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Photo: Bill Shaw/WTIU News
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Photo: Hallie Peilet
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Photo: Bill Shaw/WTIU
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Photo: IU Hoosiers.com
This story has been updated.
Indiana University has dismissed Men’s Head Basketball Coach Tom Crean after nine years leading the team.
“Tom Crean brought us through one of the most challenging periods in IU basketball history, led his players to many successes in the classroom and on the court and represented our university with class and integrity,” said IU Vice President and Director of Intercollegiate Athletics Fred Glass in a statement. “However, ultimately, we seek more consistent, high levels of success, and we will not shy away from our expectations.”
According to a statement, IU will begin an immediate national search for a new coach.
“The expectations for Indiana University basketball are to perennially contend for and win multiple Big Ten championships, regularly go deep in the NCAA tournament, and win our next national championship—and more after that,” Glass said in the statement. “We will identify and recruit a coach who will meet these expectations.”
Glass says he made his decision to dismiss head coach Tom Crean Wednesday night and met with him Thursday morning. He says the decision to fire Crean was not a one-year or four-year decision, but a nine-year decision.
“An extension wasn’t something I was prepared to do even though we had success. I just think that both in between and within seasons, it’s just been too inconsistent for our expectations,” Glass says.
Crean’s head coaching career started at Marquette where he compiled a record of 160-68, including a trip to the 2003 Final Four. Prior to that, he served as recruiting coordinator and associate coach for four years under Michigan State’s Tom Izzo.
Crean followed Kelvin Sampson, who resigned for committing major NCAA recruiting violations. Crean came to Indiana inheriting sanctions and the return of one scholarship player.
His tenure had high and low moments. He captured two Big Ten titles, advanced to the Sweet Sixteen three times and held onto a number one ranking for eleven weeks during the 2012-2013 season. Each of the seniors that played for Crean at IU earned their degree while his teams received high academic progress rate marks nationally.
Some off the court trouble made news in 2014 when some members of the team were cited for illegal consumption of alcohol, other alcohol violations, fake IDs, reported failed drug tests and player suspensions.
IU was ranked as high as number three in the country early in the season before accepting a number three seed in the NIT where Indiana lost 75-63 to Georgia Tech Tuesday night. The Hoosiers finished 18-16 missing the NCAA Tournament for the fifth time in nine years. Ultimately, Crean’s 166-135 record at Indiana wasn’t enough.
Crean will continue to be paid $4 million for the next three years unless he’s hired for a comparable job, then the salary offsets.
Glass will conduct a national search for a new coach consulting with basketball experts and former IU players.
“I don’t think we can overstate what a big deal this hire is,” Glass says. “Resources won’t prevent us from getting who we want.”
A couple athletic officials, along with trainer Tim Garl and assistant coach Derek Elston, will act as the transition team until a new coach is named.
The players are on spring break and will meet Sunday night.