Notes from the May Classic

By   |   Friday, May. 9, 2008 - 8:53 PM   |   6 comments

– Maurice Sutton will take his unofficial visit with Indiana coach Tom Crean on Monday. After that, he plans on visiting Villanova and then making his decision. But Indiana’s first impression, he said, has been strong. He pointed to the five banners when asked about what it was like to play in Assembly Hall and relayed the story of his visit to Subway today. Someone stopped him and said, “You’re Maurice Sutton.”

– Jeremiah Rivers apparently took an unofficial visit to Indiana on Friday. He was in the gym talking to members of Indiana’s support staff, including Kelvin Sampson’s son Kellen (a graduate assistant.) Rivers, the son of Boston Celtics coach Doc Rivers, is transferring form Georgetown after two years. Crean got to know the Rivers family well during his time a Marqutte, where Doc played.

– Demetrius Walker, the 6-4 slashing wing for the S0-Cal All-Stars, told Andy Romey of Inside Indiana/ that Indiana is his No. 1 school right now and that the Hoosiers have offered him a scholarship in the class of 2009.

Maurice Sutton is in the Hall

By   |   Friday, May. 9, 2008 - 6:52 PM   |   9 comments

Maurice Sutton and Patrick Bade prepare for the second half.

Looks like Indiana Elite and Sutton are going to hang on to win. They’re up nine with 58 seconds left.

I’ll have more after we head to the floor and conduct interviews.


Sutton orchestrates a give-and-go with Patrick Bade to get his team two points and make it 59-56. Great touch on the pass, and Sutton knows it: he pumps his fist as he goes down the floor.

Then he grabs a loose ball and sends an outlet pass up the floor to get an easy basket and extend the lead.


Sutton re-enters the game with a little more than four minutes left and his team ahead 57-52. He’s got 13 points so far.


Matt Kinney of Indiana Elite just hit a transition 3 to tie the game at 44 with 55 seconds left in the third quarter.

Sutton has thrown down a dunk this quarter and Walker helped steady his team’s defense by hustling to take a charge.


Sutton’s put-back makes it So-Cal 35, Indiana Elite 31 at half.


Now we catch up with Demetrius Walker, the wing for So-Cal that has some interest in IU. He takes an alley-oop and finishes strong at the rim.


Maurice Sutton, it turns out, has made all the difference.

He’s just scored four quick points. He made an excellent adjustment in the air to corral a lob pass and then hit a lay-in. Then he got his hand on a pass and broke in — beating his man down the floor — for a dunk.

It’s So-Cal 31, Indiana Elite 29 with two minutes left in the half.


In the Wear twins, David and Travis, North Carolina will be getting two Tyler Hansbrough-like players. They’re big, tough kids that play with some energy.


Sutton takes an alley-oop pass from North Central guard Tyrone Johnson and drops it through the hoop. Then on a break he couldn’t hit his lay-up but was fouled. He hit 1-of-2.


Doesn’t take long for Sutton to get involved. He takes a pass from Evan Gordon — Eric’s little brother — and hits an uncontested jumper from free throw line to cut So-Cal’s lead to 24-15.

His basket drew the loudest applause of the day from the crowd.


Maurice Sutton has finally procured an orange Indiana Elite jersey and has entered the game in the second quarter, his team down 24-10.


Maurice Sutton, the 6-10 center who could become a part of Indiana’s incoming recruiting class, is at Assembly Hall right now preparing to play with Indiana Elite LNO in the first game of the night.

He’ll be playing against the So-Call All-Star team led by Wear twins — bound for North Carolina in 2009 — and Demitrius Walker, a 6-3 who is being recruited by Indiana.

More updates as the night progresses.

Verdell Jones officially signs with IU

By   |   Friday, May. 9, 2008 - 3:50 PM   |   7 comments

Jones at his announcement on Monday.

It took a few days but Verdell Jones, the point guard from Champaign, Ill., has given Indiana his signed letter-of-intent.

His announcement on Monday that he would join the Hoosiers’ class of 2008 came as a bit of a surprise because Tom Crean had seemingly jumped into Jones’ recruitment late.

However, Jones had a long relationship with Crean’s top assistant, Tim Buckley. It was Buckley who first started recruiting Jones a few years ago when he was Steve Alford’s assistant at Iowa, and he kept in touch with Jones when he went to Marquette.

Here’s a release from Indiana on Jones’ signing. It includes quotes from Crean.


Bloomington, Indiana–Indiana University men’s basketball coach Tom Crean
has announced that Verdell Jones III, a 6-4, 180-lb. guard from Champaign
(Illinois) Central High School has signed a national letter of intent to
attend IU and play basketball for the Hoosiers beginning next fall. He was
the Champaign News-Gazette Area Player of the Year and an All-State choice
as a senior.

“Verdell is an excellent addition to our recruiting class,” said Crean. “He
is a great floor leader with a tremendous ability to direct an offense and
he also has the ability to make plays on his own. His wingspan will make
him a tough defender and we like the fact that he has played in so many
big-game environments in high school and AAU ball that he will be able to
compete for our program right away. We are very excited about his upside.”

Read the rest of this post »

No stipulations on where Finch can transfer

By   |   Friday, May. 9, 2008 - 2:38 PM   |   Comments Off

A spokesman for the University of Florida football program said today that there are no stipulations on other schools to which Jerimy Finch can transfer.

A report this week in the Knoxville News Sentinel stated that Finch’s release from his scholarship to play football at Florida prohibited him for transferring to Indiana. But the Florida football spokesman said that report is incorrect and there is nothing prohibiting Finch from playing at IU.

The safety from Indianapolis visited Bloomington last Friday and met with IU’s coaches. Sources close to the situation say Finch, the top-rated high school player in Indiana in 2006, is interested in transferring to IU.

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Site maintenance today

By   |   Friday, May. 9, 2008 - 2:02 PM   |   Comments Off

You may notice some changes going on each time you log onto the blog or

We’re making a few tweaks and adding a feature to our site that we hope you’ll like.

More on that later.

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Thursday Q&A (updated)

By   |   Friday, May. 9, 2008 - 1:49 PM   |   Comments Off

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.

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Crean: “I don’t have a lot of respect for that.”

By   |   Thursday, May. 8, 2008 - 3:50 PM   |   50 comments

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 wouldn’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 doesn’t look like that’s the way it’s going to turn out. I don’t think there’s any doubt that there was a certain amount of orchestrating going on. It’s disappointing. It’s very disappointing on a lot of fronts but that’s really all I have to say about that at this point.

Question: Can you say what prompted the outburst? Do you know?

I don’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, I’ve seen now, this was totally part of an orchestration. It just was. I don’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 don’t have a lot of respect for the way that it turned out.

Question: Did you put any conditions on Eli’s release?

No, not really. But it’s all sort of starting to play out, isn’t it?

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