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AN INDIANA DAILY STUDENT SPECIAL PUBLICATION

2016-17 BASKETBALL GUIDE


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2016 Basketball Guide | Indiana Daily Student | idsnews.com

PHOTOS BY REBEECA MEHLING | IDS

After a $45 million rennovation, the new Simon Skjodt Assembly Hall is ready for the 2016-2017 basketball season.

SEASON STARTS WITH RENOVATED SPACE With the new season starting, the newly renovated Simon Skjodt Assembly Hall was dedicated and opened to the public on Oct. 16. The space underwent $40 million in renovations that spanned multiple years.

Top left The north lobby of Assembly Hall is newly rennovated with a large Indiana sign on the upper concourse. Bottom left The new Henkie, Spirit of ‘76 room includes two murals on wither end of the room and a great view of the court. Above Fred Glass, IU Athletics Director, talks about the old hardwood flooring that was installed as a hanging in the north lobby of Assembly Hall. Glass said that the floor will make a nice backdrop for photo opportunities for the fans.

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2016 Basketball Guide | Indiana Daily Student | idsnews.com

Newcomers will be a large part of IU’s success By Zain Pyarali zpyarali@iu.edu | @ZainPyarali

With IU men’s basketball losing seven players after last season’s Big Ten Championship, the newcomers on the team will play an even more important role this season. Fifty percent of the roster is new, and some of them could see significant playing time early. IU Coach Tom Crean said depth is going to be critical for the team this season, especially when looking at the crucial playmakers the Hoosiers lost from last year. Without players like Yogi Ferrell, who fluidly ran the offense for four years, and Troy Williams, who could make a game-changing play at the drop of a hat, these newcomers will have to build off the returners to understand what needs to be done to become successful. “The most important thing they can do is absorb that work ethic and that temperament that you gotta have to get better and keep going even when you’re tired, and then those guys are going to come back in the gym and work later, or before and follow that lead,” Crean said. “Trying to get them connected to their teammates is the most important thing.” The most important newcomer this season was part of the program last year but didn’t see the floor. Junior guard Josh Newkirk transferred from Pittsburgh and took a redshirt last season after having micro fracture surgery on his left knee. Newkirk was able to return to full practice during the spring semester a year ago and has been getting acclimated to his teammates and playing with high intensity on defense. Crean has said a number of times in the offseason there might not be one point guard handling the ball; rather, a group of guys will play the role. Newkirk is at the top of that list. He’s not a premier scorer like Ferrell, who averaged just north of 17 points per game last year, but he doesn’t need to be. The 6-foot-1 guard can pass the ball efficiently, play tenacious defense and has a little bounce in his step when finishing at the rim. Two other newcomers that will add depth at guard

MATT RASNIC | IDS

Junior Josh Newkirk shoots in the three point contest during Hoosier Hysteria on Oct. 22 at Assembly Hall. Newkirk took a redshirt season last year but is in position to take a major role in this year’s team.

will be freshmen Devonte Green and Curtis Jones. Both averaged 20 points per game during their senior years at their respective high schools, and Crean said the duo is interchangeable with the skill sets they bring. Although they’re new to the program, Green and

Jones aren’t strangers to the mindset they need to bring to become successful at IU. Jones played in high school at Huntington Prep with sophomore center Thomas Bryant and in the same AAU program as Johnson and Williams in Virginia.

Bryant played AAU with Green in New York before coming college and had high praise for the amount of work he’s put in limited time in Bloomington. “What impressed me a lot about him is that he’s willing to work,” Bryant said. “He listens to a lot that

