I know this is selfish, however, for once, Covid has had a positive affect. In this case, on the future of the IU basketball program. Trayce Jackson-Davis returns to Bloomington for his senior season after a positive Covid test kept him from pursuing his NBA dreams. I always felt that he had a lot more to prove at the college level and his draft stock was not high. Perhaps, First Team All American honors through another year of play will get him the attention he deserves. Without the Covid setback, he probably would have come back anyways but let’s give the virus its due!

The future of IU basketball looks bright, but I’m cautioned from chugging the Kool-Aid. (See Post #1840). I drank too much of it before last year’s IU football season, so I’m not ready to buy in to the preseason hype. Injuries and the transfer portal can easily put a damper on things, so I’ve always preferred reduced expectations. There’s already talk of a North Carolina match-up in the BIG/ACC Challenge, and perhaps another top-10 match up against the Big East. The Hoosiers are already headed to Vegas in December for a game against Arizona and a week later they travel to Kansas. They could have four quick losses before the BIG battles even begin! Hopefully, they won’t bite off more than they can chew and not have the Kool-Aid to wash it down.¬†

Let’s instead start with the basics of beating Wisconsin, Iowa, Rutgers, and Purdue – four bitter losses last season. We did manage to stop the bleeding against the Boilermakers, but fell short in West Lafayette. It was indeed a positive finish for the year as the Hoosiers had their best showing in years in the BIG tourney. The team also barely got to the Big Dance for the first time in the TJD era but ran out of gas. Slowly mix-in four top recruits that should add depth and scoring and we just might have a delicious¬† Kool-Aid concoction. Big gulps are not good but BIG wins are a priority. Let’s sip our way through the season and avoid a Kool-Aid hangover.