Big Ten writers pick Indiana to finish ninth

  • 10/15/2014 9:27 am in

The Big Ten conference won’t release an entire preseason poll at Thursday’s Big Ten Media Day in Chicago, but will instead unveil just the league’s top three teams in the preseason.

Ohio State beat writer Bob Baptist of the Columbus Dispatch completed his annual poll of Big Ten writers (27, up to two per program) for the upcoming season and released the results this morning.

The league’s media voted Indiana to finish ninth.

Indiana received 163 votes, which was 33 behind Illinois and just one ahead of Maryland, which was picked to finish 10th. The media’s top three teams, according to the poll conducted by Baptist, are Wisconsin, Ohio State and Michigan State.

The full poll is available after the jump.

Wisconsin (378)
Ohio State (322)
Michigan State (305)
Nebraska (299)
Michigan (286)
Minnesota (226)
Iowa (214)
Illinois (196)
Indiana (163)
Maryland (162)
Purdue (95)
Penn State (84)
Northwestern (78)
Rutgers (27)

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  • hoosierfan2336

    Probably accurate. I think we will be athletic enough and have enough shooters to beat anyone, but be young enough to lose to anyone on any given night as well. All I want is improvement from last year.

  • Gregory Spera

    I’m numb to this BS, anymore. I get it. We stink.

  • ForeverIU

    Oh Puleeeeez! I’ll pretend I didn’t read this.

  • And One

    That’s okay. They’re wrong.

  • Miamihoosier

    If you go in to the archives, and look at predictions for IU coming in to Cody Zeller’s freshman year, they were almost identical. The media, and even most of our fan base, thought we would be lucky to finish 9th. The majority of guesses that year on “predict IU’s record” post were like a game or two above .500. I am not saying James will have the same impact Cody did, but the combination of James and Sophomore Troy, is going to make a bigger impact than most think. This is where our head coach shines. You just don’t see kids at other schools making those same improvement leaps. We are weak in the front court, but we certainly had holes that season as well. Jordy was horrible on D as a Junior, Verdell was marginal all around, Tom Pritchard was logging real minutes for that squad, and we had no depth. Nobody knows what’s going to happen, that’s why they play the games, but we aren’t finishing 9th.

  • Kyl470

    That’s why they play the games.

  • HoosierBuddy

    Im going to say we finish 4 behind wisconsin, michigan, michigan state. I think Ohio state is overrated. That said I believe it will be a toss up for 2nd 3rd and 4th between UM, Mich St, and IU. I have a feeling im being conservative with this IU team. WE WILL SHOCK THESE POLLS. PLEASE POST THIS BS FOR THE YOUNG HOOSIERS TO SEE.

  • Brad

    I think we are much better than people are giving us credit for? However, if the prediction people are right and we do finish that low, that would be a major blow to the program.

  • VAHoosier

    Funny, I think MI and MSU are OVERrated. I suppose virtually every team in the conference, other than Wisc, is either overrated or underrated. The conference has never been so wide-open in my memory.

  • VAHoosier

    I would have us finishing 5 or 6, ahead of IL, IA, and MN. I think there’s a good chance one of the other “top” teams (NB, MI, MSU) will falter and finish outside the top-5, leaving a door open for us. Of course, we could be the team to falter. Perhaps it’s time to acknowledge that no one knows what will happen, and just enjoy the season…

  • CreamandCrimson

    I couldn’t agree more with your last sentence. We don’t know, the “experts” don’t know, the coaching staff doesn’t know (although they have a better idea than the other two entities I mentioned)…there’s a ton of “if’s” across the board and I’m very excited to see all of these preseason questions start to get answered.

  • HoosierBuddy

    Yeah :theres so many scenarios that could play out. Everyone behind Wisconsin is a toss up. This season will be fun.I just hope I have something to cheer for. I live on the Indiana Kentucky border and work in Kentucky tired of hearing all the undefeated talk. I got laughed at alot last year when I tuned in the Iu games. But I will wear my cream and crimson proudly no matter what happens.

  • VAHoosier

    This is one of the most depressing posts I’ve ever seen on ITH. 🙂

    Keep your chin up…

  • MicMaxey

    Not gonna happen!

