Tom Dienhart, Senior Writer, October 16, 2014

This is a big year for Indiana. The Hoosiers need to rebound from a sub-par season that saw them go 17-15 overall and 7-11 in the Big Ten. Back in 2013, IU won the Big Ten and was one of the top teams in the nation. A key to any return to the form expected from IU fans will be the play on the interior.

?You have to be able to rebound,? said Crean.


But, how will the Hoosiers do on the glass? And can they also get points on the interior after the unit lost some key personnel inside?

?We are hoping for the emergence of Hanner Mosquera-Pera,? said Crean. ?Consistency is key. Not being able to play long stretches has hurt him in the past. He needs to be a disrupter and a force on defense. He needs to be able to guard anyone on the court. He also has to score for us in transition.?

IU scored 25 percent its points in the paint last year, according to Crean. He knows that must continue. Indiana will space things out to take advantage of Yogi Ferrell?s court skills to open things up. This should be one of the better backcourts in the conference. IU wants to take advantage of it.

Another wild card: freshman James Blackmon, a McDonald's All-American who augments this backcourt.

?He has come in with a good work ethic,? said Crean. ?He?s constantly working on his game. He knows he?s good but knows he needs to get better. He?s going to be fun to coach.?

Blackmon may be the best freshman in the league–and a huge key to the program finding its old championship stride.

Watch Crean's full remarks here: