Sophomore guard Kyle Hornsby said the Hoosiers like to think they're "supposed to" beat everybody. Last year, IU was "supposed to" beat Indiana State in the championship game of the Ameritech/Indiana Classic and lost 63-60, giving the Sycamores their first win in the series since 1924. It was the first time since the tournament began in 1974 that the Hoosiers did not win the championship. The two teams will meet again at 8 p.m. today in the Hulman Center in Terre Haute, Ind. \nThe Hoosiers (2-2) enter the contest after back-to-back losses in the National Invitation Tournament. The Sycamores (2-1) earned back-to-back wins in the second and third rounds of the Puerto Rico Shootout. Interim head coach Mike Davis said the Hoosiers, who are 15-3 overall against ISU, have had a difficult time maintaining their focus.\n"We've got to come in and play," Davis said. "If we can dig in, and that's a big question mark, like the second half of the Temple game, we'll give ourselves a chance. But we can't come in and get down by 18 or 15." \nDavis said he plans on going with a smaller lineup for tonight's game, but would not specify what changes would be made. He has been depending on freshman forward Jared Jeffries and junior forward Kirk Haston. Both are expected to start, but Jeffries, who occasionally plays the role of point guard, will be kept in the low post. Haston's strength against ISU has been rebounding. As a freshman, Haston scored 18 points and grabbed 16 rebounds. Last year, he scored eight points and had 12 rebounds. Haston leads the team in rebounding (41) and field goals (34).\n"I want to go big, but that's not working," Davis said. "I think I put so much pressure on Jared Jeffries to bring the ball up the court, do this and do that, and that's not fair to him. I'm not going to put him in that situation. I had a long talk with him yesterday and I'm going to keep him inside." \nDavis said he plans on going with three guards for most of the game. Junior guard Dane Fife said it doesn't matter who is in the lineup, as long as they can help the team win. \n"We just have to go out and beat Indiana State, regardless of who plays," Fife said. "We're going to have to trust the coaches and trust whoever's out there. That's the bottom line. I don't think three guards make a difference; it's whether they play hard or not." \nLast year, ISU earned its first NCAA Tournament invitation since Larry Bird was in uniform. The Sycamores finished first in the Missouri Valley Conference and received their first at-large bid in school history. This season, ISU must compensate for the loss of guard Nate Green, who averaged 13.8 points per game and 5.1 rebounds per game. Green, who was named MVC Player of the Year, ranked in the league's top six in scoring, assists, steals and blocked shots.\nThe Sycamores' four other starters return. Senior guard Michael Menser is the Sycamores' top returning scorer with 11.1 points per game. Menser, a 5-foot-11 senior, was first in the MVC last year in three-point field goals made per game (2.84), shooting 46 percent. Menser and 6-foot-6 senior forward Matt Renn, who averaged 10.8 points per game and 7.3 rebounds per game last year, are the team leaders this season. Renn earned all-tournament honors in Puerto Rico with 37 points and 22 rebounds in the three-game tournament.\nAlso returning for the Sycamores is junior guard Kelyn Block, who averaged 10.6 points per game last season. Junior center Djibril Kante is coming back from a bulging disc in his lower back, which hampered him most of last season. \nThe Hoosiers struggled with free throws in New York against both Texas and Temple, shooting 19 of 35 against the Longhorns and six-of-11 against the Owls. \n"It's not finished until you make the free throws. That's the key thing," Davis said. "That tells you where the mindset is. Until we step up and make some, it's going to be that way. \nDavis said the mindset of the team is its biggest problem right now. He said he's been tough on the players during games, especially in New York, and that they're not used to seeing him in that light. He said he plans on backing off a bit.\n"There's too much on their minds. We've got to come back and we've got to refocus. It's harder for us to refocus. It's the mindset of the team … miss a free throw, throw the ball away, it just snowballs.\n"It seems like we have a panic, and not just the team, but everyone around us. I'm disappointed in the loss, but we're 2-2 and we played four really good teams. We just got off to a bad start."\nIDS reporter David Uchiyama contributed to this story
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While sophomore guard Tom Coverdale remained on the court in Assembly Hall for a television interview after IU's 70-62 win Friday against South Alabama, junior guard Dane Fife sat in the men's locker room. Fife remembered playing a pick-up game last summer with Coverdale and noticing a difference -- his teammate was playing hard.\nThis summer was a turning point for Coverdale, whose play in the final minute Friday helped IU to a second-round National Invitation Tournament victory in front of 12,581 people. It was Coverdale's first collegiate start, and he made the most of it on offense and defense.\nCoverdale, who scored 10 points in 10 games a year ago, had a career-high 13 points in 32 minutes Friday. Last season he played 41 minutes. And he got no TV time.\n"I think last year he got a little discouraged because he wasn't playing much, and he let his attitude slip," Fife said. "I don't think he was really enjoying the game because he wasn't playing, and this year he had the whole summer to work, and he regained that enjoyment for the game... He wants to play, and he wants to win."\nCoverdale's attitude change from last year was evident Friday, when IU was ahead 63-62 with less than a minute remaining. Coverdale, a former Indiana Mr. Basketball from Noblesville, escaped his defender, found an opening and drove in for a layup.\n"We just wanted to get the best shot we could," Coverdale said. "My man was pressuring the ball pretty hard, so I just went past him and no one picked me up, so I had a wide open layup. They couldn't leave Kirk (Haston) because he'd knock it down in that situation."\nSeconds later, sophomore forward Jeffrey Newton blocked a three-point shot by South Alabama's Emmett Thomas. Junior forward Kirk Haston grabbed the ball out of the air and found Coverdale, who was fouled by Demetrice Williams.\nCoverdale, who is shooting 55 percent this season from the free-throw line, sank both shots to give IU a 67-62 lead with 19 seconds on the clock. IU struggled from the free throw line all night, completing 18-of-31.\nThe team needs to practice free throws for at least an hour a day, Coverdale said Friday. The Hoosiers had a brief practice at 6 a.m. Saturday to work on free throws. IU made 12-of-30 free throws Tuesday against Pepperdine.\n"I know I wasn't happy with mine in the first half, and I knew I had to step up in the second half and knock those two down for us to win," Coverdale said. "That's going to be an emphasis before we go to New York. We're going to have to improve on that if we're going to win up there." \nCoverdale started Friday in place of sophomore guard Kyle Hornsby, who damaged a nerve in his leg last week and did not practice Wednesday. Hornsby said the competition for a place in the starting lineup is healthy and makes everyone work harder, especially the guards.\n"People have been questioning our guards all along," Hornsby said. "If we keep pressuring ourselves and pressuring each other to become better players to compete for playing time, I don't think that's going to be a problem by the middle of the year."\nCoverdale, who joined the Hoosiers last year after a season at New Hampton Prep School in New Hampshire, said his goal entering this season was to become a starter. And because three seniors graduated from last year's roster, he thought he might have a chance this year if he played hard, he said.\n"If you're a competitor, it's never fun to sit on the bench," he said. "Last year I got kind of down because I wasn't playing, and I wasn't playing as hard as I should've in practice, and I know that. My confidence was way down, and it's way up this year, and I think that's the main difference"
It's been 12 years since the men's basketball team lost a game in the National Invitation Tournament, and the Hoosiers are looking to extend a nine-game NIT winning streak at 8 p.m. against South Alabama at Assembly Hall.\nIU (1-0) advanced to the second round Tuesday with an 80-68 win against Pepperdine. South Alabama defeated Marquette 67-54 in another first-round game. The Hoosiers hold a 2-0 record against the Jaguars. The last time the two teams met was Dec. 13, 1997, in the Indiana Classic when IU won 64-56. \nSouth Alabama returns four starters, including center Virgil Stanescu, a 6-foot-10 Romanian who averaged 13.4 points and 6.9 rebounds last year. Stanescu could be a problem for the Hoosiers in the middle if he stays out of foul trouble. Senior guard Ravonte Dantzler, who averaged 12.3 points per game last season, scored a game-high 20 points against Marquette -- 18 of which came in the second half. Sophomore guard Demetrice Williams and senior forward Reggie York also return from last year\'s starting lineup. \nSouth Alabama finished with a 20-10 record last year and was a Sun Belt conference tournament finalist. Coach Bob Weltlich, in his fourth season at South Alabama, earned last year\'s conference Coach of the Year Award. \nInterim head coach Mike Davis' record is just beginning. It wasn't until the second half of Tuesday's game that IU overcame its opening-game jitters and began to play comfortably. The Hoosiers had five turnovers in their first seven possessions, and junior guard Dane Fife said mistakes like that will have to be eliminated tonight. \n"We've got to come out stronger," Fife said. "The guards came out and struggled a little. Our effort defensively kept us in the game."\nSo did the effort of junior forward Kirk Haston, who tied a career-high with 28 points and grabbed 14 rebounds against Pepperdine. It was the best season opening performance by a Hoosier since since 1982, when Randy Wittman scored 28 points against Ball State. Davis said he has been counting on Haston and freshman forward Jared Jeffries for strong performances inside. Jeffries finished with 15 points and five rebounds in his freshman debut.\n"What I want to do is get Kirk Haston and Jared Jeffries in the post immediately and get the ball to them," Davis said. "There's no one that can stop Kirk Haston if he gets the ball inside. He has a hook shot, jump shot. It's going to be hard for people go on Kirk Haston and Jared Jeffries in the post."\nHaston, Jeffries, Fife, junior forward Jarrad Odle and sophomore guard Tom Coverdale are tonight's expected starters.