we tell him to and goes out there and plays his heart out, and I respect that a lot about him. He’s gotten better in everything, when it comes to shooting, ballhandling, passing and defense. He’s improved each and every day.” Green has shown glimpses of how good he could be by racking up double digits at Hoosier Hysteria and the first exhibition game against Hope College. The soft-spoken freshman confidently shoots from beyond the arc and drives downhill into the lane with authority while playing with a defense-first mindset. A couple of x-factors that will come off the bench this season have to get healthy before they’re cemented into the rotation. Transfer junior forward Freddie McSwain from Neosho County Community College is recovering from knee surgery, and freshman forward De’Ron Davis is coming off an Achilles injury. It’s hard to say how McSwain will transition to the Division I level after he only played eight minutes in the preseason, but the big-bodied 6-foot-6 transfer definitely has the frame to be successful. Like the majority of the Hoosiers, McSwain has been tabbed as a defensive-minded player with high energy and could possibly be like Williams and make big plays for IU. Davis, on the other hand, didn’t get to Bloomington until the end of the summer, and Crean said he’s behind in his progression right now. When the 6-foot-10 freshman gets healthy and up to speed, he’ll definitely be a presence in the backcourt with his length and size rotating off the bench with Bryant and other sophomore forwards OG Anunoby and Juwan Morgan. These newcomers bring great depth to IU this year, and although there isn’t one guy that sticks out from the rest, Crean will look to these new guys to be a critical part of the team’s success during its quest for the sixth championship banner. “We’ve got a long way to go with getting any type of depth, but those guys a long with Josh have got to wear a lot of hats for us, and showing confidence early on that they’ve improved is going to be really big,” Crean said.

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2016 Basketball Guide | Indiana Daily Student | idsnews.com

MEET THE PLAYERS

This year, 30 IU student-athletes fill the men’s and women’s basketball team rosters. With 16 returning from last season, expectations are high for what the coming season could mean and whether another banner will be brought to the newly renovated Assembly Hall. OG Anunoby Year Sophomore Position Forward Height 6’ 8” Weight 235 lbs Hometown Jefferson City, MO

Thomas Bryant

Jenn Anderson

Year Junior Position Guard Height 6’ 4” Weight 200 lbs Hometown Marion, IN

Year Senior Position Center Hometown Sheridan, IN

De’Ron Davis

Amanda Cahill

Amber Deane

Year Junior Position Forward Hometown Clyde, OH

Year Senior Position Guard Hometown Lathrup Village, MI

Tia Elbert

Darby Foresman

Year Freshman Position Forward Height 6’ 10” Weight 240 lbs Hometown Aurora, CO

Year Sophomore Position Center Height 6’ 10” Weight 255 lbs Hometown Rochester, NY

Devonte Green

Grant Gelon Year Freshman Position Guard Height 6’ 5” Weight 195 lbs Hometown Crown Point, IN

Year Sophomore Position Guard Height 6’ 0” Weight 180 lbs Hometown Bloomington

Zach Roberts Year Redshirt Sophomore Position Guard Height 6’ 6” Weight 200 lbs Hometown Carmel, IN

Juwan Morgan Year Sophomore Position Forward Height 6’ 8” Weight 230 lbs Hometown Waynesville, MO

Tim Priller

Kym Royster

Year Senior Position Guard Hometown Erie, PA

Year Sophomore Position Forward Hometown Newark, OH

Freddie McSwain Jr.

Tyshee Towner

Laken Wairau

Year Junior Position Forward Height 6’ 6” Weight 215 lbs Hometown Hinesville, GA

Year Senior Position Guard Hometown Aurora, IL

Year Sophomore Position Guard Hometown Christchurch, New Zealand

Josh Newkirk

Bri Wickware

Year Redshirt Sophomore Position Guard Height 6’ 1” Weight 195 lbs Hometown Raleigh, NC

Year Freshman Position Forward Hometown Denton, TX

Danielle Williams

Year Sophomore Position Guard Height 6’ 2” Weight 187 lbs Hometown Indianapolis

By class

By height Tallest at 6’ 10” Thomas Bryant and De’Ron Davis

44%

2 from Missouri 2 from New York 2 from Virginia 1 from Colorado 1 from Texas 1 from North Carolina 1 from Georgia

Shortest at 6’ Johnny Jager

25%

25%

Women’s team breakdown By state 3 from Ohio 2 from Indiana 2 from Illinois 1 from Michigan

Men’s team breakdown 6 Native Hoosiers

Year Sophomore Position Center Hometown Fort Worth, TX

Quentin Taylor

Year Junior Position Forward Height 6’ 9” Weight 225 lbs Hometown North Richland Hills, TX

