IU Basketball Coach - The Weekly Stock Report

Which coaches should you be buying as potential candidates and which ones should you be selling? Interested in the "Market Quotes" with what candidates have been saying about the IU vacancy? Find out in the first installment of HoosierNation.com's Coaching Stock Report...

Tom Crean – Crean has had a nice run at Marquette (140-73 in 7th season), highlighted by an appearance in the 2003 Final Four. After back-to-back NIT appearances in '04 and '05, he'll be back in the NCAA Tournament for the third time this season - a couple of big homecourt wins this week over No. 17 Georgetown and No. 9 Pitt guaranteed that. He's a Midwest guy, which will be a big plus in the eyes of Rick Greenspan. He's also a "name" coach who is a relentless recruiter.

Steve Alford Alford's a love ‘em or hate ‘em sort of candidate among IU fans, and some point to his sub-.500 conference record at Iowa as deal breaker. That's a negative, but don't overlook his New Castle, Ind., background. Greenspan has hired three coaches thus far (football's Terry Hoeppner, baseball's Tracy Smith, women's basketball's Sharon Versyp) and each is a homegrown Hoosier. Notice a trend? The timing from Alford's perspective couldn't be better. He's finally contending for a Big Ten title, and he's going to lose four seniors at season's end so it's a good time to pursue other options.

Rick Majerus – There's plenty of good when it comes to the former Utah head coach when you look at his win-loss record, but his age and health are huge drawbacks. Greenspan is looking for stability his this hire, and Majerus' health makes him a gamble. He'll likely be back on the sidelines next season, but at a program that is in need of someone to breath life into it. Indiana's situation isn't quite that desperate.

Randy Wittman/Scott Skiles – Wittman has the IU family ties, while Skiles is an Indiana product who starred at Michigan State and now has a home in Bloomington. While those are appealing attributes, their NBA coaching backgrounds might not be a big draw to Greenspan. Neither has coached at the college level before, so there are no indications about how effective they'd be as recruiters. While the command of Xs and Os are going to be important in the search process, so is the ability to keep players like Greg Oden, Mike Conley, Josh McRoberts and Dominic James from leaving the state to play their college basketball.

Kevin Stallings – Expect Greenspan to talk to the current Vanderbilt coach a great deal about IU's vacancy, but in more of a consulting role. Stallings and Greenspan have strong ties from their days together at Illinois State, and Stallings knows the lay of the Indiana land due to his background as a Purdue player and assistant coach. Expect Greenspan to rely on him for advice in his coaching search, not to re-establish IU as a national power as the school's next head coach.

Insider's Trading:
- There were plenty of headlines late last week suggesting that Ohio State Coach Thad Matta was saying no to Indiana, but don't be too quick to rule him out as a candidate for the IU job. The Buckeye coach has yet to explicitly say that he's not interested in coming to Bloomington. While he said that he doesn't think he's allowed to comment specifically on any coaching vacancies presumably by contract, you can't tell me OSU officials are keeping him from coming out and denying any interest in the IU job. There's got to be more to this, most likely Matta's uncertainty about how the NCAA is going rule in a couple of weeks in the aftermath of the Jim O'Brien violations.

Market Quotes:
- Michigan State Coach Tom Izzo on Tom Crean, a former MSU assistant who's been rumored as a strong candidate for the IU job: "Tom Crean has done an incredible job this year, and I think he's done a great job building that program. He did a great job when he was with me. Then in a five-year span he go them to a Final four, and then he had what happened to us a little bit. You lose a couple of those guys early, he lost the one guy early, a pretty good player in (Dwyane) Wade. Now he has a young team and a good team, and he's done an unbelievable job there. He's a good recruiter, he's a good person and he's a great coach, and that's a pretty good combination to have."

- Ohio State Guard J'Kel Foster about the speculation about Matta: "We know coach Matta loves this team. We know he's not going anywhere. We're not even thinking about that. We've got bigger and better things to look forward to."

Editor's Note: HoosierNation.com will have regular coaching stock updates leading up to IU's decision on a new head coach…be sure to visit regularly!

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