Troy Williams Archive
Throughout many of the Hoosiers’ 23 practices this preseason, freshman forward Troy Williams played with one hand.
It was only until this past Monday that Williams started to even practice with his right hand after he injured it the week of Hoosier Hysteria. During practices, he’d play with only his left hand.
But as the week went on, Williams proved himself worthy of being a starter in Indiana’s exhibition Saturday night against Southern Indiana. In the Hoosiers’ 83-68 victory, Williams recorded a double-double, scoring 10 points and adding 10 rebounds in his first college game of his career.
“Before I came here, I had a left hand but it wasn’t as strong as my right hand. People see it as a setback, but really I see it as a help to me,” Williams said after the Hoosiers’ win. “Having both hands equal at the same ability really has helped a lot so now I can finish both sides of the rim with either hand.”
But scoring and grabbing rebounds wasn’t the only thing Williams did Saturday night. Wearing padding on his right hand, the 6-foot-7 freshman also blocked three shots, dribbled between his legs and even attempted a few one-handed dunks.
All in all, it was a good first night for Williams, who only three and a half weeks ago wanted to participate in Hoosier Hysteria so badly he was willing to do it with only one hand but instead settled with judging the dunk contest.
“When you’ve gotta guy like that, I mean, you’ve got to let him run. You’ve got to let him play and what you want to do is you want to coach him along the way,” Indiana coach Tom Crean said. “He wants to be coached, and that’s a big deal.
“He’s got such a firecracker in his body. He’s on the explosion all the time.”
Hoosiers adjust to first game with new NCAA rules
Crean called it the story of the game.
In their first test against the NCAA’s new rules on hand-checking that has caused Crean to change the way he coached his defense, Indiana committed only 12 personal fouls. By contrast, the Screaming Eagles were called for 23.
Hanner Mosquera-Perea, Troy Williams and Yogi Ferrell met with the media following Indiana’s 83-68 exhibition win over Southern Indiana on Saturday night at Assembly Hall.
Watch and listen to their postgame comments in the embedded media player below:
Speaking to the media in advance of Saturday night’s exhibition against Southern Indiana, Indiana coach Tom Crean revealed his team is slowly getting back to full-health.
Freshman center Luke Fischer, who suffered a torn left labrum in late September, has been practicing for the past three days after missing practice over the past month. In addition, freshman forward Troy Williams has been back for a week after injuring his right hand before Hoosier Hysteria, though he is still practicing with padding on that hand.
Only freshman guard Stanford Robinson remains out with the bruised knee he sustained during Hoosier Hysteria. And Crean does not expect him to play in tomorrow night’s exhibition, unless something “magically changes” overnight.
“Troy Williams lost valuable time and then he came back and he did a great job and he did it with one hand,” Crean said. “And Luke has missed valuable, valuable time.”
“We’ve just had different issues with the injuries.”
Sophomore center Peter Jurkin, who has been in Sudan to see his severely ill father, is back as well and was at practice today, according to a program spokesman.
Tom Crean was an in-studio guest on Friday’s ESPNU Midnight Madness special and on the broadcast, was asked by Andy Katz for the latest on injuries to freshmen Luke Fischer, Troy Williams and Stanford Robinson.
Here are Crean’s comments on each player:
· Fischer: “Luke Fischer got injured right before we started practice. Tore his labrum and he’s back doing 5-on-0 work and hopefully we’ll have him by the second exhibition game, probably at the earliest.”
· Williams: “Troy Williams gets the cast off his right hand and we finally get a chance to see his right hand because the last couple of weeks it’s been all about his left hand and it hasn’t been too bad.”
· Robinson: “Stanford Robinson got hurt actually at Hoosier Hysteria, which you never want to have happen. He bruised his knee, he should be back hopefully sometime by the end of next week.”
Indiana’s first exhibition game is Saturday, Oct. 26 against Division II Southern Indiana at Assembly Hall at 7 p.m.
With the start of college basketball season on the horizon, we’ll be taking a long look at the conference at large as well as Indiana’s roster over the next month. Today, we look at freshman Troy Williams.