By state

Year Freshman Position Guard Hometown San Antonio, TX

Karlee McBride

Year Freshman Position Guard Height 6’ 4” Weight 175 lbs Hometown Richmond, VA

Year Junior Position Guard Height 6’ 3” Weight 195 lbs Hometown Richmond, VA

Ria Gulley

Year Senior Position Guard Hometown Fairborn, OH

Curtis Jones

Robert Johnson

Year Freshman Position Forward Hometown Indianapolis

Alexis Gassion

Johnny Jager

Year Senior Position Forward Height 6’ 7” Weight 220 lbs Hometown Indianapolis

Year Junior Position Guard Hometown Mt. Carmel, IL

Year Redshirt Sophomore Position Guard Hometown Oakdale, MN

Year Freshman Position Guard Height 6’ 3” Weight 186 lbs Hometown North Babylon, NY

Collin Hartman

Tyra Buss

James Blackmon Jr.

3 from Texas

1 from Minnesota 1 from Pennsylvania

Juniors

Sophomores

Seniors

8

returning players

from the 2015-16 season

from the 2015-16 season

By height Tallest at 6’ 4” Danielle Williams

By class 14% 29%

21%

36%

6% Freshmen

10

returning players

Freshmen

Juniors

Sophomores

Seniors

Shortest at 5’ 7” Tia Elbert

3

transfer players Amber Deane from Dayton Tia Elbert from Marquette Tyshee Towner from Wabash Valley College

Coach Teri Moren’s thoughts on this season “For the first two seasons, it was completely coach-driven ... Fast-forward to year three, and it’s finally a player-driven program. Our practices are different. Expectations are bigger.”


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2016 Basketball Guide | Indiana Daily Student | idsnews.com

Moren is on a mission in 2016-17 By Jake Thomer

jjthomer@indiana.edu @jake_the_thomer

In Coach Teri Moren’s first season at IU, her team struggled to a 15-16 record. At the end of the year, the Hoosiers lost four players to transfer. Growing pains and roster turnover are expected after any coaching change, and Moren had her fair share of both. But all the while, she was focused on changing her program’s focus and attitude. Last year’s success made it apparent that Moren was well on her way to implementing the changes she hoped to see. The Hoosiers made the NCAA Tournament and advanced to the Round of 32. Now, as she prepares for her third year in charge of No. 23 IU, expectations are high. According to Moren, the program’s culture change and on-court success have gone hand-in-hand. “For the first two seasons, it was completely coach-driven,” Moren said. “My staff and I were the ones bringing energy every day and bringing everybody along. Fast-forward to year three, and it’s finally a player-driven program. Our practices are different. Expectations are bigger.” That transformation is already becoming apparent. During one recent practice, starters and backups were alternating five-on-five runs against an all-male practice team, as they usually do. When the starters were off the court resting, senior guard Karlee McBride was shouting encouragement and giving advice to the freshman-laden second unit from the sidelines. McBride’s voice could be heard louder than any other voice, including those of Moren and the rest of her staff. At one point, Moren blew

NOBLE GUYON | IDS

IU Coach Teri Moren celebrates after the Hoosiers scored off a rebound during one of last season’s games. Moren looks to see how she can further change the program following last season’s successes.

the whistle to halt play because an offensive set had not developed the way she wanted it to. Before Moren could even get a word out, sophomore guard Tia Elbert took over. Elbert gathered the four other girls on the court around her instantly, gave instruction and some positive words, and Moren let play resume without speaking. When the players are driven to improve and succeed, Moren said her job as a coach gets easier. “It’s made a tremendous difference right now in practice, listening and watching those veterans coach our young kids up, and not just leading with their actions but their voices,” Moren said. Three of IU’s seniors have been in Bloomington for it all. Though they have

two winning seasons and an NCAA Tournament win to show for their hard work, this year they hope to take another step forward. Those outside the program are optimistic about IU’s chances, too, as the Hoosiers were picked to finish third in the Big Ten in preseason polls. Senior guard Alexis Gassion, one of the three players in her fourth year with the program, said rankings don’t mean much but the expectations will give the team motivation. Gassion said returning to the tournament and making a deep run are the clear goals for the Hoosiers. She said the culture change under Moren has been positive for the team and program as a whole. “There’s been a lot of changes. Obviously I have a

