Indiana men’s Basketball’s busy offseason continued yesterday with the announcement that Calbert Cheaney would be joining the staff as director of player development. This is Cheaney’s second stint with Indiana, after spending 2011-2013 with the program in various capacities.
Cheaney remains the all-time leading scorer in Big Ten history and is the only Hoosier to have ever won the Wooden award, which he took home in 1993 alongside Big Ten MVP. He went on to be the sixth pick in the 1993 NBA draft.
Cheaney spent 13 seasons in the NBA, averaging just under 10 points per game in that span before getting into coaching. For the last three years he’s been with the Pacers in a player development role, but he also has six years as an assistant coach at both the G-League and college levels.
Cheaney will not be involved with recruiting in his new job, but it’s easy to see why you would want somebody with his experience and pedigree around in a coaching capacity. He’s played and coached at the level that every high school recruit aspires to.
In Mike Woodson’s words, “Our players can ask him, how do you become successful when you get to college? What can I do to help my team win championships? What do I need to do to be an All-American or National Player of the Year? How did you become a first round draft pick who played 13 years in the NBA?”
Being able to hire Cheaney away from the Pacers for a non-recruiting role is a reflection of the excitement and momentum Mike Woodson has built at Indiana over the last three seasons. He’s brought in elite recruits from across the country, alumni from different generations of IU hoops, and enough NIL money to beat Duke and Kansas.
Bloomington is the place to be.