  • WhatsUpKnight

    i’ll say this, if IU finished 9th in the B1G and misses the tournament again, i think CTC’s behind is going to start feeling mighty warm. and deservedly so. call me a homer, but i have to think IU’s reputation, history, fan base, and facilities should allow a coach to acquire enough talent to field a competitive team year in and year out. bo does it (with far less heralded players, i might add), izzo does it, matta does it. why should we expect anything less?

    being said, i like CTC. i like the way he’s represented our school, and i respect how hard he’s worked since he got here. i hope he knows what he’s doing going after so many unknown recruits. is he developing a system? or is he settling for the best of what’s left?

  • Devout Hoosier

    Well I guess there is no reason to waste time playing the games then. These predictions are way off and depend too much on last year’s results. I thought the collective wisdom of the BigTen writers could give us deeper insight than this. Let’s compare at the end of the season.

  • WhatsUpKnight

    that’s what i thought about all the college magazine publications, but these guys are quite a bit nearer and dearer to the B1G. this one worries me a bit.

  • HoosierBuddy

    I do lol. These cat fans sometimes are annoying but I hope IU meets them in the tourney and beats them. That would more then make up for last year lol.

  • IUBizmark


  • IUBizmark

    For a guy known, nay, heralded as a recruiter, I’m unimpressed of late.

  • transplantedhoosier

    No offense, but when has Izzo not had a team that didn’t finish in the top 3 or 4 in the league? In my opinion, he has to be one of the best five coaches currently in college basketball. My guess would be that 5th would be best case scenario for us behind Wisconsin, MSU, Nebraska and either OSU/Michigan/Iowa.

  • VAHoosier

    Sure, that’s a compelling reason to pick MSU. Izzo is great, and I agree he is one of the top 3 or 4 coaches in the game. Keep in mind the league has grown, so top 3 or 4 is harder than it used to be. And looking at what MSU lost offensively, it’s hard to see them challenging for a top spot. They will be very tough at home and great defensively, as Izzo’s teams always are, but I expect they will struggle to score for stretches.

    But who knows? We’re all speculating here, even the so-called “experts.”

  • Ole Man

    Really sad. Particularly as to how far IU has fallen, since 2013, in the eyes of the media. Yes, I know that it’s only “sports’ pundits” (no offense or slight intended Alex and crew). However, this has to have some effect on recruiting.

  • Sandhya

    2007, though 2011 they were in a 4 way tie for 4th

  • Ole Man

    I think Troy will demonstrate that he has made great strides this year. Having said that, I honestly believe that fans are putting way too much expectation upon the young man. He isn’t suddenly a double/double, defensive, take-over-the-game player.
    He will be better; but he won’t be enough, even with Yogi and JBJ.
    This team to me is at least a year away.
    A plus .500 record in the B1G and a bid to the dance may be the ceiling.

  • JJ

    I find it funny that just about every team ahead of IU has major losses to overcome as well…

    Off the top of my head:

    Iowa: Marble / Basabe
    MSU: Payne / Harris / Appling
    Michigan: Stauskas / McGary / Rice, Jr. / Morgan / Horford
    OSU: Craft / Ross / Lenzelle Smith, Jr.

    Yes, IU lost a lot, but those are also some huge shoes to fill…

  • I’d say Nebraska to Purdue is pretty interchangeable.

  • Zach

    Thought the B1G writers would give some more optimistic predictions for our team, but I guess not. We’ll show em though

  • WhatsUpKnight

    we’ve definitely seen how easily the pendulum can swing. land one cody zeller and your program is transformed seemingly overnight. land an entire ‘movement’ consisting mostly of unfocused, chemistry-killing underachievers, miss out on the top player in your own state(harris), and all of a sudden the pendulum starts swinging the other way. do we have a team this year that’s going to break that momentum and start the pendulum back in the right direction? the ‘experts’ certainly don’t think so (when did i become so negative, old man? that’s your job!).

    on a positive note, i think this team’s going to prove the experts wrong. and i think this season will go down as CTC’s best coaching effort so far. mark my words!

