Oct. 20, 2012
Player Post-Event Press Conference Video | Coach Crean Post-Event Press Conference Video
Coach Miller with Sage Steele Video | Photo Gallery | Women's Basketball Photo Gallery
BLOOMINGTON, Ind. - The Indiana men's and women's basketball teams officially opened the 2012-13 season with Hoosier Hysteria in front of a capacity crowd in Assembly Hall on Saturday, Oct. 20.
The women's basketball team got things started with an hour-long scrimmage at 5 p.m. At 7 p.m., head coach Curt Miller, his staff and the 2012-13 squad was introduced to 17,472 Hoosier faithful.
"We ask you to come out and support us," Miller said. "It is a great home schedule. We're very proud of that. One of the things that we did at Bowling Green was we protected home court. We were 60-4 in our last 64 games at Bowling Green. No one wanted to play us at home. No one is going to want to play us in Assembly Hall. We need your help. We're committed to recruiting great character kids. We have a simple philosophy that you build championship programs in the locker room. You have to have a championship locker room before you can have a championship team. We promise a team that will represent this school, community and this state night in and night out."
Following the men's basketball team introduction, head coach Tom Creanaddressed the crowd.
"When you come to Indiana, there is a target on your back from the very beginning," Crean said. "There are so many former players here tonight, and they had the target on their back. A lot of people didn't want to see Indiana Basketball come back. But we are back."
The team did a long shot contest and dunk contest, before a brief scrimmage. Aulani Sinclair won the women's long shot contest, while Cody Zeller pulled the upset on the men's side. Crowd favorite and reigning dunk champion Victor Oladipodefended his title with several crowd-pleasing slams, including one that involved members of the women's basketball team and the audience.
In a 15-minute men's scrimmage to cap the evening, the Red squad topped the White squad by a 40-39 score.
"You want the definition of family in sports?" Crean added. "All you have to do is look at the Indiana Hoosiers. There is absolutely no way that, starting in 2008, any of us could have endured what we went through without having all of you stay with us. When you talk about families, they are not built on the good times. They are built on adversity. They deal with problems and keep right on moving. And through the last four years, Indiana remained family. There is no way this turns without each and every one of you. You have made the Hoosier Nation something to be reckoned with anywhere in the country and anywhere in the world.
"Thanks to each everyone one of your for coming out here and supporting this program, these young men as they continue to grow and get better. We couldn't have done it without you, thank you very much."
The men's team opens with an exhibition game against Indiana Wesleyan on Nov. 1, while the women's team will play its exhibition game on Oct. 30 against Kentucky State.
Head Coach Tom Crean
On whether the night exceeded expectations:
"Yesterday morning exceed them when there were people lined up in the morning, seeing so many people that spent the night last night outside. As happy as I was seeing so many people get in, I also feel for the people who weren't able to get in. I don't think any of us envisioned that it would move that fast today. I was just hoping for a packed house. The energy was high; it was fantastic. There was no downside to anything after seeing people line up outside yesterday morning."
On whether to expect more of Cody on the perimeter:
"Well maybe. Cody has a really nice stroke. I think he will continue to do more this year. We are excited about his improvement, because it's all over the court."
On having so many former players back for this event:
"They are the owners (of this program). And we have said that from the beginning. There is no way this thing starts off with us behind the scenes without those people. We didn't have anybody to tell them in the locker room what it meant to play at Indiana or what it would take to succeed in the Big Ten, what the daily practice were like. I tried to bring in some former Marquette guys at times, but they hadn't lived the Indiana part. If you have come through this program and you have invested the way that they have, then you have ownership. There is a high level of respect for that. I think one of the big reasons they are owners is because people get it. And they know how important the former players are. I think the former players appreciate how they were treated when they were here."
On how Kevin (Yogi) Ferrell allows the team to play at an even faster pace:
"Yogi is a special player. We knew that when we recruited him and he has done nothing to make us believe anything less than that in the time that he has been here. He continues to get better. He is a very hard-nose young man. His energy is very good. And it's early. We are only entering into our second week of practice and he will have his down days. He has a gift of vision. It's incredible. He has tenacity about him. The players have great respect for him because they know he is talented, but they know he will really deliver the basketball. He comes out and he really tries to get better at what he does. He really, really works at the defense. There is no question that if he continues down the road of improvement, he will be a very good player here."
On being back in front of the fans playing again:
"It was very fun to be back out there. We had a hard practice, and the fans came out here and really supported us. I couldn't ask for anything else."
On winning the Long Range Contest:
"I worked on it a lot this summer. I shot three's in high school a bit. I know I have to shoot outside more this year, to make it more difficult for teams to double-team me."
On tonight being a change of pace from normal practices every day:
"We definitely go hard at practices, and we definitely wanted to go hard out there. I think it was good for the freshman to get a little taste of what it's like to play in front of 17,000 people. I thought overall it was a good night, and I am sure we will be back at it tomorrow and fix the things we did wrong tonight."
On the size of the crowd:
"I wasn't surprised at all. The fan base has always been huge for us. Maybe not to this extent, but I didn't see an empty seat in the house, and that was pretty special. I want to thank the fans for coming out and supporting us. We couldn't ask for anything better than that."
On his favorite moment of the night:
"My favorite was coming out of the tunnel for the last time for Hoosier Hysteria. It's been pretty crazy to see how fast four years have gone by. That was pretty special to me. It was also cool to sell out every seat."