different coaching staff since coming here my freshman year,” Gassion said. “I picked up pretty fast on it, and I know what coach expects from me, so I’ve been able to do what she wants.” Junior guard Tyra Buss will lead the charge for the Hoosiers this year. Buss was the leading scorer on last year’s team and is a preseason All-Big Ten choice. Although Buss wasn’t recruited by Moren, they came to IU at the same time and have led the charge to rebrand IU women’s basketball together. Buss said to her the change to a player-driven program has been most apparent in the team’s self-motivation. She said the players sometimes decide to come into the practice facilities for extra work and scrimmage

“It’s made a tremendous difference right now in practice, listening and watching those veterans coach our young kids up, and not just leading with their actions but their voices.” Teri Moren, IU Women’s Basketball coach

time without even telling coaches. “That’s really what I think is the best about this is that we want to get better as a team,” Buss said. “It’s not that our coaches want us to get better, which they do, but I think we, the players, just want to get better. We want the program to be at the top.”

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2016 Basketball Guide | Indiana Daily Student | idsnews.com

IDS FILE PHOTO

Fans rush from the stands and fill the court of Assembly Hall after then-junior forward Christian Watford made a field goal in the final seconds of the Dec. 10, 2011, game to give the Hoosiers a 1-point win against the Kentucky Wildcats.

HISTORIC HOOSIER MOMENTS With new facilities and teams with promising veteran and rookie players, the men’s and women’s basketball teams will look to build on the legacy made by past Hoosier teams.

PHOTO COURTESY OF IU ARCHIVES

Denise Jackson shoots the ball in a 1983 game at Assembly Hall. The 1983 women's team went on to win the Big Ten regular season.

PHOTO COURTESY OF IU ARCHIVES

IU’s first varsity men’s basketball was formed for the 1900-1901 season.

PHOTOS COURTESY OF IU ARCHIVES

Above The 1973 women's basketball team celebrates a tournament win. The team made it all the way to the AIAW Final Four, but lost to Queens College. Right Students gather in and climb on Showalter Fountain after the men’s basketball team’s 1987 NCAA championship win.

PHOTO COURTESY OF IU ARCHIVES

Assembly Hall was first built and opened in 1971. The first basketball game was held on December 1, 1971 vs. Ball State University. IU won 84-77.


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2016 Basketball Guide | Indiana Daily Student | idsnews.com

Schedules set for the season Men’s team schedule Nov. 11 vs. Kansas 9:00 p.m. in Honolulu, HI

Jan. 10 at Maryland 9:00 p.m. in College Park, MD

Nov. 16 vs. UMass Lowell 7:00 p.m. at Assembly Hall

Jan. 15 vs. Rutgers TBA at Assembly Hall

Nov. 19 vs. Liberty 7:00 p.m. at Assembly Hall

Jan. 18 at Penn State 7:00 p.m. in University Park, PA

Nov. 22 at IPFW 9:00 p.m. in Fort Wayne, Ind.

Jan. 21 vs. Michigan State TBA at Assembly Hall

Nov. 27 vs. Mississippi Valley State 4:00 p.m. at Assembly Hall

Jan. 26 at Michigan 9:00 p.m. in Ann Arbor, MI

Nov. 30 vs. North Carolina 9:00 p.m. at Assembly Hall

Jan. 29 at Northwestern 6:30 p.m. in Evanston, Ill.

