Indiana Basketball – Don’t Blame Tom Crean for Theo Pinson’s Commitment to UNC

by Kent Sterling

UnknownAll you can do is all you can do, and by all accounts that’s what Indiana Men’s Basketball Coach Tom Crean did in his pursuit to snare five-star recruit Theo Pinson.

The 6’6″, 180 lbs. wing committed to North Carolina today.  He’s similar to Michael Jordan in more than appearance, although a better passer.  He’s hard not to like, this kid from Greensboro, North Carolina.

Outrecruiting a home court advantage is difficult, as UNC coach Roy Williams found out when Crean and Indiana won the battle for NBA bound Cody Zeller.

I’m glad word of the announcement came out of the blue and was followed by the commitment itself very quickly.  Fans didn’t have a chance to get all worked up like they did for Andrew Wiggins, who was treated poorly after announcing his choice to attend Kansas.

It was easy over the past few days of digging into who Pinson is to figure out why the nation’s blue chip programs were after him.  He’s an excellent passer, and solid shooter, a generous teammate, and long enough to be a very good defender.  I didn’t read or hear an unkind word about him, and every morning he tweets “Good Morning, World!”  Hard not to like that kid.

Indiana will move on in its recruiting and should wish Pinson well.  Indiana fans should too.  They should leave the bush league nonsense to Kentucky.

9 thoughts on “Indiana Basketball – Don’t Blame Tom Crean for Theo Pinson’s Commitment to UNC

  1. Larry in Chicago

    Crean must go. He cannot close the deal. First he totally underachieves in the NCAA Tournament with two lottery picks on the court and now this. I realize you are a Crean-apologist so this propaganda is expected. I am going to turn to for the real truth about IU basketball.

    1. kentsterling Post author

      There is a weird anti-Crean sentiment in Indiana, but that doesn’t mean that Crean did anything wrong in the recruiting of Pinson. This isn’t an affirmation of Crean as the coach of the Hoosiers, but Pinson’s decision is not an indictment of him either.

  2. Chuck Crabb

    LOL. Even when it has nothing to do with UK, they get a mention. The Kent Sterling obsession with UK and Calipari is truly entertaining!

    This is Chuck Crabb…………

    1. kentsterling Post author

      Entertaining is what we shoot for here. The example Kentucky couldn’t provide on the floor at Robert Morris, they pony up in spades as a classless fanbase.

      1. Chuck Crabb

        It’s kinda sad Kent. I so much want to like you because I think you are a good guy at heart, and I really enjoy most of your pieces (especially the one about traffic court). However, I am a UK fan and inevitably I see the daily spew.

        Just wondering – did you experience some sort of very negative experience with a fan or the like? I understand the rivalry, but your’s comes across as pure hate most of the time.

        1. kentsterling Post author

          I’m not a big fan of the way UK currently does business or the blind eye fans turn because of the wins. Colleges should be about education first, and the systemic hoarding of one-and-dones make a mockery of collegiate athletics.

          It’s not about the fans as much as it is about Calipari’s formula for success.

          1. Chuck Crabb

            I get that, but the rule is controlled by the NBA Players Association, so they are the ones that must help out the college game. But the Players Association is controlled by the agents, and the agents want to get guys to the league as fast as possible so they can get paid. They alos believe that the D-League is the better way to get better faster.

            I know Cal rubs a lot of people the wrong way – I get that. But he is operating within the rules, and by all accounts his players are going to class and doing very well. And the OAD’s are finishing the semesters too (sans Daniel Orton).

            I have a hard time believing that Crean would turn away the players that Cal is bringing on board. I share your utopic sentiment of that college basketball is for college players, but the reality is that is all about winning and money.

          2. kentsterling Post author

            You write about the reality of the college game as though it’s beyond anyone’s control, and it isn’t. If the league wants to take people early, let them go back to drafted kids out of high school. If a kid is good enough to play, he should be able to cash paychecks just as they can in every other profession.

            Operating within the rules isn’t an excuse. There are three levels of morality – preconventional, conventional, and postconventional. With preconventional, there is no regard to right and wrong. Conventional morality is used by those who rely on the rules of others to form their behavior. Postconventional is for the more enlightened people who determine what is right based upon the effect actions have upon others.

            Calipari is getting paid a truckload of cash while his players work for free. Calipari’s players are never getting their degrees. Calipari is supported by people who look at college basketball as though winning is the only thing. That’s the way sports is for professionals, but in college the mission is a little more complex.

            I hope Kentucky players go to class and do the work necessary to get good grades. That’s the least they should get for playing ball at UK.

  3. Jeff Gregory

    I don’t blame Crean for Pinson. Like you, I appreciate that the IU fans didn’t turn on him. The way the Wildcats’ fans turned on Wiggins and to some extent, Jaquan Lyle (for removing UK off his list) has been sickening.

    I am not sold on Crean for other reasons, but I am not ready to show him the door, either. What he has done to get the program back to the national conversation should not be under-appreciated.


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