Tom Crean Archive
Tom Crean’s weekly radio show was Monday night. Here are some of the major tidbits to take from it:
· Reacting to loss: To open the show, Crean was asked if he had changed his mind about Saturday’s overtime loss to Butler after watching the film. Crean said his reaction was the same as it was right after the game.
“We settled for too many pull-up jump shots,” Crean said. “Their defense is really predicated to give you that shot. That only works if you let them. It’s not what we’re built on. We’re a pretty good pull-up shooting team, but we don’t want to do that all the time.”
And of course, there was second guessing, as there always is with a loss. Crean said he wish he would have gone to his bench more early in the game. He said there has to be a great trust in all the guys you put on the floor in a competitive game like the one on Saturday.
As far as how his players reacted to losing for the first time this season, they were upset.
“They were down, there’s no question about that,” Crean said. “It wasn’t like I walked in the locker room like, ‘everything is fine, let me pick you all up.’ The last couple of days, the resolve has really come back. They care. There was nobody that was masking how down they were. But the last two days is when that resolve starts to come out.”
· Mosquera-Perea plays, but not much: Freshmen Hanner Mosquera-Perea and Peter Jurkin were eligible for the first time in their college careers on Saturday after serving nine-game NCAA suspensions to start the season. Mosquera-Perea got on the floor against the Bulldogs, but he only played for three minutes, scoring two points.
Jurkin did not play.
“It’s just going to take a little bit of time,” Crean said of Mosquera-Perea. “We didn’t go in with a set amount of time for him. His minutes will continue to go up. He’s going to be a force for our team. He’s an energy giver. When he’s out there, people can just feel it.”
· Reaction to Big Ten expansion: Don Fischer asked Crean for his thoughts on the addition of Rutgers and Maryland to the Big Ten Conference.
“It’s great because we don’t have to look to schedule games in those areas as much,” Crean said. “We always want to have an East Coast presence. It’s great for our school, it’s great for our recruiting, and it’ll be very competitive. Those are two outstanding schools and programs.”
There are many ways to try and explain No. 1 Indiana’s upset loss to Butler on Saturday. There are many ways to try and justify it.
But maybe, just maybe, the right answer you’re so desperately looking for doesn’t have all that much to do with Indiana. Perhaps it has more to do with Butler.
There’s no question the Hoosiers didn’t play like the nation’s best team in Saturday’s 88-86 overtime loss. No question at all, they have to play better going forward.
At the end of the day, though, no matter how good and how talented the Hoosiers are, they continue to run into situations they haven’t experienced before. On Saturday, it was an overtime game against a smaller but more physical team. They had to adjust inside of the game and, for the most part, they failed to that.
It doesn’t happen often, but Tom Crean and Indiana were outcoached on Saturday. And that’s no insult to Crean. It’s more a compliment to Butler coach Brad Stevens, who continues to prove his value as one of the best in-game coaches in college basketball.
Stevens and Butler have been there before. They’ve been to two national championship games. They’ve played against and beaten bigger teams. They’ve taken on the so-called “best” of college basketball and won.
Saturday’s game was nothing new for the Bulldogs. Even as their best players began fouling out — first Roosevelt Jones, then Andrew Smith and Erik Fromm — Butler remained calm.
“It’s no surprise to us,” Smith said afterward. “People are going to be surprised when an unranked team beats a team like IU, but we have a great team.”
And that’s just it. These are the kinds of games Indiana needs to learn how to win. The Hoosiers won’t always be able to win in run-away fashion. Sometimes, they’ll have to grind them out.
INDIANAPOLIS — Cody Zeller didn’t provide much of an answer when he was asked about Indiana’s effort on the glass in Saturday’s 88-86 overtime loss to Butler in the Crossroads Classic at Bankers Life Fieldhouse.
While the final rebounding numbers showed Butler with just a 40-38 edge overall, the Hoosiers (9-1) allowed Butler to rebound 48.1 of its misses, a season-high for an IU opponent.
Indiana came into the game allowing an offensive rebounding percentage of just 26.4, which ranked 20th in the country.
When asked how he and his teammates allowed Butler to grab 11 offensive rebounds in the first half, IU’s star sophomore offered little in terms of an explanation.
“I don’t know, we’ve gotta figure it out,” Zeller said.
It sounds like the Hoosiers may begin to figure it out sooner rather than later.