Dec. 2 vs. SIU Edwardsville 7:00 p.m. at Assembly Hall

Feb. 1 vs. Penn State 6:30 p.m. at Assembly Hall

Dec. 4 vs. Southeast Missouri State 4:00 p.m. at Assembly Hall

Feb. 5 at Wisconsin 1:00 p.m. in Madison, WI

Dec. 10 vs. Houston Baptist 4:00 p.m. at Assembly Hall Dec. 17 vs. Butler 5:00 p.m. in Indianapolis at Banker’s Life Fieldhouse Dec. 19 vs. Delaware State 8:00 p.m. at Assembly Hall Dec. 22 vs. Austin Peay 7:00 p.m. at Assembly Hall Dec. 28 vs. Nebraska 7:00 p.m. At Assembly Hall Dec. 31 vs. Louisville 12:30 p.m. in Indianapolis at Banker’s Life Fieldhouse Jan. 3 vs. Wisconsin 7:00 p.m. at Assembly Hall

Feb. 9 vs. Purdue 7:00 p.m. at Assembly Hall BOBBY GODDIN | IDS

Feb. 12 vs. Michigan 1:00 p.m. at Assembly Hall Feb. 15 at Minnesota 9:00 p.m. in Minneapolis, MN Feb. 21 at Iowa 9:00 p.m. in Iowa City, IA Feb. 25 vs. Northwestern TBA at Assembly Hall Feb. 26 vs. Northwestern TBA at Assembly Hall

Junior forward Kym Royster jumps for the tip off in the game against University of Indianapolis during the first exhibition game of the season. IU opens the season Friday against Presbyterian.

Women’s team schedule Nov. 11 vs. Presbyterian 7:00 p.m. at Assembly Hall Nov. 13 vs. Vanderbilt 2:00 p.m. at Assembly Hall Nov. 17 at Chattanooga 6:30 p.m. in Chattanooga, TN

Feb. 28 at Purdue 7:00 p.m. in West Lafayette, Ind.

Nov. 19 vs. Western Kentucky 3:00 p.m. in Bowling Green, KY

March 4 at Ohio State Noon in Columbus, OH

Nov. 23 vs. UMass Lowell 2:00 p.m. at Assembly Hall

Jan. 7 vs. Illinois 5:00 p.m. at Assembly Hall March 8-12 will be the Big Ten Tournament Times will be announced and games will be held in Washington, D.C.

Dec. 8 vs. Northern Kentucky 7:00 p.m. at Assembly Hall Dec. 11 vs. Valparaiso 2:00 p.m. at Assembly Hall Dec. 17 vs. Oakland 5:00 p.m. at Assembly Hall Dec. 20 at Florida 7:45 p.m. in Winter Park, Fla. Dec. 21 vs. Stony Brook 7:45 p.m. in Winter Park, Fla.

Nov. 27 at Auburn 2:00 p.m. in Auburn, AL

Dec. 28 at Penn State 7:00 p.m. in University Park, PA

Dec. 1 at NC State 7:00 p.m. in Raleigh, NC

Dec. 31 vs. Ohio State 3:00 p.m. at Assembly Hall

Dec. 6 at North Texas 12:30 p.m. in Denton, TX

Jan. 4 at Minnesota 7:00 p.m. at Assembly Hall

Jan. 10 at Michigan 6:00 p.m. in Ann Arbor, MI

Feb. 11 vs. Northwestern Noon at Assembly Hall

Jan. 14 at Northwestern 3:00 p.m. in Evanston, Ill.

Feb. 16 vs. Michigan 6:00 p.m. at Assembly Hall

Jan. 19 vs. Purdue 8:00 p.m. at Assembly Hall

Feb. 19 at Nebraska 3:00 p.m. in Lincoln, NE

Jan. 23 vs. Penn State 7:00 p.m. at Assembly Hall

Feb. 22 vs. Iowa 7:00 p.m. at Assembly Hall

Jan. 29 at Wisconsin 3:00 p.m. in Madison, WI

Feb. 25 at Illinois TBA in Urbana-Champaign, Ill.

