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Dooley and Rahrig will meet again … in Pittsburgh #iufb

Matt Dooley picked up his cap and gown on Tuesday, but he’ll return them before the weekend begins.

He won’t walk across the stage with his classmates and he won’t attend Indiana’s spring commencement ceremony on Saturday at Memorial Stadium. Dooley’s plans have changed.

Instead, the former IU long snapper will be at the Pittsburgh Steelers’ rookie minicamp trying to make a good first impression and earn a more permanent spot in the NFL.

“Even though my family was planning on flying in, this takes priority,” Dooley said. “I’ll get my degree in the mail.”

Dooley wasn’t expecting to get drafted last weekend, but he was expecting to field some interest from NFL teams looking for another specialist to work out during camp season. That interest was slow to arrive.

It was a bit surprising considering that Dooley earned his place as one of the Big Ten’s top specialists over the last four years. He served as the Hoosiers’ long snapper in each of the team’s 48 games in his career and earned IU Special Teams Player of the Year honors as a senior in 2014.

“I was just hoping to get picked up in free agency afterward and I didn’t get any calls,” Dooley said. “It was a little discouraging at first, and a little confusing because I at least expected a workout or something. It was just delayed a little bit and then my agent called (Tuesday).”

So now he’s headed to Pittsburgh, but he won’t be traveling alone. Dooley will board the same flight as former Indiana center Collin Rahrig, who signed with the Steelers as an undrafted free agent on Saturday evening. In an unforeseen turn of events, Rahrig and Dooley are the second set of former IU teammates to land with the same NFL franchise after Atlanta drafted running back Tevin Coleman in the third round and signed receiver Shane Wynn shortly after the draft. Bobby Richardson, the fifth IU player to ink an NFL free agent deal, signed with New Orleans. (more…)

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Video: IU players on offseason, future expectations

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Hoosiers cap big weekend with sweep at No. 20 Maryland #iubase

Indiana boarded a plane and flew East this week, leaving four losses and the troubling trajectory of its season in its wake.

Three games at No. 20 Maryland yielded three wins, capped by Sunday’s 6-2 victory over the Terrapins, and rerouted the Hoosiers’ postseason hopes in a more favorable direction. The weekend sweep in College Park, Md. keeps the seventh-place Hoosiers (26-19, 9-10) in the hunt for a Big Ten Tournament invitation and puts an at-large berth in the NCAA Tournament within reach.

In finishing off the big road series, Indiana outscored the Terps 25-9. It combined for 30 hits and saw all three weekend starters go five innings, while the bullpen allowed only three runs over 12 innings of work.

“It’s huge for us,” right fielder Will Nolden told BTN on Sunday. “We have our backs against the wall these next couple weeks. That was our goal to come out and play well, and obviously we did that really well this weekend.”

IU finished with six hits and the top six batters in the lineup each scored once on Sunday, beginning with a five-run top of the third that sent the Hoosiers on their way. Brad Hartong’s RBI groundout drove in Casey Rodrigue for the first run of the afternoon, before Maryland starter Jake Drossner lost command of the strike zone. With two outs and Nick Ramos on second, Drossner walked Scott Donley on five pitches and hit Logan Sowers on the second pitch of his at-bat. With the bases loaded, Drossner threw eight consecutive balls to walk in Ramos and Donley and, after a pitching change, Austin Cangelosi drove a two-run double to left field and pushed Indiana’s lead to five. (more…)

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Collin Rahrig heading to Pittsburgh #iufb

Collin Rahrig is heading to Pittsburgh.

Rahrig told The Herald-Times in a text message Saturday that he signed a free agent contract with the Steelers, becoming the third Hoosier to find a professional home. The South Bend native started 36 of the 40 career games he played at Indiana, making 19 of those starts at center, 12 at left guard and five at right guard. As a senior, Rahrig was named a All-Big Ten honorable mention selection by both coaches and meida. He was also a nominee for the Rimington and Burlsworth trophies.

