IU, Big Ten centric notes from Athlon Sports college basketball preview

  • 09/01/2017 8:23 am in

Last weekend, we shared that Indiana’s Robert Johnson would be featured on a regional cover for the Athlon Sports college basketball preview magazine.

Now that the magazine is officially on newsstands, here are some additional notes on Indiana and the Big Ten at-large from the annual publication. (You can purchase the regional cover featuring Johnson here. The magazine also features a four-page story on Archie Miller.)

· Athlon predicts the order of finish in the Big Ten as follows: Michigan State, Minnesota, Purdue, Northwestern, Michigan, Wisconsin, Maryland, Iowa, Indiana, Penn State, Illinois, Ohio State, Nebraska and Rutgers.

· In Athlon’s preseason top 25, the Big Ten teams are Michigan State (2), Minnesota (16), Purdue (18) and Northwestern (24).

· Michigan State’s Miles Bridges and Wisconsin’s Ethan Happ are preseason first team All-Americans.

· Athlon projects eight Big Ten teams to make the NCAA tournament field: Michigan State, Minnesota, Purdue, Northwestern, Michigan, Wisconsin, Maryland and Iowa.

· The publication ranked the top 100 players in college basketball and Miles Bridges was No. 1. Other Big Ten players on the list include Happ (6), Purdue’s Vincent Edwards (36), Michigan’s Moritz Wagner (37), Michigan State’s Nick Ward (39), Minnesota’s Nate Mason (57), Minnesota’s Amir Coffey (85), Northwestern’s Bryant McIntosh (94) and Purdue’s Carsen Edwards (98).

· No Big Ten newcomers were represented on Athlon’s “15 most impactful freshmen” list.

· Miller was ranked as the second best hire in college basketball behind Brad Underwood at Illinois.

· Two Big Ten coaches appeared on Athlon’s “coaches on the hot seat” list: Pat Chambers of Penn State and Tim Miles of Nebraska.

· Collin Hartman is one of ten players on Athlon’s “All-Rehab” team.

· No IU player made one of the three preseason All-Big Ten teams. The first team is Bridges, Vincent Edwards, Happ, Wagner and McIntosh.

· Bridges is Athlon’s pick for Big Ten player of the year, Minnesota’s Reggie Lynch is the pick for best defensive player, Purdue’s Dakota Mathias is the pick for “most underrated” and Michigan State’s Jaren Jackson is regarded as the league’s best newcomer.

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  • iubase

    That’s the upside. Hope it works out. New system and coach makes me more cautious

  • TomJameson

    Oh, I get why the projections are like they are, but I don’t think there is anything close to an in-depth analysis from most of the media. Unless they have a person focused on a specific conference, they are looking at only the same highlights you mention.

    Hmmmm … played badly after a few good games, lost three of their starters, 10th in the conference with a 7-11 record, lost in the first round of the NIT, and had a coaching change. Heck, with those bullet points I’m surprised “the pundits” even have us as a D1 team. lol

    But I’m sticking with my theory of “they know not of which they speak”, and let the games, and season, speak for themselves.

  • E Foy McNaughton

    I saw that this pm. That probably drops them 2-4 spots

  • KelvinSampson87

    I think IUBB fans can all agree Brad Underwood is in no way a better hire than AM. Let’s go Hoosiers!

  • Gregory J. Haggard

    You are entirely correct Arch, however, if you go back and look you will see that they have ALWAYS rated us lower than every other publication.
    In particular for me was the class that AJ Guyton was a part of.
    That tore it for me and I haven’t bought Athlon since, or even paid any attention to them, so perhaps I spoke out of turn, at least for the years you refer to.

  • bleeding crimson

    Kyl470, you’re killing me. This is your third (dated) of going on the record of predictions and I agreed with 2 of them. I’m wondering how many others I’ve missed this preseason? LOL

    I do agree that is a crock about Underwood being a better hire than Archie. I think it’s like weitrhino said, they are just running off raw data and not taking the intangibles into consideration. Hell, they are just as unaware who Archie is as we WERE. If Archie just continues to do his punch list as he has stated, I think we’ll be just fine and may just end up in the top 4 of B1G, breaking the top 25 would be a given if that was to happen.

    I don’t think people realize that Archie is really known for his Defensive teams and we all know we sucked at that, esp last year. If he just changes that one aspect of our team, many other intangible numbers will fall in place, points off TO, steals, limiting the opponent pts, block shots, shot clock violation, etc. All those add up and not necessaryly on points made.

    I think the hardest thing to predict is how is our offense is going to respond. It’s more of the fact that we lost most of our starters and those points that go along with it, where are we making those up at? Plus they will also have to learn Archie’s way of doing things, Off/Def practice, expectation, off court/classroom, etc. Those will all be different for the returning class. We all have our preceived line ups but only time will really tell. Just going off what I’ve seen so far, I think we’ll be just fine, fun to watch and suprise a lot of folks. Maybe even knock off a few top 25 teams. Go Hoosiers.

  • david r

    Ain’t no way we’re finishing 9th. Athlon, and anyone else who thinks that can kiss my Abernathy!


    I do as well.


    If anything, they have an incentive to flatter fans of a program like IU in order to sell more copies.

    i.e., Robert Johnson on “any” cover.


    The ole, addition by subtraction thing, right ? That’s what I’ve been thinking as well when it comes to the whole, JBJ isn’t on the team any more but RJ is, situation. I’m. let’s just say, cautiously optimistic that that will be the case.

    As bad as I hate to say it I’m also starting to wonder if CJ isn’t one of those players who came in rated fairly high, rankings wise, and is the the type of player where everyone just continues to anticipate that the very next game could be his breakout game, but just never does for whatever reason. Hope that feeling turns out to be woefully wrong. This season should tell us much about him and where he is going to be going forward when it comes to playing meaningful minutes.


    Could you please explain your point and your rationale behind it for an eighth or ninth time ? lol You have more patience than I. lol

  • Arch Puddington

    No, you’re just speaking like a fan! It would be interesting to go back and see how the predictions from various national media have compared to reality over the years. If they have consistently picked IU or anyone else too low, then they have consistently picked someone else too high. I suspect it all balances out over the long term, but perhaps not.

  • Gregory J. Haggard

    I am certainly speaking like a fan.
    But I also believe I am correct.
    It is tough to argue with your logic though!