Is Cody Zeller a fan of Night of the Living Dead, the classic 1960s’ zombie movie that gave eating out a whole new meaning?
Or is Tom Crean’s newest twist on a Halloween basketball scrimmage theme just a way to tap into his inner child?
That, it seems, is the intriguing mystery in the announcement that IU will host a Night of the LIVING RED scrimmage on Friday night, Oct. 29.
As it just so happens, that’s the first night of Zeller’s official visit to Indiana. Zeller, in case you’ve spent the last few months refereeing the chats between that Chilean miner’s wife and mistress, is a 6-10 forward from Indiana rated among the nation’s top-20 players. He would be a huge recruiting coup for Crean for the Class of 2011.
Anyway, Night of the LIVING RED (last year it was called Haunted Hall of Hoops) is designed to be an intense public scrimmage as different from the Hoosier Hysteria event as filet mignon is to ground chuck. Crean is trying to sharpen his team for the season and the stakes go right where a guy can feel it –- in his stomach.
“It will be coached to win,” Crean said. “Somebody will eat soggy hotdogs and somebody will eat steak.”
Crean enjoys Halloween themes. He wants kids to come dressed in whatever goes bump in the night. It’s designed for fun, fear and, yes, finalizing.
“It’s going to be very important,” Crean said. “I want our team to go after it in front of a juiced up crowd.”
NCAA rules prohibit Crean from mentioning Zeller, or any recruit, but he did say that in events such as Night of the LIVING RED, “recruiting always factors in.”
Zeller, of course, missed Hoosier Hysteria because he was in North Carolina listening to coach Roy Williams’ sales pitch. Before that he was at Butler where he, if you believe internet reports, went to church, played video games and visited a class.
Come on! Is it just us or does that sound NOTHING like a typical college weekend? Not that there’s anything wrong with doing those things, but, well, it IS wrong. College is where boys and girls become men and women and that only happens when they experience EXACTLY what college life is like.
Yes, a zombie movie.
Anyway, Crean asked the 13,100 attending Hoosier Hysteria to jam Assembly Hall for Night of the LIVING RED. Yes, it will inspire the scrimmaging players. More importantly, it would, in theory, help show Zeller just how fun being a Hoosier can be.
Build a better team and land a big-time recruit.
Who said Halloween has to be scary?