BLOOMINGTON, Ind. (AP) — Indiana Hoosiers coach Mike Woodson hired Big Ten career scoring leader Calbert Cheaney as his new director of player development Tuesday.
Cheaney had spent the previous three seasons on the staff of the NBA’s Indiana Pacers.
It’s Cheaney’s second coaching round at his alma mater. He was the director of operations in 2011-12 and helped oversee the internal and external development of Indiana’s players in 2012-13, both seasons on Tom Crean’s staff.
Cheaney will not be involved with recruiting in his new role.
“I could not think of anyone better suited to be part of this program than Calbert Cheaney,” Woodson said in a statement announcing the hire. “His experiences are as good as it gets. Our players can ask him, how do you become successful when you get to college? What can I do to help my team win championships? What do I need to do to be an All-American or National Player of the Year? How did you become a first round draft pick who played 13 years in the NBA?”
Prior to his time with the Pacers, Cheaney was an assistant coach with two teams in the NBA’s G League and spent three seasons as an assistant coach at Saint Louis University.
Cheaney started his coaching career with the NBA’s Golden State Warriors in 2010-11 after spending one season in the Warriors front office.
“I have nothing but love and passion for this program and I can’t wait to return and start working with our players and staff,” Cheaney said. “Helping them get the most out of themselves is something that I enjoy and brings me great satisfaction when they see their work pay off on the court.”
Cheaney attended high school in Evansville, Indiana, and was a three-time All-American between 1989-93. He swept the six major national player of the year awards in 1992-93 and finished his career with a school record 2,613 points. He also holds Indiana’s school record for baskets, 1,018.
Indiana went 105-27 with four NCAA Tournament appearances and a trip to the 1992 Final Four during his career.
In 1993, the then Washington Bullets drafted Cheaney with the No. 6 overall pick and he averaged 9.5 points in 825 career games with Boston, Denver, Utah, Golden State and Washington.
“We’re incredibly appreciative of Calbert’s innumerable contributions to our team during his time here, and after spending the last two seasons working with him, I can see why he’ll be such a great asset to the Hoosiers’ basketball program,” Pacers coach Rick Carlisle said.
LOUISVILLE (AP) — Denny Crum, who won two NCAA men’s basketball championships and built Louisville into one of the 1980s’ dominant programs during a Hall of Fame coaching career, died Tuesday. He was 86.
The school announced Crum’s death in a release after being informed by his wife, Susan. No cause was given, but Crum had battled an extended illness. He had a mild stroke in August 2017 while fishing in Alaska and another two years two ago.
Nicknamed “Cool Hand Luke” because of his cool, unflinching sideline demeanor — legend has it he never uttered a curse word — Crum retired in March 2001 after 30 seasons at Louisville with 675 victories, which ranked 15th all-time then, and championships in 1980 and ’86. The disciple of legendary UCLA coach John Wooden often wore a red sport coat and waved a rolled-up stat sheet like a bandleader’s baton as he directed Louisville to 23 NCAA tournaments and six Final Fours.
The second half of his tenure was not nearly as successful as the first, however, as Louisville endured two separate NCAA investigations and never returned to the Final Four after Crum’s second championship season.
Nonetheless, Crum was inducted into the Hall of Fame in May 1994, with Wooden, his college coach and longtime mentor at his side. Crum finished with 11 more wins than his most influential advisor amassed at UCLA.
Crum remained a beloved, revered and respected presence around Louisville whose legacy has been recognized in many ways. He frequently attended Cardinals games played on the KFC Yum! Center home court bearing his name and signature. And Crum was present for the September 2022 dedication of Denny Crum Hall, a new campus dormitory for athletes and students.
“You try to remember all of the things that you did, things that happened,” Crum said at a February 2020 ceremony honoring the 1980 title team. “Some was bad, but most of it good. It just makes you really proud that you were a part of it.”
Crum had a front-row seat in March 2022 for the introduction of one of his former players, Kenny Payne, as Cardinals coach. Payne said then that he would rely on Crum’s insight in his first head coaching job; and there were plenty of the Hall of Famer’s other pupils to not only support Payne, but enjoy another meeting with their mentor and friend on and off the court.
Payne expressed prayers for Crum’s family and called his former coach a true treasure who gave so much to the school and community.
“Today is a sad day for me personally, as well as the basketball world,” Payne said in a statement. “My thoughts go through all the lessons that he taught, not just to me, but every player he ever came in contact with. Those lessons are still relevant today. We were so blessed to have him in our lives. We must keep his memory alive.
“Rest in peace, Coach. You touched so many. Well done.”
Former Cardinals great Junior Bridgeman echoed Payne on Crum’s impact on generations of players.
