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Blab’s son killed in altercation

Sad news coming out of Texas:

Witnesses said Christopher Blab, 19, was punched in the face during the altercation outside the University Heights apartments in San Marcos. He fell and hit his head on the concrete. According to police, two of Blab’s friends took him to Central Texas Medical Center before he was transferred to UMC Brackenridge for a severe head injury. He died from his injuries on Sunday.

Christopher’s father, Uwe Blab, played for Indiana and went on to a professional career with the Dallas Mavericks and the San Antonio Spurs in the 1980s.


Hoosier Morning

MICHIGAN INDIANA BASKETBALL

Indiana guard Jordan Hulls shoots two free-throws against Michigan. The Hoosiers, though, have struggled to get to the line and then make the free throws when they do get there. Chris Howell | Herald-Times

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IU women’s basketball and transfers

In case you missed it, the Indiana women’s basketball team officially announced that Georgie Jones, a 6-2 sophomore, will join the Hoosiers after leaving Marquette. Jones is enrolled at IU and will be eligible to take the court in the second semester next year.

Jones appeared in 37 games, starting 19 at Marquette. She averaged 3.5 points and 4.9 rebounds for her career. With the addition of Jones, the Indiana frontline could look markedly different next season with 6-5 incoming freshman Marissa Taylor joining 6-3 Sasha Chaplin, 6-2 Danilsa Andujar and 6-2 freshman Jasmine Davis, who has yet to play this season due to injury but is practicing with the team now.

For those wondering about departed freshman Sasha Bernard, www.tampabay.com reports she will be transferring to South Florida. The Delray Beach, Fla., native will be much closer to home as all indications are she left IU simply because she was homesick.


Crean addresses Elston, Bawa

The two Indiana players who most often fill in the blank in the question, “How come _____ doesn’t get more playing time?” are freshmen forward Derek Elston and Bawa Muniru. Indiana coach Tom Crean actually addressed the status with both on his weekly radio show Monday night.

The mention of Elston was mostly unsolicited, coming in response to a general question about rebounding.

“We’ve gotta have a lot more out of our five position,” Crean said. “We’re really searching to figure what’s going to help us, and we’re looking for some consistent measures right there, and at the same time I look at it, we’ve gotta get Derek Elston more minutes. He’s had a couple of tough situations where we played four guards against Ohio State, we played four guards against Michigan. So it makes it harder for him. He’s not ready to defend those type of people yet the way we have to defend him. But we’ve still gotta get him on the court because he’s capable of getting rebounds.”

Elston is averaging just 15 minutes per game, but hasn’t played that many since the win over North Carolina Central on Dec. 19. He’s averaging 6.1 points and 4.3 rebounds per game, though, and grabbed six rebounds in just 10 minutes against Illinois.

Muniru was brought up by a caller, who asked if Muniru was going to spend this much time on the bench, why he wasn’t redshirted.

“I’m at practice with him every day,” Crean said. “I respect the fact that everybody else isn’t. As we work towards all the time, we are not in a position — I think if you look at our five position the way it is right now, with our front line abilities, there’s nothing that says he’s not going to be able to help us over a period of time. But I mean, we’re with him every day. The learning curve that he has right now is very high. He’s gotta continue to work inside of it and he is. I’ll just go on the premise that I’m there and I know what I’m doing.”

Crean said, though, that with a stronger front line Muniru would have been redshirted.

“If we had the luxury of knowing that we were going to get tremendous production over a period of time consistently over the front line, there’s not a question in my mind we would’ve redshirted him,” Crean said. “But that’s where we sit right now. Again, it’s just a matter of continued work and improving. He’s showing improvement. When I feel that it’s helping our basketball team be better, I’m going to put him out there.”


Tight end from D.C. commits to IU

Indiana added its 25th commitment this weekend when Paul Phillips, a tight end from Georgetown Prep in Washington, D.C., committed to the Hoosiers according to coach Dan Paro.

Phillips is the third member of his family to play Division I football. His older brother Andrew is an offensive lineman at Stanford and middle brother Colter is a tight end at Virginia.

Phillips is a three-star recruit according to Rivals.com. The 6-foot-5, 225-pounder caught 20 passes for around 350 yards last season,  and Paro said he’s effective in both the passing and running games.

“He can do both,” Paro said. “We had a multiple formation offense, and we could split him out wide or we could keep him in tight to block.”


Dickerson named third-team preseason All-American

From Indiana’s sports information department:

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. – Sophomore Alex Dickerson has been named a Third Team Preseason All-American by Ping!Baseball, the publication announced. Dickerson, who is expected to play left field this year, was selected as a third teamer at designated hitter, where he played the majority of the 2009 season.

Dickerson earned Freshman All-America recognition last season from the National College Baseball Writers of America and Collegiate Baseball Newspaper in addition to being named a Third Team All-Mideast Region honoree by the American Baseball Coaches Association.

The Poway, Calif., native became the first Hoosier to take home Freshman of the Year laurels and led all Big Ten freshmen with his 14 home runs and 57 RBI, his 14 longballs setting a new Indiana freshman record and his 57 driven in falling one short of the IU rookie mark. The left-handed hitting Dickerson finished eighth in the conference with a .370 average in his debut season for the Hoosiers, where he hit in the cleanup spot for 57 out of IU’s 59 games.

His .618 slugging percentage (sixth), 57 RBI (eighth), 15 doubles (tied for seventh), 147 total bases (second) and 88 hits (third) were all among the conference’s top 10. He led all conference freshmen in batting average, home runs, RBI, hits and total bases.

Indiana begins its official practice season on Monday, Feb. 1. The Hoosiers open the 2010 season with four games in San Diego from Feb. 19-21. IU will play three games at San Diego on Friday and Saturday before finishing the weekend with a game at San Diego State on Sunday.


Wisconsin’s Leuer hurt and other Big Ten notes

Wisconsin managed to time its release of word on forward Jon Leuer’s injury exactly at the time coach Bo Ryan was up for his portion of the Big Ten teleconference.

Ryan, sounding frustrated, said he didn’t have much to add.

“We already released a statement,” Ryan said. “What did it say? Whatever they say in the statement is all I know. We aren’t even called in on those meetings. That’s all HIPPA protected.”

The release simply said that Leuer fractured a bone in his wrist. A timetable for his return has not been set.

Leuer was Wisconsin’s second leading scorer with 15.4 points per game. He was leading the team in rebounds with 6.2 per contest.

“Somebody’s going to have to go in for him,” Ryan said. “All we can do is tell him to get well soon.”

In other conference injury news, Purdue point guard Lewis Jackson is nearing a return from an injured foot, but coach Matt Painter couldn’t give a timetable on that either.

“We really don’t have a date, but he’s doing a great job,” Painter said. “He’s out of the boot about half the time right now. We’re slowly working him out of it full time. He’s shooting some jump shots, but he’s not jogging or running yet. We’re working towards him coming back in the next week and a half to two weeks.”

In coaching news, Michigan coach John Beilein signed a contract extension through the 2015-2016 season that will pay him around $1.8 million per year.



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