By Pete DiPrimio
BLOOMINGTON -- Welcome to a new, refreshing era of Indiana basketball non-conference scheduling, where the Savannah States of the world could soon be replaced by …
Are you ready to give thanks?
First, IU won’t give up completely scheduling patsies. Every power team in the country does it. You’d have to be an idiot not to do it some, and new coach Archie Miller and veteran athletic director Fred Glass aren’t idiots.
Still, both are committed to quality non-conference scheduling and the first example of that reportedly will be Arizona, which happens to be coached by Sean Miller, who is Archie’s older brother and who will never, ever coach, say, Mississippi Valley State, which had become a recent Assembly Hall regular.
Yes, Hoosier Nation noticed.
Anyway, according to Jon Rothstein of FanRag Sports, Indiana and Arizona are set to launch a three-game series starting in 2019.
In case you’ve forgotten, Arizona has become a perennial national title contender under Sean Miller, although it has not won a national title. IU has won five of them, the last in 1987, which was so long ago Twitter hadn’t even been thought of, let alone invented.
Seriously. There was no Twitter in 1987, or any social media. Not even close.
There was Billy Ray Cyrus, but we digress.
Anyway, Archie wants to get it on with his brother. Sean has the same feelings.
Rothstein indicated the series would start in Arizona for the 2019-20 season, then switch to IU the following season, then end up at a neutral site, which would mean in New York City’s Madison Square Garden.
Archie Miller already has Hoosier Nation buzzing just because he is not Tom Crean, who wore out his welcome after missing out on the NCAA tourney in two of the last four seasons.
Miller got them buzzing even more with a recent recruiting blitz that landed three four-star guys who figure to stay for all four seasons, which is huge for getting and keeping IU in title contention.
That followed the opening buzz when Miller retained three freshman from Crean’s 2017 recruiting class.
And that doesn’t even count the assurance from Glass that as soon as it can be worked out, IU and Kentucky will resume their annual series that got derailed because of location silliness.
So people are pumped.
This IU-Arizona series will pump them up more.
Right now, the Hoosiers are unbeaten.
All things are possible, until they’re not.
Honeymoons are wonderful things.