  • Alford Bailey

    So, if the experts are right and IU has a disappointing season, finishes ninth and misses the Dance again will a change be made? ( Remember I predict a top 3 finish but that is going against 99% of the cbb world right now.)

  • Mattb

    seems pretty wide open after wiscy..
    who is going to score for MSU? Dawson? Valentine?
    OSU is going to be asking a lot out of Russell
    Michigan lost a lot and productive role players sometimes aren’t as effective with more touches/defensive attention
    Nebraska seems like a one-man show
    I think Iowa will be decent
    Not sold on Illinois

    (slightly) Above .500 in B1G play certainly seems reasonable

  • SCHoosier

    It’s not “sad”.. its reality and circumstances. From a “brand” standpoint IU has improved its position with recruits over what it was before TC arrived…academics are top notch and we’ve put three guys in the pro’s. Now the programs reputation has to be earned on the court. Until the Hoosiers PROVE they are better than 9th position..that seems about right to me pre-season. My gut says IU will be better than that…but seeing is believing.

  • AJ_IU_ColtsFan

    Yeah, this is a slap in the face, but I think it’s more superficial a judgement than we’re all taking it here. This vote feels less that the writers believe this program is “falling” or on the decline, or anything dire like that, and more that those sports pundits’ are simply picking up where they left off: With the Hoosiers disappointing everyone last season and finishing low.

    To people looking closer, I’d bet they believe last year was more the aberration than the true course. That’s certainly what I believe.

    Yeah, I get it,the pundits are saying “show us you’re for real”. And after last year, that’s a legitimate challenge to make. But again: I’m not convinced those writers are using anything other than last year as a basis for that attitude. It’s all that writers ever do in voting stories like this.

  • AnonymousDave

    Exactly. These guys are looking at every single team, they’re bound to miss something on one particular team. Also I’m sure a lot of these writers have opinions and teams they think will surprise but if they start publicizing that they’re gonna get a lot wrong and their magazine or site starts to lose credibility. If picking college basketball teams was conducted like fantasy football I think some “experts” might tell you to stash Indiana late as a dark horse. In your deeper league finds of course lol.

  • calbert40

    Meh. None of this really matters. I guarantee that most people polled didn’t give a second thought to how the severely unbalanced schedule could really tip the scales in favor of one team over another, and since so many of these teams are going to be lumped together, schedule difficulty within the league will have a HUGH bearing on final standings.

    A better way to look at this, IMO, is we are in the 2nd tier of teams. I believe there are three tiers: Tier 1 – Wisky and OSU, Tier 2 – Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, MD, UM, MSU, Minny, Nebraska, Tier 3 – NW, PU, PSU and Rutgers.

    Would it really shock any of us if ANY of the teams in Tier 2 finished 3rd? Would it shock any of us if that 2nd tier of teams finished in ANY order? It wouldn’t surprise me at all. Personally, I believe IU finishes between 5th and 7th, and the difference between 5th and 9th may be just one or two games.

  • calbert40

    I don’t believe a preseason rating will have any effect on recruiting. None. I look at these publications and preseason ratings with a “who cares?” attitude. They aren’t worth the bar napkin they were jotted down on.

    This is the same group that predicted Nebraska to finish 12th last year, so keep this poll in context.

  • Snookafly

    My big fear is that since the media rankings have set the bar so low, fans are going to convince themselves that a 5th or 6th place finish is wonderful. “We didn’t have a disappointing season– we OVERACHEIVED. Just look at all the preseason polls! It’s because of the great coaching.”

  • calbert40

    It is pretty unimpressive that he’s helped us land AAs for the longest consecutive year stretch in program history.

  • AnonymousDave

    I think 5th would be rather nice especially since I think this team is still a year away from doing big damage. I’m a huge Crean supporter but I understand why people are getting impatient. Fifth or sixth buys him another year with this years team lacking experience and depth upfront. Another ninth place year and he very well could be gone.

