Around the Hall: Reaction to IU’s NIT draw, road game

  • 03/13/2017 8:40 am in

Around the Hall is recommended reading from the Inside the Hall staff.

Mike Miller of The Herald-Times writes that Indiana simply wanted to keep playing, even in the NIT:

Indiana learned Sunday night that it received a No. 3 seed in the NIT and will open the consolation tournament with a 9 p.m. matchup against No. 6 Georgia Tech at McCamish Pavilion in Atlanta.

Typically, the higher-seeded team hosts games on campus in the NIT, but Indiana declined to bring a game to Assembly Hall this week with students — a large portion of the ticket holders — on spring break. An Indiana spokesman said the school would be able to host a game, if still alive in the tournament, as early as March 20.

Sam Beishuizen of writes that Indiana missed an opportunity by declining a home game:

Indiana Athletics does countless things right. They’ve gone out of their way to improve fan experiences on game days, been active and sometimes groundbreaking in the use of new technologies to bring viewers closer to the games and generally do a good job in helping the community around the school.

But they whiffed on this move.

The reality is that the crowds at an NIT game at the newly renovated Simon Skjodt Assembly Hall were not going to be standing room only. Already slightly embarrassed to be in the NIT to begin with, empty seats certainly wouldn’t have been the greatest of looks.

But is this worth it?

Gregg Doyel of The Indianapolis Star writes that Indiana is all over the NCAA tournament bracket – except for one team:

Butler is 2-0 against No. 1 seeds in this field, both wins against top overall seed Villanova out of the East Region. Know who else is 2-0 against No. 1 seeds in the 2017 bracket? Indiana. The Hoosiers took down No. 1s Kansas (Midwest) and North Carolina (South) earlier this season. Researchers are furiously looking for another example of a team knocking off two eventual No. 1 seeds without making that NCAA tournament itself. I’m going to save them some time and declare: It’s never happened. I could be wrong, but would it matter?

The Atlanta Journal Constitution has reaction from the Georgia Tech side, which is excitement for the opportunity:

Having been given a chance to keep playing, Tech can conclude the season with a more positive feeling than its first-round loss to Pittsburgh in last week’s ACC Tournament. The game will be broadcast on ESPN. Tech was given a No. 6 seed in an eight-team quadrant headed by Syracuse. Indiana is a No. 3 seed.

“We’ll need to play, obviously, really, really well, but it’s a great opportunity for our program,” Pastner said. “One, it’s postseason. Two, it’s Indiana. Three, it’s a home game. Four, it’s national television. It’s huge for our program.” examines the rules changes in place for the NIT:

A few experimental rule changes will be in place for the NIT, allowing the NCAA to collect more data as it considers the impact of its current game format with two 20-minute halves. These rules break down the accumulation of team fouls into 10-minute segments, providing a snapshot of what college basketball with four quarters might look like.

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  • pcantidote

    After sleeping on it I think I might have figured it out. With the team on the road in Atlanta, the “renovations” are going to be the cleaning out of the head coaches office.

    Seriously though, I really do think it is because Glass doesn’t want a nasty boo-fest for CTC’s last home game where with a small crowd every screaming idiot can be heard loud and clear. I suppose this could be true even if it wasn’t CTC’s last game, but I can respect it a lot more if it is.

    Don’t believe me, well, then based on the Spring Break / small crowd logic we should give away every women’s home game as well. I haven’t seen that happen yet. Moreover, as someone else has already figured out, 11 of the 16 hosts of the NIT are on spring break. Also, I bet we were on spring break in 2005 as well, as this is always when IU is on spring break. We didn’t give that home game away.

    I suppose we’ll find out the truth soon enough….

  • Shaggy_C

    “It’s Indiana”

    Why does that sound so familiar 🙂

  • Jay Skibbe

    AGREE, iNDIANA, trying to hide Fans rooting to get rid of crean, and hiding the embarassment of 5,000 fans showing up, and yep time to clean out the HEAD COACHES OFFICE, because its obvious, his 3 million annual salary has cost Indiana University millions of dollars by no NCAA selection 2 of the past 3 years, TIME TO SAY BYE BYE TOM CREAN !!!

  • Shaggy_C

    As I understand it, the TV revenues from the NCAA tournament are doled out to the conferences, not the individual teams participating, so from Indiana’s perspective it doesn’t make much difference if they make it in or another B1G school does so long as the total representation for the conference (and overall success) stays more or less the same year to year. In other words, missing the tourney does hurt the IU’s basketball reputation, but I don’t think it directly leads to significant impact on the school’s bottom line, certainly not by millions of dollars.

