Notebook: Crean, on radio show, says Penn State loss ‘really devastated us’

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On Tom Crean’s weekly radio show on Monday night, host Don Fischer opened his introduction of the Hoosiers coach by saying “Coach, it was a tough week for your basketball team…”

Crean interjected. “You think?”

By now, everyone knows what happened. Wednesday: Indiana leads a lowly 12-12 Penn State squad, 64-53, with 2:26 left and loses. Friday: Sophomore Hanner Mosquera-Perea is arrested on suspicion of operating while intoxicated. Saturday: The Hoosiers get blown out by rival Purdue, 82-64, in West Lafayette.

It was, arguably, the most turbulent week in the Tom Crean era. And on his radio show Monday night, Crean reflected on the week that was, starting with the second-half collapse against Penn State.

“We should have never been in that situation,” he said.

But what Crean admitted he did not calculate very well was the impact that 66-65 loss would have on his team. The arrest of Mosquera-Perea, who Crean likened to a “family member,” only hurt the team’s morale even more, he said. Crean has preached plenty of times, this season, a game-by-game mentality, but during Saturday’s game at Purdue he could tell his team’s spirit wasn’t there.

Just based on his team’s huddles, he could tell his team wasn’t in the right mental mindset.

“I think we really underestimated how much that one really devastated us,” he said.

“We got away from it there. And it’s too bad because it was a winnable game and it ended up affecting us the next game.”

And the result was an 18-point loss to the Boilermakers — the largest margin of defeat the Hoosiers have faced this season. Indiana is now 10th in the Big Ten standings with a 4-8 record. Only the Nittany Lions and Illinois have worse records.

But perhaps there is an even bigger, underlying concern with this team, only exemplified by the struggles of last week: effort. Crean said it’s there, but his players’ level of effort is not in the context he would like it to be at.

“Your effort can be one thing, but your attitude toward it can be another,” he said. “And that’s what we’ve got to improve.”

Crean looks back at 2012 recruiting class

When Crean was asked, Monday night, about the 2012 recruiting class and whether it’s been a disappointment, he said that neither he nor his assistants have coached them with “unrealistic expectations.”

Those unrealistic expectations Crean referred to was the nickname of that recruiting class, “The Movement,” as dubbed by former commit Ron Patterson. The nickname caught on via social media, Indiana’s press corps started to use it and the group consisting of Patterson, Yogi Ferrell, Peter Jurkin, Jeremy Hollowell and Hanner Mosquera-Perea became known as the ones — fair or not — that would help the Hoosiers to its first national title since 1987.

Of course, Patterson didn’t last one summer in Bloomington and Jurkin has dealt with injuries, barely seeing the floor in his first two seasons. Mosquera-Perea was a work in progress, according to Crean, and now has legal issues to deal with. Hollowell, Crean says, has “not played to the level of his abilities.”

Out of that five-man class rated No. 8 in the 247Composite team ranking, Ferrell is the only one starting for the Hoosiers less than two years after they arrived on campus. And he has carried the bulk of the load, averaging 17.9 points and 3.9 assists per game this season.

Hints about 2014-2015 schedule revealed

Though he was hesitant to give many details away, Crean talked a bit about next season’s schedule, which already has the Hoosiers slated to play Louisville and Butler in neutral-site, non-conference games.

“There will be a few more marquee names on there,” Crean said.

One of those marquee names could potentially be a Big East team. Another will be against an ACC team in the Big Ten/ACC Challenge, which will most likely be played in Assembly Hall.

Crean also said his team will play in an exempt tournament, which will include four home games, with the fourth against a “very, very good team.”

Indiana had lacked a marquee, non-conference opponent this season, which Crean had been hoping for but was unable to achieve in his efforts with Fred Glass.

  • IUMIKE1

    Exactly !

  • David Macer

    RMK never ever went after guys that were 5 star guys unless they were in IN, IL or OH. AAU has ruined HS basketball in the past 15 years. It used to be an emphasis on your HS coach not your travel coach.

  • David Macer

    Or use it against him….

    Many of us live and die by wins and losses. I was one of those. I still hate losing, but now see it as a life lesson.

