Crean press conference live


That’s a wrap on the press conference. We’ll be doing interviews now and get back to you with more updates this afternoon.

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Marquette had only 600 student season ticket holders when he started there, Crean said. The first meeting he held with students, “Crean and Coffee,” he had only 17 students showed up. But that grew tremendously. Crean said he will be active in meeting students and letting them know how much he appreciates them.

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Crean said the in talking with Devin Ebanks and Terrell Holloway, his plan will be to tell them about why he’s at Indiana and what it will take in terms of commitment and work ethic to succeed. He plans to visit with them quickly and to get to know IU’s current players. Those are priorities right away.

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Crean said everything has happened too fast to know what he’s going to do with assistant coaches, whether they’ll be from Marquette, from the current IU staff or include people with an Indiana background. He said he needs coaches who will be incredibly loyal, passionnate, skilled and will work incredibly hard. “I don’t care if they wear a watch, but I don’t want them looking at it all the time.”

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IU’s recruiting will be inside-out, Crean said, starting with Indiana, building through the Midwest and then the nation. He said players in the state need to know that Indiana has been the university and the team that’s been the focus of his state for so many years.

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Crean said Izzo is one of his best friends and he talks to him regularly, including through this hiring process. He said Izzo is a big fan of IU and the Big Ten and was very high on Crean coming to Bloomington.

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A reporter asked what to expect offensively and defensively. Crean started by saying conditioning and physical strength – as well as mental strength – are the starting point to the style IU has.

He wants to have an outstanding fast break like Michigan State. “We’re not a motion team per se. We’re a team that drives up and down the floor. We want to get the ball into the paint and score.”

The offensive will be based on drive and kick and matchups, he said. On defense, defending the 3 and having a strong half-court defense are emphases and there’s room to mix defenses. Rebounding is an emphasis. He said he’ll need to get to know the team to know how it will all come together.

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Crean said they’ll start to study the four recruits who’ve signed letters of intent. He said he’s going to build this program the right way and take a long-term approach to that, and they recruits need to understand that. He said he needs fans to keep supporting the program through the challenges ahead as they work on doing things the right way at Indiana.

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Media are now asking questions. Crean was just asked about whether he’ll allow Bassett and Ellis back on the team and what challenges he’ll face in recruiting.

Crean responded that he’s not going to be overwhelmed by the challenges, but said he has great challenges ahead. He said the recruiting sanctions on the program are significant. He said he’ll tackle the challenges full-bore and he doesn’t know what he’ll do with the players who’ve been kicked off the team.

“This university for as long as I can remember has been bigger than any one person. It stood for class, for integrity, for doing things the right way. It stood for respect.”

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This is quite a presentation. Crean just called the Indiana coaching job the pinnacle of college basketball. He said he’s humbled to have the job.

“We can’t wait to get started,” he said.

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Crean said he met with IU’s players this morning. Last night, he talked with his players in what was one of the most painful discussions of his life. He said he and his players had and knew each other’s hearts at Marquette and that’s what he’s going to build at Indiana.

“I’m going to look for people who understand what it means to wear the candy stripe pants,” he said. “I’m going to be looking for people who understand what it means to wear that jersey that says Indiana.”

——————

Crean said he had a great job at Marquette, but Indiana is not a job he could pass up.

“I’m going to have no trouble whatsoever embracing the tradition of Indiana basketball,” Crean said. “Because I have been a fan for a long, long time.”

Crean said he hopes people understand that IU basketball has a major challenge ahead, but he has no questions about tackling that challenge.

“I know what the values of Indiana are,” Crean said. “I know the fabric of this state.”

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Crean has just introduced his family and is talking about the importance of family to him. His family includes former Colts QB Jim Harbaugh he noted.

He then reminisced about his memories of IU’s ’76 championship team. He told a story about getting his picture taken with Kent Benson when Crean was a student at Central Michigan. He said he kept that picture on his wall for years.

“There was never a bigger celebrity in my mind than Kent Benson,” Crean said.

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After loud applause upon his introduction, the first thing Crean just did was go into the audience and shake the hand of Bill Lynch, saying he hasn’t had a chance to work with a football coach in a long time (Marquette doesn’t have a football program).

He then held up a “Crean and Crimson” t-shirt someone gave him before the press conference.

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Greenspan said the search process is about hiring the best individual to lead IU’s famed basketball program to athletic and academic success that will meet the standards of IU’s fans, not about gamesmanship or coaches trying to get more money at their current institutions.

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Harry Gonso just said the search committee made an offer to only one coach, regardless of what any media reports said. He said there will be no discussion of anyone considered except Crean.

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Crean, Greenspan and others have just entered. We’re underway. McRobbie has other commitments and is not here.

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Greenspan just poked his head in the room. Hopefully that means they’re about ready to start.

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Eli Holman and Jordan Crawford just came into the Hoosier Room. First two players I’ve seen at the press conference.

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They’re a bit late getting started. We just received a copy of what appears to be the search committee’s criteria for a new coach. Here they are:

Have a good understanding of IU basketball traditions and its ethos, and a good understanding and appreciation of the university’s values.

IU’s new basketball coach should be a person who will be widely acceptable to and attract the enthusiastic support of the whole “Hoosier Nation,” and be of the stature appropriate for the IU basketball program.

