More newspapers around the country are mentioning the upset victory of Belmont’s men’s basketball team over Missouri, including the Chicago Tribune and the South Bend Tribune, both of which carried the recent story from the Los Angeles Times, and a story in the Miami Herald, which also ran on the Knight Ridder News Wire and was published in the San Jose Mercury News which compared the fortunes of Belmont’s men’s basketball program with that of the storied but struggling Indiana program. Excerpt:
The reeling Indiana Hoosiers are only 20 months removed from a national title game appearance, but they’re performing like a team that only recently made the leap to big-time college basketball. Heck, some might consider that an affront to tiny Belmont University, which raised eyebrows last month by stunning Missouri. The Bruins were a NAIA program until making the leap to Division I in 1996.
Nobody is suggesting the Hoosiers have descended to that level. But the situation appears grim at the tradition-steeped school. Indiana isn’t just losing, it’s being blown out.
Perhaps the Hoosiers should take some lessons from Belmont, a Nashville-based school led by the NCAA’s reigning field-goal and free-throw percentage leaders from last season in Adam Mark and Steve Drabyn. Mark is connecting on 63 percent of his shots (he made 70 percent in 2002-03), and Drabyn is hitting 89 percent of his free throws, down from 95 percent.
Belmont (8-3) has never played in the NCAA tournament. But the Bruins appear to have a better chance of doing so than Indiana this season.