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Creek: ‘We’re going to make it up next year’

When the ball tips in Saturday’s Wazoo Sports Derby Festival Basketball Classic, Indiana fans will get a glimpse of the future. Christian Watford, Jordan Hulls and Maurice Creek will team together for the first time.

“We’re going to have fun out there. That’s what it’s all about,” Creek told Inside the Hall. “Both guys are going to bring leadership and energy and help the team out. They’re going to play with all of their heart.”

Creek’s experience at Hargrave, a military prepatory academy in Chatham, Virginia, has prepared the 6-5 guard for the transition he’ll undergo this summer in Bloomington.

“Time management and go hard at everything you do,” Creek highlighted as two of the many important things he’s learned during his time at Hargrave. “As far as basketball goes, just play hard and the game will come to you.”

Creek admitted it was tough watching Indiana struggle this season, but his outlook for the Hoosiers next season is all positive and his expectations are high.

“It was a great experience for them. They were all coming in. They didn’t know each other,” Creek said. “But we’re going to make it up next year. We’re all ready to go. All of us are going to be new and everybody thinks its going to be the same deal as last year. But we’re just trying to prove them wrong and just make it a better year.”

Jordan Hulls, Maurice Creek and Christian Watford

Three of the six Indiana signees – Jordan Hulls, Maurice Creek and Christian Watford – practiced together for the first time this afternoon in preparation for Saturday’s Wazoo Sports Derby Festival Basketball Classic. I’ll have more on the practice, including quotes from all three players, later this evening and tomorrow. For now, here’s a picture I took of the three of them before the workout:

Photo: New basketball practice facility coming along

I was down at IU for the night Saturday, and just remembered I snapped this photo of the basketball practice facility:

Not done by any means, but it’s rounding into shape.

See IU basketball players stand outside an IU football game

How well do you know the IU Hoosiers? How likely are you to go to an Indiana football game this year? Exactly the IU athletic department’s point: Why not kill both birds with the same stone? Hence the following event. Get hyped!

Indiana University men’s basketball coach Tom Crean has announced his program will hold a Fan Appreciation Tailgate on Saturday April 18, at 11:30 a.m. in the Mellencamp Pavilion. The event, which is free, will be held prior to the start of the annual spring football game which begins at 2 p.m. next door at Memorial Stadium.

“I thought this would be a great way for our players and coaches to interact with our great fans in a very informal and fun setting,” said Crean. “Our fans are the best in the country and we wanted the opportunity to thank them personally and to tie it in with the spring football game is another added bonus.”

The first 90 minutes of the tailgate will include interaction with the players and coaches and games for the kids. At 1 p.m., Coach Crean and his staff will publicly announce their 2008-09 team awards recognizing several of the players at that time.

If you notice, the above link contains a photo of Tijan Jobe scoring a basket. So what they say is true. Legends do exist.

Final Rosters announced for Wazoo Sports Derby Festival Basketball Classic

Here are the final rosters for the 2009 Wazoo Sports Derby Festival Basketball Classic. Maurice Creek, Jordan Hulls and Christian Watford will play together on the Gold team. Inside the Hall will have coverage throughout the weekend beginning late on Thursday.

Gold Team

Maurice Creek, Indiana, 6’5″, 200, Guard
Tyler Griffey, Illinois, 6’8″, 230, Forward
Jon Hood, Kentucky, 6’7″, 190, Guard
Jordan Hulls, Indiana, 6’0″, 170, Guard
Brendan Lane, UCLA, 6’9″, 205, Forward
Michael Snaer, Florida State, 6’4″, Guard
Daniel Orton, Kentucky, 6’10″, 260, Center
Christian Watford, Indiana, 6’8″, 215, Forward
Maalik Wayns, Villanova, 6’1″, 190, Guard
Rodney Williams, Minnesota, 6’6″, Forward
Kyryl Natyazhko, Undecided, 6’11″, Center

Coaches: Vince Walden, IMG Academy – Florida; Lewis Howard, Largo H.S. – Maryland

Black Team

Nolan Dennis, Memphis, 6’5″, 180, Guard
Rakeem Buckles, Louisvile, 6’8″, 203, Forward
Eric Bledsoe, Undecided, 6’0″, 160, Guard
Lakeem Jackson, South Carolina, 6’5″, 220, Forward
Elijah Johnson, Kansas, 6’2″, 183, Guard
Noel Johnson, USC, 6’7″, 180, Forward
Mike Marra, Louisville, 6’4″, 200, Guard
Eric Murphy, Florida, 6’10″, 220, Forward
Raymond Penn, Oklahoma State, 5’9″, 150, Guard
Peyton Siva, Louisville, 6’0″, 180, Guard
Stephan Van Treese, Louisville, 6’9″, 225, Forward
DaShonte Riley, Syracuse, 6’11″, Center

Coaches: David Gaines, Christ School- North Carolina; Andre Flynn, Fayette County H.S. – Georgia

Submit your questions for Evan Daniels of Scout.com

National recruiting analyst Evan Daniels of Scout.com has agreed to answer questions from Inside the Hall readers as a part of a Q & A we’ll be conducting in the near future. To submit a question, please post it in the comments of this post. We’ll use the best questions submitted.

Final standings for Pick ‘Em Challenge

Thanks to more than the 500 of you that participated in the contest. Here is a look at the final standings:

The top three should contact us at info@insidethehall.com to arrange delivery of their prizes.

On a side note, a couple people have inquired in the comments about coverage of this weekend’s Wazoo Sports Derby Festival Basketball Classic at Freedom Hall in Louisville. We will be at Friday’s event at Bellarmine and at the game on Saturday. Look for coverage on the site beginning either late Friday or early Saturday. If you are interested in attending, ticket information is available here.

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