Interim head coach Mike Davis said he couldn't feel his legs when he walked on the court Tuesday before IU's game against Pepperdine in the first round of the NIT tournament in Assembly Hall. He said he was nervous and was afraid that he would trip over one of the television cables.\nBut Davis made it safely to his seat and guided the Hoosiers to their first win in the post-Bob Knight era, as IU defeated Pepperdine 80-68 before 12,025 fans. IU will play South Alabama in the second round at 8 p.m. Friday in Assembly Hall.\n"I was nervous all day today," Davis said. "Not from a coaching standpoint, but not knowing how our team would respond to the first game of the season, and we played exactly like I thought we would. We were nervous, tight, we missed easy baskets. But I thought we did a great job on defense, and we rebounded the basketball. A win is a win."\nIU had won preseason exhibition games against Athletes in Action and Marathon Oil, but Pepperdine was the first team to challenge IU with the zone defense. The Hoosiers began the game by making four turnovers in their first five possessions, missing shots and making poor passes. But late in the first half and into the second half, the Hoosiers were able to spread the offense and find junior forward Kirk Haston and freshman forward Jared Jeffries inside.\nHaston, IU's leading returning scorer with 15.3 points per game, led the team with 28 points and 14 rebounds. He suffered an injury in his right knee last year during the first two minutes against Pepperdine in the first round of the NCAA tournament. He watched from the bench with a torn lateral meniscus as IU lost 77-57. Haston said he wanted to win this game "more than he could put into words."\n"I had it circled and underlined more than six or seven times on my calender, and I think most of the other guys did too," Haston said. "It was very important. There was so much riding on this game. There were a lot of positives and a lot of pressure in this game, and I feel everyone reacted very well."\nIU took off on an 11-0 run around the 12-minute mark in the second half when freshman Jeffrey Newton was fouled by Pepperdine's Boomer Brazzle. Newton made the second shot to put IU ahead 57-51. Haston made six of the next 11 points on layups.\n"I thought that the way for us to win this game was to get inside," Haston said. "Every time we got inside, we got a bucket or got fouled. They were really pressuring our guards and gambling a lot, and that left a lot of room in the baseline."\nThe Hoosiers struggled against Pepperdine's press in the first half, and Davis said the team came out nervous and tight. IU didn't make a run until about the 8-minute mark, when it was down 21-18. Freshman Andre Owens went up for a three-pointer in the left wing and was fouled by The Waves' Brandon Armstrong. Owens began a 10-3 run when he made two of the three free throws, bringing the Hoosiers within one.\nPepperdine coach Jan van Breda Kolff was called for a technical foul seconds later. Haston, who led the first half with 10 points, tied the game with his second free throw.\n"We were very tight," Davis said of the first half. "We were missing easy baskets, but we did a great job of defending and rebounding the ball offensively. Our guys are too tense, and it's understandable. They've been through a whole lot and they're young."\nIt was one of IU's young players, though, who gave the team its first lead of the night. Jeffries slammed a dunk off an assist by junior guard Dane Fife, putting the Hoosiers up 23-31.\n"I thought our guards controlled their guards the whole game, and that was the key," Fife said. "We got hammered by Pepperdine last year. In fairness to us, we didn't have Haston, and Haston had 28 tonight, but we're glad we got a chance to show we can beat Pepperdine and got revenge. Every year, you have to prove you're the best, and that's what we want to do"
The four men in charge of the men's basketball team have no idea if they'll have jobs at IU in a year. But they say that doesn't bother them. \nNonetheless, they hope they'll be considered for the job. When Mike Davis was hired as interim head coach, he said he made a conscious decision to hire his staff with the idea that they were going to be with him for more than one season.\n"I wouldn't have stayed if I didn't want to be here next year," Davis said. "And I wouldn't have hired them to come in and work one year for me because they both have families. That's the intent, to be here next year."\nIn a matter of days after former coach Bob Knight was fired, Davis put together a staff filled with collegiate and professional experience. The only introduction necessary was "Julius Smith, this is Dan Panaggio." Everyone else already had either coached with or against each other. \nInterim associate head coach John Treloar, Panaggio and Davis have all spent time coaching in the Continental Basketball Association. Treloar and Davis have been with the IU program for the last three years. And Smith laughs as he remembered how his Tulane team played (and usually won) against Davis' Alabama team when they were both assistant coaches. \nNow, years later, Davis called upon them to help him lead a young, talented team. He surrounded himself with older coaches who bring varied experience but share a common goal -- to remain at IU. In order to do that, the Hoosiers are expected to win.\n"I've been doing this for 20 years and so far the best thing about it is the personalities and the way we get along," Smith said. "I like the fact that we can voice our opinions, disagree and at the same time be agreeable when it's all said and done. \n"So many times in this business, you get coaches and you get egos. Well, I haven't seen that develop. We all have one, but I have not seen it get in our way as far as helping each other out. We're all on the same page, we all want to succeed, and we all want to be the coaches at Indiana for a very long time."
