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MEET THE 2012-13 MEN’S TEAM Will Sheehey, forward

Kevin “Yogi” Ferrell, guard Year Junior Height 6’7” Hometown Stuart, Fla. Last season » 268 points » 97 rebounds » 7 blocks



Jordan Hulls, guard



Christian Watford, forward Year Senior Height 6’9” Hometown Birmingham, Ala. Last season » 453 points » 208 rebounds » 16 blocks



Maurice Creek, guard



Year Junior Height 6’5” Hometown Upper Marlboro, Md. Last season » 390 points » 49 steals

Jonny Marlin, guard



Austin Etherington, forward



Year Sophomore Height 6’6” Hometown Cicero, Ind. Last season » 20 points » 14 rebounds » 1 block







Year Junior Height 6’8” Hometown Westfield, Ind. Last season Academic All-Big Ten

Derek Elston, forward



Year Senior Height 6’9” Hometown Tipton, Ind. Last season » 144 points » 80 rebounds » 10 blocks

Jeremy Hollowell, forward



Year Freshman Height 6’8” Hometown Indianapolis Projection No. 10 small forward 2012 class

Cody Zeller, forward Year Sophomore Height 6’3” Hometown South Bend, Ind. Last season Played in 9 games for a total of 12 minutes, scoring 2 points

Taylor Wayer, guard

Victor Oladipo, guard



Year Freshman Height 6’8” Hometown Istmina, Colombia Projection No. 9 power forward 2012 class

Raphael Smith, guard Year Junior Height 6’5” Hometown Oxon Hill, Md. Last season Redshirted season due to a ruptured achilles heel injury



Hanner Mosquera-Perea, forward Year Senior Height 6’0” Hometown Bloomington Last season » 420 points » 120 assists » 38 steals



Year Freshman Height 6’0” Hometown Indianapolis Projection No. 2 point guard 2012 class

Jeff Howard, forward



Year Sophomore Height 7’0” Hometown Washington, Ind. Last season » 563 points » 236 rebounds » 42 blocks

Peter Jurkin, center Year Junior Height 5’11” Hometown Indianapolis Last season Academic All-Big Ten



Year Freshman Height 7’0” Hometown Juba, South Sudan Projection three-star recruit

Remy Abell, guard Year Sophomore (will sit out this season) Height 5’10” Hometown Greenwood, Ind. Last season Played at IU-Purdue University Fort Wayne



Year Sophomore Height 6’4” Hometown Louisville Last season » 95 points » 15 assists » 6 steals

i ntro d u ci n g th e 2012-2013

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Pressure to perform BY MAX MCCOMBS

When last season began more than a year ago, no one quite knew what to make of Indiana. The Hoosiers were ranked anywhere from the middle of the Big Ten pack to once again occupying the conference cellar. They did not even sniff the preseason national polls. The rest is history. The squad upset three top-five teams and reached the Sweet Sixteen before bowing out in a rematch to Kentucky. This year, with the majority of the team returning and bolstered by a highly touted freshman class, the team is ranked No. 1 in both the AP and Coaches polls and will not be sneaking up on anyone. “Back then, people were just wanting us to win a game,” senior guard Jordan Hulls said. “Now they’re wanting us to win every game. It’s kind of ‘what have you done for me lately’ is sometimes what it feels like. Not necessarily our fans, but that’s what goes around the country. “The pressure, it’s good though. I’m excited about it. We can’t let it get to our heads.” With the pressure comes a measure of pride in how far the

team has come in just a single year, senior forward Christian Watford admitted at Big Ten Media Day on Oct. 25. “It’s definitely a great step that we’ve gotten to,” Watford said. “The last few years we’ve been picked near the bottom. It shows that our hard work really pays off.” IU Coach Tom Crean said the program’s history means it is always a topic of discussion in the preseason, even during recent lean times. “Our team has had to deal with a lot of other hype that wasn’t necessarily positive,” Crean said. “I think it’s easy to look at the couple of years we started and say, well, Indiana was down and Indiana wasn’t doing this or that and that’s all true. The target of being an Indiana Hoosier has never changed.” As Hulls alluded to, the obvious danger of a top preseason ranking is hubris. College basketball lore abounds with tales of seemingly stacked teams that fail to live up to their billing, including as recently as last season’s North Carolina squad. Crean said he preaches a short-term mindset to overcome this, with a goal of showing improvement on the court each day. “It sounds cliche, but it’s the

Preseason No. 1 ranking leaves Hoosier fans with high expectations for the 2012-13 season


Fans swarm Branch McCracken court Dec. 10, 2011, in Assembly Hall after IU beat Kentucky, 73-72.

truth,” Crean said. “The thing I can always look at and back it up with is we wouldn’t be in the position we are in right now without having that mindset from before. The bottom line is if your team is improving, led by your best players, then everybody else has to fall in line.” Crean said it was a work ethic to achieve that last year that put the team where it is now. Now


that they are here, the work ethic has not wavered. “What matters is, are they challenging each other?” Crean said. “Are they competing? Are they absorbing the competition and are they hungry to get better? I don’t see any sign of that not being the case.” Junior guard Victor Oladipo said the team’s cohesion from last season has carried over as

well, largely due to the collective pressure the players now feel. “We were together last year, but I think this year we have to be more together than we’ve ever been because we do always have a target on our backs,” Oladipo said. “We are just going to continue to keep playing for one another, keep playing for each other and bringing the young guys along that have meshed in so well.”


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THE MOVEMENT IS HERE “There’s no blueprint of the prototype player for rebuilding situations, so let’s go get guys we can win with and not just look at it as rebuilding.” Tom Crean, IU coach




After Cody Zeller brought his nearly 7-foot frame to Bloomington last fall, the IU basketball community got its first taste in several seasons of what it’s like to have hype surrounding an incoming freshman class. Zeller came, many said, to be the savior of the IU basketball program, to give the team the spark it needed to climb back to the top of the Big Ten and college basketball worlds. With Zeller, the Hoosiers went 27-9, making their first trip back to the Sweet 16 since 2002, along with knocking off eventual national champion Kentucky at Assembly Hall in one of the most replayed college basketball games in recent history. But this season, the Hoosiers welcome “The Movement,” a group of four freshmen Hoosier fans hope can build upon the impact Zeller made on his own last season.


