No. 45 favorite Hoosier? Picking Indiana’s Favorite Basketball Players, One Number at a Time
BLOOMINGTON, Ind. – Welcome to our summer series where Hoosier basketball fans can vote for their favorite Indiana players to wear each number. Today, we resume with all the best to wear the number 44.
Each day we’re going to give you four picks along with a short player bio to choose your favorite Hoosier who wore a certain number.
Here are your four No. 45 jersey picks in alphabetical order so we don’t show bias. Be sure to take the poll below via Twitter.
(Editor’s note: We’ll be taking results for 24 hours on the poll, then sharing the results on this story the next day, so check back regularly to see the results.)
Jim Crews (1972-76)
Jim Crews, a native of Normal, Ill., spent four seasons with the Hoosiers early in legendary coach Bob Knight’s career.
The guard was a member of three NCAA Tournament teams, including a Final Four appearance against UCLA in 1973, an Elite Eight run against Kentucky in 1975 and finally a national championship title against Michigan in his senior season, the first title domestic for Knight.
That season, the Hoosiers went undefeated with a 32-0 overall record and an 18-0 conference final.
While at Indiana, Crews contributed 346 total points, 196 assists, and 132 rebounds. He wasn’t done wearing the cream and the crimson, so he spent the next eight years serving as Knight’s assistant before becoming head coach of the University of England men’s basketball team. Evansville.
Crews became an Army coach after 17 years with the Purple Aces and made his final stop at Saint Louis University where he first served as an assistant before taking over as big boss once again.
Andrae Patterson (1994-98)
Forward Andrae Patterson ranks 26th on Indiana’s all-time leading scorers list with 1,365 points. He also added 687 rebounds, 156 assists and 104 steals.
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Although Patterson never won national titles with the Hoosiers, he qualified for four NCAA tournaments with the team. Indiana’s best showing during that stint came during Patterson’s senior season when the Hoosiers played in the second round of the tournament against Connecticut.
After college, the Minnesota Timberwolves drafted Patterson 46th overall in the second round of the 1998 NBA draft. After a few seasons, Patterson played overseas and later returned to the NBA scene as coordinator of the player staff/player programs for the Utah Jazz and now as assistant general manager of the Portland Trail Blazers.
Brian Sloan (1984-89)
McLeansboro, Illinois forward/center Brian Sloan hasn’t stacked the stat sheet as he totaled 181 points and 143 rebounds during his Hoosiers’ career, but he’s certainly contributed significant minutes to a team. talent led by Coach Knight.
The former Illinois high school Mr. Basketball is a member of the 1987 Hoosiers national championship team, where Indiana beat second-seeded Syracuse by one point for the fifth league title. ‘Indiana.
The next two seasons, Sloan and the Hoosiers qualified for the tournament, including a Sweet 16 appearance in Sloan’s senior season against No. 3 seed Seton Hall.
Ray Tolbert (1977-81)
Ray Tolbert, a native of Anderson, Indiana, ranks 21st on Indiana’s all-time leading scorers list with 1,427 total points. He also contributed a whopping 874 rebounds and won an NCAA championship title against North Carolina in his senior season for the Hoosiers’ fourth crown.
Prior to that magical senior season, Tolbert was part of a Sweet 16 run, an NIT Championship against Purdue where Tolbert was co-MVP and another Sweet 16 before the big trophy.
After graduating, Tolbert was selected by the New Jersey Nets as the 18th overall pick in the first round of the 1981 NBA Draft. He played for five other NBA teams and a few overseas teams before becoming the coach of the ABA champions Anderson and later the college assistant at Fishers High School where he currently works.
No. 45 all-time in Indiana
Here are all the players who have worn No. 45 at Indiana:
- Parker Stewart — (2021-22)
- Andrae Patterson — (1994-98)
- Brian Sloan — (1984-89)
- Ray Tolbert — (1977-81)
- Mike Noon — (1976-77)
- Jim Crews — (1972-76)
- Mike Branaugh — (1968-70)
- Gary Leinberg — (1965-68)
- Larry Cooper — (1963-65)
- Tom Bolyard — (1960-63)
- Ron Horn — (1958-59)
- jerry thompson — (1955-58)
- Frank Stemle — (1953-55)
- John Roper — (1944-45)
Vote for your favorite number 45 on Twitter
You will be able to vote on Twitter for your favorite player with each number. Here is the link to today’s poll for #45.