The tattoo on A.J. Moye's right bicep -- the words "one luv" and "No. 40" in hunter green ink -- serves as a daily reminder.\nA reminder of his best friend Travis Davenport, who died last September of a heart attack. Moye and Davenport were hanging out in the gym, and Davenport wanted to play basketball. Moye wouldn't let him because he knew Davenport had a heart condition.\nThe next day, Moye found out from his mother that Davenport had died of a heart attack. Minutes later former coach Bob Knight and then-assistant coach Mike Davis walked through the door as part of a recruiting visit. It was the first time he met Knight.\nWhen the two coaches knocked, Moye was ready to quit basketball for good. And he had no idea how Knight would react to his sudden change of heart. \n"I didn't know what to expect. I was wondering if (Knight) was going to come in and rip my head off and curse me out and say 'suck it up,' but the first thing we did was hug," Moye said. "We stood there hugging for about five minutes, and I cried like a baby on Coach's shoulder. He just said 'Think of all the good times the Lord blessed you with and just be thankful that you did get to have interaction with him.'"\n"For weeks, Coach and I just talked about my friend. Other schools were like 'We're sorry about your friend, but when are you committing?' With this institution I actually had people at the funeral from Indiana."\nMoye, Davenport and freshman Jeffrey Newton were inseparable since childhood in Atlanta. Davis said he met Davenport when he was at Newton's house on a recruiting trip.\n"When I watched A.J. play in high school, he played (Davenport's) team," Davis said. "It was sad to see a young guy die like that. A.J. was really hurt by it. He's a really emotional kid, so it was pretty sad."\nDavenport died Sept. 16. Moye couldn't bear to say goodbye to another best friend, so when he had the opportunity to go to college and play basketball with Newton, there was no hesitation.\n"That taught me so much about life," said Moye, a freshman guard. "I was always NBA or bust. Losing my friend taught me that life's about being happy, so when I had the opportunity to be around a childhood friend, I just had to go for it."\nHe also wanted to be with freshman Jared Jeffries, who he has known since he was about 14. But as the three top recruits were watched closely, it was difficult to tell if they would commit to IU or Duke.\n"(Jeffries) started it," Moye said, laughing. "I was like, 'Man, I don't wanna go to Indiana, that coach is crazy.' Jared was like, 'No he's cool.' And then I met Coach and decided to go. But he met Coach K(rzyzewski) and said he wanted to go to Duke. (But), we we're here now."\nThe move to IU meant a whole new lifestyle adjustment for Moye, on the court and off the court. He was used to city life and clubs, not the laid-back pace of Bloomington. But Jeffries, a graduate of Bloomington High School North, showed him the ropes.\n"When I got here, I was a tough, street, inner city kid," Moye said. "I really didn't know how to act in this environment. I was running around, acting crazy, and (Jeffries) really calmed me down. He instilled a lot of values in my life. It is so rare that you find a kid that has so much going for him."\nIn high school, the 6-foot-3 Moye was the best in the state of Georgia, averaging 31 points, 14 rebounds and five assists in his senior year to earn the title of Mr. Basketball. He was a Parade All-American with a 4.0 grade point average and a 40-inch vertical jump. But he quickly learned that it takes more than a three-point shot to survive in the Big Ten.\n"I just ripped and rammed my way through high school," Moye said. "The biggest struggle is learning the floor of the game, when to do certain things. I'm not picking it up as fast as Jared. He's been around this system since he was little. He grew up in this structure. \n"I just ran up the court and knocked down three-pointers. I have the talent to do it, but it's so much more experience I have to get under my belt. Being a high school recruit, people have a lot of expectations of you, but it's almost unfair because for one, you're a freshman. Right off the top, I'm not going to be what people want me to be. I'm capable of it, but it's not going to come overnight."\nAlthough Moye is in the midst of a learning process, he's also in the best shape he's ever been. He's lost 14 pounds since becoming a Hoosier, and Moye often leads the sprints at practice, instead of trailing behind. But he knows he has a long way to go, and he's working hard to get there. But Newton is the main reason Moye is at IU, not the basketball.\n"It provided me with a bigger picture. My coaches tell me I have the talent to get to the NBA in a matter of three or four years but that's not the biggest thing to me," he said. "I don't want to play this forever … Life is so short"
Before the Athletes in Action game Nov. 5, there was a captains' meeting in which three juniors walked onto the court. It was the first time in years there were no seniors representing the Hoosiers. Of the 11 players on this year's roster, there are five freshmen, three juniors and three sophomores.\nJuniors Dane Fife, Kirk Haston and Jarrad Odle are expected to lead the team this year, but only Fife, Haston and sophomore Jeffrey Newton return with a playing time average of more than 20 minutes. \nThe team was forced into unity when former coach Bob Knight was fired and the players demanded Davis be his replacement. If Davis left, they all would leave. But during the summer and the first few weeks, Davis said he noticed the team had trouble coming together. He said there were cliques established before the season even started, separated by different personalities, ages, and most of all, experience. But after weeks of fall practices and two exhibition games, the younger players understand their roles. Haston said the only thing that separates the team by age is that the freshmen get ice water thrown on them more often in the showers. And Odle said they are beginning to respect the juniors as leaders on the team. \n"It's just teaching them what we've been though. It's all a learning experience," Odle said. "You have to go through it. At first, these guys didn't want to listen to us much, but now they're starting to see we know what we're talking about. For some of these young guys, they have to go through games and learn and they'll learn from experience and learn from watching us."\nThe freshman class consists of guys who are best friends and came to IU based on each other's decisions. Newton and freshman A.J. Moye, both of Atlanta, Ga., have been best friends since they were 10 years old. Moye said he committed to IU because he wanted to be with Newton and freshman Jared Jeffries. And most have known freshman Andre Owens from AAU basketball and various camps.\nHaston, Fife and Odle shared many experiences together during the last three years under Knight and entered this season knowing what was expected of them. As Fife said before the season began, they are Bob Knight's team. Davis said it's good to have players on the team who are close, as long as they get the ball to the right person on the court.\n"I want them (the freshmen) to be tight, but I also want them to be close to the other guys on the team so that when they play, there's no favoritism," Davis said. "I think our guys are coming together as a team. There's no jealousy. They're starting to like each other more." \nMoye said the transition from high school to the Big Ten has been difficult for him, and more physical than he expected. He calls it "football on wood." And when he sat on the bench for the entire 40 minutes of the Athletes in Action game, Moye said he didn't take it too well. But Odle has helped keep Moye's head up.\n"The older players have been helping me get through it, like Fife and Odle," Moye said. "Jared gets on me all the time. He's always toughening me up every day, saying something to get me going while I'm playing. He keeps my head into it. Right now the most fun for me has been interacting with the older guys."\nBut while Davis said he is counting on the juniors to lead the team and help the freshmen adjust, he's also counting on them for solid performances. \n"What are you doing?" Fife screamed at one of the freshmen during a practice. "He was wide open."\nFife, one of the toughest defenders in the conference, is second among returning players in minutes per game (23.5) and starts (22). His father, Dan, and his brother, Dugan, were both basketball captains at the University of Michigan. Fife said he often takes players to the side to answer their questions and help them make the transition. \n"I want him to just play and play through everything," Davis said. "Dane's a little crazy when it comes to playing basketball. He holds, he grabs and he's the kind of guy you need on the basketball court for you the whole way."\nHaston is the team's leading returning scorer (15.3 ppg) and rebounder (8.3 rpg). He can be known by his hook shot and he is on pace to score more than 1,500 points, which would put him in the top 15 on IU's all-time scoring list. The team is well-balanced, he said, and has not been divided by its differences. But he said he is concerned about IU's ability to finish.\n"One of the things I've been trying to tell them is how competitive it is each night," Haston said. "We would play 35 extremely good minutes of basketball last season only to get beat because we would let up for five minutes. I'm trying to get them to really focus on playing an entire game, which is something coach Davis is really trying to emphasize at practice." \nDavis said this year's team will never be "buddy-buddy" but things will work out. He said his main concern is that they know how to work together as a team. \n"You can't make guys like each other. That happens naturally," he said. "You have to execute to play together and you have to be willing to get the ball to the open person. You may love everybody, but you have to make sure you don't play selfish basketball"