Yet, these four freshmen came to IU after the team had its first season above .500 since IU Coach Tom Crean began coaching in 2008. They are the first freshmen in recent memory to begin their stints as Hoosiers with IU coming off a successful season, and some of their new teammates said they worry the freshmen may struggle with connecting to the down-toearth team atmosphere. “The freshmen won’t understand where we come from when we tell them what to do just because we’ve been through the worst times here at IU,” senior forward Derek Elston said. “When they come into a situation like this, they see it as an everyday thing, as a routine, but we realize that we never had this growing up. We literally had to hope that Coach Crean would tell us what to do, or otherwise we’d be lost.” With this class, because they saw the Hoosiers have success last season, the veterans on the team have

to be even more conscious of staying down-to-earth amidst the preseason No. 1 rankings and Zeller’s personal accolades, Elston said. He said they know staying humble and working hard are what got the Hoosiers to where they are now, and they want to keep that tradition. “I don’t think they realized what we we’re going through, but then you tell them this is exactly what you have to go through to be good,” Elston said. “They stop with the faces and the whining, and it’s good to see them grow up like that already in this process we’re going through.” Crean said leading up to last season, when these four freshmen signed to come to IU, he made sure he was recruiting players he thought could not only impact the team athletically, but who would also be willing to buy into the system that had been in place from his first season at 6-25 all the way to the Sweet 16. “We’re going to get the guys that fit where we’re


trying to go,” Crean said. “There’s no blueprint of the prototype player for rebuilding situations, so let’s go get guys we can win with and not just look at it as rebuilding. “You just recruit them to get after it and win it.” His four newest Hoosiers have made this adjustment well, Crean said, but they have to continue along the track they’re on, staying humble and recognizing the roots of the program and passing this tradition on to younger guys, no matter the success the team reaches this year and beyond. “Experience is an equivalent of your understanding,” Crean said. “You can be experienced and have been there, and you could be 21 or 22, but if you don’t understand the extra work, if you don’t understand what it’s like to play in the league, it doesn’t matter. “They’ve got to go through it, but these kids understand that, and the more they help them with it, it becomes more of a player-led program.”

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The men’s basketball team puts their hands together before the start of their 97-54 victory against Bryant on Nov. 9 at Assembly Hall. BY MICHAEL NORMAN |

THE LEGENDS CLASSIC The first-ever Legends Classic in the brand new Barclays Center in Brooklyn, N.Y., will provide the toughest “road� test in IU’s nonconference schedule. I put the quotes around road because realistically, Hoosier fans will probably pack the place more than any of the other three schools. Nov. 15 vs. Sam Houston State (W 3-0) Nov. 19 vs. Georgia (W 4-0) at Barclays Center Georgia’s talent and athleticism will be a step up from IU’s first three opponents, but the

Bulldogs shouldn’t pose much of a threat. Prediction: Watch for the Hoosiers’ depth to take advantage of a Georgia team that lost two of its top three scoring leaders from last season. Nov. 20 vs. UCLA or Georgetown (W 5-0) at Barclays Center In round two at the Barclays Center, IU plays either UCLA or Georgetown. Personally, I’m rooting for a UCLA-IU showdown. With 16 banners between the Bruins and Hoosiers, historic storylines will be played up, and for good reason.

Although the possible Shabazz Muhammad and Cody Zeller matchup had us drooling since the schedule first came out, it seems like it’s not going to happen with Muhammad expected to miss two to four weeks after injuring his shoulder. Regardless, the Hoosiers match up well with both Georgetown and UCLA. If IU gets Georgetown, the Hoosiers will need to run-andgun to prevent the tempo from slowing down to where the Hoyas like it. If IU gets UCLA, expect Zeller to be the feature of the offense with or without


Muhammad playing for the Bruins. Prediction: IU sweeps the Legends Classic and receives one of Jay-Z’s platinum albums as a commemorative souvenir. Wouldn’t that look good somewhere in Bloomington? Nov. 25 vs. Ball State (W 6-0) If it makes Ball State fans feel better, they have bragging rights in football for this year. In 49 other states that would hold more weight, but this state loves its Hoosier basketball. Prediction: IU wins big in this one.

ACC-BIG TEN CHALLENGE Nov. 27 vs. North Carolina (W 7-0) Bloomington will be buzzing for this late November matchup. Expect students to camp out overnight, the scoreboard to be lit up and a raucous Assembly Hall crowd to be completely clad in cream and crimson. Consider this IU’s biggest nonconference test. UNC lost four players to the NBA draft – Tyler Zeller, Harrison Barnes, Kendall Marshall and John Henson – who SEE PREDICTIONS, PAGE 8

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Not so fast, Hoosier fans Ever since IU was named preseason No. 1 in the nation, Bloomington has been buzzing with national championship talk. With a roster filled with tremendous depth, experience and athleticism, Hoosier fans are already penciling the crimson and cream into the national championship game in Atlanta. While there are good arguments to back up IU’s optimism, I’d like to borrow a line from ESPN football analyst and former IU football coach, Lee Corso. “Not so fast, Hoosier fans.” Many different things could go wrong for any team throughout a long college basketball season. The main thing that can derail any team is injuries. Coaches know this best. A twisted ankle here, a tweaked hamstring there and now your team is starting to show some weaknesses. Injuries are something that you can’t prepare for because you don’t know when they will strike. But when they strike, they can leave a team spread thin. Junior guard Maurice Creek, who knows more about injuries than some sports medicine students, said thinking about getting injured while playing doesn’t help players succeed. “I’m not trying to think about [injuries],” Creek said. “I feel like when people start thinking about it, that’s when people get hurt.” Even if the injury bug doesn’t bite the Hoosiers, IU is going to be in for a battle every time they take the court against a Big Ten opponent. This year, the Big Ten is stacked from top to bottom with quality teams and dynamic players. Michigan, Ohio State and Michigan State will be strong. If IU stumbles against these teams, the Hoosiers could

see a tougher road to the Final Four that could ultimately doom their title run. “I don’t think you can do anything, in my mind, but look at the fact that Michigan State, Michigan and Ohio State won the championship last year, and until somebody unseats them that’s the way it is,” IU Coach Tom Crean said at Big Ten media day. “It’s a new season and all that, but those teams didn’t get any worse, they’re probably even a little bit better.” The Hoosiers could conceivably finish as low as fourth or fifth place in the Big Ten, which would probably lead to a No. 2-4 seed in the NCAA tournament. Plenty of two to four seeds have had success in the big dance, but after being named the preseason No. 1 team in the nation, anything but a No. 1 seed would be a disappointment. Which brings us to the question that I’ve been trying to wrap my head around as more and more preseason awards were given to IU. Do the Hoosiers have to win the national championship for this season to be considered a success? Should other outcomes be considered failures because the Hoosiers were the preseason No. 1 team? By being named preseason No. 1, I think Hoosier fans are falling into a dangerous mindset that could lead to a disastrous letdown if IUBB doesn’t go all the way. This year, Hoosier fans expect banner six. If banner six doesn’t come this year, I don’t think this mindset is fair to the players, coaches and trainers who will work all year for this team only to feel as if they let Bloomington down because they couldn’t win it all. Realistically, once the tournament begins, everyone has the same chances of winning

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— 1.47 percent. One bad game and your season comes to a screeching halt. As a 15-year-old, I experienced how quickly a dream season could turn into a nightmare when one of my favorite Big Ten teams of all time, the 2004-05 Illinois Fighting Illini, lost to North Carolina in the championship. Led by Dee Brown, Luther Head and Deron Williams, the Illini lost one game all year, the last game of the Big Ten regular season at Ohio State, before losing to the Tar Heels. Although I still believe that team to be one of my favorite teams of all-time, the huge expectations that were built up throughout almost four months of hype made losing to UNC even more devastating. Ending the season with a loss left a sour after-taste for a magical season and it still affects how I view that team. I don’t think of the season as a failure, but only a championship would have provided the storybook ending. This year, I fear that Hoosier fans, dying for banner six, might have blinding expectations that obstructs their ability to fully enjoy the season. When all you think about is the possibility of glory in March, you cannot appreciate all of the small moments along the journey. So my advice to Hoosier fans is simple. Enjoy every moment of 2012-13, whether IU wins it all or loses somewhere in the tournament, and expect the Hoosiers to use every ounce of their energy to fulfill those on-court expectations.

