the sense, if people have followed our program at all, which I know that you have, we had to get a team on the floor before we could build a program. That was last year. Then we were able to recruit guys that we wanted to, that we had a chance to develop relationships with. We’re very bottom heavy and we have to have a balancing act right now between what do we need to do in the short term versus how are we not going to have to start over again when these guys get older.”

“In the purest sense of your question, there’s no doubt we’re trying to address that in a big way. They’ve all gotta get stronger, bigger, better, more athletic that we have in the program. We’ve gotta continue to address that. But I look at our team and we also need somebody that’s better at getting in the lane. We need somebody that can get in the lane and create havoc, that can get into that paint and make decisions to get the ball to shooters. Our team will look different when you add the spacing element into it that Matt Roth and Maurice Creek bring. Obviously Maurice was our best guy at being able to absolutely get in the lane and make a play and make a good decision with it, but we’re not anywhere close to being done recruiting. And that’ll pick up again tomorrow in a big way. We’re going to address it. We have been and at the same time I have to sit here and look ahead into the future and figure out okay, how are we going to have to not do this again. That’s what’s hard because there’s a lot of good young players that we’re recruiting that we want and we’ve gotta make sure that we get those and we’ve gotta make sure we have the ability to sign them when they’re ready to come.”

A quick glance at the scholarship numbers page shows that the 2013 graduating class is likely the one being referenced as “bottom heavy,” with six grants being allocated to that group. (And technically, it’s now seven if Matt Roth is included.)

The concern, which Crean directly addressed, is having scholarships available to sign the plethora of players targeted in the 2011 and 2012 classes. The Hoosiers have offered scholarships to several players in both classes, including (but certainly not limited to), Cody Zeller, Marquis Teague, Jeremiah Davis, Marshall Plumlee, D’Vauntes Smith-Rivera, Hanner Perea, Peter Jurkin, Ron Patterson, Jeremy Hollowell, Yogi Ferrell, A.J. Hammons and Kenny Kaminski.

What’s not clear, however, is how exactly this balancing act will play out. For now, it’s best to leave this as it currently stands, but it’s certainly a storyline we’ll follow closely as we move toward the conclusion of the spring semester and of course, recruiting this summer.

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  • marsh21

    Crean is slow to make changes and this too needs to change to make a less talented program acheive moderate success!

  • recker

    The guy makes over 2 million a year to win. If players have to been told to leave then so be it if we want to improve at this point. If not are you happy with just being horrible? Right now things need to change to win and some players are not at this level to play period and we need grants.

  • recker

    LOL on being in the semis next year but he does need to get some better players so maybe do it in two or three years.

  • aceman07

    I thought so too and after watching him in pregame the other I really do think he will develop. He looks bigger and stronger than he did at the beginning of the season and everyone forgets that he got a late start. I hope it's a case of CTC not wanting to discourage him rather than him being too dumb to learn the offense and defense or something like that

  • aceman07

    HAVE TO PUT THIS IN ALL CAPS AT THE TOP FOR ALL TO SEE!!! FOR THE FIRST TIME IN A SEVERAL YEARS I DREW A CERTAIN LEVEL OF SATISFACTION WATCHING PURDUE GET THEIR BRAINS BEAT IN YESTERDAY!!! AFTER THE LARGE NUMBER OF BUTTHOLE FANS ROOTING AGAINST IU IN A VERY DISTASTEFUL WAY IN THE AREA I WAS SITTING ON THURSDAY I HOPE THEIR PROGRAM FALLS APART AND THEY NEVER WIN ANYTHING AGAIN!!!

    AH, THAT FEELS GOOD. I FEEL LIKE A TRUE IU FAN AGAIN!

  • marsh21

    That's what I'm saying, Crean is slow to make changes sometimes in the lineup which hurt Elston and others during the season. Slow is not good with this group of kids as we have little room for error. Hell no I'm not happy with being horrible or else why would I waste so much of my time on this blog?

  • MillaRed

    I thought this season was lost Kelin, but just learned that Illannoy did not make the dance. Man I feel sooooo much better now.

    Your last comment their makes me wonder what is going on in poor Tom Pritchard's head right now. That poor kid really needs to find his game or he may be on the pine as a senior when more talent arrives.

    With the scorer's we have, all Bawa needs to do is rebound and defend. The points will come as a result of him running the floor and hustling.

    We can start by staying on our feet and not knocking teeth out a la Tijan.

  • IUMIKE1

    Exactly my point above.

  • Taskmaster75

    The dude also has frustration problems when I watched him play against Canterbury. They were playing decent D on him and he just started chucking up shots. Can't have that, especially when the other people at Ohio State (Like Sullinger) will be of his caliber.

  • Taskmaster75

    Maybe it had to do with practice. Tijan gave effort, and Bawa either looked way too raw or just didn't practice well.

  • Taskmaster75

    Correct, but most coaches don't release players from scholarships due to the public backlash from recruits, etc. Short of the kid committing a crime, it's pretty binding.

  • IUMIKE1

    Seems like he might be taking the same approach to Bawa as he did Elston……that started to look like it is going to pay big dividends….. he said said with his fingers, toes and eyes crossed while looking up to the bball gods. LOL.

    Had to come to ITH to find some solace after watching pUKe pull one out of their blue A$$e$. Couldn't even find it in myself to watch to B10 tourney final game or not right from the start anyway.

    The only thing worse than an IU loss is a pUKe win over anybody !!!!

    Doubt it will happen but Moses committing to helping lead us back to prominence tomorrow would sure take the sting out of alot of things that have happened the last few days.

  • True, I remember when I was being recruited and I didn't know this rule. When the coach mentioned it my parents and I questioned him, but his response was that it's very rare since coaches would get a horrible rep if they did it a lot. I played DII and I'd think it's more common in DI where it's more cut-throat

  • Taskmaster75

    I think you are correct in the assumption, and it's probably in rare cases where the coach flat out hates a guy for his attitude or his demeanor, or crimes as I alluded to.

    But yeah, you don't hear about it often. If Calipari did something like that, he wouldn't have that same appeal 🙂 (What the appeal to him is, I have absolutely no idea)

  • IUMIKE1

    Money and ignorance are the first two things that come to mind.

  • Taskmaster75

    Right on the money (Huzzah puns)

  • MillaRed

    I think we all agree on the Elston questions. But at this point I suppose it doesn't matter. Thank goodness the kid saw the floor late in the season because he now realizes his potential as a HOOSIER, instead of another uniform. Better late than never in this case.

  • Kelin Blab

    Milla….that is why I want bawa at IU at least for another season or so. If J.Rivers can be a solid on ball defender along with Creek, and bawa became an eraser playing behind them, you cannot tell me IU cannot reach 500 next season. Currently on this roster, J.Rivers is our ONLY shot blocker. Teams have NO reason not to drive on IU because NO ONE is there to make them think twice about it.

    Bawa is 30 pounds bigger than Jajuan Johnson and the same size, imagine if he added 15 pounds this off season, at least when we play PU we have someone that can match up better with JJ. I could care less if Bawa ever scores a point when you have VJ3, Elston, Creek, and Watford ALL capable for a 20 plus point explosion……..

    I don't know what TP offers right now that Bobby C doesn't or can't bring to the table.