Q & A: Max Bielfeldt talks decision to transfer to IU

  • 06/02/2015 8:17 pm in

Indiana added a fourth member to its 2015 recruiting class on Tuesday with the addition of Michigan transfer Max Bielfeldt.

The 6-foot-8 forward, who averaged 5.1 points and 3.6 rebounds in 14.5 minutes per game last season for the Wolverines, will have one year of eligibility and will be able to play immediately.

Inside the Hall talked to Bielfeldt in-depth on Tuesday evening on a variety of topics and our full Q & A is available after the jump:

Inside the Hall: What was this process like for you and what ultimately led you to choosing Indiana?

Max Bielfeldt: I think the process was very interesting because, when I was coming out of high school, I was looking at what I could be in four years whereas for a fifth year, you’ve got nine months to play basketball, get a good degree and basically meshing as quickly as you can. So it’s a very interesting way to look at it. I kind of knew what I was looking for, but at the same time, realizing what I’d be most happy with was the hardest part for me.

Nebraska is a little further from home, but they’ve got a lot of minutes there in the frontcourt. There’s just so many different factors. I think I would have been happy at all three places and gotten along with the guys and had a great time, but ultimately you can’t pick all three and have to come down to one. I think Indiana offered the best academic as well as athletic opportunity.

ITH: When you went on your visit, what gave you a good feeling about it when you were there and what were your takeaways from it? What stood out about it?

MB: I think some of the biggest things that stood out were that Coach (Tom) Crean had been watching a lot of my film and had a couple of papers broken down of a couple of things I could work on that would make me a threat. We had a little workout there and he took me through some things and just kind of figured out my game a little bit more and gave me some things to develop. That was one.

I also hung out with Nick Zeisloft and Collin Hartman, they were hosting my visit. I got along well with them. Things just went really well. We checked out the Kelley School of Business, which is a remarkable school, and I’m really looking forward to getting into that and doing my thing there. I think just everything you could look for was really good.

ITH: Thinking back to where you were a year ago and how things have played out here, it’s very rare that a player is allowed to transfer within the conference, but could you ever have imagined that you’d be playing at a different Big Ten school to finish out your career?

MB: It’s interesting. I was looking at schools that would be best for me and close to home and I think most of those were Big Ten schools. Figuring out the teams and rosters there, who I’d fit in best with and just going from there and seeing what would be the best fit academically and athletically, it kind of finally came down to Indiana was the best choice.

ITH: Looking at some of the preseason projections next year, Indiana is being looked at pretty favorably nationally. With what is coming back and with what is being added with the three freshman along with you, how big was that in your decision that this could be a really good team next year?

MB: I think it was a big deal because you’re getting recruited for one year. It’s a lot different, you have to figure out what the team can do in one year, how the team can be successful and how you can be happy. It’s tough to go a place where there’s a new coach or a lot of unpredictables. For four years, that would be OK because you’d develop relationships, but you’re going to be there for nine months so it’s not quite the same.

ITH: As far as academics with the Kelley School, do you have a plan for that?

MB: I think I’ll do an MS in finance, entrepreneurship or management in the Kelley School. I kind of have to hone in and figure out exactly what I’m doing, but I’ve been looking into it a lot. There’s a lot of good choices there.

ITH: You’ve gone through the Big Ten, you’ve won, you’ve been deep in the NCAA tournament. What can you draw upon from your experiences at Michigan and kind of bring them to Indiana and help some of the younger guys learn what it takes to take that next step and advance further in the tournament and try to win the Big Ten?

MB: I think with the amount of time I’ve been around the Big Ten, it’s a pretty unique perspective. And now coming to a second Big Ten, it offers even more of a unique perspective. Being able to bring that leadership in and knowing what to expect, what it takes to win and being a part of a lot of winning teams will be pretty valuable.

Filed to:

  • INUnivHoosier

    I can’t read the initial comment, but in the context that “Uncle Tim” was used, it’s hard to see how it could be an allusion to Uncle Tom.

  • INUnivHoosier

    The entrepreneurship program at IU is more than just getting the degree.

    A word to the wise, don’t just listen to Kyl740. Read about the entrepreneurship program; understand what it offers, and make your own decision based on your goals.

  • At the Quarries

    Part of being a center is being tall, but I didn’t say it was the definition of a center (I don’t know where you got that). I don’t know what “true center” means, but I do know that there are very tall men who operate under the basket with a very different kind of poetry of movement than do most tall and short men. They are men that don’t take no as an answer when they have the ball and are around the basketball. And there are lots of them around, they are not a dying breed.

  • Kyl470

    Just think how successful Mark Cuban could of been had he got a masters degree in entrepreneurship.