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» PREDICTIONS CONTINUED FROM PAGE 6 combined to average 55.2 of UNC’s 81 points per game. This year’s Tar Heels will be led by two sophomores, James Michael McAdoo and P.J. Hairston, and a junior, Reggie Bullock. All three possess the ability to score from any spot on the floor, so IU’s defense will need to step up the intensity, especially around the perimeter. Prediction: Hoosier Nation will help get the adrenaline and blood flowing, so I’m taking IU at home to beat the still-gelling Tar Heels.

NONCONFERENCE PART II Dec. 1 vs. Coppin State (W 8-0) Dec. 8 vs. Central Connecticut State (W 9-0) The Crossroads Classic Dec. 15 vs. Butler (W 10-0) at Bankers Life Fieldhouse If you’re a fan of Indiana basketball, the game fits your holiday wish list: In-state foes. Check. A centralized, neutral college basketball venue that will be packed with fans of both teams. Check. IU Coach Tom Crean vs. Butler Coach Brad Stevens. Check. Prediction: IU cracks double-digits to 10-0. Check Winter Break Games Dec. 19 vs. Mount St. Mary’s (W 11-0) Dec. 21 vs. Florida Atlantic (W 12-0) Dec. 28 vs. Jacksonville (W 13-0) Prediction: The holidays will be happy for Hoosier fans. IU keeps rolling into Big Ten play, 13-0.

BIG TEN PLAY BEGINS Dec. 31 at Iowa (W 14-0) JJan. 7 at Penn State (W 15-0) IU lost on the road to Iowa last season and also struggled to put away the Nittany Lions. Both of those games were in the middle of the Big Ten schedule last season. Prediction: To start the conference season, Crean will have his troops ready to go, so don’t count on the Hoosiers slipping up in their first true road games of the season. JJan 12 vs. Minnesota (W 16-0) JJan. 15 vs. Wisconsin (W 17-0) Prediction: After taking care of a Golden Gopher team that will underachieve this year, the Hoosiers play the Badgers in their only matchup of the regular season. Because it is in Bloomington and not Madison, Wisconsin, I like IU to keep the momentum going against a good Big Ten opponent. JJan. 20 at Northwestern (W 18-0) JJan. 23 vs. Penn State (W 19-0) Prediction: At this point, IU will be flexing its muscle as the big dog of the Big Ten, which isn’t good news for these two schools’ feline mascots.

THE GAUNTLET OF THE BIG TEN In the span of a week, IU will play its biggest in-state rival and two possible top10 opponents sandwiched around the trip to Purdue. JJan. 27 vs. Michigan State (W 20-0) Tom Izzo vs. Crean will be the epic Big Ten coaching showdown for the next decade or two. The battle of freshmen recruiting classes will be on display and you know Gary Harris and Kevin “Yogi” Ferrell will come ready to play. Prediction: Overall, I think IU and MSU will split, so I’ll take the Hoosiers at home. JJan. 30 at Purdue (W 21-0) At Purdue, the Hoosiers can expect the Boilermakers to come out swinging, but IU’s last few recruiting classes will showcase the depth Crean has brought to Bloomington. Prediction: The Hoosiers will weather the storm in Mackey Arena and come out on top to stay perfect against in-state opponents.


Feb. 2 vs. Michigan (ESPN College Gameday) (W 22-0) The week will conclude with ESPN’s College Gameday crew and the national spotlight on Bloomington to watch the Hoosiers and Wolverines in prime time. Michigan might be IU’s biggest competition within the conference this season, so it will be a crucial game in the standings for both teams. Last year, IU and Michigan got together for a couple of dandies, so how could the Big Ten ask for more to showcase the talent of the league? Prediction: Bloomington better brace itself for that weekend because it’s going to get rowdy. Hoosiers top the Wolverines behind the loudest Assembly Hall crowd of the year in a close game and finishes the week 3-0. Feb. 7 at Illinois (W 23-0) Feb. 10 at Ohio State (L 23-1) On paper, Illinois looks like a trap game to me for the Hoosiers. IU will be coming off College Gameday and a date with the Wolverines and then will have to play Ohio State after leaving Champaign, Ill. Speaking of Ohio State, the Buckeyes will be gunning for the Hoosiers. After having to listen to a few months of experts calling the Hoosiers the best team in the Big Ten, the Buckeyes are going to be ready for the cream and crimson. Prediction: IU will survive a scare in Champaign, but OSU will hand the Hoosiers their first loss of the season.

THE HOME STRETCH Feb. 13 vs. Nebraska (W 23-1) Feb. 16 vs. Purdue (W 24-1) Prediction: IU takes care of the Cornhuskers and sweeps the state of Indiana. Corn for everybody. Feb. 19 at Michigan State (L 24-2) Good teams in the Big Ten usually split. The Hoosiers and the Spartans are two good teams in the Big Ten. Prediction: It’s a quick turnaround from the second Purdue game of the year, so I’m going to give Michigan State a slight advantage at home. Feb. 26 at Minnesota (W 25-2) March 2 vs. Iowa (W 26-2) March 5 vs. Ohio State (W 27-2) After sweeping the season series from the Golden Gophers and the Hawkeyes, the Hoosiers will welcome the Buckeyes into Assembly Hall for senior night. On a night to honor Jordan Hulls, Derek Elston and Christian Watford, the Hoosiers will look to avenge their mid-season loss in Columbus, Ohio. Prediction: If there was one game on the schedule that looks like it could shape up to be the night IU wraps up the Big Ten regular season championship, it would be this one. Behind the emotionally-charged Assembly Hall crowd, the seniors will lead the Hoosiers to victory — winning their final game in Bloomington. March 10 at Michigan (L 27-3) In what will be the final Big Ten game of the season for both teams, I think the Wolverines will defend home court entering the Big Ten Tournament. When you combine Michigan’s backcourt – Trey Burke and Tim Hardaway Jr. – with the fact that it’s on the road and IU will be coming down from the emotion of senior night, I think the Wolverines will take this one. If that happens, I would love see both of these teams settle the season series somewhere in the Big Ten Tournament or NCAA Tournament.