“I’m excited about the rebounding drills we’re gonna do,” Crean said. “I’m not sure there will be many people that will be sharing that joy with me, but I know I’ll be excited about it because, right now, that’s an area we’ve got to really shore up.”
Butler’s success on the offensive glass led to 27 second-chance points and despite giving up some size across the frontline, the Bulldogs (8-2) won the points in the paint battle 42-32.
Crean didn’t point to one area in particular that contributed to the Hoosiers’ struggles on the glass, but it was clear that he saw rebounding as a major factor in the outcome.
“I think we’re going to be disappointed with some of our contact on the block outs,” he said. “Some balls bounced wrong that we’ve just got to go up with two hands and get ‘em. But that’s not an excuse for us in the fact that we didn’t rebound well enough.”
Tom Crean met with the media following Indiana’s 88-86 overtime loss to Butler at Bankers Life Fieldhouse on Saturday.
Watch and listen to the press conference in the embedded media player below:
Tom Crean’s recruiting philosophy has always been fairly clear during his tenure at Indiana: Pursue players that will fit your program — no matter where they are ranked — and develop them.
Crean didn’t always get highly-touted recruits during his first several years in Bloomington, but they all fit his philosophy. Even though coaches at other major college programs ignored some of the players Crean went after — namely Will Sheehey and Victor Oladipo — Crean treated them like they would be important parts of a rebuilding project.
Now that fans have gotten an opportunity to see how Crean has developed various players, it’s much easier to understand what his goal was all along.
“Some of the people that rank players for a living are some of my close friends, good friends, and I read it non-stop,” Crean said Thursday. “But we don’t make our decisions on it. You just can’t. It’s part of the tools that are available. Beauty is truly in the eye of the beholder, and you recruit that way. Sometimes it’s hard for your fan base to see that, but you have to stay true to it.
“The rankings and the top 100s and all of those things matter absolutely zero when it comes to the next level. They might track you earlier because you’re ranked, but it doesn’t have anything to do with where you get picked or who you play for or how long you play for. … Once you get here, it’s a clean slate no matter what. The ranking doesn’t help you win a game or lose a game, it doesn’t carry you to the next practice. Sometimes it’s a burden.”
Indiana’s 2013 recruiting class has a good mix of highly-ranked players and a few who may be undervalued by scouting services. The Hoosiers’ success in recent years has given the program national visibility and helped it lure recruits that might not have previously considered Indiana. But Crean has also stayed true to his original philosophy, signing a variety of pieces he feels will best fit together.
Here’s a look at the 2013 class, with Crean’s analysis of each individual player.
Noah Vonleh (five stars, ranked 8th by ESPN.com), New Hampton School, Haverhill, Mass., 6-foot-8, 220 pounds:
“That’s a dream recruit in this sense: to have someone who’s that humble, who’s that grounded, and that talented at that age, you can’t expect that. The stars were aligned for us. The upside is just enormous. As talented and as skilled as he is, that upside, it’s hard to imagine it. He’s incredibly unselfish. They can give him the ball at the top of the key in a 1-4 set, and he’ll deliver the ball. He’s like Cody in that he doesn’t look for his offense nearly enough. He’s another one of those young guys we have here who is untapped in the sense that they have no idea how good they can be.”
Troy Williams (four stars, ranked 33rd by ESPN.com), Oak Hill Academy, Hampton, Va., 6-foot-7, 190 pounds:
“When we found out that we had an opportunity to recruit him, and it became apparent that there was a small window to get in, the window just kept getting bigger and bigger. Here’s a guy that we were already a fan of. And once we had the opportunity to recruit him and see how he would fit, we couldn’t have drawn it up much better.
“He’s a cross between Will and Victor when you combine the height, the athleticism, just the incredible leaping ability, the explosion, the ability to run end to end. We’re gonna be great for Troy because we’re gonna help him get much better in the half-court and get much better in the ball screens. But what he brings to the table when it comes to energy, edge, up and down the floor, the ability to offensive rebound — those are crucial things. He’s a stat-sheet stuffer without really understanding how to do all that.”
Tom Crean, Tim Buckley, Steve McClain, Kenny Johnson and Calbert Cheaney met with the media on Thursday afternoon to discuss Indiana’s six signees for the 2013 recruiting class.
Watch and listen to the lengthy press conference in the embedded media player below:
Transcript after the jump.
Tom Crean met with the media following Indiana’s 100-69 win over Central Connecticut State on Saturday at Assembly Hall.
Watch and listen to the press conference in the embedded media player below:
Select quotes available after the jump. Read →