It must have felt so good. Gus Johnson worked up into a lather that aroused the faithful. The fans were loud and strong, all night long. And when the clock hit zero, Assembly Hall exploded in ecstasy as the Hoosier faithful Crimson and Creamed the court.
But the Hoosiers weren't allowed to lay around and enjoy the post-victory endorphins. Haters be hatin'. Paraphrased, the haters say, "A storied program like Indiana should not be storming the court like some mid-major."
The Hoosier faithful have been scrambling to defend their students coming onto the floor. Greg Rosenstein from the Indiana Daily Student newspaper's sports blog:
For everything the Hoosiers have gone through in the past few years – recruiting violations, ineligibility issues, injury problems – I can see why those in attendance would want to rush the floor.
You know, Kentucky fans have went through all those things. The scandals and NCAA penalties of the late 1980s were much worse than Kelvin Sampson's 3-way recruiting scandal. In Rick Pitino's first year, his undersized and limited-talent Wildcats beat AP Poll #25 Alabama in Rupp Arena, and there was no court storming. A few weeks later, Pitino secured a significant upset by defeating #12 LSU in Rupp. Again the Kentucky fans didn't rush the court.
Perhaps that's not a fair comparison for the Hoosiers. (Besides the fact that Kentucky fans only get aroused when they can complain about being persecuted. Free Enes!) The IDS's Greg Rosenstein continues:
It was also Tom Crean’s first win at IU against a ranked opponent.
Well, he has been there for three seasons. That's is a long time to be pent up for a top-25 win. I mean, look at Crean running around the stadium after the game
basking in the cheers without bringing his team along cheering for the fans:
Clearly the coach needed to let it all out.
But shouldn't the storied institution of Indiana basketball -- you know, the one with banners on the wall -- act like a team that was once feared for their incredible winning tradition and semi-psychotic coach? Not according to Terry Hutchens on his IndyStar HoosierInsider blog:
Sure, if you have a team that is used to winning big games and a program that is considered one of the elite, you probably don’t rush the court in that situation. But Indiana basketball is none of those things.
I absolutely agree. #iulol
Evan Hibert -- a man who's heart is clear of Crimson and Cream -- posts a biting analysis of Coach Tom Crean's underwhelming tenure at Indiana University. One thing that Evan didn't mention: Despite the embarrassing losses this season, Indiana fans have no real desire to replace Crean. Partly because Crean has shown some (admittedly very-far-off) recruiting prowess in winning the state of Indiana for IU.
And Cody Zeller. #iulol