“He made you prepare for what we did,” said Bridgeman, who played for Crum from 1972-75. “He said if you are good at what you’re going to do, we’re not going to worry about what the other team is going to do. And that really translates into life. That’s a life lesson that’ll carry you farther and in whatever area you go into.”
A native of San Fernando, California, Crum played guard for two seasons at Los Angeles’ Pierce Junior College before transferring to UCLA in 1956. The Bruins went 38-14 in Crum’s two seasons as a player.
He briefly served as a graduate assistant to Wooden before coaching Pierce in the mid-1960s.
Wooden hired Crum as his assistant and chief recruiter in 1968, when the Bruins were in the midst of their dynastic run to 10 NCAA championships.
Crum is credited with luring Bill Walton to UCLA, and the Bruins went 86-4 and won three NCAA titles during Crum’s three seasons there.
Crum succeeded John Dromo as Louisville’s coach on April 17, 1971, but Wooden figured his former assistant would soon return to succeed him.
“Denny was so good that I knew I wasn’t going to keep him very long,” Wooden told the Courier Journal of Louisville back then. “I was pleased when he got the job at Louisville. I had always hoped when I retired that he’d be the one to succeed me, but he left and proved to be just what I thought he was.”
BLOOMINGTON, Ind. (WISH) — Indiana University senior point guard Xavier Johnson has been granted an extra year of eligibility, per a news release from IU men’s basketball.
The extra year was granted after the NCAA approved a medical hardship waiver for the 2022-23 season.
“We are very happy for Xavier and his family and can’t wait to have him be a key member of our program, next season,” said IU head coach Mike Woodson. “I know this year was challenging for him, but he brought a positive attitude every day and I believe he will bring a great deal to our team next season because of the adversity he has faced.”
Johnson suffered a broken foot against Kansas on Dec. 17.
Johnson started in 11 games this past season, averaging 9.9 points and 4.9 assists per game.
WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. (AP) — National player of the year Zach Edey of Purdue has declared for the NBA, but will keep open the option of returning to school next season.
The 7-foot-4 center, who led Purdue to a Big Ten regular-season title last season by averaging 22.3 points, 12.9 rebounds, 2.1 blocks and 1.5 assists per game, has one season of college eligibility remaining. The Boilermakers also became the second No. 1 seed in the NCAA Tournament to lose to a No. 16 seed last month.
“My basketball career has been unorthodox to say the least, but I wouldn’t change a thing about it,” Edey wrote on Twitter. “From ranked 437 in my recruiting class to national player of the year, I can’t put into words what Purdue University, my teammates, my coaches and our fans mean to me. Though we fell short of our ultimate goal this season, I loved every minute of it.”
He added: “I will evaluate my future after going through the process and look forward to what’s next.”
Edey became the first player from Purdue to win the national player of the year award since Glenn Robinson in 1994. Robinson was the No. 1 overall pick that season.
Edey is the first player in NCAA history to finish a season with at least 750 points, 400 rebounds, 70 blocks and 50 assists in a season — since blocks became an official stat. He finished in the top 25 nationally in all four categories, was a unanimous first team All-American, the Big Ten player of the year and swept the national player of the year awards.
But where Edey fits in the draft is unclear in an evolving league that values 3-point shots and perimeter play over post players. That was one reason Edey’s former teammate, Jaden Ivey, went No. 5 overall in last year’s draft.
Most of the current projections, though, don’t have Edey being selected in the first round. Still, his upside remains high because the Canadian has played just five seasons of high-level basketball after giving up hockey and baseball.
Purdue has had at least one player selected in each of the past seven drafts, and Edey is the best hope to keep that streak intact.
In 99 career games, Edey has 1,533 points, 847 rebounds, 148 blocks and 106 assists. In 2022-23, Edey became the second player in Big Ten history to lead the league in scoring, rebounding and field goal percentage.
(AP) — The Big Ten is hiring former Major League Baseball executive Tony Petitti to be its next commissioner, a person with knowledge of the decision told The Associated Press on Tuesday night.
The person spoke on condition of anonymity because a deal was still being finalized. An announcement is expected from the conference by the end of the week.
Petitti replaces Kevin Warren, who is leaving to become president of the Chicago Bears. Warren’s last day on the job was scheduled to be April 17.
Petitti continues a trend of recent hires to lead the top conferences coming from outside college sports — like Warren, who worked for the Minnesota Vikings before taking over for Jim Delany and becoming the Big Ten’s first Black commissioner in 2019.
The Pac-12 subsequently hired George Kliavkoff, who was an executive for MGM Resorts International. Last year, the Big 12 hired Brett Yormark as commissioner after he had previously run Barclays Center in New York and worked for the Roc Nation talent agency.
Petitti has extensive background in television, working for ABC, CBS and MLB Network. He was also chief operating officer for MLB, taking over the position Rob Manfred held before he became commissioner.
INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — Indiana University guard Grace Berger is one of 15 prospects that will be attending the 2023 WNBA Draft on Monday night in New York City.
The draft will take place at Spring Studios, located in the Tribeca section of New York.
Berger is a four-time All-Big Ten First Team selection.
Berger is also the all-time winningest player at Indiana, having won 118 games during her five seasons in Bloomington.
Berger is seventh in school history with 1,841 points and second in assists with 573 assists.
The following is the complete list of 15 prospects who will be at the draft:
- Laeticia Amihere (South Carolina forward)
- Grace Berger (Indiana guard)
- Brea Beal (South Carolina guard)
- Aliyah Boston (South Carolina forward / center)
- Zia Cooke (South Carolina guard)
- Jordan Horston (Tennessee guard)
- Ashley Joens (Iowa State guard / forward)
- Haley Jones (Stanford guard / forward)
- Dorka Juhász (Connecticut forward)
- Lou Lopez Sénéchal (Connecticut guard / forward)
- Taylor Mikesell (Ohio State guard)
- Diamond Miller (Maryland guard)
- Alexis Morris (LSU guard)
- Maddy Siegrist (Villanova forward)
- Stephanie Soares (Iowa State forward / center)
The 2023 WNBA Draft will begin at 7 p.m. EST on Monday.
The Indiana Fever have five picks in this year’s draft, including the number one overall selection.
VALPARAISO, Ind. (AP) — Valparaiso hired former Illinois star Roger Powell Jr. as its new men’s basketball coach Friday, making him the first Black coach in program history.
Powell served an assistant coach at Valpo on coach Bryce Drew’s staff from 2011-16 and then followed Drew to Vanderbilt where he was the associate head coach. Powell spent the last five seasons at Gonzaga, which went 121-13 and finsihed as the 2020-21 national runner-up.
Powell replaces coach Matt Lottich, who was fired last month after going 108-117 in seven seasons, including 11-21 in 2022-23. Lottich, like Powell, also was an assistant with Drew but was promoted to head coach following Drew’s departure.
Under the mentorship of Drew and Powell, the Beacons won 124 games and reached the 2015-16 NIT title game. At Gonzaga, Powell was part of three straight Sweet Sixteen runs and two appearances in the Elite Eight.
“My family and I are extremely blessed to have the opportunity to come back to Valparaiso University where my coaching career started,” Powell said. “Now as the head men’s basketball coach, I have some unfinished business to attend to. It’s time to get to work.”
Powell was a three-year starter for the Fighting Illini and played in the 2004-05 national championship game. He finished his college career with 1,178 points and 531 rebounds then played one season with the NBA’s Utah Jazz before continuing his career in lower-profile leagues and eventually moving into the coaching ranks.
BLOOMINGTON, Ind. (WISH) — Legendary Indiana University basketball coach Bob Knight was released from a hospital Monday after a weekend hospitalization for an “acute illness.”
Knight’s family confirmed his release Monday after news of his illness spread via a message sent to members of the school’s alumni program.
“On behalf of the Knight Family, we thank you for your thoughts and prayers,” Pat Knight wrote in a statement posted to the Bob Knight website. “Coach always taught us, and those that played for him, the importance of fighting through adversity and he and our family thank you for the tremendous amount of support you have shown and given during this time.”
Bob Knight has been dealing with health issues for the past few years.
During his 29-year tenure at IU, Knight led the Hoosiers to three national titles, five Final Four appearances, and 11 Big Ten championships.
Knight broke ties with the university after his firing in September of 2000 but returned to a hero’s welcome in February of 2020.
DALLAS (AP) — Kim Mulkey had tears of joy streaming down her face as she guided LSU to it first national championship.
Her Tigers used a record offensive performance to beat Caitlin Clark and Iowa 102-85 on Sunday and win the first basketball title in school history.
The victory made Mulkey the first women’s coach to win national championships at two different schools. She won three at Baylor before leaving for LSU two years ago.
“Coaches coach a lifetime and this is the fourth time I’ve been blessed,” Mulkey said. “Never in the history of LSU basketball, men or women, has (anybody) ever played for a championship.”
The feisty and flamboyantly dressed Mulkey, who wore a sparkly, golden, tiger-striped outfit, now has the third-most titles of all time behind Geno Auriemma’s 11 and Pat Summitt’s eight. Mulkey has never lost in a championship game.
“My tears are tears of joy,” she said. “I’m so happy for everybody back home in Louisiana.”
Clark, The Associated Press national player of the year, couldn’t lead the Hawkeyes to their first national title despite one of the greatest individual performances in NCAA Tournament history. The junior finished with 30 points. She scored 40 in the semifinals to knock out unbeaten South Carolina one game after she had the first 40-point triple-double in NCAA history in the Elite Eight.
