Just when you thought all the football bashing would ruin your week, here comes a breath of basketball fresh air.
That’s right. Indiana basketball is back, and here’s one you didn’t see coming -- Indiana is set to bury Franklin College in Wednesday night’s exhibition debut.
Sorry. Of course you saw it coming. The Hoosiers always throttle their exhibition opponents, which in the last seven years have consisted of Division II and III teams.
They are 11-0 against such opponents in that stretch and the closest game was an 18-point victory over Bemidji State in 2008.
Last year IU smacked down Grace 96-73 and St. Joseph’s 95-67.
Anyway, the Hoosiers are ready to roll and coach Tom Crean has a few ideas on what he wants to accomplish. It has more to do with approach and execution than victory.
“I am going to be far more concerned about how we play and the things that we do, like our toughness level, our rebounding level, and things of that nature. That is what we’re going to look to establish as best we can.”
Franklin is coached by Kerry Prather, who is 433-296 in 28 years at the school.
“I have a lot of respect for Kerry and (assistant coach) Adam Martin, who is a Bloomington native,” Crean said. “It’s the biggest reason we decided to take this game this year and to give (Franklin players) the opportunity to play at Assembly Hall. We think they are going to be a very worthy opponent.”
The Hoosiers have been practicing since Oct. 15. Their last exhibition is next Monday at Ferris State. They open their season Nov. 12 against Florida Gulf Coast.
“Without a doubt it comes fast as a coach,” Crean said. “You are never where you want to be when you get ready to play your first game. We are very anxious to play.”
Anxiety includes this tidbit. Guard Verdell Jones won’t play as he continues to recover from a badly sprained ankle. Guard Jeremiah Rivers’ status is less certain. He just returned to practice after missing a couple of weeks with a concussion.
Oh, yes. Crean was adamant that he wasn’t going to be giving injury reports anymore, so don’t ask.