April 2, 2008

Crean & Crimson aside, Indiana's near-future bleak

Category: Golden Eagles — Patrick Stumpf @ 11:41 pm

If Indiana head coach Tom Crean still thinks he’s got the best job in the world, he’s sadly mistaken. Sure the state of Indiana has had a colorful past to look back on, with “Hoosiers” and Bob Knight all producing memorable moments–had, of course, being the key word. For all those who side with Crean’s decision that’s your choice, but he’ll regret his decision come next March, when chances are his new team will be struggling to earn an NCAA bid. Key departures for next season include seniors Mike and D.J. White, named Big Ten player of the year, Eric Gordon, who will likely bolt to the NBA Draft as his stock may have reached it’s pinnacle, not to mention the final two starters for 2007, sophomore Armon Bassett and junior Jamarcus Ellis, who were dismissed from the team early this week due to disciplinary reasons. What does this mean? Indiana’s storied past will suffer a definite bump in the road. Mr. Crean will basically have to build from the ground up like he did at Marquette, which no doubt will lead to growing pains for himself and fans early in his tenure. Crean stated in his press conference Wednesday he wouldn’t have left Marquette under any other circumstances beside this one, which I find hardly believable. Tom, anyone can say that, but if Oklahoma State (who now has a head coaching vacancy) or any big program for that matter offered to double, even triple what IU offered you, I have no doubts you’d take the deal. Moving away from IU, Marquette now begins their own quest for a qualified head man, and after first hearing the news of Crean’s departure a number of names popped into my head. Sean Miller (Xavier), Tony Bennett (Washington State), Rob Jeter (UW-Milwaukee) and Anthony Grant (VCU), among others like former MU coach Rick Majerus. Regardless, whomever is hired will enter a great situation, assuming “The Big Three,” Dominic James, Wesley Matthews, and Jerel McNeal, all choose to stay for their senior years.

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