Brenda?

Without rehashing my previous post about the history of transfers, you can read that here let me try to calm you all in the best way I know how.

At the end of Season 4 of Beverly Hills, 90210 Shannen Doherty decided to leave the show. She had been a notorious pain in the ass for a while and everyone was largely sick of dealing with her nonsense. She was the first departure from a show that was a massive hit. How big a hit? The lowest rated episode of that 4th season pulled down a 9.8 rating, that translates into 9,231,600 viewers. By comparison, The Big Bang Theory, the #1 show on all of TV last week pulled a 10.4 rating. There was a lot of concern about how the show would fill her shoes. She was one of the two twins whose move from Minnesota got the whole ball rolling, after all.

Enter Tiffani Amber-Theissen.

Valeria Malone moved to Beverly Hills from Buffalo after the death of her father, and the show just got more awesome. You think Brenda would have gone with Dylan to Punta Brava to get back all of his money and watch him get in a sword fight, or smoked pot in Casa Walsh, or two-timed Steve with Dylan, or helped Dylan leave rehab and crash his car, or co-hosted a house party that set Kelly on fire with a random lesbian, or slept with Donna’s boyfriend, or bought a night club, or got a tattoo, or tried to seduce Brandon? Nope.

Sometimes when people leave, things get better.

David Caruso left, Jimmy Smits came in. NYPD Blue, already great, got better.

Coach died, Woody came in Cheers got better. Diane left, Rebecca came in. Cheers got better.

Andre Harris, Delray Brooks and Courtney Witte left. Keith Smart and Dean Garrett came in. IU won the national championship.

Sometimes, when people leave. Things get better.

So, there’s that part of why you should calm down.

How about this part.

This year’s team was bad. The chemistry seemed off. The players seemed dumb. They collapsed at the end of games all the time. They didn’t reach any sort of post season play. And if twitter is any indication, they were all very happy to go home over break.

Why would you assume that everyone on a bad team would come back?

Why would you assume they should?

Why would you want that?

I am so fine with the player departures that happened today. I’m actually pretty happy about it. This team needed an overhaul, not just graduating Will and Evan while replacing them with James, Robert, and Max. That causes a modest improvement.

This way, you lose a guy who not only didn’t perform up to expectations, but also seemed to suck the life out of the team every time he got on the court. You lose a guy billed a shooter who never shot and was poised to be our elder statesman next year. Likely from the bench. And a couple of walk-ons.

And you completely rework the make up of the team. How is that not a good thing?

Need I remind you how little fun you had watching this team play?

I know. I know. This many defections says terrible things about Tom Crean for some reason. It’s a leap of logic I just can’t make that one guy goes pro, one guy transfers mid-year, and two more non-contributors transfer at the end of the year and this means Crean has lost the team and has unhappy players who, barring the presence of the guy they came to play for in the first place, would have been totally happy after a losing season. And all of them would have signed up for another season with better players coming up behind them. Makes total sense to me.

But what about this? What happens if Crean does nothing? If no one transfers and next year we have a mild improvement while Jeremy does nothing and Austin continues to seem like a nice guy who can’t, or won’t, shoot. How much will Crean’s inactions prove to you that he’s a terrible coach, asleep at the wheel, letting the program drift into yearly mediocrity, or worse? My guess is, a lot.

Now, I could be wrong. Maybe every person who is leaving, or has left, IU in the last three years, has left for the same reason. It’s entirely possible that different kids, with different skills and experiences, with different amounts of playing time behind and ahead of them, all made the same decision for the same reason. And that reason is that Tom Crean has poor substitution patterns, or over-signs, or claps too much, or whatever he’s done that not only bothers you, but also drove off all these kids who a. you don’t know, b. are nothing like you, c. and have a much different experience of this season than you had.

That’s all very possible. It’s also possible that monkeys might fly out of my butt.

When you find yourself losing your mind over this, please repeat this to yourself, out loud if it helps, preferably in a full elevator, “Kids transfer from every program, every year. This isn’t even a large amount. It’s two kids last year and two this year. That’s pretty standard. Also, this team was bad and you know what’s worse than a lot of changes? No change at all. We’re going to be better for this. Oh, sorry, this is my floor.”

 

Jeff Taylor