IU Athletics Director Fred Glass introduced Archie Miller last Monday as the new coach of the men’s basketball program. Miller comes to IU from the University of Dayton where he coached the Dayton Flyers, a mid-major team that has made the NCAA tournament the past four years.
The Editorial Board, like many other Indiana fans, is ecstatic about the hire. The Tom Crean era was a rebuilding time for the Hoosiers, but Miller is the catalyst needed to take the team to the next level. It's Miller time.
Miller already has a successful track record before he sets foot in Bloomington. Not only did he maintain an almost 70 percent win rate with the Flyers throughout six seasons, he’s worked as an assistant coach at Western Kentucky, Ohio State, Arizona, Arizona State and NC State.
Players and coaches alike from Miller’s past have nothing but good things to say about him. He’s known as a coach who really cares about his players but isn’t afraid to be tough when the need arises.
Kyle Madsen, a man who played under Miller at Ohio State, told the Indianapolis Star, “He was just able to have a conversation, always an honest conversation. Not always exactly what we wanted to hear, but you always knew he was right with what he was saying.”
This is exactly what the IU men’s team needs. Crean took the program from a sanctioned-crippled mess and got it back on its feet, but he wasn’t hard-nosed enough. The Hoosiers will benefit from a no-nonsense program encouraging them to play team basketball in a structured, unselfish way.
Miller also comes from a successful coaching family. His brother Sean is the head coach of Arizona’s men’s basketball team – a team that was a one-seed in this year’s NCAA tournament. John, Archie’s father, was a Pennsylvania high school basketball coach whose teams went 657-280 throughout a 35-year tenure.
Good coaching is in Miller’s blood.
Even Bob Knight thinks Miller coming to IU is a good move. That’s right – the IU-administration-hating-never-setting-foot-on-campus-again-infamous-IU-coach Bob Knight said “You folks get behind him, and you’re gonna enjoy some good basketball,” when he spoke to Bloomington High School North.
Miller coming to IU seems to be unanimously lauded. We agree that Miller is the man for the job, but Hoosier fans must remember that results likely won’t be instant. It may take a couple years for Miller to get his feet wet with a new team in a new city.
Luckily Miller is familiar with the Midwest as a recruiting region. Between his time at Dayton and Ohio State, he’s had to find local talent in this area. As head coach at IU, Miller will have access to more money, a larger staff and greater resources than he did at Dayton. This will likely translate to great local recruiting, which every fan loves to see.
Overall, Glass hit it out of the park with this hire. Miller is just the right man to take the Hoosiers to the next level as a team. The Editorial Board knows it may take some time before another banner hangs in Simon Skjodt Assembly Hall, but if anyone can make it happen, it’s Miller.