Published: Sat, March 18, 2017
Sport | By Scott Davis

Georgia Tech takes down IN in NIT

Georgia Tech takes down IN in NIT

This morning, with the firing of the University of IN head coach Tom Crean, speculations soon arose that a leading candidate to take his place is Bruins head coach Steve Alford. Alford's coaching path hasn't taken him back to IN, but Bloomington might be a possibility now that they have a vacancy and he is coming off a strong season at UCLA.

Freshman Josh Okogie scored 18 of his game-high 24 points in the second half to lead Georgia Tech to a 75-63 win over in in the first round of the NIT on Tuesday at McCamish Pavilion.

Crean, who arrived from Marquette in 2008, finishes his in career with a 166-135 record. IN had advanced to three Sweet 16s in the previous five seasons - getting that far only once in the 14 seasons before it hired Crean, and after he inherited and cleaned up the massive mess left behind by his predecessor, Kelvin Sampson. He touted Crean's successes during his tenure as head coach.

He talked about how IU needs to be more consistent next season in all phases of the game - shooting, rebounding, turnovers and defense. The news broke at 12:16 p.m. - just as the first round of the NCAA tournament was beginning - when IU issued a written statement from Glass. On top of that, IN guard Robert Johnson went 1-for-8 from the field including 0-for-5 from behind the arc. "They'll get it back rolling if they get another chance". As a senior, Alford led the Hoosiers to the 1987 national championship.

People making $28,000 a year are downsized every day in the Hoosier state, and we spend no time mourning their loss when the end of their road might end in homelessness. However, that fifth banner came 30 years ago and it's been 15 years since the Hoosiers' last national title appearance. "Yes, I'd love to coach IN", doesn't really play when you have Lonzo Ball, and your current team is equipped to win the national championship. It's my home state.

"That's never been something I look at, whether it be that job or other jobs", he said.

"So obviously all that comes up, but I love UCLA".

Not sure if he'd leave because he's got a great thing going in Charlottesville, but Bennett is one of the premier coaches in the nation - with such a unique and effective defensive system. The fact it was the IN job could complicate Illinois' search.

The turnovers were also a constant of Crean's teams in Bloomington. While praising Crean for accepting the job burdened by the ramifications of NCAA sanctions in 2008 and bringing the program back to occasional prominence, Glass said he's looking for a coach who can perennially contend for and win Big Ten championships, regularly go deep in the NCAA Tournament and win Indiana's next national championship.

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