Friday, December 19, 2008

Indiana Has Hit Bottom

I'm sure that many of you have already seen the latest story on last year's debacle at Indiana University. According to Eric Gordon, there was rampant drug use on last year's team. There seems to be confirmation from other anonymous sources, so this story seems to be beyond debate. To me, this story backs up everything that I've thought about Kelvin Sampson and his coaching job at Indiana. We knew that he lost control of his team, and that the program was unsustainable.

In my opinion, Indiana handled this situation correctly. Though fighting different issues, they did the same thing that the New York Knicks are correctly doing this year. When you have bad characters, you just have to purge the system. Bring in new coaches, bring in new management, and get rid of all of the players. IU has done this by bringing in a very good (and as far as we know, very clean) coach in Tom Crean.

This season Indiana probably has its least talented team in modern history, but from what I've seen they appear to be good kids. And with hard work and good coaching, they're improving. They had that atrocious stretch in Maui where they got rocked by St. Joseph's and snuck by Chaminade by two points. They looked like they might be on pace for something like a 20-loss season. Yet they've already shown some fire by hanging with Gonzaga for much of the second half, and following that up with a solid victory over TCU.

We might continue to hear more stories about the horrendous reign of Kelvin Sampson at IU, but it won't change the fact that the basketball program has already hit bottom and should be back and competitive in the Big Ten by next season.

1 comment:

Unknown said...

Yes, Crean is such an amazingly good coach that he will be able to turn this horrible situation around. And it is nearly impossible for them to have less talent in any season going forward. So they have hit bottom. But that's a far cry from being competitive in a major conference.