Rahrig started the first six games of last season before moving to left guard for the final six. NFL teams like him at center in a zone blocking scheme, which the Steelers have used since 2013. He was second among Indiana linemen with 56 knockdowns last season.

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Shane Wynn and Tevin Coleman to be reunited in Atlanta #iufb

Shane Wynn and Tevin Coleman won’t be separated.

One day after Coleman went to Atlanta in the third round of the NFL Draft, the Falcons reached out to Wynn with a free agent contract after the IU receiver went undrafted on Saturday. Wynn’s agent, Ed Wasielewski, confirmed his destination on Saturday evening.

Wynn ran a 4.29 40-yard dash at Indiana’s Pro Day in late March, a time that would have been the second-fastest mark at the NFL Combine. He could profile as a return man in the NFL.

Wynn finished his four-year career at Indiana tied for second in receptions (189), third in kick return yardage (1,854) and tied for third in receiving touchdowns (20) on the Hoosiers’ career leaderaboards. Wynn started the final 36 games of his career and appeared in all 48, standing as the only player in IU history with a receiving, rushing, kick return and punt return touchdown in his career. He is also the eighth Indiana player to record 100 catches and 1,000 yards for his career.

Now he’ll try to latch on and keep his partnership with Coleman going for a few more years.

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PG Harrison Niego commits to Indiana as preferred walk-on #iubb

As an eighth-grader, Harrison Niego remembers watching Nick Zeisloft lead Lyons Township High School to back-to-back regional championships in Illinois.

Now, the two are set to become teammates at Indiana.

Niego, a 6-foot-2 point guard from Zeisloft’s alma mater, committed to IU on Friday night as a preferred walk-on for the 2015-16 season. He, like Zeisloft, will add another knockdown shooter to Indiana’s bench.

“This team has a lot of potential to make a great run this year,” Niego said. “(I liked) the culture of winning, and it starts from the top and goes all the way to the bottom. It was irresistible and it’s how I work, too. That was really attractive.”

Niego’s father, Joe, a former fourth-round draft pick of the Houston Rockets in 1987, said Indiana has shown interest since his son’s sophomore season. North Dakota State, Illinois-Chicago and Northern Illinois each offered Niego, who was also considering Ivy League schools Yale, Dartmouth and Cornell.

IU coach Tom Crean and assistant Tim Buckley were both involved in Niego’s recruitment. Peegs.com’s Jeff Rabjohns was first to report Niego’s commitment.

“Harrison got the call from coach Crean asking us to come to campus and to visit with the coaches again,” Joe Niego said. “We sat down and looked at film, and coach laid down his plan on how he saw Harrison fitting in. We got there, and after talking to coach Crean and the players and seeing the history there and what they’re continuing to build on, he just got excited for the opportunity. He came home and we did the pros and the cons of the other opportunities.”

Niego joins an IU roster that currently has only four guards, including Yogi Ferrell, Robert Johnson, James Blackmon Jr. and Zeisloft. That supporting cast, along with a deep backcourt, made it an easy sell.

“He’s a guy that shoots the ball extremely well,” Niego’s father said. “He has a real high basketball IQ. One thing he’s never really had a chance to do in his basketball career is really play with athletic players around him. He’s a guy that feels he can use the talent around him and there’s a lot of athleticism there that he’s excited to get going with.”

He’s excited to team with Zeisloft, too. As Niego weighed his college options and considered the possibilities of accepting a basketball scholarship at a mid-major, playing in the Ivy League or walking on at Indiana, he leaned on Zeisloft for advice.

Those conversations, and all the other factors, including the chance to play for a Big Ten championship contender, led Niego to Bloomington.

“I’ve been in contact with Nick a lot over this recruiting process as Indiana became more and more one of the possibilities for me in walking on,” Niego said. “Nick’s a great guy. He’s been awesome to me. I grew up watching him. It’s really cool to now be on the same team as him.”

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Atlanta drafts Tevin Coleman in third round #iufb

It was Tevin Coleman’s dream to be a first-round pick, to be the first running back taken in this weekend’s NFL Draft.