MORE PREDICTIONS Big Ten Regular Season Champion: Indiana Big Ten Player of the Year: Cody Zeller, Indiana Big Ten Coach of the Year: Tom Crean, Indiana All-Big Ten Team: Guard Trey Burke, Michigan Guard Tim Frazier, Penn State Forward Aaron White, Iowa Forward Deshaun Thomas, Ohio State Center Cody Zeller, Indiana


Then-sophomore forward Will Sheehey dunks the ball against Kentucky on March 23 at the Georgia Dome in Atlanta, Georgia. IU lost to the Wildcats 102-90 during this Sweet Sixteen appearance.


I N D I A N A D A I LY S T U D E N T | W E D N E S D AY, N O V. 1 4 , 2 0 1 2 | I D S N E W S . C O M



Teammates watch from the sidelines as the Hoosiers lose 55-69 against Michigan State on Jan. 20, 2011, at Assembly Hall. IU completed the 2010-11 season with a record of 9-20 and the 2011-12 season 6-24.

Rock bottom

IU Coach Curt Miller’s 11-season tenure at Bowling Green State produced quite the resume, including

6 MAC Coach of the Year awards

Team looks for fresh start after a 6-24 record in 2011-12 season BY JOE POPELY

A new beginning. A new era. A fresh start. A clean break. Call the 2012-13 IU women’s basketball season what you want as IU Coach Curt Miller ushers in a new brand of women’s basketball in Bloomington. But before a program can be rebuilt, it first has to implode. A coach who leads a mid-major

team to nine straight seasons of 20 or more wins, five conference titles and five NCAA Tournament appearances doesn’t just leave after turning a program into a perennial powerhouse. Something bad has to happen on the other end. Something historically bad. The 2011-12 IU women’s basketball season was just that. The team finished 6-24 overall and 1-16 in Big Ten play, opening the conference

slate with 14 consecutive losses before edging Wisconsin 62-60 on Feb. 23 in Assembly Hall. For the players, it was rock bottom. Now it’s time to use the lessons they learned during a painful season to make sure it never happens again. “It was hard to get past a lot of the losses,” senior forward Aulani Sinclair said. “But we just had to SEE BEGINNING, PAGE 11

New coach brings winning history, fiery passion to Assembly Hall BY ROBBY HOWARD

IU Coach Curt Miller had been inside Assembly Hall before, but March 28 was different. This time he walked in, paused Curt Miller and took a moment just to look around. It was empty. It was quiet. He watched the National Championship banners dangle in the air just above his head, and he thought of the players and coaches who had competed on the floor. Suddenly he felt butterflies swirling around his stomach as his mind wandered into a daydream. It raced with visions of 17,000 Hoosier fans filling the red and blue seats, cheering a successful IU women’s basketball program. It hit him that, yes, this was his job now. This time when Miller walked into Assembly Hall, he walked in as the ninth head coach of the Hoosiers women’s basketball team, faced with the task of turning that daydream into a reality. For Miller, that opportunity is a dream come true. “As a basketball traditionalist or a basketball junkie, it’s pretty numbing when you really think about who’s played here and coached here and now you’re leading a team,” Miller said, “It’s a special opportunity. That’s why it was a dream job.” Being an Indiana coach has been Miller’s dream job since he started coaching girls’ basketball as

a senior in high school, he said. Long before he was a senior in high school, he was involved in competition. Miller grew up in Girard, Penn., as the youngest of three. His brother was six years older and his sister nine years older. The Millers bonded by participating in a range of sports — not just basketball — including competitive swimming. “You name the sport, we were involved with the sport growing up,” he said. What Miller lacked in age, experience and size in competition with his siblings, he made up for in energy and enthusiasm, he said. “I got picked on a little bit in that driveway,” Miller said. “I wanted to hang out with their friends. I wanted to play basketball. I wanted to play in the backyard football game, even though I was little.” Miller said this drive permeated throughout the 6,000-person community, where everybody knew everybody. “My hometown was crazy for basketball,” he said. “In third grade, in the ‘70s when a lot of communities were still not starting organized basketball until seventh or eighth grade, my community was starting competitive leagues in third grade. Everything we did sporting wise, we tried to be competitive.” But one area that wasn’t competitive was the seventh and eighth grade girls’ basketball team in Girard. No teacher took on the head coaching job in the mid ‘80s. So, they offered it to the high school senior Miller, who was

“Can you do it? When you look around an empty Assembly Hall, those feelings go through your head. You’re not human if they don’t.” Curt Miller, IU coach

gearing up to play his fourth and final season on the boy’s basketball team at Girard High School. “I jumped at the chance,” he said. “We had a good season, and I was hooked ever since then that I wanted to do that for my livelihood. I had the time of my life and really enjoyed it.” Being raised in that competitive community has built his reputation around coaching with intensity, Miller said. “It’s really driven me to this point,” he said. “It’s something that defines me. Everyone knows me as a fiery, passionate coach.” After graduating from BaldwinWallace with a bachelors degree in physical education and business administration in 1990, he set out on starting his women’s basketball coaching path. Miller began his collegiate coaching career as a volunteer assistant at Kent State, followed by stints as an assistant coach at both Cleveland State and Syracuse. After being an associate head coach at Colorado State for three years, Miller received a call in 2001 from Bowling Green State to be the head women’s basketball coach. SEE MILLER, PAGE 10

4 players with All-American honors


graduation rate among his athletes who completed their eligibility

8 5 5

regular season MAC titles

MAC Tournament titles

NCAA Tournament appearances

Mid-American Conference record

135 wins 41 losses

Overall record 258 wins 92 losses



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MEET THE 2012-13 WOMEN’S TEAM Jasmine McGhee, guard

Candyce Ussery, guard

Year Senior Height 5’11” Hometown Anderson, Ind. Last season



» 327 points » 33 assists » 30 steals

Brionna Arnold, guard


Carmela Roeschlein, guard


Linda Rubene, forward


Andrea Newbauer, guard


Nicole Bell, guard





Year Freshman Height 6’3” Hometown Fredericksburg, Ind. Eastern High School Averaged19.2 points and 11.0 rebounds per game senior year









Year Sophomore Height 6’0” Hometown Cary, Ill. Last season Shot 46.3 percent from the field during freshman season at Northern Illinois



Year Sophomore Height 6’6” Hometown Dalton, Ga. Last season » 152 points » 126 rebounds » 33 blocks



Year Junior Height 6’3” Hometown Round Rock, Texas Last season » 24 points » 36 rebounds

Milika Taufa, forward

Andrea Mize, guard Year Freshman Height 5’4” Hometown Cincinnati Indian Hill High School Averaged 22.5 points, 5.5 assists and 4.6 steals per game her senior season

There, he compiled a .737 winning percentage (258-92), the 16th best winning percentage among all active Division I coaches. In his last eight seasons, the Falcons made a postseason appearance each year and in seven of the last eight, they won at least a share of the Mid-American Conference regular season. This position also allowed him to connect with former IU men’s basketball player Dan Dakich, who coached the men’s team at BGSU from 1997-07. “We would sit and talk, and sometimes it had nothing to do with X’s and O’s,

Simone Deloach, center

Year Senior Height 6’1” Hometown Eminence, Ind. Last season » 372 points » 98 rebounds » 12 blocks



but just how to build a program,” Miller said. “We’re friends, but certainly, he has no idea how much I respect him as a coach.” He also credits Dakich for helping him get the job he has now at Indiana. Now at his dream job inside Assembly Hall, Miller is still filled with butterflies. He calls it a nervous energy that drives coaches who fear failure. “I certainly have that, wondering what it’s going to take to get this ship righted and this program back on its feet,” he said. “Can you do it? When you look around an empty Assembly Hall, those feelings go through your head. You’re not human if they don’t.”