This season marks 100 years of IU basketball and the 25th head coach in the program's history. Two days after former coach Bob Knight was fired, interim head coach Mike Davis was hired. About a week later, his staff was complete. This year, it's Davis' team, and things are a little different.\nIU is running a new offense, with the strategy of playing an inside game to get open shots for the guards. There are more set plays and unlike the motion offense, players know where to take the ball. This year's question is who the go-to man is. IU finished first in the conference in scoring last year, averaging 77.1 points per contest. But that was with guard A.J. Guyton, who led the team and the conference with 19.7 points per game. Guyton was drafted by the Chicago Bulls.\nWith five freshmen, no seniors and only three players with ample playing time experience, the men's basketball team is obviously young. But with a McDonald's All-American, a Parade All-American and the top rebounder in the Big Ten, the Hoosiers have the potential to succeed. \nLook for this year's team to hit peaks and valleys, sometimes within games. The team has shown flashes of promise, but its success will be determined by whether or not the defense can stay strong through the second period. IU finished eighth in the conference last year in the defense category, giving up 71.4 points per game.\n"No matter how big or how small my part is, I want to be part of a winning team," said freshman guard A.J. Moye. "We all do. We definitely have the talent to just kill teams, but it's a matter of kicking teams when they're down. Good teams know how to do that."\nJunior forward Kirk Haston, guard Dane Fife and forward Jarrad Odle are the team leaders. Haston is the team's top returning scorer (15.3) and one of the conference's best defenders. He averaged 8.3 rebounds per game last season, the top in the Big Ten. Fife is one of the team's best defenders and distributors. He shot 80 percent (36-of-45) from the free throw line last year and led the team with 49 steals.\n"Expectations are really high," Haston said. "We have a really good team here and I don't think a lot of people realize that. I'm hoping that once we get the season started we'll be able to keep this team together."\nIN THE PAINT\nWith the loss of five seniors, including Guyton and Michael Lewis, Davis has no choice but to delegate a heavy load of responsibility to the younger players. Sophomore Jeffrey Newton has already proved he can handle it. Newton, one of the top shot blockers in the conference, played in every game last year and averaged 6.8 points per game. \nAnd freshman George Leach had a whole season to learn from the bench, as he was redshirted because the NCAA declared him a partial qualifier. With the combination of Leach, Newton, Haston and freshman Jared Jeffries, the front line is capable of dominating.\n"Kirk Haston has proved he can score outside and inside," Davis said. "Jeffries can score inside, Leach can score inside. I want to go inside. I want to play off those guys."\nMuch is expected from Jeffries, a McDonald's All-American from Bloomington High School North. Jeffries averaged 23.4 points and 10.3 rebounds per game last year. Jeffries displayed his ability against Athletes in Action when he led the IU offense with 27 points.\nOdle and sophomore guards Tom Coverdale and Kyle Hornsby are arguably the three most improved players on the roster, and they'll all look for increased playing time this year. Odle's role has changed the most, and he is expected to increase his average three points per game. \nFreshman forward Mike Roberts has worked on mastering the fundamentals. Roberts joins the Hoosiers after a year at New Hampton Prep School in New Hampshire, where he scored 12 points and seven rebounds per game.
Last season ended with a thud for the men's basketball team. Former coach Bob Knight was accused of choking Neil Reed, just in time for the first-round NCAA tournament game against Pepperdine in Buffalo, N.Y. Junior Kirk Haston was forced to watch his team lose 77-57 from the bench because he tore the lateral meniscus in his right knee during a collision early in the game. \nThe Hoosiers haven't forgotten Pepperdine ended their last season, and they are looking for redemption at 7 p.m. in Assembly Hall in the first round of the preseason National Invitation Tournament. The winner will advance to a second-round game Friday against the Marquette-South Alabama victor at a site to be determined. Semifinal round games will be played Nov. 23 in New York.\nThe game will be the first true test of how well the team has learned interim head coach Mike Davis' new offense and how well the defense can hold up against a strong zone. But junior guard Dane Fife said the team is prepared and better than last year.\n"It was horrible. It was a nightmare for us," Fife said. "That was probably as low as I'd ever felt in my college basketball career. We expected to go far in the tournament; we had a great regular season. We owe Pepperdine one."\nDespite losing three senior starters -- Tezale Archie, Tommie Prince and Nick Sheppard -- The Green Wave is an experienced team. Pepperdine returns six letterwinners, including two starters from last season's 25-9 team, in junior guard Brandon Armstrong and junior forward Kelvin Gibbs. Both earned All-West Coast Conference honors last season. \nArmstrong is the team's leading returning scorer with 14.4 points per game. Gibbs is second on the team with nine points and seven rebounds per game.\nLike the Hoosiers, Pepperdine began with two exhibition wins. Armstrong led Pepperdine to a 101-85 win against the California All-Stars with 21 points. Senior forward David Lalazarian scored 23 points in the Green Wave's 90-70 win against the L.A. Stars.\nIU had two practices since its 79-75 win against Marathon Oil Friday and Davis said they were both spent working on a zone attack. The majority of practices have been focused on man-to-man offense, but the Hoosiers struggled against Marathon's soft zone defense. Davis said he remembers Pepperdine as being a tough, physical team. \n"It wasn't about Xs and Os, it was about coming out and playing physical," Davis said. "If you let a team have its way against you, if you let them have an offensive rebound, they want another one. You give them a steal, they want another one. We have to come out and stay focused and not let them intimidate us."\nHaston, who scored a game-high 30 points and a game-high 14 rebounds Friday against Marathon Oil, has recovered since the injury that occurred in the first two minutes of the game last year. He said watching his team lose was frustrating and he's eager to be a part of the rematch.\n"You're used to being in a game all year and all of a sudden in the biggest spotlight of college basketball, you can't do anything," Haston said. "It was very disheartening to sit on the bench, and I'm looking forward to getting a chance to play Pepperdine again"
Junior forward Kirk Haston called it the "Noblesville bounce" that sealed the game. Freshman forward/center George Leach said he was praying as the ball hit the rim. And junior guard Dane Fife called it "the Big Red roll."\nRegardless of how it got in there, sophomore guard Tom Coverdale's three-pointer in the final minute led IU to a 79-75 win before 12,201 fans Friday evening at Assembly Hall against Marathon Oil. The game was the Hoosiers' final exhibition contest before they face Pepperdine Tuesday in the first round of the preseason NIT Tournament.\nThe game was closer than expected, but with Haston's game-high 30 points and game-high 14 rebounds, IU was able to win. Interim head coach Mike Davis said the team wasn't focused and came out playing soft.\n"I don't know what they were thinking about," Davis said. "They weren't thinking about basketball, I can tell you that. We're fortunate to win the game because we played bad, but at the same time, to play bad and win, we'll take that".\nThe Hoosiers were down 75-74 when Haston swatted Marathon's center Mark Ashman's shot. With 22 seconds remaining, Coverdale, of Noblesville, Ind., took a chance on a three-pointer from the left wing. It bounced off the front of the rim and dropped, giving IU a 77-75 lead.\n"Before that timeout, (Davis) told me that if I had the open shot to take it, and that gave me all the confidence I needed," Coverdale said.\n"Obviously, I got a lucky bounce, too, but I'll take it. Sometimes, that's the way it goes."\nWith 3.5 seconds left on the clock, Fife made his eighth steal of the night and drew a foul. He sank both free throws to seal the game. Fife finished the game with 10 points, eight rebounds and seven assists.\n"Steals just seem to come naturally to me," Fife said. "My main focus was to come out tonight and not make so many turnovers. I had a stupid one at the end."\nThe IU offense struggled at times against Marathon's zone defense, which it played for the majority of the game. The Hoosiers shot less than 50 percent from the floor in both halves and surrendered 22 turnovers.\n"They played zone and that scares just about every team," Leach said. "That gave us a lot of problems with getting open shots, but once we started penetrating and finding open men, we came out on top."\nThe majority of IU's success came in the second half, when Davis began to develop play inside and take advantage of Haston and freshman forward Jared Jeffries, who led the Hoosiers in the first half with 11 points. Jeffries ended the game with 14 points, but his presence in the lane was a major asset to Haston, who scored 26 of his points in the second half.\nDavis said he used Jeffries inside because he may play there again Tuesday.\n"Jared missed some easy baskets because he's used to playing outside," Davis said. "With him and Kirk inside working, it takes a lot of pressure off of Kirk, just strictly posting up. So Kirk got a chance to move and flash some. It worked out OK."\nWith IU down 57-53 and about nine minutes remaining, Jeffries missed three chances at a layup under the basket. But Haston grabbed the rebound, made the shot and drew a foul. He missed the free throw, but Coverdale nailed a three-pointer to give IU a 58-57 edge with about 8:30 left on the clock.\nThe Hoosiers were down by four points entering the second half. A steal by sophomore Kyle Hornsby set up a jumper for Haston to open the scoring for IU in the second half. IU was ahead 39-35 when Marathon guards Curt Smith and David Harrison nailed consecutive three-pointers. \nHarrison led Marathon Oil with 21 points and 10 rebounds. \nFife regained control of the game with another steal and Haston finished the play with a hook shot.\n"I told Kirk coming out of halftime, '(We're) going to get you going, we're going to get you the ball,' and that's exactly what we did," Fife said. "Kirk did a great job of putting it in the basket. Their zone was kind of soft and we felt we could go inside with our big man and take advantage of our their big man."\nWith 2:49 left in the game, Haston was fouled while hitting a jumper. He completed the three-point play, giving IU a 74-71 lead.\n"Coach Davis was telling us to try and get the ball to the post in the second half," Haston said. "He told us that if we didn't start doing something in the first three or four minutes of the game that he was going with a smaller lineup and I really didn't feel like watching the game in the second half. I had to start being a little more aggressive and once I got the hot hand, coach Davis kept designing stuff to get it into the post for me."\nIt wasn't until the final nine minutes of the game, that the IU offense began to click. Fife said the team was preoccupied with Tuesday's game.\n"The problem with us is we're looking forward to Pepperdine," Fife said. "We weren't focused on Marathon Oil and beating them. We're worried about Pepperdine. That's who we're thinking about. That was our problem tonight." \nSophomore Jeffrey Newton did not play because of a sore achilles tendon. He is expected to return to practice Tuesday.