  • WhatsUpKnight2.0

    i’ve said it before, and i’ll say it again…i like this team, and i don’t think for one second their lack of success is in any way whatsoever due to lack of effort. they expected better and they deserved better this season. i hate it for them that things went so badly, especially for those dealing with injuries.

    so while i wish them well, and will be happy for them if they somehow manage to win the NIT, i’m personally ready for the season to be over. i’m ready to move on from this one. i’m ready for the long months of offseason stories. most of all, i’m ready for the major change that i think is in order.

    if CTC is replaced, which i think is the necessary move, i will absolutely wish him well. he hasn’t been perfect, either on or off the court (shortcoming of both have been well document, so no need to rehash), but i can honestly say he’s earned my respect. he realizes how important this program is, and he works his tail off. not sure how i’ll feel about the CTC era in retrospect, but it won’t be all bad. plenty of fond memories, plenty of what-could-have-beens. heck, i’ve had 2 kids in that timespan. still remember it like it was yesterday scaring the heck outta my 2 year old daughter when wat hit the shot, and then throwing her up in the air to make her laugh. and now i’m gonna go cry…

  • mazarems

    We play during winter breaks all the time too! I distinctly remember taking down a highly ranked Ohio State team close or on New Years Eve a couple of years ago.

  • Fifer39

    Great comment, no need to add any more.

    (Love your Watshot story. My twins were newly born at the time and I remember running round the dining room table,sinking to my knees and punching the air…in absolute silence! 🙂

  • WhatsUpKnight2.0

    haha! good stuff! that’s gotta be the top memory of the CTC era, right? i guess beating scUM to clinch the B1G would be up there too. but the wat shot was the turning of the corner, or so we thought. the beginning of the next golden era of iubb. boy was that exciting

  • pcantidote

    My two kids were born during this era as well. I have a picture of my 6 week old daughter in an IU cheerleader outfit with me holding her right before the WatShot game. I distinctly remember coming upstairs after the game and my wife looking at me like “what the hell is wrong with you” as she fed our daughter a bottle.

  • ForIndiana

    Don’t work too hard explaining this concept to him…it took him a lot of time to come up with the math on a 3 million annual salary cost IU millions…he has just migrated his hot takes from Facebook to ITH…we are all so lucky to have his beautiful mind posting here now as well. The one good thing about posting here is there are fewer broken records, but Skibbe is another one.

  • Shaggy_C

    Sheehey draining a last second bucket to beat VCU and send IU to the Sweet 16 was a pretty epic one, too. Good times back then…Seems so long ago now.

  • WhatsUpKnight2.0

    and that’s the type of anecdote that encapsulates iubb. ok, so we haven’t been to a final 4 in longer than i care to remember. but the true die hard fans have so many fantastic memories centered around those types of moments. we remember exactly where we were when smart hit the shot (my childhood living room floor), or the moye block (my very first bachelor pad, devoid of furniture), etc…

  • Fifer39

    Right. We were back and what better game in which to show it. We had it all to look forward to again. How distant that glittering future seems now.

  • WhatsUpKnight2.0

    oh, right! and CTC thanking seth davis afterward, WS rolling his eyes in the background. yeah that was a great one

  • Fifer39

    I think I know that kind of look….

  • pcantidote

    Finally getting a W at the Breslin Center was up there too. I think that might have been the game that Cody might have faked taking a shot to his manhood.

  • Wannamaker

    So for the first time in history the AD of a university made the very deliberate choice to give the opposing team the home team advantage.

    Any more proof that Fred Glass’s decisions are counter to what is good for IU?

    No one – no one – gives away a home game. (Well, unless you’re Florida State, and there was a hurricane, and LSU is full of it and…)

  • pcantidote

    She told me the other day that she checks the score of the game before I come upstairs so that she can prepare for my mood. Yikes. Apparently I have some work to do in the offseason as well.

  • WhatsUpKnight2.0

    yeah, and didn’t he later retaliate and tag that guy in the coin purse?

  • Indiana_Banners

    Oh please. Fred Glass has overseen the most successful period in IU Football since the early 90s, a dramatic increase in revenues throughout the program, and the greatest upgrades in facilities in several decades as well. Almost all of that sounds good for IU to me.

  • WhatsUpKnight2.0

    boy does that sounds familiar!

  • pcantidote

    I agree. There is no reason to get on Glass….yet. He did have a bust on the CTC extension but there have been positives as well as you mention. Let’s see how he handles the basketball coaching situation before making the call on his performance.

  • Fivelefts

    However, I went to that game against Vandy.. And the atmosphere sucked! And we lost! I believe that was coach Mike Davis last home game coached? Regardless if CTC is being replaced.. I don’t think the atmosphere will be supportive enough of the entire team, which includes CTC. That’s too bad for the players..

