Notes, quotes from Tom Crean on the Big Ten teleconference

  • 01/26/2015 10:30 am in

The Big Ten held its weekly coaches teleconference on Monday morning to review the fourth week of conference play.  Here are some notes and quotes from Tom Crean’s appearance:

· Opening statement: “Well we’ve got a short time here after playing yesterday to get ready for Purdue who is playing very, very well. So our focus is on that and at the same time, we’ve got to continue to learn from our week. We did some really good things in our Maryland win and we turned back around against Ohio State and did some good things, but we didn’t do enough of them. And Ohio State played very, very well and we’ve got to continue to understand how to get people out of their comfort zone, how to take away strengths of the other team and at the same time, continue to play to our strengths. Part of the challenge is making sure that we’re teaching these guys constantly what enables them to win, why they’re successful and keep moving on and moving forward with all of those type of things and that’s what we’re looking forward to doing today and as we get ready for Purdue.”

· On the status of Robert Johnson: “I didn’t realize this until we saw it on the film, which is really disappointing, when he fell, there was actually, it looked like, a red folder or papers that were laying close enough to the court that he slipped on, that were on the baseline by the cheerleaders. It’s one of those inadvertent things you hope never happens, but it did and they were just laying there as he finished his layup. So we didn’t realize that at the time in the game, at least I didn’t realize it until we saw it on the film, but I think the best news for Robert is that he went back into the game and now we have to continue to monitor it in a very close way and hopefully it doesn’t linger. But he was treating it last night and moving forward with that. It’s really going to be … we’ll just go and see what happens at the end of the day and see how he feels and as we get closer tomorrow and I don’t think it’s anything that is going to be long lasting, but there’s nothing that says it’s going to be OK for this game either, so it’s too early to tell I think.”

· On the nature of the injury to Johnson: “He just got an injury there. I’m not exactly sure what we would clarify it as. We’re just treating it.”

· On the challenge of guarding Purdue’s two 7-footers: “It’s obviously a major one because one is hard enough but when you’re dealing with two and they play through them and they can score, they just keep getting lower at the rim, that’s an issue. It’s not just a situation where we just can guard them, realistically, with one person throughout the entire game. So we’re working through that right now and we’ve already been talking about that. But we’re going to have to make sure that we don’t get away from what we want to do and at the same time, we’re going to have to be very, very good with pressuring the ball. They’ve got numerous guys that can hurt you from the perimeter, so they’re a well balanced team. There’s no doubt about that. They play extremely hard, they’re extremely competitive and the bottom line is, they play with a lot of movement so if you get too caught up in worrying about one or two things, they’ve got three or four other things that they can go to and take advantage of.”

· On Stanford Robinson’s play on Sunday and how much he’ll be challenged going forward if Johnson is limited: “I’m not sure it’s about that as much as it’s about … Stan was solid in some areas, but what Stan has gotta do is quit turning the ball over. He’s got to quit turning the ball over and he’s got to be a more efficient defender. We just can’t have the turnovers at the rim or driving through the lane. We’ve got to keep simplifying the game and when we try to do too much is when the issues come. He’s capable of more, he’s provided more and certainly in a game like this with Purdue who is really, really strong on the perimeter as well, it’s going to be important that he plays better. But we’re just going to focus on what the team needs to do today and not really get down to any one or two individual type of things where they’ve got to do this or they’ve got to do that to prepare for the game. We’ve got to make sure that we get our team square all the way around for how good Purdue is.”

· On whether other team’s big men having trouble matching up is working to IU’s advantage: “I wouldn’t say that. I’d say we’re playing the way we need to play and other teams are playing the way that they need to play. And that’s the way it is for us. Collin (Hartman) is a very talented player that’s skilled, can do things at the basket and can certainly do things away from it, so I don’t know if it’s an advantage, it’s just the way that we play. And it’s working for us. But at the same time, it wouldn’t work if you didn’t have a guy like Collin that is willing to get in the fight defensively and use his body and bang and battle with people. That’s easier said than done when it comes to what Purdue is doing with how big and physical they are. It’s just who we are right now and who we’re going to continue to be and then we’ve got to figure out things defensively as we go.”

Filed to:

  • OhioHoosier

    Our ball screen defense has been concerning. I miss the days when Cody would hedge players out to mid-court!

  • David Macer

    Good point, but we don’t have Cody or anyone that possesses his height or speed.

  • Jimmy Johnson

    I agree, if the Butler bigs can do it why can’t ours, wait a minute we dont have any bigs so what is the excuse.

  • PBzeer

    Our defense is kinda like a TC presser, a lot of words that don’t say much of anything.

  • INUnivHoosier


  • I really do wonder what the impact was of RJ going out of the game (initially and then effectively). He was the only one who seemed able to hold on to the ball when driving (other than Yogi), and so maybe if he’d been healthy the offense wouldn’t have stuttered _quite_ so badly. Not saying IU would have won, but I’m curious what others think.

  • INUnivHoosier

    RJ being in the game would have definitely had an impact. Stan wouldn’t have logged as many minutes, and RJ probably wouldn’t have made a lot of those bad decisions with the ball.

    I hope Stan can get into a flow, because I thought he would improve quite a bit this year.

  • IULore

    They always tell me a lot.

  • PBzeer

    Like RJ’s status? What’s up with Stan? Lot of words, but don’t know any more now than before I read it.

  • SCHoosier

    The overall defense/TO issues were so bad Sunday..IU was going down no matter who was in the line up IMO.

  • John Prichard

    It only takes one player to be out of position on defense. We do switch defenses up during a possessions and you can tell we are lost at times.

  • TomJameson

    Really? I learned that he is concerned about Stans turnovers, that he knows they are the result of driving into traffic, that he is trying to coach him into slowing down and taking what is there and not forcing things, and a bit more. And that’s just about Stan.

    I think if you read his pressers without your obvious bias, you could learn quite a bit about his thoughts, concerns, and plans for this team.

  • TomJameson

    I think it’s a combination of things with Stan. It’s obvious that he’s forcing things, we all see that, but I always ask why? Maybe he’s worried about playing time and wants to show that he can do more. Maybe teams are collapsing around him more because they know he’ll drive like that. Maybe it’s mental because of what happened pre season. I don’t know, and frankly CTC is the one who should be concerned with the why of it, we just want him to play like he did last year (or better). At least you can tell by the presser that Coach is aware of it, and is working with Stan on it.

  • TomJameson

    Of course one can’t say what the outcome would have been, but I think it’s safe to say there would have been a positive impact for IU if RJ could have played the whole time healthy.