The coach should:

  • Understand and endorse the primacy of the academic mission of IU to provide the best possible education to IU students and to conduct world-class research and consequently has a strong record of student athlete graduation and helping students succeed in life.
  • Have a clean NCAA background and understand and be fully committed to compliance with all NCAA regulations and all relevant IU policies.
  • Have impeccable personal integrity with a strong work ethic and be personable, cooperative, collaborative and a good communicator.
  • Have successful Division I coaching experience with a winning record, preferably for a number of seasons; NBA coaches with comparable experience and an understanding of collegiate basketball can also be considered.
  • Have a good understanding of IU basketball traditions and its ethos, and a good understanding and appreciation of the university’s values.

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This large room is now packed with media and IU VIPs and various athletic department staff. We haven’t seen coach Crean yet, but it looks like we will soon. I think they’re almost ready to start.

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Members of the media are gathering in the Hoosier Room under Memorial Stadium for a press conference scheduled to start in about half an hour. As the press conference to announce new coach Tom Crean gets underway, we’ll be back with live updates.

Share the Scoop!

18 comments:

  • Cate #1


    Wednesday, April 2, 2008 - 10:34 AM EDT

    Doug, Chris and Zak, thank you all so much for working so hard to update all of us curious readers. I really do appreciate it!

  • Bob Hafele #2


    Wednesday, April 2, 2008 - 11:03 AM EDT

    Tom was a gtreat hire!!!!

  • BacktoBasics #3


    Wednesday, April 2, 2008 - 12:03 PM EDT

    Does this mean we’re going to be spending $8.00 per coke at IU games just to pay for all of this money IU is throwing around? Most likely…

  • Jon #4


    Wednesday, April 2, 2008 - 12:06 PM EDT

    I’m excited about his enthusiasm.

  • Laffy #5


    Wednesday, April 2, 2008 - 12:11 PM EDT

    Excellent hire.

  • Jackie #6


    Wednesday, April 2, 2008 - 12:20 PM EDT

    I am thrilled! I really knew very, very little about this Coach. He really impressed me with his vim and vigor and love for IU…the tradition, integrity and respect that comes along with it. I believe his words are the same as many across the Hoosier Nation! And, I also believe he and DD have that in common. I hope he keeps DD on staff. GO HOOSIERS! CREAN & CRIMSON.

  • Eric #7


    Wednesday, April 2, 2008 - 12:25 PM EDT

    Coach Crean is now on the Colin Cowherd show on ESPN radio right now…

  • ww #8


    Wednesday, April 2, 2008 - 12:26 PM EDT

    What a tough life moment for Crean. Leaving kids and university that were loyal to him. Such is the nature of the business. Kudos to IU for doing this so quick. Imagine me saying kudos to IU? Sleep well Juan Blanco.

  • Jackie #9


    Wednesday, April 2, 2008 - 12:29 PM EDT

    Thanks for the ESPN heads up, Eric!

  • Greg #10


    Wednesday, April 2, 2008 - 12:42 PM EDT

    I want to know why this decision wasn’t made 2 years ago? The more I observe I am thinking that Sampson was Herbert’s hire.

  • Jon #11


    Wednesday, April 2, 2008 - 1:03 PM EDT

    I thought that I read Crean was not interested 2 years ago?

  • Hoosier Reader #12


    Wednesday, April 2, 2008 - 1:17 PM EDT

    Crean seems to be bringing some integrity, enthusiasm and honest sincerity to Indiana. We here in my office are anxious for Basketball to start. Something we haven’t been for awhile.

    Some here say he has that spark that we saw in Coach Hep when he first came to IU. Though he may not be a true Hoosier, he is a Midwestern guy who understands Basketball and what it means to Indiana.

    Welcome Aboard Coach Crean. Keep the enthusiasm, warmth, honesty, sincerity and passion! If you do, you will go far with Indiana Basketball and the Indiana Fans!

  • Hoosier Lady #13


    Wednesday, April 2, 2008 - 1:17 PM EDT

    Wow! I was very impressed with what he had to say at the press conference. He reminds me a lot of Coach Hep. I think we got a good one this time around.

  • Steve O #14


    Wednesday, April 2, 2008 - 1:48 PM EDT

    Any way we get a couple of Crean’s recruits from Marquette? There’s a good article here —> http://www.jsonline.com/story/index.aspx?id=734584

    It sounds like his recruits are pretty loyal…

  • HiggiStardust #15


    Wednesday, April 2, 2008 - 2:42 PM EDT

    I wasn’t 100% sold on this hire, but I am now. Tom Crean is passionate about the program…and most of all, he is passionate about be at IU. The hell with Sean Miller and Tony Bennett…we finally have OUR coach. Welcome aboard Coach Crean!!!!

  • IU in Milw #16


    Wednesday, April 2, 2008 - 2:45 PM EDT

    From an IU alum that has lived in Milw. for 15 years and have grown to love Marquette as much as IU, I am nervous about Crean as our new coach.

    In his introduction to MU, he talked about how he loved Coach McGuire and MU for the 1977 championship growing up in Michigan. Now he says the same thing about IU. Do you really think a Michigan kid loved IU?

  • b landrebe #17


    Wednesday, April 2, 2008 - 4:47 PM EDT

    Great hire…..ethics and charisma…………now………………WHEN will Greenspan get the ax?????????/

    Should be a no brainer, unless lots of admin people are sleeping together????

  • IUWeb #18


    Monday, April 7, 2008 - 12:48 PM EDT

    You can get the original “Crean & Crimson” t-shirt the Coach is holding at the press conference at IUGear.com. It’s only $9.99.

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