With former guard A.J. Guyton graduated and drafted to the Chicago Bulls, the Hoosiers are searching for a go-to man. There were signs of promise from junior forward Jarrad Odle and freshman forward Jared Jeffries Sunday in IU's 84-74 win against Athletes in Action (5-2).\nOdle, who averaged three points per game last year, led the Hoosiers in the first half with 11 points. But it was Jeffries who accounted for 32 percent of IU's scoring Sunday. Jeffries nailed 10 of 11 free throws and led the team with 27 points.\nWith the loss of Guyton, former point guard Michael Lewis and former coach Bob Knight, much has changed for the IU offense. The motion offense has been replaced with a 1-4 scheme and more set plays. And Odle is expected to score this year.\n"Without A.J. Guyton, we have to really spread it out a lot more, and it's a matter of who's going to step it up, and I'm sure it will be a different guy scoring every night," Odle said. "I think it's going to be whoever's playing the best that night, and tonight Jared Jeffries has proven he's a great scorer."\nJunior center Kirk Haston is the team's top returning scorer, averaging 15 points per game. Sunday he was held to 11 points. Jeffries, a Bloomington native, scored 22 points in the second half, 11 of which came from the free throw line. As Indiana's Mr. Basketball last year, Jeffries averaged 23.4 points and 10.3 rebounds per game for Bloomington High School North. He is one of the five freshmen on this year's team who is expected to be a major contributor.\n"I'm not a real vocal person when I play, but I think I do a good job of leading by example," Jeffries said. "That's what I want to do." \nInterim head coach Mike Davis said Jeffries played tentatively until the second half, when Davis decided to take the ball to him inside.\n"In the last three or four practices I thought Jeff Newton had done a really good job against Jared in practice and that helped him late in the game to come out and attack," Davis said.\nOdle said he knew from the beginning of the season that his role would change. Junior guard Dane Fife said Odle needs to guard the opponents' power forward or small forward and he needs to knock down open shots but that his all-around game has improved this season.\n"I wasn't surprised that Jarrad came out and played the way he did," Fife said. "He's been playing really well at practice. That's what I expect out of Jarrad. He's been really shooting the ball well and he's improved in every aspect of his game."\nAthletes in Action is a strong team on the perimeter and nailed 48 percent of its three-point shots, compared to the Hoosiers' 17 percent. Odle said he is weak at guarding the perimeter, which is why he didn't play much in the second half.\n"With the spread offense they were running, you have to have quicker guys in to guard the perimeter, and that's one of my weaknesses," Odle said. "So it will be a matchup game, as it always has been, but I'm going to have to step up even more."\nDavis said he was satisfied with Odle's performance and he expects more from him as the season progresses.\n"I just want Odle to play relaxed and free and have fun," Davis said. "If he could play like he did today for us, that's great. If he could give us half of that, that's great. He's been really working hard. I look for a lot of really good things from him"
Interim head basketball coach Mike Davis and former player Tom Geyer were the only two people in the basketball locker room Oct. 5, Geyer's last day on the team. \nBoth have different versions of what happened.\nGeyer, a walk-on senior, said he and Davis got into a heated argument in which Davis kicked him off the team. Davis said Geyer quit.\nInitially, Geyer also said he quit. He told reporter Terry Hutchens of The Indianapolis Star that he quit the team the same evening he and Davis exchanged words. Geyer was quoted in an Oct. 6 Star article saying, "The administration made a change when they got rid of Coach Knight, and I guess now I feel that I need to make a change in my life and move in another direction."\nAbout two weeks later, Geyer came to the IDS and told a different story.\n"We had some type of argument, and then he told me that if I was ever going to speak to him in that manner again, then I should just get my fucking shit and get the fuck out," Geyer told the IDS. "And then he goes, 'As a matter of fact, get your shit and get out and don't come back.' To me, that meant that I was kicked off the team."\nDavis said that is a lie.\n"Why would he meet with me the very next morning and say, 'Coach, my heart is not in it; I don't want to play anymore.' He wasn't off the team. He's no longer a part of this team because he decided that, not me.\n"You don't come meet with me and say that you don't want to play any more if you think you're off the team. You come to me and say, 'Coach, am I off the team or can I come back or what should I do?' That tells you there that he's lying."\nGeyer said the coaches offered him the chance to rejoin the team, but he would have to change his loyalties, which are with former coach Bob Knight.\n"What the coaches wanted from me -- in order to get back on the team -- was I was going to have to change the attitude that I had, and my loyalties would have to change, and I would have to give them 100 percent backing," Geyer said. "I couldn't do that. My loyalties are set with Coach Knight and the way Coach ran the program, and that's what I believe in. That's what I came here to do, play for Coach Knight. After this whole situation, I couldn't see myself playing for anybody but Coach."\nGeyer said his heart wasn't into practice the day he and Davis had the disagreement. His play was sluggish and so was his form.\n"This is what I want Tom," Davis yelled during the practice, crouching low to show a defensive move, waving his hand to the side. "This is what I want, Tom, and if you can't do it, get on out." \nGeyer retreated to the locker room with his chin to his chest.\nJunior guard Dane Fife, Geyer's roommate, said later that evening that Geyer quit, but not because he was kicked out of practice.\nGeyer said frustration with athletics director Clarence Doninger and Davis regarding his unused financial aid led to him getting kicked out of practice, but Geyer added that he deserved it because he wasn't giving Davis the effort asked for.\nGeyer has been on unused aid, not a scholarship, for the last three years. He said he met with Doninger to discuss the status of his financial aid for the second semester and Doninger told him "it was up in the air." \n"I asked him why, and he said, 'because you quit the team,'" Geyer said. "And I said, 'That's not exactly what happened in practice.' Even after telling him the story, he did not give me any reassurance I would have full financial aid for the second semester, and he said he would make the decision later.\n"After contemplating this for a couple of days and talking it over with my family, we decided to call (Doninger) and tell him that I was going to be paying my own way for next semester and not to worry about the financial aid."\nThe NCAA allows 13 scholarships for basketball. Geyer was the 12th man on the team. The Hoosiers received verbal commitments this year from two recruits, Donald Perry and Sean Kline. Geyer said he knew he most likely wouldn't receive any aid next year, but that he wanted it for next semester.\n"We got a commitment from Donald Perry, and that eliminated all chances of me getting financial aid for this upcoming semester," Geyer said. "I knew that would be the case even if Coach Knight was here. I was expecting that Coach Davis would sit down and talk with me and tell me what was going to happen and that I may not have aid because someone committed. He never did. Coach (Bob) Knight would've handled that differently than Coach Davis did."\nGeyer received a notice from the athletic department informing him of the end of his financial aid. The athletic department has the right to revoke a player's aid if an athlete quits a team, but not if he or she is kicked off. Doninger said he was considering giving Geyer the money but that his parents called before the decision was made and said they would pay for next semester.\n"I wanted to do a little checking before I committed one way or the other," Doninger said. "I like Tom, and we discussed that notice for next year, and he said he understood that. That should not have been a surprise. When I talked to him, he said he understood.