Men's Basketball

    Coach Crean Talks About Taking on Northwestern at the Big Ten Tournament

    Go Hoosiers!
    Go Hoosiers!

    Go Hoosiers!

    March 10, 2010

    Indiana Head Coach Tom Crean

    Thoughts on the matchup with Northwestern:
    "I think it's probably an easier preparation obviously for both teams, in the sense that when you just spent a few days getting ready to play each other then you go through the game we've had. So it's like anything else, you just have to make a few adjustments, make a few additions. There were definitely some things they did that hurt us so we want to get those corrected. We've worked hard at that and we'll just let the game be played. I'm sure they're going to have a few different things that they want to do, but our sprits are really good. Our guys are excited to play. It was a different week in the sense that we had three games last week so we didn't take a day off, which means you have to take two days off this week so we took Sunday off, we practiced Monday, we took Tuesday off, we practiced today. I don't like doing that, but there's really no way around it. It's been very good. Our guys have been very locked in."

    On if the team has any momentum from the win over Northwestern:
    "I think the bottom line is for the most part we've been getting better. I'm not going to sit here and say that everybody has improved over a span of when you lose games like that, but for the most part, a lot of our guys have gotten better. So I think that helps build it.

    "I don't know if I would call it momentum. I think they've got a good feeling right now, maybe it is momentum, but so many things go on in a game that you just hope that now with what they had a chance to go through the other day that it helps create some momentum inside of the game and brings somebody that plays in a role that maybe they didn't the other day and they bring even more to the table for you."

    On watching film of other Northwestern games:
    "We had watched everything to that point, with getting into Saturday's game. Now what we've done is we've made some specific edits that we wanted to watch because you just don't feel right if you're not watching enough film, but we certainly prepare for the next game as well. When you've got a week like this and you don't play until Thursday you want to be as prepared for every facet of the tournament. We'll have folders and tapes and everything that we need for every team in the tournament and as it goes down the line you just subtract from there, but there weren't a lot of things that we wanted to look at differently, just a couple things and then we did."



    On the need to tweak things after just playing a team:
    "Absolutely, but we would anyways. We do all the time. We're always going to add a few things and put a few things on the shelf, bring a few things out of mothballs once in a while, I think that's good. The reason for that is because they can play different ways. They can play their zone. They can play their combination switching defense and they can press. So when you have that you've got to have different facets for that. So I've tried to simplify the gameplan much like we did the other day and then the game just became very conceptual with how they played. At the same time, you see things in the game that you think you can take advantage of and you want to have those ready to go, especially after time-outs."

    On having a largely Indiana crowd at the Big Ten Tournament:
    "I hope there is. I hope there's a lot of energy in the building and I think people felt very good, from the people that I saw and obviously the responses of the crowd this past Saturday, in the way we played. I hope that it's helped ticket sales for the entire tournament. I think it's a great thing to be able to play this tournament in that building, in that venue, and in this state. I hope it continues that way."

    On the teams spirit in practice coming off of a win:
    "I think it lifts. I think everybody's barbell on their shoulder is a different weight. Mine was about seventy pounds, maybe more. I think for everybody it is because they've been working so hard. Again, I keep saying this, we have not had bad practices. Is everybody a ton better through the season? No, some people get better than others, and they invest more than others. That's part of a team. When we're on that court together and we're working, it's not a place where well we're going to kind of work at this and then we're going to work a little harder over here, then we're going to drop it here. We're trying to go full bore. At the same time, make sure that we're getting things in and adjustments and tweaks and all of those things that you need for a game and a team that you just played."

    On the role of three-pointers in this game:
    "They're not going to stop shooting threes. I thought our guys did a good job of taking what was there. It's not like we've put special emphasis on saying we have shoot x amount of three-pointers. When you win a game and the other team makes 13 out of 42, that's a lot of threes, but they shot 48 or 46 at Illinois earlier in the year so that's just part of who they are. For us it's how we play, it's how we rotate, it's how we move, it's do we get our hands up, do we challenge shooters, are we making guys take tough shots. It's never good when they're getting easy shots. It's never good they're getting unchallenged shots. It's never good when we're late in a rotation. We'll be able to mix our defenses as well, so I think that's very important for us."

    On the approach to this tournament:
    "I think they all know everybody is 0-0 on it. I look at it the same way. There have been times, in previous places, when you're fighting tooth and nail for a seed. My first year at Marquette, we got the fourth seed. We were pick to finish 12th. I remember just being miserable with that because I'm watching the game the day before and I don't think our guys have a clue how hard we're going to have to play to win that game and we don't. There are so many different emotions that could go into it. You've just got to stay very, very focus driven on what you want to get done in the game. There's been no preparation for Purdue, as far as with the team, we've done it ourselves obviously, but we would anyways. It wouldn't make a difference whether we were the first seed or not. You're going to do everything you can do to give your team every avenue to be successful in their preparation, so nothing has really changed there."

    On Verdell Jones III playing a lot at the point guard position:
    "I would expect to see that. I liked how the ball moved the other day. To me, on the offensive end it's all about how the ball moves, the decisions that are made. We made adjustments for that game and then we made adjustments inside of the game and I think that's what's most important."


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