  • IUBizmark

    Ahh, the elusive sarcasm font.
    Yes, it is impressive. I did make it a point to say “of late.” That streak will likely be coming to an end this season. I wonder if Crean also holds the IU record for signing the highest number of least scouted recruits.
    Some of the lesser known recruits I’m okay with; others are very questionable and that’s what concerns me. Payoff on any recruit is risky and can be a long term game. This new method of Crean’s is bold because it’s unconventional.
    In 4 years will those in favor of these recruits acknowledge it didn’t work out when it was supposed to? Or will they say, ah, that recruit wasn’t ever supposed to amount to much, he wasn’t highly rated?
    If Crean is a recruiter, then why isn’t he landing more highly ranked players?

  • calbert40

    The AA string is ongoing, so the “of late” doesn’t really do anything for me. I find the suggestion that Crean is an unimpressive recruiter to be grounded in less than the whole truth, but rather in the desperation and exasperation many of us feel at last year’s poor season.

    Lots of recruits are unheralded and under recruited. I was listening to a nationally syndicated sports radio program this week, and the host was interviewing the QB of Ole Miss. He asked him if he received any other offers, and the “best” offer other than Ole Miss was Tennessee-Martin. I’m certain that all but about 10 programs in the country would LOVE to have him as their QB. Did those coaches screw up by not seeing the diamond in the rough?

    Sure, I’d rather have a 4-5 man class consisting of all top 100 recruits, but that’s not always a possibility. Equally, it isn’t about where you are ranked as a HS junior. We could run down a list of unheralded recruits that have been stars at IU and other schools.

    My point is that I’ll reserve judgment on his recruiting decisions, because he’s shown the ability to recruit not only AAs, but also solid players who were not on the radars of other high majors.

  • jpsturg

    Small correction. Robinson Jr. not Rice Jr.

  • Gregory J. Haggard

    There’s nothing to do about this stuff but smile!

  • HoosierGrampy

    RMK has the longest streak of HS All-Americans: ’87 = Jay Edwards; 88 = Eric Anderson; 89 = Greg AND Pat Graham; 90 = Damon Bailey; 91 = Alan Henderson.

  • HoosierGrampy

    Replace the word sometimes with always. The UK fan base contains some of the most obnoxious and narrow-minded people you will ever meet. Do any of your co-workers get sick when the Cats lose? I was the sole non-Cat fan in an entire neighborhood for 25 yrs. To this day, my 2 favorite teams in any sport are IU and whomever is playing UK.

  • HoosierGrampy

    ITH posters are similarly expecting a lot from JBJr, RJ, 3 Sophomores and 3 Juniors.

    Nebraska returns 4 starters from last year: Terran Petteway, Tai Webster, Shavon Shields and Walter Pitchford. Shields and Pitchford will be loads to handle for every team they play. May be better than 4th best this year. Outside the the top 4 teams listed, it looks like “On any given night…”

  • TomJameson

    I think most of the fans on this site don’t really care about the preseason polls, except something to talk about. You know, the fans in this forum will be focused on CTCs coaching, and how the team played together, the turnovers, games lost when we had the lead, a lot of things like that. Oh yeah, substitution patterns. lol Personally though, I think we finish 3rd to 5th. Mostly because, IMO, anything lower than 5th won’t make it to the big dance.


    Ditto that on my two favorite teams. People laugh like they don’t think I’m serious when I say that I would pull for the Russians before I would pull for those cesspool dwellers, and when I call them cesspool dwellers I feel like that is a doing a disservice to cesspool dwellers that aren’t pUKe fans. My uncle is in a very similar situation when it comes to his neighborhood and after we beat them with the Wat Shot, he told me that he and another IU fan, made a couple of laps throughout the neighborhood flying their IU flags.


    Agree, the “brand”, thanks in large part to CTC, has been cleaned up in several areas and now it is time to restore the shine to the “brand” on the court by winning consistently, which also includes not only making the big dance but making some noise in it and a whole lot of noise fairly often. While this part of the restoration is by far and away the hardest part to restore it can’t be said that the restoration has been completed until that part is accomplished.

  • HoosierGrampy

    I feel for your uncle. Although the rivalry became largely one-sided, I’d still like to see it renewed. It was good for college ball and if certain elements in the Athletic Dept continue to offer some lame excuse about not wanting to give UK additional exposure within the State, I’d say Coach Cal is doing a pretty god job of marketing UK without our help.