\n"There was no discussion about whether he quit or he was terminated. Whether he quit or was kicked off, he didn't want to get into that. I have no idea why Tom would write this now."\nDoninger read the full version of Geyer's story on www.peegs.com, an IU fan-based Web site. Geyer published his story there Monday because the IDS had made an editorial decision not to run his story while gathering more information. \nBefore the decision regarding whether the IDS would publish Geyer's new account, Knight's lawyer, Russell Yates, e-mailed the IDS because Geyer told him the story would not run. \n"I have no idea if (Knight) and Tom talked," Yates said. \nDoninger said that he wanted to move forward and that speculation whether Knight influenced Geyer's decision was fruitless. Geyer said he did not come forward to help Knight's cause.\n"I've always said from the beginning my loyalty was with Coach Knight," Geyer said. "I would support anything I hope would be to the betterment of Coach. I think the truth definitely aligns itself with Coach in this situation. People may think this may be for Coach, but it's not. I've decided to come out because of the way Clarence decided not to give me aid."\nGeyer said he waited two weeks to tell his side because he "wanted to take the high road" and not be a disruption to his teammates.\n"I don't want this to destroy the team," Geyer said. "This is something I thought was handled badly by the administration and by the coaching staff. But I've got to look out for myself first.\n"My point is I got kicked off because of what happened in the locker room. I was told to leave, and I was given a set of circumstances much like Coach (Knight) that I didn't think were livable and therefore I came in and I told them that that was fine, I accepted that, and it was time for me to go."\nDavis said Geyer told him that he didn't want to be a part of the team anymore and that to come out with a new statement two weeks later is nothing but a distraction to the team.\n"I shouldn't even be discussing Tom Geyer," Davis said. "If he thought I kicked him off, why not say, 'Coach Davis kicked me off the team.' Say that immediately. Don't wait two weeks to try to have a distraction. Ask him why all of a sudden he changed his mind. If he wants to be a distraction to this team, fine. That's his decision"
Freshman guard A.J. Moye rolled on the court laughing as junior forward Kirk Haston struggled from the three-point line. Even interim coach Mike Davis had trouble keeping a straight face as his big man competed against junior guard Heather Cassady in the final round of the three-point contest Saturday morning at Midnight Madness, the first official basketball practice of the season. Cassady outshot Haston 17-12.\nEarlier that evening during the dunk contest, freshman guard Andre Owens ripped his red jersey off and flung it toward the scorer's table. Davis buried his forehead in his hand.\nOwens, shirtless and with a wide grin, raised his hands above his head to get the fans clapping. The crowd was on its feet. Owens drove hard to the basket, slammed the ball with his right hand and came down with a half twist. The women's team was judging the dunk contest and gave him 10s across the board. Owens slammed the ball off the court triumphantly.\nBasketball was alive and well in Assembly Hall. Players grinned as they taunted each other and the atmosphere was lively. For the first time in 30 years, former coach Bob Knight was not conducting practice. And for the first time, it was not an orderly, no-frills training session. But fans were on their feet and cheering when announcer Chuck Crabb's familiar voice boomed, "Ladies and gentleman, the head coach of Indiana basketball: Mike Davis."\n"Whether or not the fans support me or not is not my problem," Davis said. "But I wanted them to support the 11 guys that stayed. To stay and play for IU basketball speaks volumes."\nSenior Tom Geyer is the only player to quit since Knight was fired Sept. 10. He said he couldn't play for anyone but Knight. And junior guard Dane Fife, a vocal loyalist to the ex-coach, said he still is playing for Knight.\n"Coach Knight hasn't left my mind since he's been gone," Fife said. "We're his guys. A lot of things fans are going to see this season are directly related to him. This season is for him. We owe it to him. He's done a lot for us."\nYet ironically, a chant of "We miss Bobby" was drowned out by the Indiana fight song. And while there were a select few in the crowd who held up a sheet that read, "Yes, we still drink the Kool-Aid," the majority of the followers at Assembly Hall Friday were focused on the future of IU basketball, not the upheaval of the past.\nThe hour-long practice was divided into a spot shot contest, a three-point contest, the slam dunk contest and a 10-minute men's scrimmage. For the first time, the women's team was invited to practice, but the spotlight was on the true freshmen on the men's side: Owens, Moye, Jared Jeffries and redshirt freshman George Leach. There are high expectations for the youth on the team this season, especially since the loss of A.J. Guyton and Michael Lewis to graduation last year.\nThere was no official attendance taken because admission was $1 or free with the donation of a canned good, but the turnout was estimated at 9,000 fans. Leach, who wound up defeating Owens to win the dunk contest, said he didn't expect to see such a large crowd.\n"I thought we might have less fan support because when Coach Knight left, I figured a lot of fans would go with him," Leach said. "I felt relieved to see so many people out there tonight. It's one less monkey off my back"
Mike Davis stood with his hands folded across his chest and watched silently as players went through their individual drills. He turned and smiled at a few reporters who were in the stands waiting to talk to him.\nWhen practice was over, Davis went through his own routine, answering questions from the media. As usual, his voice was soft-spoken and the microphones had to be held close to his mouth.\nBut he spoke, and he did it with a smile.\nDavis, IU's interim head coach, stuttered for the majority of his life. As an adolescent, he seldom spoke. He said he never really needed to. He did his oral assignments privately in high school because that was the only way he could do them. When he was taken on recruiting trips, Davis would say maybe five words in two days. The most he could muster was a smile. And he still walks around his house talking to himself because the problem has not gone away.\nNow Davis is the voice of Indiana basketball, and when he speaks, people listen.\n"I've been through a lot," Davis said, watching his players from a seat in Assembly Hall. "I was really shy as a kid. I couldn't get a word out when I was young. It was something I battled with every time I talked. I wouldn't really talk much because of it. That was real traumatic for me growing up, even when I played ball at (the University of) Alabama."\nSince his days as an assistant coach at the University of Alabama, Davis' career has escalated. But with every step up, it seemed as if there was always a painful step back.\nIn 1990, Davis' daughter from his first marriage was killed in an auto accident. His son from that marriage, Mike Jr., was seriously injured. The family recently moved to Indianapolis, where Davis lives with his wife, Tamilya, Mike Jr., 15, and their 2-year-old son Antoine. Davis also has a daughter, Lateesha, from a relationship he had in high school. Lateesha is 19 and lives in Atlanta.\nAlthough Davis has ample experience being a father, he said he never really knew his own. The two might have spoken five or six times, he said, and his father had open-heart surgery when Davis was in the sixth grade. He passed away in 1972.\nDavis was raised with his brother Van by his mother Vandella in Fayette, Ala., (population 4,909). It's a town where everyone knows everyone else and they all recognize Mike when he comes home, which is as often as he can. He is close to his mother, who was forced to send Davis' sister Janice to live with their aunt and his brother Bill to live with their grandparents because of financial reasons. \nDavis' grandfather, Rev. J.H. Thompson, was a preacher, and his close-knit family could be found in the First Baptist Church every Sunday. Davis said his faith is one of the reasons he is able to smile every day, and the main reason he decided not to have Sunday practices this year.