The fascinating weirdness of Tom Crean

Submitted by ypsituckyboy on February 11th, 2015 at 5:02 PM

Spencer Hall posted a pretty funny piece on Tom Crean over at SBNation. In it, Hall writes, "He's too successful to be dismissed outright as a long-term solution for Indiana, and too flawed not to worry over."

I thought it was a good article, but I couldn't help but wonder why people think Crean is such a good coach. In fact, I feel fairly confident in saying he's gotta be one of the most overrated coaches in the country. 

In 6 1/2 seasons with the Hoosiers, he's got 2 NCAA appearances. Both times Indiana lost in the Sweet 16. The '12-'13 S16 loss occurred despite the fact that IU had the #2 (Oladipo) and #4 (Zeller) picks in the 2013 NBA draft on his team. In terms of B1G play, he's got exactly 1 B1G regular season title and has finished 5th once, but his other finishes are 11th, 9th, 11th, and 9th.

While he did inherit a program in the midst of scandal, his job isn't without its advantages.

1) He coaches one of the most storied basketball programs in the country.

2) His school is the flagship university in a state with plenty of high-level basketball talent and is conveniently located near another large metropolitan area (Chicago) with even more talent. 

3) He has had plenty of recruiting success, reeling in plenty of highly ranked and talented players.

4) His school has one of the most racuous home courts in the country providing optimal home court advantage.

Thoughts?

Comments

Sac Fly

February 12th, 2015 at 4:35 AM ^

Yeah, that's it. It had nothing to do with his .664 winning percentage at Marquette, 5 tournament appearances, a Final Four and the school's acceptance into the Big East.

I'm sure he got the job because he was an Izzo assistant in 1998.

marco dane

February 11th, 2015 at 5:08 PM ^

I find Tom Crean to be interesting,but pointless. Hasn't done enough to be the coach of IU. Way to much talent has come through the doors of Assembly Hall for them not to have made bigger splash.

However,why wake a sleeping giant...let them sleep.

MEZman

February 11th, 2015 at 5:08 PM ^

I think Chicago is one of the dirtiest recruiting grounds in the country so IU doesn't really venture there much but otherwise I agree. I'd add that his substitution patterns are ludicrous, so much so that even Dan Dakich comments on them during broadcasts.

jsquigg

February 11th, 2015 at 5:16 PM ^

Have mixed feelings about Crean, but mostly negative going back to the classless way he acted after his team won the Big 10 regular season title at Crisler.  Michigan blew that game down the stretch and there is still a dent in my bathroom door from that day...... 

BJNavarre

February 11th, 2015 at 5:27 PM ^

Losing Vonleh and Fischer (transferred to Marquette) has hurt his team this year. They're doing OK, but they've definitely been hurt by early departures too.

He seems to have missed on a lot of the big time Indiana recruits - Gary Harris, Brandon Dawson, McGary, GRIII, and I'm sure there's others. Hasn't even had a ton of recruits from Indiana in his recent classes. Maybe HS coaches have figured out what a clown this guy is?

BlueinLansing

February 11th, 2015 at 5:29 PM ^

has always been the young, hot name expected to do great things.  Some of it due to being an Izzo disciple.  Eventually those people get older and either they've done what others thought, or they just sort of fade off considered a mild disappointment.

In Crean's case I think he'll be the latter.  He's a good, not great coach.  Kind of a lunatic at times and plays in the ultra competitive Big Ten and while he may be in the hotbed of Indiana the Hoosiers no longer automatically get the best players from that State every year.  See MSU's roster, see UM's roster, see OSU recent rosters.

He very well could win a couple Big Ten's down the road and might have a decent tournament run or two.  But I think his ceiling is way, way lower than what some expected.  Good coach, not great.

B-Nut-GoBlue

February 11th, 2015 at 5:31 PM ^

What he did at Marquette was pretty damn good I'd say.  And as much as I dislike him and would rather bash his coaching he actually is a pretty good "coach", Xs and Os, and all that.

As for point No.1,we're one of the most storied football programs in the country and look how that's treated us the last 7-8 years.

jmblue

February 11th, 2015 at 5:51 PM ^

Crean seems to get his teams up to play Michigan.  I don't know if that's a residual MSU thing or due to the Meyer factor, but the IU teams we see aren't necessarily the ones other Big Ten opponents see.  He's had a pretty blah tenure at IU overall.  I don't get the sense they'll climb the mountaintop with him.

 

LSAClassOf2000

February 11th, 2015 at 5:34 PM ^

The man responsible looks seconds away from a nervous breakdown at all times. I hope they win it all, if only to watch Tom Crean hike his pants up to his neck while chewing on the net he's just cut down and eaten whole.

I was under the asusmption that he did this for exhibition and OOC wins too, even to the point where he has been suspected in various rashes of net thefts in the Bloomington area over the last few years. 

bluebrains98

February 11th, 2015 at 5:42 PM ^

While he did inherit a program in the midst of scandal turmoil, his job isn't without its advantages.

1) He coaches one of the most storied basketball football programs in the country.

2) His school is the flagship university in a state with plenty of high-level basketball football talent and is conveniently located near another large metropolitan area (Chicago) with even more talent. 

3) He has had plenty of recruiting success, reeling in plenty of highly ranked and talented players.

4) His school has one of the most racuous home courts the largest stadium in the country providing optimal home court field advantage.

 

Maybe it's time to move on.