While fellow freshman Noah Vonleh possesses the most basketball talent out of the freshman class, it’s Troy Williams high-flying, energetic style of play that might endear him most to Indiana fans. There is a youthful exuberance to Williams’ game; he makes it all look so fun. (This is a kid, after all, who has proclaimed he’s still trying to give the dunk contest a go despite a right hand injury.)
Williams’ pedigree and accolades are well-known at this point. The Virginia native played AAU ball for his uncle, Boo Williams. He was named Gatorade Player of the Year in Virginia and spent his senior season playing for Oak Hill Academy, a program that’s pumped out NBA talent like Carmelo Anthony and Rajon Rondo. A stat stuffer, he averaged 16.2 points, 7.5 rebounds, 4.0 assists and 2.0 blocks during his senior season. More recently, Williams picked up MVP honors at the Derby Festival Basketball Classic.
RELATED: Troy’s Story
But Williams, like plenty of other freshmen around the country, still has an underdeveloped all-around game. And while his style of play is exciting, it’s also one that could stand some sharper discipline as he assimilates to the college game, lest he become The Undisciplined One, Take II.
“He was a freak athlete that I felt when I got him didn’t have a real great feel for how to play,” said Oak Hill coach Steve Smith when he got Williams for his senior season. “I thought, ‘Man, he takes some bad shots, forces up stuff.’”
6-foot-7 freshman forward Troy Williams is out for “the next few weeks” after suffering a right hand injury during a workout, Indiana’s announced late Monday afternoon.
No other details were disclosed, though Indiana coach Tom Crean called the injury “a setback.”
Below is the entire release, via IU media relations:
Freshman Troy Williams (Hampton, Va./Oak Hill Academy), a 6-7 forward, will miss the next few weeks after suffering an injury to his right hand during a workout.
“Troy has been rising in all areas of his game,” said IU Coach Tom Crean. “While this is a setback, it is a minor one in the scheme of things.”
Williams came to IU after playing for head coach Steve Smith at Oak Hill Academy. He was ranked No. 47 by Rivals.com and No. 10 at his position, ranked No. 67 overall by Scout.com and No. 17 at small forward, and ranked No. 57 in the ESPN100 rankings. He scored 21 points to go along with five rebounds and four assists in just 18 minutes at the Derby Festival Basketball Classic, where he was named MVP. He was named Gatorade Player of the Year for the state of Virginia and led Oak Hill Academy to a regular season record of 34-5 and an appearance in the National High School Invitational. He averaged 16.2 points, 7.5 rebounds, 4.0 assists, and 2.0 blocks during the regular season, compiling nine double-doubles and played in the Jordan Brand Classic.
(Photo credit: Mike Dickbernd/IU Athletics)
Meeting with the media for the first time as part of the Indiana basketball team Friday afternoon, IU’s freshmen agreed on what aspect of the college basketball life had surprised them most.
“The conditioning,” Troy Williams simply put it.
Though they are only one week into their first fall semester, IU’s freshmen players have been on campus since early June, adjusting to the conditioning demands of the Indiana basketball program. And it wasn’t easy, especially under strength and conditioning coach Je’Ney Jackson.
“You find out you’re not in shape like you thought you was,” Williams said.
“It’s been pretty tough,” Devin Davis added. “You have to get your mind right for every workout. You can’t come in and just think you’re going to get by. You really have to push yourself.”
It hasn’t gone unnoticed. Each player said they feel as if they have significantly improved in both strength and speed since they arrived in Bloomington.
And at the Amar’e Stoudemire and LeBron James skills academies this summer, other players took notice of Noah Vonleh’s particular transformation, who has gone from 215 to 240 pounds.
“A lot of guys I played high school basketball and camps with were saying I got a lot bigger and a lot stronger, this and that,” Vonleh said. “I just feel like I’m continuing to get better.”
‘You can follow in their footsteps’
In late June, Indiana’s entire team, including the newcomers, watched from their locker room as former Hoosiers Victor Oladipo and Cody Zeller were selected in the top four of the NBA draft.
“We all saw the faces on Cody and Victor,” Davis said, “and we just realized how much hard work they put in to get to their dream.”
Now, only two months from the start of their freshman season, IU’s newcomers have seen how they can get to the next level from Bloomington: mainly, through a strong work ethic.