Here's a look at some of the big-name coaches on the move in college basketball.
Tom Crean’s tenure as Indiana men’s basketball coach is over after nine seasons at the school.
In a press release distributed Thursday, athletics director Fred Glass said that, "after deliberative thought and evaluation, including multiple meetings with Tom about the future, I have decided to make a change in the leadership of our men’s basketball program."
Crean’s departure ends the longest tenure in the Indiana hot seat since Bob Knight’s firing in 2000. The 50-year old won two regular-season Big Ten championships during his time in Bloomington, qualified for four NCAA tournaments in the past six seasons and advanced to three Sweet 16s.
But his tenure also ended amid acrimony, both of those conference championships followed immediately by seasons that ended with sub-.500 Big Ten records.
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Indiana fans grew frustrated, visible both inside Assembly Hall and on social media, with familiar problems that plagued Crean’s less successful teams — persistent turnover issues, defensive disorganization and repeated calls for more cohesive, authoritative on-court leadership.
Truthfully, Crean’s legacy will likely center on his first three seasons at Indiana, and the foundational rebuild he agreed to undertake after leaving Marquette for Bloomington.
Those three seasons marked the worst three-year stretch in Indiana basketball history. The Hoosiers won just 28 games, finished last in the conference twice and had to endure an almost bottom-up retooling of their roster, as Crean brought the program out from under NCAA sanctions leveled because of the actions of former coach Kelvin Sampson.
Crean restored the program’s success behind a blend of successful in-state recruiting and the ability to pluck less-heralded developmental prospects from around the country.
In-state recruiting in particular endeared Crean to his fan base. He signed two Indiana prospects (Jordan Hulls, Derek Elston) in his first recruiting class, and two more (Cody Zeller, Austin Etherington) in his third.
His 2012 class was comprised entirely of players either from the state — including eventual All-American point guard Yogi Ferrell — or with in-state AAU ties. Between 2009 and 2014, Crean signed 12 players from Indiana.
That backyard recruiting success waned in Crean’s last three recruiting cycles. In 2015, 2016 and 2017, the Hoosiers signed just one in-state prospect, Crown Point guard Grant Gelon, now a freshman.
Crean also enjoyed success recruiting out of state, particularly in the mid-Atlantic and northeast. McDonald’s All Americans Noah Vonleh and Thomas Bryant both came from the New England/New York area, while landing coveted prospects like Troy Williams (Virginia), Robert Johnson (Virginia) and Oladipo (Maryland) from out east.
But in truth, fans’ greatest criticisms of Crean’s program had little to do with recruitment.
Over his final six seasons, Crean’s teams finished fifth, first, ninth, seventh, first and 10th in the Big Ten. The Hoosiers’ best was often very good, possessing one of the best home records against ranked opponents in the country in recent seasons.
But their worst was just as often a source of persistent frustration, as was the apparent inability to establish a baseline level of success in conference play. Crean was just 5-10 against in-state rival Purdue, and 7-9 against normally perennial also-ran Northwestern. He won just five combined games against Wisconsin and Michigan State, and never won in Madison. He leaves Bloomington with a winning record against only two Big Ten teams, Rutgers and Penn State, across his IU tenure.
For a fan base at one time accustomed to bossing the Big Ten — and longing for a return to such regular dominance — bottom-half (and particularly bottom-four) finishes escalated that frustration.
It appeared to ratchet up a level this winter, apathy replacing anger.
Attendance at home games suffered, with seats across the arena left increasingly unfilled. Assembly Hall’s balconies, most often populated by students, were nearly barren in February, and notable athletics donors — including some whose names are attached to facilities at Indiana — were absent from their customary courtside seats as the season wound down. Crean was even moderately booed when he was announced before the Hoosiers’ home season finale against Northwestern.
Zach Osterman writes for the Indianapolis Star, a member of the USA TODAY NETWORK