  • At the Quarries

    Yes I am “un-racist” and feel extremely good about myself.

  • Kyl470

    I have to be honest I don’t know anyone from Stanford who got a masters degree in entrepreneurship, but if you do and they are billionaires then I guess it worked out for them. However, I’m going to go out on a limb and guess that there are several business owners who are successful that didn’t get a masters in entrepreneurship. I’m an IU graduate like many other posters on this site and I got my degree in business management and I used that degree to get a management job. So I would tell anyone who is currently enrolled in college to pick a degree that will help you get a job you want upon graduation.

  • At the Quarries

    Really??!! I can understand that he might have either been too innocent or too dumb not to see the connection, but the whole point of his post was to foreground the fact that Max was hosted exclusively by two of our white players. Maybe he didn’t mean to make an Uncle Tom reference, but it is naive to expect that people will not read that connection into what he said.

  • INUnivHoosier

    Just think how successful everyone could be if they didn’t graduate from college like Bill Gates or Steve Jobs.

    The fact remains that independent entrepreneurship is one of three areas of concentration in the master’s program. They also have a corporate innovation track and a VC track. Also, IU helps students in the program who have business ideas secure funding and establish a viable business plan.

    Certainly you can go start your own business without ever gracing a college classroom or maybe just getting a degree in something other than entrepreneurship. You probably won’t be the next Mark Cuban, though. Chances are you’ll be one of the 80%+ that fail.

  • INUnivHoosier

    I immediately thought about Uncle Tom when I read it, but that doesn’t make his comment an allusion to Uncle Tom. After I read it again, I couldn’t see the connection; it was just in my own mind.

  • At the Quarries

    But you’re making my point. I would think the connection must have occurred to him as well, and yet he used it and in a context where race is obviously at play. You would think that anyone aware of the connection would avoid it knowing the connotations.

  • oldiugymnast

    I don’t disagree. I am lucky to live in the Monterey Bay area and work in development, so I know a few VCs, business owners, developers and know a couple of the 3 comma club that have MAs in entrepreneurship from Stanford. Of course, I know more that didn’t even get an MA and one that dropped out of UC Berkeley (Pebble Beach – the town where the billionaires pushed out all the millionaires). It isn’t the only route of course, but the handful I know with a Stanford MA all sing its praises. Between us, I think the 3 comma club has more to do with luck or willingness to engage in shady deals than it does with skill or personal awesomeness. I know a guy in the 3 comma club that is dumber than the brick. Know another that I would’t trust with my wallet for 5 minutes. The other 4 are in the top 10 smartest people I have ever met. Who knows what the secret sauce is!

  • INUnivHoosier

    I replied to you on an earlier comment, but it is in moderation. Priller is widely known as Uncle Tim.

  • At the Quarries

    That’s news to me. Where is he referred to as Uncle Tim? I’ve never seen it on ITH.

  • INUnivHoosier

    Moderation again. Just Google it. I guess I can’t say the names of certain people or companies on this site.

  • oldiugymnast

    I will give you the benefit of the doubt – but I find it unlikely (because I have been on recruiting visits) that he didn’t spend time with most of his future team mates – he just was hosted by Colin and Z. My real problem with your comments circle around the fact that you seem to be confusing difficult to impossible circumstances (like Hulls injury or HMP’s dislocated kneecap) with excuses- and not understanding that by most experts opinion – last season’s team far exceeded expectations in light of the difficulty it endured.

    I may be a little sensitive about racism right now – since I just had to listen to 20 people screaming about the way good people who are treated very badly live (and complaints were from the very people that exploit them). So forgive me if I over reacted.

  • InTheMtns

    Troy and RJ were in Texas working out with John Lucas. I don’t believe Yogi was on campus that weekend either. Why throw out accusations like this when you don’t know the background? Choosing Nick makes perfect sense since he is also a grad-transfer. Colin and Nick are both at Kelly so it makes sense from that stand point, too. Having Max be hosted by players who weren’t on campus at the time, however, does not.

  • At the Quarries

    Ah, I didn’t understand what you meant by “moderation” earlier. I await anxiously, LOL!

  • INUnivHoosier

    Additionally, I’m not making your point. Alluding to something and knowing that people will probably draw a connection are two different things.

    The difference is the intent to draw the connection. Simply avoiding something that you don’t intend to have a negative connotation because you know it can have a negative connotation is being politically correct.

    Was his comment politically correct? Probably not. Was his intent to make an Uncle Tom reference? I don’t see it, because despite similarities in spelling, the comment doesn’t draw any parallels to Uncle Tom.

  • hoosier93

    Most centers are 6-9 and taller. On the collegiate level you can get away with 6-8 at times.