With Indiana mired in an eight-game losing streak, the callers into Tom Crean’s weekly radio show Monday didn’t want to talk about the present but instead the future. Mostly, they wanted to know about what sort of players Crean considers ideal at each position.
In the post, as he usually does, he stressed versatility.
“I think he’s gotta be able to have a move and a counter move on both sides of the rim,” Crean said. “Post moves are important, but the ability to finish is far more important. i think you’ve gotta be able to play through them in the sense that you can go inside-out with them. You can go inside, they can kick it back out and follow it. But ultimately, they’ve got to be a threat, and when they don’t score, they’ve gotta be able to go the foul line and make their foul shots. I think there’s no question they gotta be able to hold their spot in the post. I think at this day and age right now, that even as important as holding the spot in the post is the ability to play pick and roll basketball, be able to different things in the pick and roll defensively. There’s very few teams in the league that don’t run pick and roll, there’s very few teams in the country that don’t run pick and roll. It’s very important that you have those guys that do that, and they have got to be factors in the rebounding game. But ultimately, you break it down you want a guy that’s got good hands. That’s got a big wide tail, in proper terms, and that can really, really move their feet defensively and has that intelligence that they know where the other guys on the court should be.”
In a rare occurrence, because a lot of people think he’s overly enamored with perimeter players, Crean was asked what sort of guards he’s actually looking for.
“You want to have at least five pure guards and at least one guy that can swing between the three and four position,” Crean said. “… I think the bottom line is if we could get to a point where we could have three interchangeable guards in the lineup, and what that means is, they’ve all gotta be able to make baskets. One might have the incredible quickness to get to the rim, might have a pull-up game. The other two might be great 3-point shooters. One might be a great 3-point shooter and a pull-up guy. But I really don’t want to have guards down the road that are not shot makers. I think it’s very, very important that our point guard is a 3-point shot maker. We want to run a lot of quick pick and rolls in transition when we have the right kind of guards because I think it’s so easy to get good shots if you have guys that can make decisions off that ball screen coming down the floor at the top of the key or in that slot area.”
Some other discussion points:
— Crean retold the story he tweeted last week about freshman point guard Jordan Hulls. Hulls apparently hit 77 3-pointers in five minutes in a practice drill, including 49 of his last 52. He said in the games, Hull is rushing his shots.
— Crean was asked if he was OK with having football players join the team. He said he was, and that wide receiver Damarlo Belcher was considering joining the team, but that Belcher eventually decided against it.
— Crean said he wants to see a lot of strength training from the big men this spring and summer including more “barbaric” drills like rolling massive tires.
Not sure if any of you caught this (I know I didn’t), but apparently Indiana brought a fireman’s helmet to Saturday’s game at Minnesota. It was the job of one of the players at the end of the bench to bring it into the huddle at every timeout.
Assistant coach Tim Buckley was asked about it Monday when he filled in for Tom Crean on the Big Ten teleconference. He said it was the first time the Hoosiers had used “that particular prop” but that it it was part of a recurring theme the Hoosiers had discussed throughout the season. However, he said he would leave it up to Crean to disclose the theme itself.
Joe Boncore, Moses Abraham’s guardian, confirmed that Indiana has offered the 6-foot-9, 235-pounder a scholarship and that Abraham is trying to set up a visit to Bloomington for Thursday’s game against Wisconsin. The only hold-up could be a randomly scheduled game, Boncore said.
“We’re trying,” Boncore said. “As an independent school, they pick up games in the last minute. This is Prince Georges county. It’s like the hotbed of basketball here. Teams and games pop up in the last minute at obscure gyms. Right now it’s looking like that. We’re trying to make the Wisconsin game.”
Boncore confirmed that Indiana coach Tom Crean was at a game last week and offered a scholarship.
Moses Abraham, the 6-foot-9, 235-pound forward out of Tempe Hills, Md., will be visiting Indiana on Thursday, according to Scout.com’s Dave Telep (subscription required).
Abraham, a three-star prospect according to Scout and a four-star according to Rivals, was offered a scholarship by Indiana last week.
The story is that Tom Crean showed up in practice gear and took a private plane to see Abraham in person.
Abraham has offers from Georgetown, Arizona State, Florida, Tennesse, Texas, UCLA, Connecticut, Kansas State, Marquette, Maryland, Seton Hall and VCU.
Here is a YouTube clip with Abraham. He is wearing No. 12 in the black jersey.
Herald-Times photographer David Snodgress went inside the recently named Cook Hall last week and captured what the new basketball practice facility looks like.
Indiana University’s new basketball practice building next to Assembly Hall offers equal facilities for mens and womens teams, eliminating the need to share the single court in Assembly Hall and expanding training equipment.
A single wall divides the men’s (right) and women’s practice courts.
Indiana guard Jordan Hulls looks to pass the ball against Michigan State. Chris Howell | Herald-Times
Minnesota’s players celebrate a second-half run by their reserves against Indiana. Associated Press
How many games will IU basketball win in 2014-15
Total Voters: 324
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