\nJosephine Kennedy, a retired schoolteacher, taught Davis in her Sunday school class and worked with him each week on his speech impediment. She's known the Davis family for about 60 years.\n"I can remember him as a little boy growing up," Kennedy said. "Yes, yes, that pleasant smile. I gave him some points on what to do, how to speak and get an audience of his family together and that seemed to have helped quite a bit. I saw improvements in him, even after he got into college and it was a joy working with him because he's a very likeable person, humble and quiet."\nThe gym has always been one of the few places where Davis' speech impediment is indiscernible. That's one of the reasons, Davis said, he loves the game.\n"Basketball is all I've ever known," Davis, 41, said. "It's a way for me to express myself as a person. Movements speak for you as you play."\nDavis' former high school basketball coach, Ray Nelson, said he noticed Davis' talent as early as the eighth grade and said at that time, he knew Davis could be a major contributor at the collegiate level.\n"When he was in the ninth grade, we were in an area tournament and had him playing defense," said Nelson, who is now the mayor of Fayette. "Mike was about 6-3 ... we had him assigned to a 6-9 star player that had already committed to Alabama that year. And the top recruiter from Alabama was there that night.\n"Everybody came to watch the star from the other team and after the game, the recruiter came up and was more impressed with Mike's defense. He shut him down."\nDavis' skills spoke volumes about him. He earned the title of Mr. Basketball for the state of Alabama when he was in high school. He lettered four times at the University of Alabama and finished his collegiate career with 1,211 points.\nFollowing his playing career at Alabama, Davis was a second-round selection of the Milwaukee Bucks in the 1983 NBA Draft. He went on to play in the Continental Basketball Association and became an assistant coach under current IU interim assistant head coach John Treloar, in the CBA.\nNow Davis has an entire team of his own, one he inherited when Bob Knight was fired, and he is working to develop a young, but talented team. Davis said he's hoping to accomplish success through the kind of player he used to be -- a silent leader.\n"I really don't want guys to be vocal to the standpoint where they think that because they say something, guys will respond to it," Davis said. "I want guys to bust their butt and play hard and have that be contagious. I think I have to be the guy who's leading them and talking to them"
Donald Perry, a 6-foot-2 point guard from Louisiana, verbally committed to IU Tuesday and said he will sign a letter of intent on the early decision date Nov. 8. Perry, a senior at Reuben McCall High School in Tallulah, La., averaged 25.5 points and eight assists last season. He shot 45 percent from three-point range and 84 percent from the free-throw line.\nInterim head coach Mike Davis is known for recruiting strong players, and his southern roots helped bring players such as George Leach, Jeffrey Newton and A.J. Moye to former coach Bob Knight's program.\nBut now Davis is working to build his own program. And although there is no guarantee the players he recruits this year will play for him next year, Davis has filled the last two open recruiting spots (if no current players transfer) with Perry and Huntington North forward Sean Kline. \n"Just playing for Indiana is more important than playing for a coach," Perry said. "That doesn't scare me because even if (Davis) isn't there, I want to play. Coaches change everywhere you go. You never know what can happen."\nPerry, 16, took an unofficial visit to IU Friday and decided on his way home he would commit to Davis' program. When he got home, Perry called St. Louis, which also expressed interest, and canceled his recruiting trip there. Perry had also visited Tulane, which is about three and a half hours from his home, but he said Davis' honesty with him was a major factor in his decision.\n"He's a real down-to-earth guy," Perry said. "He won't tell a lie to get you to come to school. Most coaches will tell you anything."\nThe Hoosiers are looking for someone to replace Michael Lewis, who graduated last year as the school's all-time assist leader. Perry has qualified to play as a freshman because he scored 21 on the American College Test and earned a 3.5 grade-point average. \nMitchell Riggs, basketball coach at Reuben McCall, said Perry has the ability to fill whatever role Davis will need him in.\n"I have all the confidence in the world in the kid," Riggs said. "He has a bundle of ability. As a freshman, he went from scoring 13 points a game to scoring 20 his sophomore year. He's been like an elevator, climbing and climbing and the best in him is yet to come"
Pat Knight, former assistant men's basketball coach and son of former coach Bob Knight, accepted an assistant coaching position with the University of Akron's men's basketball team. Knight will replace Saint Crawford, who is looking at another position elsewhere. Knight's official start date is Oct. 16.\nKnight said Akron called him last Tuesday about the position and he agreed to a six-month contract. But his ultimate goal is to land a coaching position where he started, next to his father.\n"It's not a recruiting position," Pat Knight said. "You coach but you don't recruit. It's a step-down position but I don't mind. I have to keep my coaching career going."\nJosh Sutter, assistant director of athletic communications at the University of Akron, said Pat Knight is an acquaintance of Akron assistant coach Brian Donoher and that relationship contributed to the decision.\nSutter said Bob Knight is also an acquaintance of Akron head coach Dan Hipsher.\n"We're extremely fortunate and grateful that at this late date we are able to bring in someone who has the experience and knowledge that Pat has," Hipsher said. "With only two weeks until the season starts, it's a great advantage for us to be able to bring in someone who understands the motion offense like he does."\nKnight still has a home here in Bloomington, but he rented a one-bedroom apartment in Akron for the next six months. He is moving to Akron this Friday, but Knight still has some unfinished business in Bloomington to attend to, as well. He said he never quit as assistant basketball coach of IU and that he was fired with his dad. He said he is now waiting to see if he will be paid the rest of his salary. Russell Yates is both Pat Knight and Bob Knight's attorney.\n"I'm still waiting to see what they're going to do with my salary," Pat Knight said. "I signed a contract for the year. I never quit. I got fired along with my dad. No one has ever come and talked to me. I heard it from (trainer) Tim Garl.\n"They're screwing with our lives. I lucked out but it's not the same. It's a step down position-wise," Pat Knight said.\nChristopher Simpson, vice president for public affairs and government relations, had no comment other than he never recalled Pat Knight being fired. Terry Clapacs, vice president for administration, did not return a phone call from the IDS.
Pat Knight, former assistant men's basketball coach and son of former coach Bob Knight, has accepted an assistant coaching position with the University of Akron's men's basketball team. Knight will replace Saint Crawford, who is looking at another position elsewhere. Knight's official start date is Oct. 16.\nJosh Sutter, assistant director of athletic communications at the University of Akron, said Pat Knight is an acquaintance of Akron assistant coach Brian Donoher and that relationship contributed to the decision. Sutter said former coach Bob Knight is also an acquaintance of Akron head coach Dan Hipsher.\n"We're extremely fortunate and grateful that at this late date we are able to bring in someone who has the experience and knowledge that Pat has," Hipsher said. "With only two weeks until the season starts, it's a great advantage for us to be able to bring in someone who understands the motion offense like he does."\nIDS reporter David Uchiyama contributed to this story.\nRead Monday's IDS for more details and watch idsnews.com for continual updates.