Feb. 2 at Michigan State 6:00 p.m. in East Lansing, Mich. Feb. 5 vs. Maryland Noon at Assembly Hall

March 1-5 will be the Big Ten Tournament Times will be announced and games will be held in Indianapolis

Feb. 8 at Rutgers 7:00 p.m. in Piscataway, NJ

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GOTT TAKES

IDS FILE PHOTO

Two banners too many The move to take down banners celebrating non-winning seasons is smart for moving forward this season There are many types of banners. One of my favorites is the parade banner, which usually is around 30 inches in height with a width of six feet or so. Definitely a great type of banner. We also have the street banner that is usually double-sided and hung from lampposts and streetlights. There’s Bruce Banner, who turns green and punches things when he gets mad. The Star-Spangled Banner is a popular one, especially recently with its Colin Kaepernick fling. However, in Bloomington, Indiana, there is only one type of banner — the championship banner — that truly matters. 1940, 1953, 1976, 1981 and 1987. Those are the vital ones hanging in Simon Skjodt Assembly Hall. They indicate the IU men’s basketball team won a National Championship. Until recently, when two friends named 1983 and 2013 joined them. With the renovation to the arena, Athletics Director Fred Glass made the call to take those two banners

down. As important as they were — ’83 symbolizing the fans’ contribution to the Big Ten Championship and ’13 saluting the spirit of the fanatics who stuck by the team in its down years — these were not championship banners. Glass made the right call. Those two seasons were special and will stick with IU faithful for years to come, but commemorating a season that ended with a loss feels like a farce in some respects. These two banners were anomalous as the rest of their league titles hung on a pair of banners listing the individual years. Isolating those two years in particular made sense but still felt like a waste of a banner. As someone who’s become ingrained in the IU basketball way of life, I now know Big Ten Championships are kosher, but the goal and what the program is constantly striving for is that sixth banner that reads “Basketball Champions.” On the south side of the stadium now hang seven

Greg Gottfried is a senior in journalism.

banners: two for achievements by the women’s program, two listing each men’s Big Ten title, one for Final Four appearances, one to recognize the undefeated season and UPI National Championship in 1975 and one more for NIT titles. Across from these seven hang the five men’s national championship banners on the north side of the renovated hall. It would have cost between $50,000 to $100,000 for the infrastructure to hang the 1983 and 2013 banners, but it seems only right to save this money, perhaps for a sixth banner on the north side to be strung up sooner rather than later. gigottfr@iu.edu @gott31

IDS FILE PHOTO

IU basketball needs to focus on true championship seasons, like that of 1987, and recognize that the 1983 and 2013 banners just distracted from the true goal of the program.

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Hoosiers looking for a new leader By Andrew Hussey aphussey@indiana.edu @thehussnetwork

IU Coach Tom Crean steps down from the dais after his first radio show of the season. Next up on the program is junior guard Josh Newkirk. While the Pittsburgh transfer settles into his seat, his coach says, “He’s got big shoes to fill,” to the Holiday Inn crowd. Newkirk is one of many Hoosiers tasked with replicating what former IU point guard Yogi Ferrell, who started in 137 games in his career at IU, brought to the team. Also gone are Nick Zeisloft, Troy Williams and Max Bielfeldt, who provided valuable leadership for last year’s Big Ten Championship team. The leadership void is apparent, and Crean’s counting on his trio of junior guards — Newkirk, Rob Johnson and James Blackmon Jr. — to step up and lead on the court after senior Collin Hartman suffered a knee injury. However, no one has spearheaded those efforts yet. “Whoever is ready to take it away from me, I’m ready to give it up, and I know the coaches are ready to give it up,” Crean said. That’s the existential crisis facing the Hoosiers as the season begins. No one has taken the mantle as the next alpha dog. Johnson said he believes it’s going to take a group effort to replace Ferrell. “I think we are just going to have raise our level for the other things that he brought as far as defense, leadership and things like that,” Johnson said. “I think that’s where everybody’s got to cover slack.” The juniors are all coming off injuries that required offseason surgeries and all are working their way back into the flow of things. Comfort will come with time, but Crean said he

IDS FILE PHOTO

Then-sophomore guard Robert Johnson attempts to a 3-point basket during the game against Northwestern last season. Johnson is one of a couple Hoosiers who could take on a major leadership role this season.