    We all want IU to win. But if you don’t think these kids and coaches don’t want to win, you are solely mistaken.

  • calbert40

    I said “by the end of the season, we will be somewhere in the 50s.”

    I assumed that comment would make it fairly obvious that I was including the ENTIRE season and not just the non-conference slate.

    The point being (again) that despite playing an easier non-conference schedule than we are used to playing, this team still ended up playing a pretty tough schedule…at the very least, much tougher than most like to believe.

  • calbert40

    What team are you referring to, exactly? I used current RPI standings.

  • calbert40

    Do you honestly believe that the ACC is a better conference than the B1G? I’ve been following the B1G ever since I could read the sports page, and this is the deepest I ever remember it being. ANY team can beat ANY team on ANY night in ANY venue. I’ve never seen anything like it.

  • calbert40

    I’m in the “get off my lawn” crowd too, Cream, despite being just 35. I think there is an easy way to correct this, and I hope they do this sooner rather than later.

    Split the conference into two divisions of 7 teams each. Play each team in your division twice (12 games). Play all other teams just once (7 games) rotating home and home every other season. That is 19 games. Just one more game. This way, every team has to play a schedule that is nearly the same difficulty.

    The biggest problem with this scheduling option is that if they divide the conference based on geography, IU and Purdue are where the split would be. Maryland, Rutgers, PSU, OSU, MSU and UM are obviously in the East. Nebraska, Minnesota, Wisconsin, Iowa, Illinois and NW are obviously in the West. IU and Purdue are on the dividing line. Unless they decided to move NW into the East and IU and PU into the West.

  • calbert40

    Learning how to play a 2-3 zone is easy. Playing AGAINST a zone is not, especially Syracuse’s zone. I was suggesting that it is easier for a team to learn how to play a 2-3 zone as their defense.

  • Ratatatat

    Considering what has transpired after Davis left, I think IU was foolish to let him go. He was a good coach – as good or better than Crean. The recruiting would have caught up if he was given half a chance.

  • kbb247

    Never mentioned one thing about the kids or coaches not wanting to win. Not sure how u got that.

  • Laffy

    I forgot.

    If we do well in a tournament, that proves how awesome we are.

    If we stink, it means it’s all a crap shoot and means nothing.

    My bad

  • Laffy

    Are you being stupid on purpose just to get attention?

    How many times do I have to say “pre-conference”?

    So, stop listing Big Ten teams.

  • calbert40

    I’m sorry. I must have missed your answer to the question. Do you believe that the ACC is a better conference than the B1G this year? If you like stats, the RPI doesn’t think it is very close this year.

  • Laffy

    Gosh, I didn’t know the game was decided by “stats/RPI” and was decided on the court.

    And according to the SCOREBOARD, they were even.

  • William Hagenmaier

    just be thankful they didnt give another game away

  • calbert40

    1) Since you are still evading the question, I’ll assume that is because you don’t want to give the obvious answer, which is the B1G is considerably better than the ACC.

    2) The B1G/ACC Challenge only shows which individual teams are better on a given day in late November. It doesn’t prove which conference is better or deeper over the course of the entire season.

    If you’d prefer to look at the Challenge as a better gauge of which conference is better, that is your prerogative, but I’ll look at the entire season’s body of work in order to make a more accurate judgment.

  • Laffy

    Assume whatever you want, pumpkin…..doesn’t make it true.

    Just because you and the media say the Big Ten is “far better” doesn’t make it true.

    Like I said….if the Big Ten does great in The Dance, you’ll brag it “proved you right.”

    And if the Big Ten chokes, you’ll whine, “It’s a crap shoot and proves nothing.”

    Yawn.

  • calbert40

    It isn’t just the my opinion or the media’s, it is the impartial statistical metrics that suggest the B1G is better than the ACC, and that it really isn’t close. Now, the ACC may have one or two teams that are better than any team in the B1G, and an ACC team may win the tourney, but that doesn’t mean the ACC is better than the B1G on the whole.

    On a related note, I have always thought that we should call one another pet names on here. You seem like a “Sugar Buns” to me. Are you agreeable to that?

  • Laffy

    You keep going by stats and I’ll keep going by scoreboard.

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