Thursday, February 17, 2011
IU Golden Age; Lynch Returns; Dickerson Honored
Everybody knows this has not been the greatest period of athletic success in Indiana history, specifically when looking at football and basketball. It certainly bothers athletic director Fred Glass, who is committed to turning things around faster than you can say, Cody Zeller will hit the IU campus next June.
Glass insists he wants to be a part of a new “Golden Age” of Indiana athletics. He was an IU student when Hall of Fame coaches such as Bob Knight, Jerry Yeagley, Sam Bell, Doc Councilman, Hobie Billingsley and Bill Mallory were cranking out championships. He sees the coaches he has on staff now as having the potential to produce similar success.
“We’re acquiring and maintaining the kind of coaching talent to make (another Golden Age) a reality,” Glass said. “We’re on the launching pad of doing that.”
IU has had strong success this year in men’s soccer, baseball, volleyball, track and field, swimming and diving. That’s great, but football and basketball are the major catalysts for the overall athletic department. They drive everything else.
Glass said IU is on the “cusp” of entering another successful run in all sports.
“My goal is that in five years that’s more apparent by Big Ten championships, national championships, and so forth.”
It’s a heck of a goal, and half the fun will be in the attempt. You know what? Beating Northwestern Saturday night would be a great way to start it off.
Bill Lynch went with the people who wanted him. Why wouldn’t he? It’s the perfect scenario. He returns home, in a manner of speaking, to Butler where he once was a stud athlete. Now he’ll spearhead fund raising, with a top priority renovating historic Hinkle Fieldhouse (estimated cost -- $10 million).
A cynic might say that’s almost as much as IU will pay new football coach Kevin Wilson, the man who replaced Lynch, but this isn’t the time for cynicism.
Lynch will become associate athletic director of development for Butler. He will work under athletic director Barry Collier. The two played basketball for Butler in the 1970s.
Lynch was a standout quarterback for the Bulldogs. He was a three-time Indiana Collegiate Conference player of the year. He ranks second in school history with 5,909 passing yards. He also was a captain on the basketball team.
Lynch was an assistant football coach at Butler for seven years, and then the head coach. He led the Bulldogs to four conference championships and a 36-12-3 record. He also served as an offensive coordinator at Northern Illinois, the quarterbacks coach for the U.S. Football League’s Orlando Renegades, the quarterbacks coach at IU under Bill Mallory.
He had a 100-97-3 record as a head coach, including stops at Ball State (37-53), DePauw (8-2) and Indiana (19-30).
Today’s hot question -- Would you like to be Alex Dickerson for a day? To answer that means first answering an even more important question – Who is Alex Dickerson?
For those too focused on basketball and football, here’s some quick background. Dickerson is one of the best college baseball players in the country. We know this because he’s one of 50 players across the nation recognized as candidates for USA Baseball’s Golden Spikes Award. The award, sponsored by Major League Baseball, goes to the nation’s top amateur baseball player.
Oh, yes. Dickerson plays for IU. Boy, does he play. As a sophomore he hit .419 with 24 home runs, 75 runs batted in, 19 doubles and an .805 slugging percentage. His 38 career homers rank nine shy of the school record. He starts the season with a 17-game hitting streak.