Tom Crean was born March 25, 1966 in Mount Pleasant, Michigan and is the head coach of the Indiana Hoosiers men's basketball team. His previous head coaching job was at Marquette University (19992008), where the program had averaged 20 wins a year, won a conference championship, and made six postseason appearances, including the 2003 NCAA Final Four, the program's third appearance all-time and first since 1977.
Crean established a reputation as a strong recruiter, selling recruits on the notion of joining a family and making sure that players' families are involved in the program. Crean is known as one of college basketball's best talent evaluators. Crean's attention was cited by Madison native Wesley Matthews as the biggest factor in his decision to attend Marquette instead of the University of Wisconsin-Madison, where both of his parents had been athletes.
Crean's basketball philosophy involves defensive pressure and fast breaks. His style involves contesting each of the opponents steps on the court. Crean utilizes the halfcourt defense, and requires great ball pressure, great help, challenging shots, and defensive rebounding. Shot selection is extremely important, focusing on spacing, inside-out attacks, penetration and kick. On offense, Crean has a reputation for his magnitude of offensive sets and their multitude of options, with one opposition coach estimating about 400 different sets run.
Crean is also known to excel in public relations, charming alumni and press. Crean started the tradition of Midnight Madness at Marquette, which was seen as an immediate success. Between 1999 and 2006, the team saw a 70% overall increase in attendance, three total attendance records broken, and 1.5 million fans pass through the turnstiles. According to former Marquette athletic director Bill Cords, "He's done so many things outside of basketball for the good of the community and the good of people in the state." Crean also participates in Al's Memorial Run and Walk for Children's Hospital, a charity event started by former Marquette coach Al McGuire.
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