Quaneisha McCurty, center Year Redshirt senior Height 6’4” Hometown St. Petersburg, Fla. Last season » 260 points » 196 rebounds » 23 blocks



Claire Jakubicek, forward

Aulani Sinclair, forward

Year Junior Height 5’9” Hometown Fort Wayne Last season » 81 points » 121 assists » 30 steals


Year Freshman Height 5’11” Hometown Bloomington Last season Redshirted her freshman season at Bowling Green State due to an ACL injury

Sasha Chaplin, center

Year Senior Height 6’3” Hometown Gulbene, Latvia Last season » 40 points » 32 rebounds » 5 blocks



Jocelyn Mousty, forward

Year Freshman Height 5’5” Hometown Clay City, Ind. Clay City High School All-time leading scorer in the school’s history



Kaila Hulls, guard/forward

Year Freshman Height 5’11” Hometown Indianapolis Ben Davis High School Back-to-back Indiana High School Athletic Association 4A state championship team (2009-10)


Year Sophomore Height 5’8” Hometown St. Louis Last season » 92 points » 36 assists » 19 steals


Year Sophomore Height 5’9” Hometown Greenwood, Ind. Whiteland High School Averaged 10 or more points per game each season of her high school career

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Year Junior Height 6’0” Hometown Lahaina, Hawaii Last season » 77 points » 93 rebounds » 10 blocks


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» BEGINNING CONTINUED FROM PAGE 9 turn around and use it for motivation. This year, we know exactly what happened last year, and we don’t want to feel like that again, so we just look forward to the future.” Too often last season, Sinclair said, one bad play would turn into a string of bad plays. “We’ve seen that a lot last year,” she said. “Definitely when you’re down four points or whatever and you turn the ball over consecutive times, it definitely drives your mentality down a little bit. But as being leaders this year me and Jazz (senior guard Jasmine McGhee) definitely have to bring the morale of the team back up, and it’s not the end of the world, so when we go down by four, we don’t keep going down to down by 16. “As soon as we see mental lapses, I feel like that’s when we need to pull the team together and get us refocused and play our style of basketball so we don’t have those mental droughts, which leads to multiple points for the other team.” Miller also noticed IU’s tendency to fall into bad runs and will look toward his upperclassmen — in particular Sinclair — to prevent that from happening this season. “Aulani’s a great player and has to be a go-to player for us, so she’s a leader by example in that way,” Miller said. “What we’re really challenging her is to make more of a leadership role vocally. When things don’t go well, this team has a tendency to feel sorry for itself, and a little segment of bad play turns into too long of a segment of bad play. “Aulani’s gotta keep everybody together and be one of those leaders that can get and stop runs against us.” This situation occurred last season when two conference losses came down to the wire. On Jan. 29 at Northwestern, the Hoosiers were down 52-50 with 8:59 to go in the game but surrendered a 10-2 Wildcats run that made it 62-52 with 5:11 left. IU fought back to make it a three point-game with 47 seconds remaining, but the Wildcats hung on to win 68-61. Two weeks later against Illinois, IU lost by a point at home. With that in mind, executing down the stretch will be a focal point this season, McGhee said. “I think we have to learn how to execute when we need to score,” McGhee said. “That was probably the challenge in all of our losses.” Miller’s pick-and-roll

Fans sit by themselves in section B on Jan. 26 at Assembly Hall. The Hoosiers lost to Ohio State 73-55. IDS FILE PHOTO

offense relies heavily on executing set offensive plays that can vary depending on the defense and game situation, something McGhee said will help the team perform at a high level during crunch time. “I think his knowledge for the game is really gonna help us with these close wins and these close games that we have to execute and score,” she said. One advantage Miller had at his last position at Bowling Green was time. During 11 years, Miller added more and more to his playbook while recruiting players who fit his system. Now, he is tasked with installing a system none of his 16 players have ever experienced. “We’re gonna try to be as efficient as we can, but there’s no doubt that this team has to make the games look a little ugly this year to be successful,” he said. “It is a pretty game, we’re not the most pretty team right now, and that’s probably not what we want the game to look like. We’ve got to do what you call ‘muck it up.’” Beyond late gameexecution, the team struggled throughout the entire second half of games, senior center Sasha Chaplin said. “It’s just realizing how last season went and knowing that the second half was our little struggle point,” she said. “And now this year we just have to collectively put it together and play an entire 40 minutes of basketball.” When the Big Ten win against the Badgers finally came, it was cathartic for Chaplin and her teammates, she said. “It was joy just to finally

“It was joy to finally have a win, because outside of what everyone sees, we were working very hard in practice, we were doing everything we were supposed to do, you just weren’t seeing the results out there.” Sasha Chaplin, senior center

have a win, because outside of what everyone sees, we were working very hard in practice, we were doing everything we were supposed to do, you just weren’t seeing the results out there,” Chaplin said. Despite the lack of results with IU going nearly two months without a win after beating Texas A&M Corpus Christi in late December, Sinclair said her passion for the game never faltered. “No,” she said. “Never. I feel like you put so much time and effort into it, you just love the game. If you didn’t, I don’t think any of us would be here right now.” Miller has repeatedly said he is less concerned about this year’s win-loss total than changing the program’s culture. For now, he wants his team to be one of the hardest working teams in the Big Ten and said the team has to find its own drive, its own passion and its own energy. “Our big message to them is there’s more in them than they realize,” he said. “They can go longer, they can go harder, they can go faster than they have ever been pushed. We’re pushing them.”



