Feb. 6, 2009
Full Video of Coach Crean Press Conference
BLOOMINGTON, Ind. - Indiana head coach Tom Crean took time on Friday to talk with the media about his team's upcoming game at Michigan State. You can hear what he said here.
Indiana head coach Tom Crean
On his time at Michigan State and what it is going to be like coaching against his mentor, Tom Izzo:
"It was a great opportunity to be a part of the ground floor, maintaining and then building on what was already a great program. Having been there as a graduate assistant, I had a great feel for it. I grew up in that state so I had always been a fan of what they had done in that program."
"I loved it, many memories. A lot of the blueprint of what we did at Marquette, and in a sense what we are trying to do here, were all formed inside of that. He (Izzo) is a great, great friend. As good of a friend as I have."
On how the team's attitude has been different in practice after the win:
"I don't think it's different. We've really just tried to spend time preparing for the next game and staying with certain things we do every day."
On whether one specific player on Michigan State has him concerned:
"No, the moment you think that there are so many other guys. The teams that have gone in there and been successful have had a minimum of three guys that can go in there and really make something happen. Michigan State is a lot more than one, two or three guys, they are a full team. They have great depth. You couldn't play with the speed they have in the backcourt and in the (fast)break, you couldn't be as relentless as they are in the backcourt and you couldn't execute the way they do if you didn't have great depth. There is not one guy you could build your plan around."
On what Devan Dumes has done differently the last couple games to lead to his success:
"I think it's confidence, there is an element of letting the game come to him. I think its really understanding what his strengths are. He's improving defensively and it's a combination of other guys also making shots. There's no question that Matt Roth is making shots, Verdell is making shots and Nick Williams (is making shots) and doing some things inside as well. That really helps any individual player."
On Michigan State's biggest strengths:
"The biggest thing in this game is there isn't a better fast break in America. North Carolina's is probably right there in the conversation, but there's not a fast break like Michigan State's right now. We can prepare all we want, and we do work on transition defense every day, but they (his players) have seen nothing like what we will see tomorrow. We've got to be fearful of what's going to happen if we don't get back."
"Also, I don't know if we are still number two in rebounding margin today, but they are the clear-cut number one. If we don't go in there and compete on the backboards, get into their bodies and do everything we can to keep them off the offensive glass, we'll get smacked."
On the crowd noise they will face on Saturday:
"We've got to get up there and have to shut everything out as much as we can, except having conversations with one another. It's not like you are going to ignore it (the crowd noise), but you have to do your best to work through it. It's a great environment and ours is becoming a great environment all the time. We have to continue to make this place (Assembly Hall) an obnoxious, full-throttle, never-let-down environment. That's what we are going to see from their students tomorrow. It's a very loud building obviously and they are playing at a very high level. We'll have to communicate through it."