The dazzling guard, who grew up in Iowa, set the NCAA record for points in a tournament, passing the 177 that Sheryl Swoopes scored in 1993 en route to leading Texas Tech to the title that year. Clark ended her tournament with 191.
The 102 points broke the previous high for a championship game, surpassing the 97 that Texas scored against Southern California in 1986.
Taking in the game was first lady Jill Biden, who sat in a suite above the court with tennis great Billie Jean King.
Jasmine Carson scored 22 points, Alexis Morris added 21 and Angel Reese had 15 points and 10 rebounds for LSU (34-2).
“It’s no one-man show around here. When I go down, the next man is up,” said Reese, who was honored as the Most Outstanding Player of the Final Four. “Every single time, every time I go out or Alexis (Morris) goes out, everybody always comes to step up.”
Trailing by 21 points early in the third quarter, Iowa started hitting from the outside to go on a 15-2 run, hitting four 3-pointers and converting a 3-point play to get within 65-57.
The Hawkeyes (31-7) trailed 73-64 with 1:03 left in the third quarter when Clark was called for a technical foul. She swatted the ball away on the floor after a foul call against a teammate. That counted as a personal foul for her, her fourth of the game.
“I thought they called it very, very tight,” Clark said. “Hit with a technical foul for throwing the ball under the basket — sometimes that’s how things go.”
Clark played the entire fourth quarter with four fouls but couldn’t get the Hawkeyes much closer.
“They really played well, they were ready to go. They did a great job. I’m just so proud of my team,” Iowa coach Lisa Bluder said. “This is brutal, it’s really tough to walk out of that locker room today and not be able to coach Monika (Czinano) and McKenna (Warnock) again. I’m very thankful for the season we had and don’t want to take anything away from that.”
After Katari Poole hit a 3-pointer in front of the LSU bench, Mulkey started weeping. A few seconds later after another LSU basket, Reese taunted Clark by putting her hand in front of her face with a “you can’t see me” gesture and then pointed to her ring finger at the end.
As the final seconds ticked off, Mulkey and Reese hugged, setting off a wild celebration by the Tigers.
The game was tight for the first 15 minutes before Carson got hot from the outside. She made all six of her shots in the second quarter, including four 3-pointers. After one of them, she threw her hands in the air and Mulkey mimicked it on the sidelines.
For good measure, the graduate student guard banked in a shot just before the halftime buzzer to give the Tigers a 59-42 lead at the break. It was the most points ever in the first half of a championship game, breaking the record held by Tennessee since 1998.
“I’ve been working for this my whole life,” Carson said at halftime. “It feels great to finally display it on this stage.”
LSU shot 58% from the field in the opening 20 minutes, including going nine for 12 from behind the arc. The Tigers finished the game shooting 54% from the field, including making 11 of 17 3-pointers.
Clark had 16 points and five assists before picking up her third foul with 3:56 to go in the half, which didn’t go over well with the sellout crowd of more than 19,000 fans.
Before Sunday, Carson had gone scoreless in five of her seven postseason games in her career. She had 11 points in this NCAA Tournament before the finale.
It was high-scoring first quarter despite there being a lot of stoppages because of foul calls, which made getting into an offensive flow more difficult. Clark had a huge first quarter, scoring 14 points, but Iowa trailed 27-22.
Carson banked in a 3-pointer before the buzzer.
HOUSTON, Texas (WISH) — Former Purdue University men’s basketball head coach Gene Keady is joining an exclusive club.
Keady is one of 12 individuals who make up the Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame Class of 2023.
The class was announced on Saturday.
“It’s the biggest honor I’ve ever achieved,” Keady said on Saturday.
Keady spent 25 seasons as Purdue’s head coach. He is still the winningest coach in program history with 512 wins at Purdue.
Keady was named Big Ten Coach of the Year seven times in his career.
“I think when you coach at all different levels, you get a feel of what you need to do to motivate your players and how they should cherish their education and their families and be part of a team,” said Keady. “And it’s always — as I said a while ago, it’s not about me. It’s about us. So that was the lesson I learned was all the players that I coached were always a joy to be with, and I really appreciated the fact that they were loyal to me.”
Keady led Purdue to the NCAA Tournament 17 times.
He previously was inducted into the National Collegiate Basketball Hall of Fame back in 2013.
Here is a complete list of the Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame Class of 2023:
- Gene Bess
- Pau Gasol
- David Hixon
- Gene Keady
- Dirk Nowitzki
- Tony Parker
- Gregg Popovich
- Dwayne Wade
- Gary Blair
- Becky Hammon
- 1976’s Women’s Olympic Basketball Team (Women’s Veterans)
- Jim Valvano (Contributor)
The 12 individuals will be enshrined in the Hall of Fame in August.