Hoosiers place four on Big Ten academic all-conference team

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Indiana was among the Big Ten leaders with four academic all-conference selections, the league announced on Wednesday. Here’s the full release from IU Athletics:

The Big Ten Conference on Wednesday recognized four members of the Indiana University men’s basketball team on its 2013-14 Academic All-Conference team. Senior Jeff Howard, senior Taylor Wayer, sophomore Jonny Marlin and sophomore Peter Jurkin were honored. Since 2010, IU has been represented 27 times, which is tied with Northwestern for the most in the league during that span.

The list of honored student-athletes features 34 men’s basketball players from the 12 member schools. To be eligible for Academic All-Big Ten selection, student-athletes must be letterwinners who are in at least their second academic year at their institution and carry a cumulative grade-point average of 3.0 or higher.

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Robert Johnson ready to embrace challenge that awaits in Bloomington

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In his first season as the head coach at Benedictine College Preparatory  in Richmond, Virginia, Ryan Marable had a significant challenge to undertake.

It wasn’t an unfamiliar situation for Marable or something he didn’t know was coming as he’d spent the previous two seasons as an assistant on the Benedictine staff.

But as four starters departed the program for Division I destinations, the Cadets had plenty of production to replace and had only one constant remaining: Robert Johnson.

“We’re kind of similar to Indiana in terms of our basketball culture,” Marable told Inside the Hall. “If we don’t win the state championship, a lot of people say it’s a down year.”

Benedictine didn’t win the state championship.

But no one can consider their season, which ended up at 25-7 against a schedule that included opponents like Paul VI Catholic (Va.), St. Benedict’s (N.J.), and Huntington Prep (W.V.), anything but a success. A primary reason the program was able to sustain its winning ways was Johnson, who signed with Indiana last fall after a highly contested recruitment between the Hoosiers, Florida State, North Carolina and Virginia.

“His ability to not only score points when needed, but make other guys better was really the basis (for winning games),” Marable said. “I feel like he really grew into almost a college freshman playing high school basketball this year.”

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That’s A Wrap: Collin Hartman

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Welcome to “That’s A Wrap,” our player-by-player recap of the 2013-2014 Indiana Hoosiers. Today: Collin Hartman.

Hartman (16 games): 0.7 points, 0.9 rebounds, 0.1 assists, 45.5% FG, 50.0% FT in 4.5 minutes per game.

Well before the 2013-2014 season began, on Oct. 2, Indiana coach Tom Crean spoke at his annual State of the Hoosier Nation event and addressed what he wanted out of each player.

When he stopped at freshman Collin Hartman, one of six (at the time) on scholarship, the Hoosiers’ head coach said Hartman would be a guy they “need to make shots.”

“We need him to be a ball-mover, a body-mover; a guy that can space and knock down shots,” he said.

Nearly six months later, the season has ended. Hartman took just 11 shots and saw 72 minutes of action in only 16 games. So, what happened?

Early in the season, when Indiana lacked any additional scorers to complement sophomore Yogi Ferrell, Hartman was given a chance to come in and solidify a spot in the Hoosiers’ rotation.

He played in a sixth-man role in Indiana’s early games against Samford and Stony Brook, scoring a season-high five points against the Bulldogs by going 2-for-3 from the field. Crean liked the way Hartman brought energy from the bench. But the following game, he went 0-for-2 against the Seawolves in 12 minutes of action.

After that, Hartman would rarely see the court — playing just 16 total minutes in Big Ten action.

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2014 forward Yante Maten excited by Indiana offer

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Indiana’s recruiting efforts for the class of 2014, which already includes James Blackmon Jr., Max Hoetzel and Robert Johnson, are still ongoing.

With three scholarships now available for next season, IU extended an offer to the Gatorade player of the year in Michigan, Yante Maten. The offer came during an in-home visit.

“They’re interested in him as basically a stretch four,” Bloomfield Hills coach Duane Graves told Inside the Hall. “A little bit inside, a little bit outside. Yante is a phenomenal young man. They like his character, he’s actually a really good student as well.”

Maten, who led Bloomfield Hills to the Class A championship game, averaged 19.8 points, 15.2 rebounds, 6.6 blocks, 4.8 assists and 1.8 steals through his team’s first 26 games.

Bloomfield Hills fell to Muskegon 91-67 on Saturday at the Breslin Center as Maten scored 13 points despite battling foul trouble.

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Audio: Crean on Kap and Haugh on 87.7 The Game

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Indiana coach Tom Crean was on Kap and Haugh this morning on 87.7 The Game in Chicago earlier this morning and discussed a variety of topics, including Noah Vonleh’s decision to leave for the NBA, the recent turnover in the program, why he’s looking forward to next season and several other topics.

You can listen to the full interview here or in the media player below:

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That’s A Wrap: Troy Williams

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Welcome to “That’s A Wrap,” our player-by-player recap of the 2013-2014 Indiana Hoosiers. Today: Troy Williams.

Williams (32 games): 7.3 points, 4.4 rebounds, 0.9 assists, 50.9% FG, 20.7% 3PFG, 67.6% FT in 21.5 minutes per game.

If you’re looking for the personification of Indiana’s inconsistent 2013-2014 campaign, freshman wing Troy Williams is a good place to start.

The Oak Hill Academy product came to Bloomington with much promise and dazzled at times. At Madison Square Garden on Nov. 22, he pumped in 22 points and snagged eight rebounds against Washington, his athleticism and confidence on full display. But the next night against UConn, Williams had just two points in a loss.

He found his offensive niche around the basket this season and sported a team-high 2-point field goal percentage of 56.9. Not counting Luke Fischer, his field goal percentage at the rim was nearly tops on the team, too. Only Will Sheehey (61.1 percent) bested him. Sometimes it was out of the corner, scoring on tip-ins, putbacks and up-and-unders. Others it was connecting with Yogi Ferrell late in the season against Michigan.

But when Williams tried making a move off the wing to the hoop, he often played too fast, taking a step before dribbling and turning the ball over. This happened a lot. Williams’ turnover percentage of 24.8 percent was near worst on the team, just barely losing that title to Devin Davis (25.8), Hanner Mosquera-Perea (25.7) and the departing Austin Etherington (25.0), though he used more possessions this season (19.4 percent) than any of those three. Williams also struggled to shoot from distance. He made just six of his 29 3-point attempts (20.7) with two of those coming in one game (at Michigan on March 8).

Defensively, Williams’ athleticism led to a team high in steal percentage (2.2 percent) and it would have been higher had he found a way to not step out of bounds after deflecting the ball up ahead on near wing steals more than once this season.

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Jeremy Hollowell to transfer from Indiana

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Sophomore forward Jeremy Hollowell will transfer from Indiana and seek an opportunity to play elsewhere, according to a release sent to the media by IU.

Hollowell averaged 5.7 points and 3.5 rebounds for the Hoosiers last season.

“Jeremy has indicated to us that he would like to transfer to pursue another college opportunity,” IU coach Tom Crean said.  “We have put a lot of time and effort into Jeremy, both on and off the court and it is our expectation that he finish strong in school and adhere to team rules. We will be there to provide any help we can give to him to find another program.  We hope he realizes his full potential and we believe we did everything over the last two years to help make that happen.”

The 6-foot-8, 220-pound forward started 15 games this season and scored a career-high 18 points in IU’s 77-46 win over Evansville on Nov. 26. He missed three Big Ten games with what Crean called a “focus issue.”

The Lawrence Central product came to Indiana in the 2012 recruiting class, which also included Yogi Ferrell, Hanner Mosquera-Perea and Peter Jurkin.

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