knows with early season tests ahead in the nonconference schedule, they need to develop their leadership sooner rather than later. After the first exhibition victory against Hope College, he admitted the team is not where he would like it to be. “I think we’ve been very hard on the juniors,” Crean said. “I have been for reasons of leadership, and not just playing, but the responsibility that they have to take

for everybody else. All three of them are quiet by nature.” Newkirk knows he has to be less reserved. “I’d say being more vocal,” Newkirk said. “We’ve been through it. We know all the plays. We know what’s expected from coach. We just have to bring the young guys along and teach them what they don’t know.” The juniors have played 180 games combined in their college careers. They have the knowledge needed

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to guide the other players. The assistants had high praise for Johnson for how he sees the game. “He has a high basketball IQ, just like Juwan (Morgan), just like Collin,” IU assistant coach Rod Judson said. “He understands spacing very well ... Coach Crean really emphasizes the spacing aspect of offensive basketball. Rob, going into his third year, understands that and James Blackmon as well. Those guys are two awe-

some weapons to have.” Crean is still searching and trying to coax the trio out of their shells. He said he knows they are talented individual players, but for this team to succeed, they need to lead. “It needs to be forced,” Crean said. “It needed to be forced out of Yogi as well. It really did. Yogi’s leadership went to a whole other level when we got into the Big Ten season .... So they’ll get there. They’ll get there.”


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2016 Basketball Guide | Indiana Daily Student | idsnews.com

IU women’s basketball will lean on Tyra Buss By Josh Eastern jeastern@iu.edu | @JoshEastern

IU junior guard Tyra Buss has been the star of the show during her time in Bloomington. The Mt. Carmel, Illinois, native has already put her name in the IU record books. She is coming off a sophomore season in which she earned first team All-Big Ten honors, scored the third-most points ever scored in a single year in program history and has scored the most combined points after two seasons in IU history. Buss will now look to create more history in one of the most anticipated seasons for IU women’s basketball. “Being the point guard, you need to know where people need to be,” Buss said. “Coach Moren asked me to take that leadership role and be more of a vocal leader, so I’ve worked on that this preseason. We’re really ready to go.” This season will be an interesting one for Buss. She has the chance to lead this Hoosier team that has five returning starters. Along with the five returning starters are five players, freshmen or transfers, who will make their IU debuts this season. IU Coach Teri Moren finally has the depth she needs to compete at a higher level. However, with depth comes inexperience. Buss has the chance to be the glue this team needs to bring it all together. She’s the point guard, and being point guard comes with more responsibility on and off the court. “Basketball is a team sport. It’s not about yourself,” Buss said. “I try to do whatever I can to make everyone around me better and do anything that will help the team.” Buss is used to be the center of attention. The junior guard was named Illinois Gatorade Player of the Year, a

Parade High School All-American and the National High School Coaches Association Girls’ Basketball Player of the Year in 2014. Along with Buss is IU senior forward Amanda Cahill, one of the more vocal leaders on the team. Both of them are another year older. With that comes more responsibility and having to be more mature on and off the court, Moren said. “What I’ve asked from her and Cahill is more of a leadership role,” Moren said. “There is one thing to lead by example and another to lead vocally, and the team is only as vocal as the locker room is. Those are constant voices that have to be talking about being positive, being enthusiastic, being ready to go, making sure that we’re focused and staying positive.” Buss comes into her third season just 18 points away from 1,000 for her career. That’s quite the fast track to that milestone. The junior guard has been special. She scored in double figures in every single game last season and ended the year with a double-digit scoring streak of 37 consecutive games. That dates back to her freshman year, the longest such streak for an IU player since 1998. Buss said she has been working on her jump shot in the offseason. The more folds she can add to her game the more dangerous she could become for this IU team. With the season getting into full swing, Buss is looking to build off last year. If she can pick up where she left off last season, like Cahill says she’s trying to do, the country has to be on notice. This team is up and coming. “I wouldn’t say she’s acting any different,” Cahill said. “Maybe more confident going in because she’s a really hard worker. I know she’s been getNOBLE GUYON | IDS ting in the gym and trying to Then-sophomore guard Tyra Buss goes up to the basket to attempt a layup. Buss led in scoring with 27 points against Minnesota. pick up where she left off.”

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Basketball Guide 2016-17  

An Indiana Daily Student special publication

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