Men's Basketball

    Men's Basketball Hosts Grace In Exhibition Contest

    Go Hoosiers! Tom Pritchard started all 31 games last season
    Go Hoosiers!
    Tom Pritchard started all 31 games last season
    Go Hoosiers!

    Nov. 2, 2009

    Complete Game Notes in PDF Format Get Acrobat Reader

    Wednesday, November 4 • 7:00 p.m. ET
    Assembly Hall- 17,357  (Bloomington, Ind.)
    Series Record: First Meeting
    TV: (Dave Leno and Errek Suhr)
    RADIO: IU Radio Network (Don Fischer, Todd Leary and Joe Smith)

    Indiana begins its 110th season of college basketball and will play the first of two exhibition games when it hosts Grace College of Winona Lake, Ind. The Hoosiers also will play Saint Joseph's College of Rensselaer, Ind., on Monday, November 9. Including exhibition games, IU will play seven games in 18 days to start the season. The Cream and Crimson will open the regular season on November 13 at home against Howard. Both exhibition games can be heard on the IU Radio Network and can be seen only on the internet at for $2.99.

    Indiana named Tom Crean as its 28th men's basketball coach on April 2, 2008, so he is entering his second year with the Hoosiers. He needs four wins to reach the 200-win plateau in his 10+ season career He came to Indiana from Marquette where he was 190-96 (66.4) in nine seasons and made five NCAA Tournament appearances, including the 2003 Final Four. Jim Kessler is in his 33rd season at Grace and is 592-466.

    The rebuilding process that began for the Indiana University men's basketball team is in its second year as head coach Tom Crean returns 10 players from last season. He will also introduce six freshman, who comprised a top-10 recruiting class which is rated the Best in the Big Ten. Indiana has one player, junior walk-on Brett Finkelmeier, who was even in the program two seasons ago, when the Hoosiers made their last NCAA Tournament appearance and not one member of the roster will be entering their fourth season in the Cream and Crimson.

    Despite the daunting tasks and ups and downs, several players saw extended playing time last season which could prove beneficial in the future. Senior guard Devan Dumes is the team's leading scorer coming off a season which saw him average 12.7 points in 25 starts. He also made 38.1 percent of his three-point attempts. Sophomore guard Verdell Jones III exploded over the final 10 games of the season averaging more than 14 points per game in that span and finished the season with back-to-back 23 point performances against Wisconsin and Penn State. He averaged 11.0 points. Sophomore center Tom Pritchard is the team's third returning starter and he averaged 9.7 points and 6.4 rebounds and was the only player who started all 31 games for the Hoosiers.

    Sophomore sharp-shooter Matt Roth returns after averaging 6.7 points. He also shot 38.1 percent from long distance in Big Ten play, including a school record 9 for 11 against Ohio State. Sophomore walk-on guard Daniel Moore started 10 games and averaged 2.5 points and had 79 assists in 31 games. Finkelmeier saw his playing time increased down the stretch as he averaged more than 23 minutes per game in the final three contests. The coaching staff also will look for improvement from senior center Tijan Jobe who saw action in 22 games last season. Senior Steven Gambles and sophomore Kory Barnett are walk-ons who joined the team last season.

    Junior guard Jeremiah Rivers could be the X factor for the Hoosiers. He transferred to Indiana last year after playing two seasons at Georgetown and was a member of the 2007 squad which advanced to the Final Four. He is the son of Boston Celtics Head Coach Doc Rivers and will be counted on for his defense, speed and leadership.

    The Hoosiers will have to once again rely on freshmen as it continues the restoration of a program that is considered one of the five best in the history of college basketball. The recruiting class was generally recognized as the best in the Big Ten and a top-10 class nationally.

    Freshman center Bobby Capobianco of Loveland, Ohio is an imposing figure who plays with passion and enthusiasm and is known for his rebounding and shot blocking abilities. A 2009 graduate of Loveland High School, he finished high school career as his school's all-time leading scorer, rebounder and shot blocker. He averaged 17.3 points and 12 rebounds as a senior to lead his team to a 17-4 record. He was rated as the #100 prospect in the 2009 class by as well as the #33 power forward in the class

    Freshman guard Maurice Creek comes to IU from Hargrave Military Academy and is a polished offensive performer who is quick and explosive. He averaged 18.4 points, 5.0 rebounds, 4.0 assists, 2.0 steals 2.0 blocks and led his team to a 27-2 record. He was a first-team Prep School All-American and ranked Creek as the #9 shooting guard in the 2009 class and #45 in the class overall.

    Freshman forward Derek Elston is a Tipton, Indiana native who brings toughness and tenacity to the program. He was named first-team All-State and played in the Indiana/Kentucky All-Star series with averaged 19.7 points, 10.8 rebounds and 2.8 assists in leading his team to a 23-3 record. ranked him as the 90th best overall recruit in the 2009 class and 24th best power forward in the class

    Freshman guard Jordan Hulls, who led Bloomington South to a perfect season and a state title, brings leadership and intangibles to his hometown Hoosiers. Hulls will be the 25th Indiana Mr. Basketball to play for the Hoosiers He averaged 15.8 points, 4.0 rebounds, 5.2 assists and 2.6 steals per game and was ranked as the #9 point guard in the 2009 class by and #80 in the class as a whole

    Freshman forward Christian Watford of Birmingham, Alabama, was the highest rated of the recruits and offers athleticism and poise to the program. He averaged 25 points and 13 rebounds and led his team to a 26-6 record. He was ranked #34 by in class of 2009 and rated as the #6 small forward in the class of 2009 by

    Freshman Bawa Muniru, who comes to IU from Mount Zion Academy, is another big body who can rebound and blocked shots. had Muniru rated as the #111 player in the 2009 class and the #14 center. had him ranked as the #32 center in the 2009 recruiting class. He averaged 16 points at Mt. Zion Academy. He is waiting to be cleared for game participation by the NCAA Clearinghouse.

    The Grace College Lancers are coming off a 22-11 season and a second consecutive trip to the NAIA Elite Eight in 2008-09 thanks to NAIA All-American Eric Gaff and Michael Wienhorst. They lost 34.6 points per game to graduation and will look to senior forward David Swanson for leadership. Swanson recorded 12 double-doubles last year and is joined by two other returning starters, Kyle Plumlee and David Henry. The Lancers are led by Jim Kessler, who is entering his 33rd season leading the Grace men's basketball program.

    The Indiana University Department of Athletics wants you to spend part of your Holiday season with the Hoosiers men's basketball program. Five games on the IU home schedule will be played while students are gone, and the department is offering a Holiday Family Four Pack for fans who want to spend part of the season visiting Assembly Hall.

    For $120, you will receive four main level men's basketball tickets, four hot dogs, four cokes, and four boxes of popcorn.

    To order the Holiday Family Four Pack call 866-IUSports or visit

    Holiday Family Four Pack Games 11/28 vs. Northwestern State, 3:30 p.m.

    12/19 vs. North Carolina Central, 8:30 p.m.

    12/22 vs. Loyola (Maryland), 6:30 p.m.

    12/28 vs. Bryant, 9 p.m.

    12/31 vs. Michigan, Noon




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