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Filling Shoes Freshman guards prepare for new opportunities Ferrell prepares to step up as leader after Hulls completes his senior season

Bell faces leadership position early due to offseason injuries for Newbauer, Ussery


“I’m always looking to pass ďŹ rst, so I know Vic is always running the lanes. I’m always looking for him, looking for Cody, looking for the guys to get them the ball, ’cause I know they can ďŹ nish for me.â€? Kevin “Yogiâ€? Ferrell, IU forward

Even before stepping foot in Bloomington, Kevin “Yogi� Ferrell was used to success. During his four years on the Park Tudor High School basketball team, Ferrell led his teammates to three consecutive Indiana High School Athletic Association 2A State Title finals — including backto-back championships his junior and senior years. Ferrell knows what it’s like to be on, and lead, a championship-caliber team. Although he’s just getting used to wearing the candy stripes and playing in front of more than 17,000 fans, the freshman guard will be expected to carry a large load much sooner than most freshmen around the country. In IU’s exhibition game against Indiana Wesleyan, Ferrell started in the back court alongside senior guard Jordan Hulls, a player who also led a team at a young age. Hulls stepped on campus as a freshman after the team was decimated by NCAA sanctions stemming from former IU Coach Kelvin Sampson. And because he has only one season left, Hulls started helping his understudy learn the ways of leading the offense of the top-ranked team in the country. “We’re always talking to each other on the floor, me being a little older and knowing a little bit more of the plays and how things should be run,� Hulls said. “I’m trying to explain to him why we’re doing this, what should go here, what kind of position this guy needs to be in – that kind of thing – and he’s absorbing it all.� It appears Hulls isn’t the only one taking notice.

From the start of official practice in mid-October to the team scrimmage at Hoosier HysKevin “Yogi� teria, and now Ferrell as IU begins its regular season, players who Ferrell looks to pass to have noticed a better awareness from the freshman on offense. “He can find guys and go,� junior guard Maurice Creek said. “He’s got great vision, and sometimes such awesome vision that people don’t look for it, and he might have passed the ball, and no one knows it. So, you know, we’re learning each other’s game, and Yogi’s learning us too. As he develops more, he’ll be an awesome point guard.� But Ferrell knows in order to take full control of leading IU’s offense once Hulls graduates after this season, it will take more than just adjusting to the faster college game. The freshman said it’s going to take time for his teammates to adjust to having a new guy dishing out the ball from the point guard position, and that cohesion on both ends has to be there if IU wants to continue to be successful. “I feel like I can go as far as my teammates take me,� Ferrell said. “I’m always looking to pass first, so I know Vic is always running the lanes. I’m always looking for him, looking for Cody, looking for the guys to get them the ball, ’cause I know they can finish for me. “It just makes me feel good when they finish ’cause I know we’re making each other look good at the same time.�


Freshman guard Nicole Bell really likes New York Jets quarterback Tim Tebow. IU Coach Curt Miller hopes she likes him enough to lead like him. Miller thinks the 18-yearold will play a similar role as Tebow in her leadership and ability to manage the IU women’s basketball team this year, he said. “I joked with my staff, she’s kind of got to be Tebow for us this year,� he said. “It doesn’t always have to look pretty, but she’s got to somehow find a way to lead us throughout the year with the injuries that we have. “She doesn’t have to go win the game for us. She has to manage our team and lead our team.� As someone who looks up to and respects Tebow, this came as high praise for Bell. “Wow, that’s a first,� she said. “I feel like Tebow is really high up there.� Coming into the year, Bell hadn’t expected to be drawing any comparisons like this or even be in that leadership position, she said. But with offseason injuries to junior guard Andrea Newbauer and sophomore guard Candyce Ussery, Bell finds herself running in practice with the starters and even starting a couple of games at point guard. Senior guard Jasmine McGhee said Bell hasn’t flinched at being put into that level of competition. “She’s been really feisty,� McGhee said. “She’s been really on top of her game, just focusing and doing extra shooting and proving herself everyday in practice.� McGhee has already seen Bell move into the team’s leadership position that Miller wants her to fill. “She’s very vocal,� she said. “We run the plays through her. To be in that position as a freshman, I think she’s stepped up.�

This isn’t Bell’s first time in a leadership position. Going into her senior year at Indian Hill Nicole Bell High School in Cincinnati, she had to help her team through a transition to a new head coach. She knew it was her job to step up and help the team make a smooth transition. “That was really difficult for everybody,� Bell said. “All the seniors, including myself, we had to step up and be leaders to try to help the younger kids learn the new stuff and get through it.� Her leadership extended beyond vocal support. Bell finished the season averaging 22.5 points, 5.6 rebounds, 5.5 assists and 4.6 steals per game. That capped the fourth straight season Indian Hill won its conference championship. Three of those years, Bell was the Conference Player of the Year. Bell left Indian Hill as the school’s all-time leader in scoring with 1,638 points, 440 assists and 234 three-point field goals made. “Nicole Bell is a godsend for us right now, a player that we didn’t pick up until June and were very fortunate to have that happen,� Miller said. Bell ultimately decided to come to IU because of its academics and the respect she has for how Miller runs his team, she said. “It was a perfect fit,� Bell said. After appearing to thrive in the situation thus far, McGhee said she thinks the sky is the limit for Bell. “I believe she can be something better than she is right now,� McGhee said. “She’s been proving that everyday in practice.�

“I joked with my staff, she’s kind of got to be Tebow for us this year. It doesn’t always have to look pretty, but she’s got to somehow ďŹ nd a way to lead us throughout the year with the injuries that we have.â€? Curt Miller, IU coach

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Miller teaches team new offense BY JOE POPELY


After one practice in October, IU Coach Curt Miller quipped that his women’s basketball team was scared they had games coming up because of the amount plays they had yet to learn. While Miller has said the team will operate from an abbreviated playbook in the early part of the year, he understands it will take time for his players — all of whom are new to his system — to become comfortable in the new offense. At its core, Miller’s offense is predicated on the pick-and-roll and his guards making reads after coming off those screens. Those off the ball are expected to stay in motion to give the guard multiple options out of the screens and to allow the team to reverse the ball if nothing is open. The team has been working on executing set plays, all of which share a common theme: aggressiveness. “It’s an attacking-style offense, and so everyone’s gotta attack their role,” Miller said. “The fours and fives offensively are very similar, the twos and threes offensively are very similar. They’re asked the same things. There’s a variety of ways and multiple opportunities to score in our offense, but it works best when we have five kids on the floor attacking their role.” Most important to success is his guards’ ability to draw defenders away from their assignments, he said. “Penetration is the key for us in this offense,” he said. “We rely on penetration to create opportunities, and then they have to read that opportunity. Is it an opportunity for them to score with the balls in their hands? Is it an opportunity for a penetration and kick opportunity to a shooter? Is it a penetration and dump pass to a post player? “But it’s all predicated on their penetration and making reads off that penetration. The better that we penetrate northsouth, the better the offense is gonna be.” Featured is a quick look at the role of each player in Miller’s system.