  • SCHoosier

    Nice advantage for Ga. Tech..playing before a home crowed. Can’t say A-Hall has helped much this year with the losses we had there..but being on the road with a likely unmotivated team pretty much sets IU up for a one and done. Understand the decision..guess the choice is which is least embarrassing 1) small crowd at home or 2) Losing first round of the losers tournament? Hope for the best…go Hoosiers. Worst scenario is losing at home before a small crowd. At least Glass avoided that!

  • HoosierOz

    I’m sure it’s been said already but I have a big problem with their “Spring Break” excuse. I’m an alumni in my 30’s, a group that includes thousands of people. This age group is buying a house, having kids, etc and many of us are not even entertaining the idea of trying to get season tickets to IU basketball.
    What better way to see the newly renovated AH than hosting an NIT game? What better way to let our excited kids who have only ever watched a game on TV go to an actual game? That was just one example, there are certainly other groups missing out.
    I took my mother (also an alumni) to the last NIT game against Kent State and we both had a great time even with the loss and toned down environment. It was both of ours first game back since being students. We had Mother Bear’s (obviously) and really enjoyed being back on campus and in AH.
    This was a downright selfish and inexcusable decision by Glass.

  • KingofKentucky

    2nd that!! There have been a number of champions in lesser known IU sports. He hasn’t hit on basketball but he’s done an excellent job maintaining other sports programs.

  • Wannamaker

    Oh, thank you.

    As if the Kevin Wilson flare up was handled with aplomb.

    What AD doesn’t go through a thorough coach search? Who namby pamby sticks the next guy up into a head coaching position who has no HC experience beyond the high school level? And we’re a B1G team. At least Purdue talked about getting Les Miles…

    And Urban Meyer sure jumped on Wilson and grabbed him quick for the Buckeye’s OC. Is it possible Glass should have weathered the storm and kept Wilson?

    Fred Glass…he’s the dude, alright. Right up there with Jim Delany and Miles Brand.

  • Zora Clevenger

    Could it be that without students, the sparse crowd would be all ‘veteran’ IU fans who are more critical of the frustrating direction the program has taken. And that frustration from a couple thousand fans in an otherwise empty gym would not make good pr for the program. Students are there for the party and are happy regardless; older fans not so much.

  • Wannamaker

    And dat’s right on point.

  • Wannamaker

    So AD Glass decides us IU fans are a bunch of grumpy ol’ coots and don’t deserve a chance to hit Assembly Hall and root for our team or our players at home?

    Is that the rationalization?

  • Zora Clevenger

    I foolishly did not look at the IU bb schedule before scheduling a pre-Christmas trip to Chicago the day of WatShot game. So….I was on an Amtrak train heading homeward through northern Indiana as the game played out. I followed it on the HT chat. When I realized what had happened, I ran up and down the aisle of our car (I was in my mid-50’s at the time) high fiving dozens of dozing, confused fellow passengers.

  • Elwood Hoosier

    Why does Mike Brey’s name ever get brought up as our next head coach? Don’t know if he’d even listen but the guy has done awesome at ND. Clean record, graduates players, recruits top prospects. IU actually might be a step down at this point.

  • Zora Clevenger

    Well, I certainly fit the ‘grumpy old coot’ model after this season. So, yeah I think that’s Glass’ thinking. If things were to go bad in the game, there would be about 2000 fans in the stands, all wearing IU gear and booing. Not a good look.

  • IU Hoosiers # 34, 1979-83

    Just reading your comment on those 2 sceneries made me remember exactly what and where I was. Wow!! Thanks for that! !!#

  • IUBizmark

    For those concerned that the crowds will be vocally negative to Coach Crean or anyone on the team, please communicate to your fellow fans that this is unacceptable and a really bad look for IU. It makes us look like spoiled jerks and it makes future talent (coaches and players) less likely to want to come play for IU.

    Culture is our responsibility. Stand up to indecent fans and ask them to be respectful. They’ll soon realize what they’re doing is wrong. I don’t want to live in a world where IU fans hurl personal insults at our coach or players. His time here is coming to an end, either this season or next. No need to rub salt in the wound. We all wish things had gone better, even Tom Crean.

  • calbert40 – AC000000

    Ugh. What is the benefit of having a home game without students in front of a half-filled building of frothing angry fans on national TV? Be angry all you want, but be angry about things worth being angry about.

    Also, OSU couldn’t care less about player safety, academics…honestly anything other than winning. They are an SEC school stuck in the B1G.

  • calbert40 – AC000000

    Have you ever been in the Joyce Center? IU is certainly a step up as a program to ND.

    So far as why is he not mentioned, I think part of it is his “East Coast” vibe. For whatever reason, that just doesn’t seem to endear him to our Midwestern sensibilities. For me, I think if we are in fact looking for a new coach in a few weeks, he should be on the list, though.

