Wednesday, February 08, 2006

It comes to this

An angry squad on a losing streak faces an IU team needing a road win where they've not had much success in the Mike Davis era. No, this isn't a re-hashing of Minnesota, but a similar situation awaits the Hoosiers tonight in Wisconsin.

If IU wins tonight, suddenly victories at Penn State, Purdue, and Michigan all look possible, and maybe IU can roar to a 12-4 finish. Lose, and Saturday's home game vs. Iowa may become very important in terms of Indiana even getting a NCAA bid.

For Mike Davis, roaring down the stretch, or at the very least, making a lot of post-season noise is all that may save his job.

I hope the Hoosiers win tonight. I'll be rooting for them (and yes, even Davis) to get their first conference road win. But if they don't, I wonder if John Beilein could be lured to coach at IU? Sigh.

Despite the Randolph Morris foolishness, I also think Tubby Smith would be pretty great. And John Thompson III wouldn't be too bad either, but I doubt either of them would be too tempted to rebuild under such high-level scrutiny.

To stop picking on Davis, I will say that UConn looks as good as any team I've seen all year long. I'm way impressed with their depth and versatility, especially with Rudy Gay's ability to hit outside allowing to him to play the 3 and Hilton Armstrong's ability to go high-low with Josh Boone on the court. But getting Marcus Williams back was the key for this club. Whether they can beat out Duke for the National title, I just don't know. I would say UConn has a better shot at the title except for the Duke-friendly referees. The ESPMSM can debate it all it wants, but Duke gets the key calls to keep them on top/in the games. There are exceptions, but they are rare. This year's championship game could be like Duke's title win over Arizona, where the Wildcats were a superiorly talented team, but the whistles were unkind.


At 2:33 PM, Blogger Ben Fulton said...

It's an odd thing, but it seems to me that transplants are rarely successful in Indiana. Gerry DiNardo, for example, or Michael McNeely. I'm thinking that a successful coach at IU is going to have to come from the Midwest somewhere. Dan Dakich? Jim Crews?

At 10:34 AM, Blogger Indiana Fan said...

Football's a different story at Indiana. Nobody really succeeds at IU in football.

Basketball, I think that's a different story. Knight may have played at Ohio State in '60-'62, but he got the job coming from Army.
Dan Dakich and Jim Crews have stayed locally but neither have really succeeded at Bowling Green or Evansville, respectively.

With Alford also not acquitting himself very well in the Big Ten, there are just no clear-cut successors from the Knight "family tree" of coaching. And with RMK coaching at IU from 1973-2000, there's not a lot else out there connected to IU, unless Dane Fife does really, really well at IUPUI, and I don't know if the Hoosiers can wait that long.

And the other really good coaches in the Midwest are probably not going to move (Tom Izzo, Bruce Weber, even Thad Matta). I know that we're kinda stuck and there's not a lot of options, but I'd love to see some great, entertaining Hurryin' Hoosiers hustlin' on Defense and some good x-and-o coaching.

Of course, I'd love to see a million dollars in my bank acccount, natch.

At 11:22 PM, Blogger The Taco From Indiana said...

You know....after Knight was fired, one of my friends saw Rick Pitino (spelling??) having lunch in Yogi's...I know Kentucky is hated and everything, but it could happen. He has the money after coaching in the NBA, I think he would like the fame, and if my friend was right, at one time he was on the list of potentials.


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