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Terry Hoeppner dies of brain cancer

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Terry Hoeppner dies of brain cancer

Unread postby StewieG » Tue Jun 19, 2007 12:22 pm

Hoeppner is Indiana University's football coach. He was 59.

I was at Miami University when he was the football coach there. He recruited, among others, Ben Roethlisberger. He helped build that program up and when he left it really took a dive (although some of that has to be due to Roethlisberger leaving as well). Coach Hoep will be sorely missed by fans of Miami and Indiana. He was a good coach, and a better man.
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Unread postby furls » Tue Jun 19, 2007 12:35 pm

Horrible, Horrible news.

For the first time, I thought IU might be on the right track.

This is an excerpt from my OSU vs. IU football preview last year titled Hoosier Daddy.

http://www.theclevelandfan.com/article_ ... php?id=924

Had you told me at the beginning of the year that Indiana would have four wins when they came to Columbus, I would have asked why the basketball team was playing so poorly. Even though they are transitioning into the Kelvin Sampson era, I still would have expected better.

Now if you had told me that you were talking about the football team, I would have laughed in your face, rudely, for there are few things in life that are certain: death, taxes, and Indiana sitting prominently at the bottom of the Big Ten standings.

All this begs the questions, how in the hell did this happen and will it last? Well I think you can blame a lot of Indiana’s success on their new coach, Terry Hoeppner. Hoeppner, in his second year, is making substantial headway towards turning this program around. Things are really looking up in Bloomington for the long term because the Indiana job was a dream job for the Fort Wayne, Indiana native.

Lightning in the bottle is not enough to turn things around in Bloomington. The Hoosiers need a coach and a program that is committed to winning in the long term, not a staff that is going to take off at the first offers following initial success. It appears that this is exactly what they got in Hoeppner. While a head coach at Miami (Ohio), Hoeppner stated that the only way he would leave Oxford was if he was offered the job in Bloomington, so one can only presume that he is not renting his house right now.

The task he has undertaken is nearly immeasurable. Indiana University is a basketball school and it is obvious even at their football games. Earlier this year, fans at a Hoosier home game began chanting the name of a prized basketball recruit that was rumored to be at the stadium. Ironically, he was not there and it was the only time that afternoon that the crowd noise rose above a dull roar.

What Hoeppner brings to the table is a gritty toughness, the kind that is a throwback to the Big Ten of old. In his first real recruiting class, this year, Hoeppner brought in a shocking SEVEN offensive lineman. SEVEN. Last year, Ohio State’s entire recruiting class consisted of twenty players. Hoeppner motivates his players and rapidly crushing the culture of losing that has prevailed in Bloomington for twenty years (the Hoosier’s last winning season was in 1987).

The media has really latched on to this story. They love the heroic coach recovering from brain surgery and rallying his troops to two consecutive conference wins. It is the kind of feel good Cinderella melodrama that the talking heads love to indulge in nearly as much as they love rambling about Miami thuggery.
Coming from a Wolverine, we're the football equivalent of a formerly abused wife of a meth addict who just remarried the safe nice guy. We're just glad we have someone who's aware that it's a rivalry and that tackling on defense is integral. Baby steps.

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Unread postby Mr. MacPhisto » Tue Jun 19, 2007 12:54 pm

Very depressing. Hoeppner was a great coach. I thought Indiana had an outside shot at a bowl game last year and a legit shot at one this year. He was turning it around in Bloomington.

And the guy was young from our modern outlook on age. I figured the situation had gotten worse when it was announced a few days ago that he'd be on leave for the year.

He also presented a great story. The native Indianan returning home to give some hope in football to the big state school.

It'd be nice to see Indiana progress this season and do honor to Hoeppner in that way. A bowl berth would be huge for that program and really reveal the good work that he did there.
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Unread postby mswerb » Tue Jun 19, 2007 9:50 pm

Indiana also broke grounds for new facilities with the former coach's wife in attendance. His wife was asked if they should postpone the ceremony and she said that "It would not be what my husband would have done, carry on as planned" pretty gutsy on her part. It is always sad to see someone pass away so early in life.
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Unread postby swerb » Wed Jun 27, 2007 7:49 am

Yeah Hoepnner built a hell of a program in Ashland. They were a top ten team IIRC his and Bens last year there.

Sad to see him pass, I too really felt he was one of the better non-big name coaches out there, and had IU on the right track.
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