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What IU Basketball’s Prospects Are After Players’ Departures

How IU fills the spots left vacant by players who are transferring or going to the NBA draft will determine next year's performance.

Vonleh on a fast break

Photo: IU Athletics

Noah Vonleh makes a fast break against the University of Connecticut.

Yesterday’s announcement that two IU men’s basketball players were transferring and a third is leaving for the NBA has put a damper on the team’s prospects for next year.

Freshman Noah Vonleh told CBS Sports he is entering the NBA draft and IU announced redshirt sophomore Austin Etherington and sophomore Jeremy Hollowell are transferring.

The IndyStar is also reporting walk-on Jonny Marlin plans to transfer, although that has not been confirmed by IU.

How much the departures impact the team largely depends on whether IU can fill the voids, according to Peegs.com blog publisher Mike Pegram.

“The situation seemed a little bit worse because it all broke in the same several hours period,” he says. “It kind of snowballed and that led to a little bit of fan reaction.”

Here’s a sample of that reaction:

A commenter on Inside The Hall blog wrote:

“Next thing you will tell me is the roof at Assembly hall is caving in. No, wait…”

And some fans took the opportunity to make note that today is head coach Tom Crean’s birthday.

But Crean is facing the changes head on. In an interview with 87.7 The Game earlier today, he said he was looking forward to the opportunities the transfers present.

“You’re constantly rebuilding or reshaping or whatever “re” you want to use with your teams at this level, and you either get discouraged with it or you get encouraged,” he said.

“This was a substandard year. You can expect people–players, coaches–to be happy,” Pegram says. “The mood isn’t good but there are some changes and that may turn things around.”

That includes 6-foot-9 Temple transfer Anthony Lee. He has named several other schools including IU that are options.

Gretchen Frazee

Gretchen Frazee is a reporter/producer for WFIU and WTIU news. Prior to her current role, Frazee worked as the associate online content coordinator for WFIU/WTIU. She graduated from the University of Missouri-Columbia where she studied multimedia journalism and anthropology. You can follow her on Twitter @gretchenfrazee.

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  • John Temple

    I don’t think all the transfers are done yet, ala HMP. Sounds like Lee has Louisville on his horizon. Clark chose MSU. Maten may come but hasn’t committed and he’s a small forward. Cunningham is a 2015 recruit. Add it all up and IU will be worse next year.

  • KmanCRK

    Cunningham is 2014. HMP isn’t going anywhere. No reason to freak out, addition by subtraction.

  • John Temple

    What makes you so sure HMP won’t transfer after his Court judgement?

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