Crean: Hollowell must play in backcourt

Sophomore forward Jeremy Hollowell has become the team's backup PG.

When I worked for my former employer, I wrote about some of the major offseason storylines surrounding the Indiana basketball team in the summer. One of the main ones was who would be Indiana's backup point guard.

Yogi Ferrell is the starter, and that's no surprise. He figures to play heavy minutes for the Hoosiers all season long. But who would be the backup, I wondered.

Senior transfer Evan Gordon seemed like a likely option. Freshman Stanford Robinson, maybe even more likely. And while both Gordon and Robinson will likely see time at the point this season, neither is Tom Crean's top choice for the backup point guard spot.

Jeremy Hollowell, a 6-foot-8 sophomore forward from Indianapolis, has gotten a lot of time at the point guard position through Indiana's two exhibition game, and Crean expects that to continue throughout the season.

While he doesn't look like your prototypical point guard, Hollowell is a good ball handler for his size, and he has the ability to make plays for himself and for others. When he's in the game, the Hoosiers like to run a weave offense up top dominated by dribble handoffs.

"He has to play in the backcourt for us this year," Crean said. "Is that natural for him? Probably not. We don't have a lot of what you'd characterize as guards."

Having a forward run the point isn't an entirely new thing for IU. Christian Watford dribbled the ball up at times during his career to take some of the ball pressure off the traditional point guards.

But when Watford was on the roster, the Hoosiers had two other point guards -- Ferrell and Jordan Hulls -- who started, and others (Remy Abell and Victor Oladipo) that could handle the ball.

This year's team is a little different. Will Hollowell succeed at the point? Only time will tell on that one. Top Stories