Lynch: “We’re disappointed”

It’s been said many different ways in this space that Bill Lynch is an eternal optimist and does everything he can to stay positive in all of his public comments.

His season-ending press conference Tuesday was, for the most part, no different. But even Lynch had to admit, before he took questions, that this season did not go the way the Hoosiers were hoping it would.

“I think it’s important that you know that we’re very disappointed in how it turned out,” he said. “I don’t want anyone to think that up and down the hallways of this complex anyone’s satisfied with 4-8. That was not our goal when we got started.” (more…)

Sky post!

SOMEWHERE OVER THE MIDDLE OF AMERICA (I’D TELL YOU WHERE BUT THE CLOUDS ARE BLOCKING THE GROUND) — This plane is bound for Vegas, where I’ll partake in the rare trifecta of Bachelor Party/Thanksgiving/Wedding all in one week. This might seem to all of you normal folk like an odd way to go about life, but you haven’t met Jake. He’s the one getting married. This is just how he is. He gets it done. Although I did hear him say something about seeing Phantom Of the Opera last time we talked. I’m not acknowledging that. It’s a fine show. It’s just that, even though I hold no real fascination for Vegas (perhaps I will gain some on this maiden trip), I wholeheartedly believe if you are going to watch a show there it should probably involve a large and potentially dangerous feline of some sort. Perhaps the script has been adjusted.

*By the way, it’s sort of mind-boggling to think I am surfing the internet on a plane. I remember logging on to America Online 11 years ago to read all the news about Philly sports I could find. It’d take 12 minutes just for your computer to finish making that noise it apparently had to make to entice the internet to open up. Back then I had to go to newsgroups and fledgling Web sites to find what I was looking for a lot of the time. Any of you using the Web to talk about the Hoosiers back then? What were the popular sites?

I am anxious to find out what Bill Lynch says at his season wrap-up press conference later today. It has never been difficult to predict what Lynch’s message will be — and yet we media types pride ourselves on it anyway — but today it needs to be different. Saying that you’re trying to get better every day isn’t good enough. Most of us are. It’s called life. For Indiana right now, it’s about the How. Lynch owes it to the fans to be as forthcoming as he can be about where the program is, where it needs to go and how he plans to get it there.

This plane, by the way, is filled with the rambunctious energy of people fooling themselves into believing they are not going to lose a lot of money and that they will, indeed, be able to keep whatever happens in Vegas in Vegas. The lady across from me just ordered a few little bottles of Cabernet Sauvignon. Fancy.

You can count me among those who are more surprised by the reaction of some Indiana fans to the way Tom Crean’s team has played than I am by how Tom Crean’s team has played. The Hoosiers shouldn’t have lost to Boston University and probably should have handled George Mason. Many have pointed out, and rightfully so, that Mason was a very young team. The core, though, has been together for more than a couple of games. Boston U’s players had been through more than a few cupcake wins against nobodies on their home floor, unlike the ol’ Hoosiers.

I can see that hearing about how decimated the program was by all that happened with Kelvin Sampson has grown tiring for a lot of you. But I can also see Crean’s point, which is that there are plenty of people out there who haven’t comprehended the extent to which the program was gutted. For him, it’s been a balancing act: he needed to hype this freshman class to keep interest in the program kindled, but now he needs to temper that while the freshmen act like freshmen.

It’s entirely fair to have some level of doubt about Crean as a head coach right now. If you take away the Wade-fueled run to the Final Four, Crean coached his Marquette teams to exactly one tournament victory. The team that followed that deep run returned a strong nucleus of Travis Diener and Steve Novak and failed to even make the tournament. His recruiting at Marquette was sporadic, as only two classes really produced.

These are legit concerns. And they are concerns that Crean has not been in a position to address with his actions at IU so far. He certainly deserves a little bit of time before he can be judged there.

Anyway, I’m now over a totally different part of American than I was when I started this. I know that for sure, even though all I can see below me are the same white clouds. Sometimes you just have to trust you are moving forward.

To Vegas. If you don’t hear from me soon, please send a search party of Chronic, Mike P. and Downing. Something tells me the first two know how to handle themselves in Vegas. As for Downing . . . well, I just want to know he’s real.

Hoosier Morning


Indiana coach Tom Crean called the Puerto Rico Tip-Off Tournament a learning experience. Chris Howell | Herald-Times

Welcome to Hoosier Morning, a daily batch of links intended to keep you informed of what is going on at Indiana, in the Big Ten and throughout the college sporting world.


Doss, Kirlew, Saffold named All-Big Ten

Here’s the release from Jeff Keag of IU; the Big Ten’s release follows it. Here’s a PDF that lists all of the honorees.


BLOOMINGTON, Ind. – Sophomore wide receiver Tandon Doss, fifth-year defensive end Jammie Kirlew and senior left tackle Rodger Saffold earned All-Big Ten honors, the conference announced Monday evening. Doss collected first team accolades from the conference media and second team laurels from the conference coaches, while Kirlew garnered second team honors from both groups. Saffold was named a second team member by the coaches.

Senior cornerback Ray Fisher, linebacker Matt Mayberry, defensive end Greg Middleton and Saffold received honorable mention recognition from the media, and junior quarterback Ben Chappell, Fisher and Mayberry carded honorable mention from the coaches. Kirlew was also Indiana’s Big Ten Sportsmanship Award honoree.

Doss led the team in receptions in nine games and receiving yards eight times, and he paced the team with 962 yards, 77 receptions, five touchdowns and 80.2 yards per game. The Indianapolis native finished second in the Big Ten and 27th nationally in yards per game and third in the league and tied for 21 nationally in catches per game (6.64).

His 962 yards were 14th in the country and the second most for an underclassman. Doss closed out the year second on IU’s single-season receptions list, just two shy of James Hardy’s record of 79 in 2007, and fifth in the school’s single-season yardage rankings.


Crean: Roth to have surgery Wednesday

Tom Crean said on his radio show Monday night that Indiana has learned that sophomore guard Matt Roth broke the fifth metatarsal bone in his right foot and will have surgery Wednesday. He again said that Roth would attempt to rehab, and would apply for a medical hardship waiver if he could not return by February.

Roth suffered the injury in last Wednesday’s practice before the Puerto Rico tip-off. Crean said Roth got his foot tangled up with other players in a rebounding drill. He fell, Crean said, and when he did, his foot stayed put, which was the reason for the injury.

Hoosier Morning


Indiana’s Jeremiah Rivers drives the lane against George Mason on Sunday. Associated Press

Welcome to Hoosier Morning, a daily batch of links intended to keep you informed of what is going on at Indiana, in the Big Ten and throughout the college sporting world. (more…)

What Indiana’s numbers in Puerto Rico show

One part of the statistics field analyzes data in order to help predict what might happen in the future. So, I decided to take a look at what some of the Hoosiers’ stats from San Juan, Puerto Rico might tell us to expect.

What did I find out?

Not much.

As we all know, Indiana lost its respective contests with Mississippi, Boston University and George Mason. But, interestingly, focusing on their numbers, the Hoosiers might not have consistent problems. Just consistency problems. (more…)

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