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Indiana University

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Crean Challenges fans

IU coach wants electric feeling at Assembly Hall

– Tom Crean has heard the stories of atmosphere at Assembly Hall when Duke visited for an ACC/Big Ten Challenge showdown.

He’s even seen video of the 2005 game, which the Blue Devils won 75-67.

The Indiana coach said a similar electric-feeling to the building will go a long way against Maryland. The Terrapins (4-2) come to Bloomington for the first time today as part of the 2009 ACC/Big Ten Challenge.

“We’ve got to start building memories like that with crowds like that and a game like that,” Crean said Saturday. “If the Big Ten and ESPN are going to put us in situations like they did last year with us playing Wake Forest with a team that’s picked to finish 11th, and playing Maryland with a team that’s picked to finish 10th, then we’ve got to have the crowd help us in every possible way.”

Crean said Monday the game was close to selling out. Crowd support will help, as will the continued progression of Devan Dumes.

The senior guard scored a season-high 11 points in Saturday’s 90-72 win against Northwestern State.

“Devan had a good week,” Crean said. “Every day has been a better response. I’m very proud of him (last) week, and we need to keep that up. And he learned a lot over the last couple of games.

“That’s the Devan we need to have on our club right there.”

Dumes led the Hoosiers (3-3) in scoring last year, averaging 12.7 points per game. Slowed during the preseason by a knee injury, Dumes said he’s at about 85 percent.

He started 25 of 27 games he appeared in last year. This year, he’s come off the bench. He’s averaging 4.8 points in 15.2 minutes per game.

“It’s hard, especially if you don’t know if you’re really 100 percent yet,” Dumes said.

“Especially when you are trying to find your groove and you don’t know what your limits are but you still have to go out there and make the most of it.”

Dumes is one of Indiana’s long-range threats. He led IU with 59 three-pointers last season and is second to Maurice Creek with five this year.

The Hoosiers will need all the outside shooting they can get with Matt Roth out indefinitely with a foot injury.

“We do need more consistent shooting, and Devan I think started to show that (against Northwestern State),” Crean said.

“When you’re building like we’re building and trying to get this up, you need everybody to carry their load and build that consistency.”

lpope@jg.net

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