Ferrell named preseason first team All-Big Ten, Wisconsin tabbed as league favorite

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Yogi Ferrell was named to the preseason all-Big Ten team and the Wisconsin Badgers are the unanimous pick to the win the 2014-2015 Big Ten men’s basketball championship, the conference announced earlier this morning at its media day.

Here’s the full release:

Rosemont, Ill. – Wisconsin has been chosen as the unanimous Big Ten favorite heading into the 2014-15 men’s basketball season as voted on by a panel of conference media. The media also tabbed Badger senior Frank Kaminsky as the Preseason Player of the Year. Michigan State and Ohio State were selected to finish second and third, respectively.

Kaminsky was joined on the preseason All-Big Ten team by Indiana’s Yogi Ferrell, Michigan’s Caris LeVert, Nebraska’s Terran Petteway and Wisconsin’s Sam Dekker.

The Badgers return four starters from last year’s team that advanced to the Final Four. Bo Ryan enters his 14th year at the helm after leading Wisconsin to a 30-8 record last season. Kaminsky was named to the 2014 All-Big Ten first team by both the coaches and media, while Dekker earned second-team honors from the coaches and third-team laurels from the media.

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O.G. Anunoby’s high school coach on his decision, long term potential and more

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Blair Thompson, the coach at Jefferson City high school in Missouri, has an up-close perspective on IU’s latest commit, O.G. Anunoby.

As a junior at Jefferson City, Thompson was on the sideline as Anunoby averaged 21.3 points, 9.9 rebounds and 3.4 blocks per game and was named first team all-state in Missouri for Class 5.

Inside the Hall caught up with Thompson for an in-depth conversation on Anunoby and we discussed what put Indiana over the top in his recruitment, how Anunoby handled the recruiting process, his long term potential and much more.

Here’s a transcript of our conversation with Thompson:

On what pushed Indiana ahead of the other schools in O.G.’s recruitment:

“The relationship he developed through the recruiting process with the coaching staff was a big key. I think he was thankful to be part of the Indiana tradition and compete at the highest level in a very good conference. I feel like all that along with his visit to Indiana went really well.

“All those things considered, I think, gave him the information he needed to base his decision off of. I think in the end, everything he was looking for in a school, Indiana offered. I think through the process of going through that, when all the smoke cleared, Indiana is where he wanted to go.”

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Hanner Mosquera-Perea adjusting into ‘big role’

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During the offseason, Indiana coach Tom Crean was not shy about what he wanted to see from junior Hanner Mosquera-Perea this season.

He wanted to see the 6-foot-8 forward, who has missed time from suspensions in both of the two seasons he has played at Indiana, become more consistent on the court and more of a leader off it.

“It’s time to play,” he said in June. “It’s time to be really serious about playing extended minutes. It’s time to be an enforcer at the basket. It’s time to show that toughness that his body gives you. It’s going to have to happen or he won’t be out there as much. We need his consistency.

“It’s no more fun and games, now it’s time for you to lock in and mature and not anymore talk, let’s get at it.”

Nobody has received the message more clearly than Mosquera-Perea.

Just weeks into practice for this season, teammates are raving about the junior’s on-court performance. And the Colombia native said he has felt an increased responsibility to become more of a factor this season.

“My role right now is a big role,” Mosquera-Perea said on Monday. “Not just being that, being one of the oldest guys on the team. I feel like I have a lot that I need to accomplish with the team, helping the team on the court and off of the court.”

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Podcast on the Brink: A closer look at Robert Johnson

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Podcast on the Brink is back for another episode with host Jerod Morris of The Assembly Call.

Morris is joined this week by the high school coach of Robert Johnson, Ryan Marable, to discuss a variety of topics, including:

· Robert’s greatest strengths as a player
· What he thinks will be the biggest adjustment for Robert going from high school to college
· The former and current NBA players Robert’s game most reminds him of
· Robert’s personality off the court
· The question he asked Robert that helped convince him Indiana was the right place for him

So tune in and enjoy. As always, feel free to drop the show a note at jerod@assemblycall.com.

Listen in the embedded media player below, download the episode, subscribe via iTunes or subscribe to the RSS feed.

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Big Ten writers pick Indiana to finish ninth

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The Big Ten conference won’t release an entire preseason poll at Thursday’s Big Ten Media Day in Chicago, but will instead unveil just the league’s top three teams in the preseason.

Ohio State beat writer Bob Baptist of the Columbus Dispatch completed his annual poll of Big Ten writers (27, up to two per program) for the upcoming season and released the results this morning.

The league’s media voted Indiana to finish ninth.

Indiana received 163 votes, which was 33 behind Illinois and just one ahead of Maryland, which was picked to finish 10th. The media’s top three teams, according to the poll conducted by Baptist, are Wisconsin, Ohio State and Michigan State.

The full poll is available after the jump.

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Announcement primer: 2015 guard Shake Milton

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On Wednesday afternoon, class of 2015 Owasso (Okla.) guard Shake Milton will announce his college decision at his high school. The announcement is expected to come at 4:30 p.m. ET.

Here’s our primer for the announcement with everything you need to know:

The essentials

Guard, 6-4, 185 pounds, Owasso (Okla.), MoKan Elite
247Composite: 4-star (84); ESPN: 4-star (71); Rivals: 4-star (66); Scout: 4-star (NR)
Offers: Baylor, Creighton, Houston, Illinois, Indiana, Missouri, Oklahoma, Oklahoma State, SMU, Texas A&M, Tulsa, Wake Forest, Wichita State
Official visits: Oklahoma, SMU, Indiana

The primary contenders

Milton cancelled a previously scheduled official visit to Illinois, leaving him with a final three of Oklahoma, SMU and Indiana. He will be choosing from the three schools he took official visits to.

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Q & A: O.G. Anunoby talks IU commitment

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Class of 2015 Jefferson City (Mo.) forward O.G. Anunoby became the second member of Indiana’s 2015 recruiting class tonight when he announced his commitment to the Hoosiers at his high school.

Inside the Hall spoke with Anunoby about the decision and a full transcript of our Q & A is transcribed below:

On why he decided on Indiana:

“I just felt it was the best fit for me. I like the coaching staff. They probably recruited me the hardest.”

On what he liked about the coaching staff:

“How much they want to get their players better. I liked that a lot.”

On how difficult the decision was and whether he went back and forth on it:

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