MnB B1G Preview: Know Your Foe - Indiana Edition

Pat Lovell-USA TODAY Sports

Indiana is the type of school that neither polarizes or stirs emotion in its outside observers. Except for Tom Crean. Screw that guy. Anyway, Indiana has a beautiful campus, nice fans, and some amazing basketball pants. It's Know Your Foe: Indiana.

FAMOUS PEOPLE WHO WILLINGLY CALL THEMSELVES HOOSIERS. There has been a number of them over the years. Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban, Vice President Dan Quayle, Wikipedia founder Jimmy Wales, Defense Secretary Robert Gates, and my favorite: Lee Majors. And, don't tell anyone, but, Jim Nabors attended Alabama.

THE CANDYMAN CAN AND WILL WEAR THOSE PANTS. Just where did those striped basketball warmup pants come from? Short version of the legend is that Bob Knight's 1971 team decided to wear them, and they looked good, so future teams kept wearing them. Perhaps that's why Knight was always throwing chairs and yelling? Poor guy couldn't get his own pair. That knit sweater was always classier, though.

THAT TIME MICHIGAN BROKE LEE CORSO'S BRAIN. The Sunshine Scooter was the Hoosier head man from 1973 to 1982, and has, likely to this day, never lived down the defeat they suffered in Ann Arbor in '79. Prior to the game-winning touchdown pass from John Wangler to Anthony Carter, Corso caught a lateral pass on the sidelines, and promptly lost his mind as he thought the clock should have run out (note that this type of play is now illegal in college football). See this video for the lateral pass that got Corso's rutabagas so steamed.

INDIANA'S BIGGEST NON-ATHLETIC ACCOMPLISHMENT INVOLVES SEX. Well, in the research world, anyway. Alfred Kinsey, a zoology professor at IU, decided to study human sexual behavior, because the physiology of gall wasps was just not enough for this glory-hungry scientist. He and his staff of assistants studied 18,000 cases of people doing things between the sheets, and the Kinsey Institute is what stands today as his legacy. No, the real Kinsey was not as handsome as Liam Neeson in the film about his work.

THERE'S NO SCHOOL MASCOT BECAUSE NO ONE CAN DECIDE WHAT HOOSIER MEANS. At least Michigan has a mythical mascot in an almost-extinct rodent, but Indiana still struggles with what exactly the word Hoosier means or what one might look like. Many have tried to uncover this mystery, but a few of the old guard alumni have their own theories. A Hoosier is either some type of early settler or backwoods outdoors man, possibly not unlike a cross between that guy in the Dr. Pepper commercials who rows a boat with a friendly bear, and Cletus the Slack-jawed Yokel. Either way, don't expect a physical mascot anytime soon, as IU is perfectly happy leaving the mystery unsolved. Why not just have a guy dress up as Gene Hackman?

OBSCURE NON-GENE HACKMAN-RELATED MOVIE INVOLVING IU.  Every year the Bloomington campus hosts what's called The Little 500, a 200-lap bike race that is the largest in the United States. At one point, they held the race at Memorial Stadium, but it's currently at another campus field. In 1979, a film called Breaking Away had some scenes shot around Bloomington, and used the Little 500 as stand-in for a bike race in the movie. The film's plot involves four college buddies who live in Bloomington and compete for the favor of an attractive young woman.

The Seventies were weird.

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