DEPTH CHART » Senior Jasmine McGhee » Freshman Brionna Arnold » Sophomore Andrea Mize PRIMARY 2 RESPONSIBILITIES McGhee was second on the team in scoring a year ago, and this year figures to demand a similar amount of offensive production from the senior. Like the point guard, the shooting guard will have picks set for them, only on a less frequent basis. The key here is movement without the ball. The guard will roam the perimeter, often using back screens and

other off-the ball screens to switch sides of the court while hunting for an open catchand-shoot opportunity or chance to drive. If nothing’s there, they are expected to reverse the ball and reset. “It goes right back into the offense we learn at the beginning. Whenever a play breaks down, it’s just ball screen and go from there. If you don’t know what to do, set a screen. There’s a variety in this offense, so there’s a lot of options. I can’t tell you what one thing to do is because it’s not like that — there’s so many options.” —Jasmine McGhee

POWER FORWARD/ CENTER (4/5) DEPTH CHART (PF) » Sophomore Quaneisha McCurty » Senior Linda Rubene » Junior Milika Taufa » Freshman Jocelyn Mousty DEPTH CHART (C) » Redshirt senior Sasha Chaplin » Junior Simone Deloach » Sophomore Quaneisha McCurty PRIMARY RESPONSIBILITIES Like the twos and threes in Miller’s offense, the fours and fives operate very similarly. They act less like traditional post players — the bruising, defense and rebounding type — and more like oversized wing players. Miller wants his post players to be more active than they have likely ever been before and play facing the basket. He has also said he will repeatedly give them the green light from long distance. Overall, the power forward must set good picks for the guards and properly read the defense to determine whether they should slip out

for a shot or roll to the basket. This is where Miller says the team has the most depth, along with the center position. He has described McCurty as the team’s X-factor and said she could be the key to IU shocking some teams this year. It’s likely McCurty will spell Sasha Chaplin at center while Rubene gets solid minutes at the four. “We give our players a lot of touches facing the basket to be able to make decisions, not just shooting and passing and dribbling back into handoffs, and we like mobile post players. The post players gotta be active, and last year they stood on the blocks a lot, which was one of the reasons they were such a good offensive rebounding team is they had good position. “But we’re asking our post players to move a lot, sprint into ball screens, then slip screens, then roll screen, pick and pop. So we’re asking a lot of our post players to run around and not only help try to create opportunities for guards, but also create opportunities for themselves with all of their movement.” —IU Coach Curt Miller


1 POINT GUARD (1) DEPTH CHART » Junior Andrea Newbauer » Freshman Nicole Bell » Sophomore Candyce Ussery PRIMARY RESPONSIBILITIES First and foremost, the point guard must direct the plays and make sure the team stays moving. Generally, the point guard will start the play by taking a high ball screen. Depending on the play call and defense, the guard has several options. They can either take the pick and pull off for a shot, look for the screen on the roll, or drive and kick to an open shooter. Perhaps most importantly, if the play breaks down, it’s up to the point guard to reset the play and call for another pick. Newbauer was the starter last year but continues to recover from ankle surgery she had during the summer.

Bell has played in her place while Ussery looks to work back into game shape after missing preseason practice time with nagging injuries of her own and could challenge Bell for the starting spot down the road if Newbauer takes longer than expected to get back to full strength. “With Andrea Newbauer, the starting point guard, not back yet, Nicole Bell has clearly won the starting point guard position. But there’s something to be said about a veteran, and Candyce has played a whole year of college basketball. We need her to compete day in and day out. I hope the lack of playing time tonight, even though she’s been hampered by some injuries, motivates her to compete day in and day out more.” —IU Coach Curt Miller after beating Kentucky State Oct. 30

SMALL FORWARD (3) DEPTH CHART » Senior Aulani Sinclair PRIMARY RESPONSIBILITIES Sinclair is all alone on this list because she is the team’s only true wing player. She is more than capable of playing the two and is more of a combo guard/forward that likes to shoot, which serves the offense well. Sinclair is lethal from three (team-high 52 makes on 34.7 percent shooting) and will force opponents to guard her closely on the perimeter, opening opportunities for post players. Sinclair will be expected to look for her shot early and often and to drive to the hoop more than last year, something she said she worked on this offseason. If she can develop good chemistry with post players, she will be able to

use the pick-and-roll against defenders who guard her too tightly and shoot against those that leave a cushion. Overall, the three acts much like the shooting guard, looking to use penetration to create offensive opportunities for themselves, other shooters and post players.


“Everyone this year in in a position where they can score and be successful, so I feel with our new offense it benefits everyone. It’s very smooth offense, so if the play breaks down it goes right back into another play. I feel like it will be a great offense for this team, because we have great guards like Jasmine, Andrea Newbauer, and great points guards that can see very well. And our posts have done a tremendously better job this year than last year.” —Aulani Sinclair


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ABOVE Senior forward Christian Watford handles the ball during the Hoosiers’ Nov. 9 game against Bryant at Assembly Hall. RIGHT Sophomore forward Cody Zeller keeps the ball away from his opponent during the Hoosiers’ 97-54 victory against Bryant.

Frontcourt plans change in light of recent injuries, suspensions BY MAX MCCOMBS

In a span of less than three weeks in the preseason, IU’s frontcourt post depth off the bench was transformed from a smorgasbord of two talented freshmen and a physical senior veteran to junior walkon forward Jeff Howard. The frontcourt depletion began amid the celebration of Hoosier Hysteria Oct. 20. Somewhere between the night’s dancing, dunking and scrimmaging, senior forward Derek Elston suffered a torn meniscus. The tear, a reaggravation of an injury originally sustained during Elston’s Tipton High School days, was announced days later. Elston had surgery Oct. 26 and will be sidelined for at least several more weeks, though he is likely to return in time for Big Ten play. “He’s been a tremendous leader, without question,” IU Coach Tom Crean said at Big

Ten Media Day. “He’s been as good as anybody in the program at trying to help younger players. I don’t think that will change even if he’s going through the rehab.” Two of those younger players were likely to be freshmen forward Hanner Mosquera-Perea and center Peter Jurkin. However, due to self-reported violations regarding the two freshmen accepting improper benefits from someone who was technically a booster, both begin the season with nine-game suspensions. “There is a high level of disappointment because I know what we do and I know how we have done it,” Crean said. “My greatest concern is for them. It has been and it will remain that way. They don’t deserve this.” The team is appealing the suspensions, though Crean said he himself would remain uninvolved with the process. Nonetheless, in the team’s

Nov. 9 opener in Assembly Hall against Bryant, the two freshmen stood near midcourt with Elston and sophomore guard Jonny Marlin, clapping, but not smiling as their teammates prepared to replace them. “There will be some conventional and there will be some unconventional,” Crean said. “You learn a lot over your period of time at Indiana, from 2008 on, and the one thing that you learn is you don’t sit there and worry about what you don’t have.” Crean said the “conventional” option would be for Howard to see a jump in playing time and become the primary backup to sophomore forward Cody Zeller. Once the game began, it was instead freshman forward Jeremy Hollowell and senior forward Christian Watford, the more “unconventional” options, who picked up the slack in the post. Watford in particular

shined, posting a career high with 15 rebounds to go along with 15 points against the Bryant Bulldogs while wearing Elston’s No. 32 jersey as a tribute to his teammate. “Especially trying to get to the offensive glass and getting on the boards, I just try to choose my spots,” Watford said. “I’m not going to keep the number. Coach Crean may want me to keep it, but I’m not going to.” Crean said Watford is no stranger to playing up at the center position, especially in practice where he is routinely the team’s leading rebounder even while still making some mistakes. Crean said the opener was no different. “He got 15 boards and he’s probably not going to grade out that high on the block outs, so there is a lot of room for improvement with him too,” he said. “He’s a senior and he’s got really strong maturity and an understanding of what this is all about.”