Professor Murray Sperber's office in Ballantine Hall is a disorganized mess. His computer sits on a wooden chair, boxes clutter the small room and stacks of papers fill almost every square inch of free space. There's barely enough room for his dog to find a spot to lay down.\nSperber hasn't been in his office since May, when he decided to take an unpaid leave of absence in fear for his safety. The English professor had made critical comments about former coach Bob Knight during a University investigation into the claims made by former player Neil Reed, and in turn received threatening phone calls and e-mails from angry Knight supporters.\nNow the coach is gone. And Sperber said he hopes it's safe to return. But before he begins teaching two undergraduate courses next spring, Sperber will take a national book tour, that began Thursday in New York. Sperber's fourth book, "Beer and Circus: How Big-time College Sports is Crippling Undergraduate Education," was released Thursday. There are about three pages in the book regarding Knight, and Sperber insists the timing of the book release was coincidental with Knight's firing. He signed the contract in 1994 and finished the book in January.\n"People have asked me whether I feel if the good guys have won," Sperber said. "My total feeling is relief for IU and that it can move on from this and go back to the education."\nSperber returned to campus Monday after spending the majority of the summer in Montreal. He didn't expect to resume teaching until next year because he didn't think Knight would be fired so soon.\n"When Knight got fired, I thought, 'why can't I teach in the spring?'" Sperber said. "Why I couldn't teach this year was the Knight fans in peegs.com found the way to find me was through the IU schedule of classes. \n"I guess what put it over the top for me was when that phone rang in May, and a guy who sounded like he was middle-aged started reading my section numbers to me and said, 'I know where to find you.' I just couldn't teach under those circumstances and IU agreed."\nSperber said the riot on campus last Sunday resulting from Knight's firing was an example of the theme of his book, that athletics and partying take precedence over academics. Sperber said he tried not to focus on IU in his book, but said that it is a "beer and circus" school.\n"It proves my thinking in many ways how attentive students are to sports and how alienated they are to the academics," Sperber said. "I wasn't picking on IU, but I couldn't ignore IU. Like IU football, it's sort of in the bottom of the Big 10. The only thing IU was different with was Bob Knight. He had been so successful and had taken IU out of the typical category and won national championships."\nThe book is a harsh critique of high profile college sports and the universities that sponsor them. \nSperber said his main contributors to the book were students of various universities because they were the most open. His students in particular helped with much of the research by filling out questionnaires and developing their own questions about college life and the sports experience. He also said he "lived the book," referring to his involvement in the Knight investigations. \n"The very best things in the books are the quotes from the students," Sperber said. "They would say amazing stuff. It was very honest and very revealing. They understand the way their schools work much better than the administration thinks they do. Faculty do not have a clue about student subcultures."\nSperber said he has only heard positive reactions from his colleagues.\n"I would hope that people on the outside world have a better understanding of how the University works and how undergraduate education has really deteriorated," Sperber said. "I hope it informs both parents and college applicants of the realities of college life"
All four men have 'interim' in front of their titles, but the coaching staff of the men's basketball team is now complete. \nInterim head coach Mike Davis finished hiring his staff yesterday when he named Dan Panaggio as an interim assistant coach. Panaggio is a three-time Continental Basketball Association coach of the year and joins the IU staff after nine years as head coach of the CBA's Quad City Thunder.\nPanaggio is the second assistant coach to be announced in the last two days. Davis announced Julius Smith, a former assistant coach at Southeastern Louisiana University, as an interim assistant Monday.\n"It's a big decision, and one might stand on the outside and say it's quite a risk, but I like our chances here," Panaggio said. "I don't look at the risks involved as much as the opportunities."\nPanaggio, 45, finished with a career record of 313-191 with the Thunder and won CBA championships in 1994 and 1998. Last season he led Quad City to the National Conference title and the league's best regular season record.\nDavis and interim associate head coach John Treloar coached against Panaggio in the CBA before joining former coach Bob Knight at IU. From 1991-95, Davis was an assistant to Treloar with the Wichita Falls Texans.\n"(Panaggio's) teams were always very prepared, tough and educated," Treloar said. "He's developed a lot of players who have gone from his teams to the NBA."\nTreloar, who spent six seasons as a head coach in the CBA, coached against Panaggio's father, Mauro Panaggio. Entering this season, Dan Panaggio had more career victories than any other active coach. He leaves the CBA ranking second on the all-time win list behind his father (446). Dan Panaggio spent three seasons as an assistant coach to his father before taking the head coach position.\nTreloar said he has watched the younger Panaggio grow and develop as a coach.\n"He's very good," Treloar said. "For him, he sees this as a tremendous opportunity to be a part of a program with such great tradition."\nDavis, 40, is now the youngest member of his staff. Smith is 45.\n"I think coach Davis was looking for people who were older and more experienced to complement his staff and himself," Treloar said. "We all respect him."\nPanaggio said he will work mainly on offense with the players while Treloar focuses on defense. Smith will concentrate on recruiting. Panaggio said he expects players at the collegiate level to be a little more receptive than those in the CBA.\n"I'm looking forward to the whole experience," Panaggio said. "Here we'll be able to stress fundamentals a lot more. In the pro game, you don't have the time. It's a better teaching environment. This is a great basketball university."\nThe role of video coordinator was the final position announced Tuesday. Senior Dan Block, a manager for the last three years, will now be in charge of the shelves and boxes full of practice and game tapes. Block will make sure IU has tapes of every opponent.\n"It's important to have those tapes to prepare our team in knowing what the opponent wants to do," Block said. "The coaching staff looks at practice and uses that tape to show the guys what they're talking about. It will be more hours (of work), but it's hours I want to put in"
Mike Davis made his first move in piecing together a coaching staff immediately after he was hired as interim head coach of the men's basketball team Wednesday. \nDavis called on long-time friend Julius Smith, a former assistant coach at Southeastern Louisiana University, and offered him the job around 11:45 that same night. Smith arrived in Bloomington Monday.\nDavis said he will choose a second assistant today. Last night he met with Dan Panaggio, head coach of the Continental Basketball Association's Quad City Thunder. Davis is also talking with two assistant Division I coaches from the University of Alabama.\n"Now we have some pieces in place," Davis said. "I told him two years ago that if I ever got a job (as head coach), don't wait for me to call you. Just pack your bags and come."\nSmith, 46, will return to SLU sometime next week to do an exit interview and finish up some paperwork. His wife and three sons will remain in New Orleans for the year, mainly because he wanted his kids to finish school where they had started.\n"I took a risk," Smith said, laughing. "This is the first job I've had in 20 years where everybody has 'interim' in front of their name. But you don't get too much better than Indiana University."\nBefore joining SLU's staff last year, Smith spent eight years working for former head men's basketball coach Perry Clark at Tulane. Smith was part of three consecutive 20-win seasons at Tulane, including a trip to the NCAA Tournament (second round, 1992-93) and a Final Four NIT berth in 1994. \nBut his main efforts at Tulane were directed at player recruitment. Smith helped Tulane attain its top two recruiting classes in 1993 and 1997. Davis said the same will be expected of Smith at IU.\nLike Davis, who played college basketball at Alabama, Smith has strong ties to the South. Both coaches recruited sophomore forward Kyle Hornsby. Smith laughed because Davis won that recruitment contest. Smith also recruited a high-school teammate of freshman guard A.J. Moye's.\nSmith said recruiting would be difficult because none of the coaches know if they will still be with the program next season.\n"I know I'm going to have to grab those recruit reins and try and do that for him," Smith said. "We're going to have to come up with some kind of answer to tell the kids (when they ask if we'll be here next season). You win enough, and you'll take care of that."\nRight now, one of Smith's main concerns is establishing a relationship with the players IU already has.\n"Getting to know the kids is going to take a while," Smith said. "They've been through so much emotionally. I'm going to take it slow. I have to be tough and demanding, but I have to reach out to them. I don't think they'll be kicking down the door of a guy they just met"