I added a few answers to yesterday’s Q&A with Doug Wilson. Nothing major, but I thought I’d let you know. Because you surely aren’t focused on work this dreary Friday afternoon.
Interesting day at the track.
Tom Crean, who has been slowed by pretty much nothing since become Indiana basketball coach, found something he couldn’t overcome: the rain.
Crean was supposed to be the honorary starter for practice at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway today, but rain washed out the session. Crean still made his way around the facility, meeting with old friends — his brother-in-law Jim Harbaugh once was part owner of Panther Racing — and making new ones.
He also took a few laps in the pace car with assistant coach Bennie Seltzer and video coordinator Brian Barone.
Then, as Crean has done about many of the issues confronting Indiana basketball, he spoke quite frankly about the departure of Eli Holman.
For background: Holman left unexpectedly last Thursday, and did so with an outburst that led to police being called (no charges were pressed.) Holman has since enrolled at Detroit Mercy and will play for the new coach there, Ray McCallum.
McCallum, of course, was an assistant for Indiana the past two years and was the choice of the players on the team to replace Kelvin Sampson.
Now, here’s the transcript of what Crean said today.
Question: How much did the Eli thing take you aback? Have you ever had anything happen quite like that?
Crean: No. Never had anything like that. It was disappointing on a lot of fronts and it, I wouldnâ€™t say it totally came out of nowhere, but he did a great job of portraying that he was pretty happy with the way things were. And then we were led to believe it was a family decision and (he) wanted to get closer to home and that doesnâ€™t look like thatâ€™s the way itâ€™s going to turn out. I donâ€™t think thereâ€™s any doubt that there was a certain amount of orchestrating going on. Itâ€™s disappointing. Itâ€™s very disappointing on a lot of fronts but thatâ€™s really all I have to say about that at this point.
Question: Can you say what prompted the outburst? Do you know?
I donâ€™t know. I would say not getting the answer that he probably would have liked. It was about taking some time to go through this, but, Iâ€™ve seen now, this was totally part of an orchestration. It just was. I donâ€™t have a lot of respect for that. I like Eli and I wish him well. I really do. In the short time we were with him, I liked him. But I donâ€™t have a lot of respect for the way that it turned out.
Question: Did you put any conditions on Eliâ€™s release?
No, not really. But itâ€™s all sort of starting to play out, isnâ€™t it?
UPDATE (1:15 p.m.): Tom Crean spoke minutes ago about his concerns that Eli Holman’s transfer to Detroit Mercy appears to have been “orchestrated.” Chris Korman is now driving back from Indianapolis and upon his return will give you a report of exactly what Crean had to say.
Here’s a report Chris Korman just filed by telephone after Tom Crean spoke with reporters at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, where Crean is serving as today’s honorary starter:
Crean said he is not privy to IU’s report due to the NCAA today in response to February’s Notice of Allegations. IU had 90 days to respond to that notice.
The new Hoosier coach said he’s not sure of whatâ€™s in the report, but he’s confident in the people who put it together. He will attend the hearing with the NCAA infractions committee June 13 in Seattle. He is not sure of his role in the hearing.
The report to the NCAA is not expected to be made public immediately. The Herald-Times has made an open records law request to receive the report from IU.
Crean said his focus has been on addressing the teamâ€™s academic problems, which will be reflected in next yearâ€™s APR score, especially with recent dismissal of three players and the departure of another.
He is hopeful Indiana will avoid punishment for the low APR score next year based on the new staffâ€™s scores at Marquette (954 for the last four years) and on the improvement plan that IU will develop.
Indiana basketball coach Tom Crean is the honorary starter today at the Indianapolis 500 practice. Though the track is quite slick, I plan on challenging him to a race.
I grew up in Reading, Pa., where Penske Racing was once based (it has since moved to North Carolina). The Andretti clan comes from Allentown, a few minutes up the road from Reading.
With such a stellar racing background, I’m guessing I can average about 220 mph or so.
Crean will speak with the media eventually. He will undoubtedly face questions about Indiana’s response to the letter of allegations against the men’s basketball program, which was due today. Can’t imagine he’ll have anything of substance to say about it.
Jordan Hulls, the point guard from Bloomington South who received a scholarship offer from Indiana last night, visited Matt Painter in West Lafayette today.
He received a scholarship offer from the Boilermakers.
Hulls, as good friend of the scoop ww posted on a previous post, is the grandson of John Hulls, who was an assistant with Bob Knight in his first two years at Indiana.
This lineage explains why Hulls has always watched and though about playing for Duke — his grandfather knew Mike Krzyzewski before he was the guy everybody just referred to as Coach K.
I didn’t even have to make a request to get this press release. It magically appeared in my inbox, for which I am thankful. Here it is.
New UDM head coach Ray McCallum continued his retooling of the Titan men’s
basketball roster with today’s addition of transfer Eli Holman, a 6-9, 250-pound
center who played last winter as a freshman at the University of Indiana.
McCallum spent the last two seasons on the IU basketball staff and is
well-acquainted with the newest Titan, who was part of a recruiting class ranked
among the top five in the country for 2006-07. Holman played in six games as a
Big Ten freshman before being sidelined for the rest of last season with a wrist
“I’m really happy that Eli made the decision to come to UDM. I think me having
been at Indiana and recruiting him was a big reason why he went there and he had
a great opportunity there. But when you’re involved in a young man’s life for
two years, you obviously build a relationship that he cared about and respected
and he wanted it to continue,” coach McCallum said.
“With his size, he’s an athletic player who can finish around the basket, he can
block shots, he rebounds, he has good hands, he’s a good runner. I think the
next phase for him is to continue to grow as a player in our practices. I’m glad
he’s here with us.”
Read the rest of this post »
According to the Detroit Free Press, Eli Holman has decided to pick the one non-West Coast school he was considering. He’ll apparently follow Ray McCallum to Detroit.
Holman was extremely close with McCallum, who was the lead recruiter for the 6-9 center out of Richmond, Calif.
Another former Hoosier, Xavier Keeling, has already landed at Detroit. Don’t be surprised to see a few other players that once wore the candy-striped pants to end up playing in the Horizon League with McCallum.
Also, news broke today that Jordan Hulls, a point guard who will be a senior at Bloomington South, received a scholarship offer from IU last night. I actually spoke with Jordan yesterday afternoon, and he wasn’t sure at that time where Indiana’s interest in him stood. He thought they were interested in watching him this summer and then deciding whether to offer a scholarship.
Turns out, Tom Crean and his staff have already made up their minds. They have competition, though: Hulls is on his way to West Lafayette as I type and could be offered by Purdue soon. Stanford and Duke are also picking up their interest in the 6-0, self-described “leader on the floor.”