Bloomington, Ind. – The disintegration of the IU basketball roster continued Friday.
IU Coach Tom Crean announced that juniors DeAndre Thomas and Jamarcus Ellis along with sophomore Armon Bassett would not return to the team next season. Ellis and Bassett had previously been dismissed by interim coach Dan Dakich last month, while Thomas was dismissed by Crean Friday.
Friday's announcement comes less than 24 hours after freshman Eli Holman decided to not return to Bloomington in the fall. Holman made his intentions known to Crean Thursday afternoon, and became agitated enough that university police were called to the scene. No arrests were made, and Holman publicly apologized for his actions Friday morning.
The latest departures leaves IU with only two returning players who began their Hoosier careers as scholarship players – Jordan Crawford and Brandon McGee. Kyle Taber, meanwhile, has been on scholarship after originally beginning his IU career as a walk-on.
While Crean didn't go into specifics about why the players were dismissed, he did issue a statement about the kind of players he wants on the IU roster.
"Our staff is going to ensure that anyone who attends this university and wears the Indiana uniform will make this privilege among the highest priorities and not treat the opportunity as an entitlement," Crean said. "We fully expect our student-athletes to accept the responsibilities academically, athletically and socially that come with representing one of the top programs in college basketball history."
In case there was any doubt about the likely struggles on the court next season, the recent wave of dismissals only goes to confirm that Crean's first season in Bloomington will be a challenging on. Indiana is currently slated to have only seven scholarship players on the roster next season – Taber, Crawford, McGee and 2008 signees Nick Williams, Matt Roth, Tom Pritchard and Devon Dumes.
"Before you build a team, you need to develop a family," Crean said. "We will go through the learning process, feel some growing pains and experience some bumps in the road along the way. We need the Hoosier Nation to rally around this program as we go through these stages."
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Thomas Dismissed, Ellis and Bassett Also Gone
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