… And here’s the audio of Crean’s press conference from Friday afternoon, courtesy of The Hoosier Scoop:
In case you haven’t checked the schedule, IU has just about 24 hours until it’s next game — a big one in West Lafayette. And I’m not the only one who thinks the bizarre timing of the game needs to be addressed in the years ahead. Tom Crean is right there with me:
“I hope moving forward after this year it’s not a situation where we’ve got under 40 hours to prepare for a game. I get it now, I get it for television, but I think some concrete thought has really gotta be put into not allowing this to happen. Wisconsin’s gotta turn around and play. They’re playing on Sunday. I would have loved to see us be playing Purdue on Sunday. I’m not complaining about now as much as I really hope this doesn’t happen in the future. And not just because of where we’re at and where they’re at. Every game is big. Every game to every coach is the biggest game of the year, but there are certain games in all leagues that transcend anything. And I think Indiana-Purdue is one of those games just like I said the other day that Michigan State-Michigan is one of those games. And there’s probably others and I’m gonna learn pretty quick that there’s probably others. I would like to see both teams have the same kind of time to get ready for those games.”
Two quick observations: 1) The fact that IU is turning around in less than 40 hours to play any regular season game is ridiculous. Sure, it’s acceptable in March, but in the regular season, not so much. Especially when the Hoosiers had a break of more than a week earlier in the Big Ten schedule. 2) IU and Purdue need to play twice every season. It shouldn’t even be up for debate. Could you imagine the outrage if the ACC schedule came out and Duke and North Carolina only had one meeting? ESPN would probably run a 30-minute special denouncing it as the biggest travesty in sports. So note to you, Big Ten schedule-maker guy: IU-Purdue twice a season and little preparation time would be nice.
The frustration of a 19-loss (and counting) season might finally be getting to Tom Crean. Our friends over at The Palestra have the story detailing Crean’s shorter than usual press conference after last night’s loss:
After trailing by just one at halftime, Indiana scored just four points in the first 9:01 of the second half and fell 68-51 to Wisconsin on Thursday night at Assembly Hall.
By the time the Hoosiers (6-19, 1-12 Big Ten) scored their fifth and sixth points after halftime, Wisconsin had built a 15-point lead. The Badgers didn’t let the lead fall below 11 the rest of the way.
The loss was the fourth straight for IU and the 17th in their last 19 games.
“I don’t think we competed or played well in the second half. Our defense really let us down,” Indiana coach Tom Crean said. “And there is really nothing in the second half that we can hang our hat on. We were much different than the first half and they exposed that. They did an excellent job taking advantage of that.”
Trevon Hughes scored 21 points on 7 of 14 shooting to lead Wisconsin and Joe Krabbenhoft added 18. The Badgers (17-9, 8-6) shot 49 percent, hit 11 of 15 free throws and committed just seven turnovers.
Verdell Jones paced the Hoosiers with 16 points and Devan Dumes added 12 in his first game back following a two-game suspension. IU hit 15 of 19 free throws, but hit just 2 of 11 shots from beyond the 3-point line.
Up next: The Hoosiers travel to West Lafayette on Saturday afternoon for a 2PM ET meeting with Purdue. That game will be broadcast on the Big Ten Network. “I think we’re thirsty to redeem ourselves,” Verdell Jones said. “Purdue is an in-state rival and we definitely want to go up there and give them our all. We’ll prepare tomorrow for them and just come out and give it our best.”
The indefinite suspension is over. Turns out, it really wasn’t all that indefinite after all. After sitting out two games for throwing elbows in a couple of different games, most notably against Michigan State, Devan Dumes will return for Thursday’s home game against Wisconsin.
Indiana coach Tom Crean talked about the decision this afternoon and our friend Chris Korman captured the words from IU’s leader:
“We think we’ve covered the ground that needed to be covered,” Indiana coach Tom Crean said after practice today.
The notion of an “indefinite” suspension seemed a bit ridiculous from the get-go. Sure, Dumes deserved to sit out a few games, but he wasn’t exactly throwing haymakers out there. As Crean talked about following the Illinois game, he wanted to make sure that he, the Big Ten (or Jim Delaney) and Fred Glass all felt comfortable with the punishment and apparently two games was the magic number.