Crean and #1 IU almost played exhibition at Bellarmine - 14 News, WFIE, Evansville, Henderson, Owensboro

Crean and #1 IU almost played exhibition at Bellarmine

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LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) - Bellarmine University spent the week taking on two preseason top 25 Division I teams. The Knights followed up an 86-61 loss on Monday at #24 Cincinnati with a 65-46 loss at #2 Louisville on Thursday.

Those experiences will prove to be invaluable for Scotty Davenport's team, but it was almost even better. #1 Indiana offered to come to Knights Hall to play Bellarmine in an exhibition. "You know we like Bellarmine, we'd have liked to come up and played and exhibition game," Indiana head coach Tom Crean told the crowd at the "Coaches Raising the Bar for Kids" event in Jeffersonville, Indiana, in June.

"That's a true story," Scotty Davenport said. "We would have but we found out we couldn't," Crean added. Davenport went on to tell the story, "He said, 'I will play a road game, we'll divide it half and half, we'll split all the proceeds, but the Division I rule says you must host it."

Crean's only experience in Knights Hall came in March of 2011 when he was recruiting current sophomore Remy Abell. Abell's Eastern High squad beat Jeffersontown in the 7th Region final.

"I've never been to a Bellarmine game, but I did see a high school game in there," Crean told WAVE 3 Sports. "To me, I'm like, wow, this is unbelievable. If you could put your team in that environment. There aren't many Division I atmospheres that are like that building, let along Division II. I'm not an expert on Division II atmosphere's, I can name some Division III atmospheres, based on coaching at that level, but that is phenomenal. To have gone in there would have been awesome."

Crean left the door open for a future visit, adding, "I hope they change the rule on that someday, I'd be all for it."

The Hoosiers only played one exhibition, they tip off the season Friday hosting Bryant at 8 p.m. in Assembly Hall.

Bellarmine, ranked 4th in the nation in Division II, tips off it's season Thursday, November 15, hosting Wayne State. Tip off is set for 7 p.m in Knights Hall.

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