Instead, he fell further than anyone thought.

The former Indiana running back slid to the third round Friday, going to the Atlanta Falcons with the No. 73 overall pick.

Coleman watched four running backs, including two from his own conference, selected ahead of him before going early in the third round. The Falcons were one of five teams Coleman visited.

“Me and Tevin talked about this years ago,” IU running backs coach Deland McCullough said at Coleman’s Pro Day on April 15. “Me and his dad and his mom talking about what opportunities could be there if he comes in and does the things he should do. He put confidence in me, our system.”

The consensus All-American finished seventh in the Heisman Trophy voting after rushing for Indiana single-season records of 2,036 yards, 7.5 yards per rush and four 200-yard games. One of three finalists for the Doak Walker Award, Coleman did it all while spending half a season running on a broken toe. He finished second nationally in rushing yards, rushing yards per game (169.7), all-purpose yards per game (181.4) and yards from scrimmage per game (181.4).

Coleman’s selection comes one year after receiver Cody Latimer was taken in the second round by the Denver Broncos with the No. 56 overall pick. Offensive lineman Rodger Saffold went No. 33 overall to the St. Louis Rams in the second round of the 2010 draft.​

Indiana has not had a player taken in the first round since 1994, when receiver Thomas Lewis went to the New York Giants with the No. 24 overall pick. No Big Ten team has a longer current drought between first-round picks.

Perhaps due to durability and value concerns, NFL teams shied away from taking a running back in the first round in each of the last two drafts before St. Louis picked Georgia’s Todd Gurley with the No. 10 overall pick on Thursday. San Diego later traded up two picks to get Wisconsin’s Melvin Gordon at No. 15. On Friday, Coleman wasn’t even the first running back taken. Jacksonville selected Alabama’s T.J. Yeldon with the No. 36 overall pick and Detroit took Nebraska’s Ameer Abdullah with the No. 54 overall pick.

After Dallas, another one of the teams Coleman visited, selected Nebraska linebacker Randy Gregory with the No. 60 overall pick, Coleman posted a series of tweets to his Twitter account.

“It’s in Gods hands,” Coleman wrote. “No words to be said, just watch me on the field.”

Aside from the Cowboys and Falcons, Coleman visited Baltimore, Carolina and Detroit.

The NFL will stage rounds four through seven of the draft beginning Saturday at noon. Indiana defensive lineman Bobby Richardson is also expected to be drafted at some point during the middle rounds. Receiver Shane Wynn and center Collin Rahrig are also possible late-round picks.

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Football

Friday’s live chat transcript

Posted by in Football on Friday, May. 1, 2015 at 1:02 PM.

QUESTION: MODERATOR: Good morning, and welcome to today’s IU sports chat. Thanks for being here. Let’s get this first chat in May under way, shall we?
Mike, Andy, Jeremy: How are you tonight? Are you ready to get started?

JEREMY: The first of May, huh? Let’s take a break from dancing around the Maypole for a little chat on this May Day.

MIKE: Morning, everybody. Not much on the schedule today, aside from draft stuff later. Tevin Coleman is expected to be picked tonight, and I wouldn’t be shocked to see Bobby Richardson go, either. Let’s chat.

ANDY: May day! (not a distress signal, in this instance) And time to chat.

QUESTION: Why are we not knowing where the scholarship is coming from for recruit Bryant ? IU is a public institution and taxpayer supported. I personally want transparency in everything, including my sports teams. Plus, is there a date the rosters have to be settled ? NCAA mandated.
Thank you.
Terry H., Bloomington

JEREMY: Terry,
Recalling from the Ron Patterson situation a few years back, the rosters simply have to be at the scholarship limit by the time school starts in August, so there is plenty of time to sort this one out, and with the end of the semester around the corner, it will probably be sooner than later.
While I’m thinking out loud, I suppose the situation with Devin Davis bears watching too, because if doctors aren’t satisfied with where he is at the end of the summer, he could be a medical hardship waiver candidate. (more…)

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Men's Basketball

April will transfer, IU back at scholarship limit #iubb

Posted by in Men's Basketball on Friday, May. 1, 2015 at 4:22 PM.