TAKING ADVANTAGE OF TEAM’S DEPTH A much-discussed hallmark of this year’s squad is its depth, with a number of players able to play multiple positions. With three frontcourt players out due to injury and suspension, this flexibility could come in handy early on in IU’s nonconference slate. Here are a few options the team has to pick up slack until the players return.

PLAY ZELLER ALL GAME By all accounts, Cody Zeller can alone probably do this, but it carries with it obvious injury risks. Expect IU to avoid this strategy unless a game is unexpectedly close.

JEFF HOWARD Coined the “conventional” option by IU Coach Tom Crean, Howard is technically the next big man currently available on the roster after Zeller.

NOT-SO-SMALL FORWARDS The “unconventional” option compared to Howard, Crean showed a willingness against Bryant to play freshman Jeremy Hollowell and senior Christian Watford in the post.

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I N D I A N A D A I LY S T U D E N T | W E D N E S D AY, N O V. 1 4 , 2 0 1 2 | I D S N E W S . C O M

WE’VE GOT HISTORY IU’s ďŹ ve banners and what it took for past Hoosier teams to become champions BY CHARLES SCUDDER |















Two years after Branch McCracken came to Indiana as head coach, IU earned its first NCAA championship banner in the second year of the tournament. Before 1939, the NCAA put more emphasis on the intercollegiate boxing tournament, which brought in $18,000 for the University of Wisconsin, the hosts. The NCAA used that profit to create a new basketball tournament. In Kansas City, Mo., for the 1940 tournament final, Indiana solidly beat runner-up Kansas, 60-42, in front of an audience of 10,000. The tournament lasted only three games, with IU beating Springfield (Mass.), and Duquense in the week before the final game. The Crimsons — as they were called at the time — ended the season with a 20-3 record, losing only away to Minnesota, Northwestern and Ohio State. That first championship lineup included Jay McCreary, Bill Menke and MVP Marvin Huffman. In later seasons, McCracken’s teams would be dubbed the Hurryin’ Hoosiers, but these were slower, shorter, less accurate shooters. The tallest player was Andy Zimmer at 6’4�.

Branch McCracken’s Hurryin’ Hoosiers went up against the Jayhawks again in the NCAA final, in 1953, and came home to Bloomington with a championship. The team was not recognized as a contender in the preseason and was seen as “a year away� in early games, but soon were ranked No. 1 in the country. When Indiana met Kansas in Kansas City, Mo., Jayhawk fans had flooded the Municipal Auditorium, creating a hostile environment for McCracken’s team. In a nailbiter final, the Hoosiers won with Bob Leonard at the free-throw line making 1-of-2 to put the team up 69-68 going into the last 27 seconds of play. The Jayhawks took the ball down the court and shot with the buzzer as the ball bounced off the rim. The next year, the team was surrounded by preseason hype similar to the 2012-13 team. “Any time they lose it will be an upset,� read one preseason headline in fall 1953. Despite big hopes and expectations, the Hurryin’ Hoosiers fell to No. 6 Notre Dame in the first round of the 1954 NCAA tournament at Iowa City, 65-64.

Scott May, Quinn Buckner, Kent Bensun, Tom Abernathy. Bob Knight. These are names associated with the undefeated 1976 NCAA championship Hoosiers, the last team to reach a perfect record. It was the first of three banners that Knight brought to Assembly Hall, an emblematic season that ended with an 86-68 win against Michigan in Philadelphia. When Knight came to IU in 1971, the Hoosiers were not the championship-grade Hurryin’ Hoosiers of Branch McCracken, but an average team. The Boilermakers of West Lafayette were the team to beat in the state. By 1976, the Hoosiers were back to contender status. The team’s first of 32 wins was an exhibition game in Market Square Arena against the reining Olympic champions from the USSR. The Hoosiers beat the Soviets 97-78. The rest of the season was full of tough wins against ranked opponents — UCLA, Notre Dame, Kentucky, St. John’s, Michigan, Alabama and Marquette. Despite a grueling schedule, the Hoosiers came out on top every time. Against the Wolverines in the final, the Hoosiers were down by six at halftime. In the second half, however, IU easily rebounded for 57 points to come out with the championship.

After early losses in the Rainbow Classic tournament in Hawaii, the 1981 Hoosiers did not seem like a team ready to win a NCAA championship. Instead, Ray Tolbert, Isiah Thomas, Landon Turner and Ted Kitchel, under Bob Knight’s leadership, pulled out a 29-9 record and a fourth banner. The tournament was good to the Hoosiers, including two games against UAB and St. Joseph’s in front of a home crowd in Bloomington. In the final against North Carolina, after the Tar Heels beat the Hoosiers in December, IU pulled out a 63-50 victory. The NCAA final took place on March 30, 1981, the same day that President Ronald Reagan was shot in Washington, D.C. Bloomington newspapers ran both the triumphant Hoosiers win and the tragic shooting on the front page. Isiah Thomas was the all-star standout of the team, a sophomore with an average of 16 points per game. North Carolina’s Al Wood scored 39 points against Virginia in the final four, but Isiah Thomas kept him to only one basket in the final. In front of a crowd of 18,276 in Philadelphia, IU and Knight earned their second NCAA championship in six years.

Keith Smart’s buzzer beater against Syracuse in the final seconds of the 1987 NCAA championship game will be forever known as “The Shot.� Along with Christian Watford’s buzzer beater against Kentucky in December 2011, Smart’s 3-pointer is arguably the most important shot in the history of IU basketball. Smart, a transfer from Garden State Community College in Kansas, was brought to the team as a junior. He was the unexpected hero of the final seconds of the final game of the last NCAA championship for the Hoosiers. The Hoosiers, with Smart, Todd Meier, Steve Alford, Darryl Thomas, Steve Eyl and Knight, were once again at the helm and went 30-4. The morning after the 74-73 final, the Indiana Daily Student’s headline read “IU WINS IT ALL! Hoosier Hysteria hits city.� “That movie about basketball isn’t named ‘Tigers,’ ‘Stags’ or ‘Rebels’ and it SURE isn’t called ‘Orangemen’ or ‘Boilermakers,’� the front-page story said. “Its name, folks, is ‘Hoosiers’. That’s right, HOOSIERS.�

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Basketball Guide 2012-13  
Basketball Guide 2012-13  

An Indiana Daily Student special publication.