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Mike Woodson is giving Race Thompson a chance to be himself on the court

Mike Woodson isn’t the type of coach to make foregone conclusions solely based on what a player did in the past. “I don’t want to pigeonhole” them, he says. Still, Woodson does his research, asking around to gain a better understanding of who he’ll be coaching. This is exactly what he did shortly after taking the job at Indiana in the spring.

It was around then that he asked some of the current coaches, who he did not name, about Race Thompson. The response left Woodson somewhat taken aback.

“Well, he can’t handle the ball that well,” Woodson recalls hearing.