Listen to audio of Tom Crean’s appearance from earlier this afternoon on The Dan Dakich Show (via 1070 The Fan) in the embedded media player below:
(Photo credit: IUHoosiers.com)
Indiana has self-reported a secondary NCAA rules violation by the men’s basketball staff involving blue-chip recruit Gary Harris, according to multiple sources.
The school acknowledged to ESPN.com that coach Tom Crean committed the violation while recruiting an unnamed student-athlete in Indianapolis last week.
In a statement released Tuesday, the school said, “Coach Crean immediately reported an inadvertent recruiting contact violation to our compliance office, and we are following our normal procedures.”
The school says in its report that Crean visited the unnamed student-athlete at an Indianapolis-area high school on Thursday, Oct. 6. According to the NCAA recruiting calendar, the contact period ended Oct. 5.
Even though the program is still under probation until Nov. 24 of this year from the Kelvin Sampson era, IU’s report also notes it docked itself two days of recruiting as a self-penalty. Add this to the fact that the contact is a secondary violation, and it’s likely no further penalty will stem from this.
You can view the complete secondary violation report here.
Crean also commented on the misstep late Tuesday via his Twitter account: “We take the rules very serious and work very hard to stay compliant with them. We made a mistake. In reality there are no excuses and I am glad we realized it when we did so we didn’t repeat it that day.”
Q: How is Maurice Creek coming along after last year’s season-ending knee injury?
A: “He’s not 100 percent. He’s not ready to practice. He’s done some one-on-one in limited settings but it hasn’t been with his teammates, unless he’s sneaking in here late at night and doing that along with his shooting drills, which I don’t think he is. He’s smarter than that. We’re not in a rush with him. His rehabilitation has been fantastic. He’s getting stronger. Right now he’s doing things in controlled settings with managers and coaches. We haven’t put him into live action drills yet. There’s not a time period on that just yet. He was evaluated at length again [on Friday]. He’s definitely doing the right things. The mental part was the biggest hurdle for him last year, as far as overcoming that injury. As a coach I’m more concerned with that than the physical aspect, because we’re certainly not going to put him out there and ask him to do things that the doctors and trainers tell him he can’t do.”
Q: You lost the final nine games of the 2010-11 season. What was the most frustrating aspect of that streak?
A: “l look at those losses and say, “What’s the common denominator in those games?” That’s what we’re focused on more than anything. We’ve got to cut down our fouling in a big way. We averaged 22 fouls a game last season and finished last. Ohio State averaged 15 fouls a game and won the league. Right there, that statistic alone, you put a bright light on that, because that’s a big deal. You know injuries play into it and you know that not having enough scoring threats plays into it. But when the new year comes, you don’t focus on any of that. You just focus on what you can do to get better and what you can eliminate that has been getting you beat. It’s time for us to string some successes together, not just one here and there.”
Today, I received a call about Indiana basketball coach Tom Crean who is considered to be one of the better young coaches in the game and also one of the most focused and intense. The caller told me the story of a young man who is a freshman at Indiana and was finding his adjustment to college a difficult one. Crean saw the young man sitting in the lobby of the basketball practice facility recently and noticed him a couple of times as he went in and out of the basketball offices. He also noticed that the young man appeared to be very upset.
Crean invited the student into his office and proceeded to hear his story and counseled the young man on how difficult the transition to college can be and encouraged him to stick with it. He also introduced the student to the rest of his staff and he got him an opportunity to work around the basketball program as a member of the athletic department.
The young man had turned off his cell phone after telling his parents that he needed to take a walk and think and his parents were very worried when they were unable to reach him. When Crean inquired as to whether the young man had spoken with his parents recently the young man said no. Crean called the parents, gave them his personal contact information and told them he would look out for their son. After arranging for a job in the athletic department the young man is reported to be doing very well and has adjusted to life away from home.
(Photo credit: Jamie Owens of J. Scott Sports)
With the first of two live evaluation periods in the books, Inside the Hall takes a look at five Indiana basketball recruiting story lines from the opening ten days of July recruiting:
— Tom Crean earns frequent flier miles: Even with nine verbal commitments lined up for the Hoosiers’ next three recruiting classes and the current No. 1 class nationally in 2012, Crean blazed a trail across the country in the first ten-day period. Confirmed stops included the adidas Invitational in Indianapolis, the NY2LA Sports Next Level Invitational in Mequon (WI), the LeBron James Skills Academy in Akron, the Kentucky Hoopfest in Louisville, the Nike Peach Jam in North Augusta (SC), the adidas College Coaches Classic in Indianapolis, the NY2LA Sports Summer Jam in Mequon (WI), the Best Buy Summer Classic in Minneapolis and the Best of the Midwest in Indianapolis. Crean is often described as relentless on the recruiting trail and that was certainly the case as Indiana’s head coach worked from sun up until sun down scouting IU’s current commitments and top targets.
— Elite goes deep at adidas Invitational, Best Buy Classic: The Indiana Elite team that features Hanner Perea, Jeremy Hollowell and Yogi Ferrell was questioned by some for failing to win a tournament in the spring, but the trio of Indiana commits led Team Indiana into the semifinals of the loaded adidas event at North Central. After dropping their opening super pool contest to Shabazz Muhammad and Dream Vision, Elite bounced back to knock off the Andre Drummond-led Connecticut Basketball Club and the Atlanta Celtics. In tournament play, the hot hand of Hollowell (more on him in a bit) led Elite to three straight wins before falling 60-58 in the event’s semifinals on Saturday to New Heights. In Minneapolis at the Best Buy Classic, Elite advanced to the championship game and finished 5-1. For a group that’s playing together for the first time and possesses limited depth, Team Indiana’s play in the first evaluation period was impressive.
Inside the Hall had the chance to catch up with former Hoosier and NBA guard Greg Graham, who is now a physical education teacher and the basketball coach at Warren Central, on Saturday at the USSFA High School Shootout.
The primary focus of our conversation was 2013 commitment Devin Davis Jr., but we did ask Graham about the recent hiring of his former Hoosier teammate, Calbert Cheaney, as Indiana’s director of basketball operations.
Here’s what Graham had to say:
What did you think about Calbert Cheaney going back to Indiana as director of basketball operations?
“I knew that was going to happen. It was just a matter of when. Cal’s been down there the last few seasons, golf outings and I know he has a great relationship with Crean. I think it’s good for Indiana basketball. This is something that’s been wanted for a long time. To finally have a coach to finally come in and have the guts to hire a Knight guy, that’s good. And I think that’s primarily where the separation with Hoosier nation is from. If you don’t have any former players down there who are involved with athletics, I mean, people around here grew up watching Knight and his players. I think you have to still keep that connection and that tradition going.”
Do you think that’s the biggest thing Crean has done, that the past two coaches didn’t do, is embrace the tradition?
“I think it is the number one thing. And people have been wanting that. Crean finally was brave enough and had enough confidence in himself to bring a player back. I mean, why not? He’s probably arguably the best player that the Big Ten has ever seen. I say that loosely, but he’s the all-time leading scorer (in the Big Ten). He’s a proven player, I think he can help with recruiting, I think he can help a lot of those guys develop their game.”