They got the ball rolling, but in the end, life and complications got in the way.
It appeared the first IU basketball themed team would compete this year in The Basketball Tournament, the million dollar, winner-take-all event televised live on ESPN.
Former IU players Devonte Green and Josh Newkirk were announced in May as competitors for a team named “Assembly Ball.”
Other former IU players said they would participate as well.
And enough money was raised to make it happen.
But the rest just got too messy to reach the finish line.
One star player was dealing with an injury, another had a child, and a third suddenly jumped ship to another team.
In the end, the organizers couldn’t pull together the right pieces, and lacked a player who wanted to take the lead with helping to hold everything together.
Going into its ninth year, the TBT has had a plethora of college-themed teams, but no one has ever successfully assembled an IU squad. The last three winners have been college-themed teams.
An attempt will be made again next year to put an IU team in the event.
The 2022 TBT begins on July 16.
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