  • Pianoroark

    That last line. ND is in the ACC, the best conference in the nation now and for the foreseeable future. And Brey has ND right in the mix there. Not happening. No reason for him to leave.

    My feeling is Greg Marshall is the very best IU can do at this point (sorry Brad Stevens holdouts), and we should be thrilled if he takes it. With the rabid and often delusional fans and the incredible (and often unwarranted) pressure they put on this program, and now with this weird move to cast our NIT game off to the lower seed’s venue, and so on, the atmosphere around IU basketball is growing a little toxic.

  • calbert40 – AC000000

    Agree on Marshall, and Stevens. If I was Glass, after making the cursory call to Stevens just to make sure he wasn’t interested, I hang up and quickly dial Marshall. He’s excellent. Though, I think he’s a longshot too. Already makes $3M at a mid major with far fewer expectations to meet (and nowhere near as crazy a fan base).

  • Pianoroark

    Fewer expectations, yes, but fewer big game/postseason opportunities, too. Look at the way they get seeded in the tourney. Every year it’s the same sentiment: “WS got hosed again!” That’s got to get old.

  • Shaggy_C

    Hear, hear. Crean is now the third longest-tenured coach in IU history and has achieved far more success than any other coach not named Bob Knight or Branch McCracken. Just because things have gone off the rails a bit doesn’t mean he does not deserve any less respect for bringing the program back from the depths. This team is playing hard and represents IU well, both in terms of scholastics and a distinct lack of off the court drama. He rebuilt this program in the right way and should always be thanked for that, even if he couldn’t quite take us all the way to the promised land.

  • Brad

    “He brought us back.” That’s what I’ve been hearing time and again by people here on the ITH message boards and other places. I’ve always believed that many coaches could have done what he did regarding running a clean program. He was soon going to be on his way out at Marquette because the program was sputtering. He recruited well for a 2-3 year stretch which resulted in a couple of Big 10 ten titles. We were easily beaten in the 3 sweet 16’s we made it to. It was clear last year was entirely Yogi getting us where we wanted to go. He’s gone now and this team is a train wreck. The incoming recruiting class does not contain any prospects that someone will pick up a leadership role. We were CBI bound two years ago and now we are declining NIT home games. So when you say “he brought us back”, what are you referring to? Because I see a mediocre program that misses more often than it hits. Not a program that’s a consistent contender on a national stage.

  • calbert40 – AC000000

    I’m sure it does. It all depends on Marshall’s personality and ambition. For an IU fan, it seems like a no brainer decision. For Marshall, he’s been at WSU for a decade, and makes $3M/year. I’m sure he’s very comfortable there.

  • Shaggy_C

    “He brought us back” in terms of going from the least returning minutes in the history of college basketball and a completely decimated roster to a season-long top 5 ranking and a #1 seed in the NCAA tourney and second-straight Sweet 16. It was one of the greatest comeback stories in modern collegiate sports. Was it a permanent fix that made IU a perennial powerhouse? Clearly not, but I don’t think it’s fair to discount the enormity of what he accomplished at the time because you’re giving more recent events disproportionate weight. “What have you done for me lately?”

  • IULore

    People like who disgust me. Its not enough that you tear the man down, you diminish the accomplishments they all acheived the last 5 years. If you want a new coach, fine. Don’t make stupid arguments. 2 big chanps in 4 years is mediocre? ?

  • pcantidote

    There was nothing namby pamby about it. He picked the guy that was able to do something that no one had been able to do in a generation — fix the IU defense. The guy is a genius in my book and deserves the opportunity.

  • HoosierStuckInKY

    2 NITs in 4 years too. 2 Good + 2 Not Goods = Mediocre. Above average at best.

  • John D Murphy

    So what is the timeline? I am assuming IU loses on Tuesday. Not set in stone as nobody in the NIT is good or consistent, but that is what I am assuming. FG has to make an announcement that he is sticking with TC or TC is leaving, he can’t just be silent. When is that announcement, end of the week, next week?

  • Shaggy_C

    Only 1 NIT, I’m afraid. That 2013-14 squad was snubbed for the NIT tourney despite having multiple wins over ranked teams during B1G play (they actually had a 7-11 record, same as this year’s team, albeit without a B1G tourney win). So the record over the last 6 years is:
    -3 Sweet 16s (inc. two B1G championships)
    -1 NCAA First Round
    -1 NIT
    -One failure to play in the postseason

  • pcantidote

    Seems like it would have to be very soon. Another possible explanation for the Atlanta diversion is that he is going to announce before Tuesday night that he is staying, which IMO would create a toxic environment that you’d want to avoid.