Indiana announced Friday afternoon that freshman center Jeremiah April has requested a release and plans to transfer from the school at the conclusion of the spring semester.

April, a 6-foot-11 center from Westwind Prep in Arizona, appeared in only four games for the Hoosiers and never became the low post reserve option that IU coaches hoped he could be when they offered him a scholarship late last spring.

Indiana, which was oversigned by one after the addition of five-star center Thomas Bryant, is now at the NCAA scholarship limit of 13 for the 2015-16 season.

“Jeremiah informed us earlier of his desire to seek a different situation for himself,” IU coach Tom Crean said in a statement. “He would like an increased role and we are not able to ensure him this would happen. Our hope is that he will reach his potential wherever he chooses to go.”

April missed all five games of IU’s trip to Canada in August while he dealt with an ankle injury. The injury lingered into preseason workouts and April never carved out a niche in a thin Indiana frontcourt.

When starting center Hanner Mosquera-Perea went down with a knee injury in mid-January, a door was opened for April to potentially see more minutes as the Hoosiers marched into the heart of Big Ten play. But April saw only three minutes of action during conference season, the entirety of which came during a rout at Rutgers on Feb. 22.

In January, Crean called April’s lack of playing time an issue of work ethic.

“Jeremiah’s got to work harder,” Crean said in response to a caller’s question on one of his weekly radio shows. “He’s got to work harder on his own. He’s gotta work harder in building his skills. That’s the bottom line, but he’s getting better, and anytime you have the ability to get better like that and make those strides, then you want to see that work ethic pick up even more.”

All told, April played a total of 17 minutes at IU. Prior to committing, April also received interest from Marquette, Washington State and Arizona State.

“I want to thank coach Crean and his staff for the opportunity and support and for helping me improve my game,” April said in a statement. “My goal is to go somewhere I can have a bigger role. I’ll miss my teammates. They are a great group of guys.”

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Women's Basketball

IUWBB: Hoosiers officially introduce Kemokai

Posted by in Women's Basketball on Thursday, Apr. 30, 2015 at 4:06 PM.

Indiana officially announced the addition of junior college point guard Victoria Kemokai Thursday, marking Teri Moren’s third addition of the offseason.

Kemokai was a first-team All-American in the JUCO ranks in 2014-15, averaging 15.8 points, 3.9 rebounds, 3.8 assists and 2.0 steals per game for Tyler Junior College in Tyler, Texas.

Kemokai will be a junior next season and is immediately eligible. Moren offered high praise for the 5-foot-3 guard in a statement.

“Victoria is a great addition for us,” Moren said.  “We set out to find the best available point guard in the country, and we are excited to bring her to Indiana.  Victoria played for a great coach in Trenia Tillis-Jones, so she knows how to play.  She has great quickness, along with the ability to score the basketball.  The one thing that set her apart from most other guards is her ability to defend.  We are very excited about her ability to lead our team.”

As Tyler’s point guard, Kemokai led the Apaches to a 29-5 record last season. She joins Wabash Valley’s Tyshee Towner and Marquette transfer Tia Elbert in the backcourt, essentially taking the place of outgoing transfers Larryn Brooks, Taylor Agler and Maura Muensterman. Elbert, a freshman, will have to sit out a transfer year.

In the front court, IU will be bolstered in 2015-16 by two incoming freshmen, 6-foot-2 forward Kym Roysters (Newark, Ohio) and 6-foot-5 post Danielle Williams (Fort Worth, Texas).

 

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Men's Soccer

Tickets on sale for IU-Mexico spring game

Full release from IU:

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. — Tickets for the annual matchup between the Indiana men’s soccer team and the Mexican Youth National Team on April 21 at 7:30 p.m. ET are [...]



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