Hoosiers use barrage of threes to down Penn State

STATE COLLEGE, Pa. – For a 2:26 stretch in the first half, Indiana knocked down 3-point field goals on five consecutive possessions.

Shots falling from beyond the arc were a common sight at the Bryce Jordan Center on Sunday, as Indiana used a barrage of 3-pointers to beat Penn State 88-82 and snap its 16-game losing streak in Big Ten road games.

The No. 12 Hoosiers (15-1, 3-1 Big Ten), who entered the game with a nation’s-best 45.6 three-point field goal percentage, sunk 16 of their 24 3-point attemps.

“This is a hard-earned victory. This is a tough league. It’s the No. 1 league in the country for a reason,” Indiana coach Tom Crean said. “We knew that we were going to have to play at a very high level.”

Jordan Hulls tallied seven of Indiana’s 3-point field goals, and recorded a career-high 28 points, also a game-high. The junior guard from Bloomington took only two shots inside the 3-point line, making neither, and scored his other seven points off late-game free throws.

Matt Roth came off the bench and hit five 3-pointers of his own, finishing with 22 points. Cody Zeller and Christian Watford each added 10.

“(Penn State) made it hard for us a couple of times. But that’s where that extra pass was excellent,” Crean said. “I think Jordan shooting the ball the way that he did, it gets really hard to back off those guys.”

After trailing for most of the game, Penn State narrowed its deficit to two with 35 seconds left. Indiana held on, however, as Hulls and Roth combined to go 8-of-8 from the free-throw line in the final 33 seconds.

“I was hitting in the first half and Matt came in and hit some big ones in the second half,” Hulls said. “That was just on our part, getting in the lane, kicking it out and finding the open man.”

SHEEHEY CLOSE

Indiana sophomore Will Sheehey, who suffered a left foot injury in practice on Dec. 21, did not play for the fifth straight game. Sheehey traveled with the team and participated in warm ups.

Sheehey is “getting closer to day-to-day,” Crean said, adding the Hoosiers missed his production on Sunday.

“He’s getting better, but he’s just not there yet,” Crean said. “He’s improving. You hadn’t seen him be out there like that lately. Believe me, if he was ready to go you, you would have seen him… We’re getting closer to it.”

CREAN LAUDS PENN STATE

Indiana coach Tom Crean wouldn’t divulge many details of his game plan for Penn State, as the two squads are set to face off again on Jan. 22 at Assembly Hall. But Crean did praise the Nittany Lions, who were coming off an impressive 20-point victory over Purdue despite being picked by many to finish last in the Big Ten.

Crean called Penn State point guard Tim Frazier “one of the more undervalued and underrated players nationally.” Frazier led Penn State with 21 points on Sunday, while guard Jermaine Marshall added 20.

“They play extremely hard. They battle. They go after it,” Crean said. “(First-year Penn State coach Patrick Chambers has) taken some good players that were here and made them a lot better. He took Tim Frazier, and took a guy that was one of the better point guards in our league at finding people and quickness and speed, and is making him a complete guard, a complete player.”

Other notes: A solid showing of Indiana cream and crimson helped make up the 8,250 fans in attendance Sunday, by far the largest crowd for a Penn State men’s game this season… Newly hired Penn State head football coach Bill O’Brien got a standing ovation when introduced to fans during a first-half timeout… Indiana now leads its all-time series with Penn State, 29-9… Sunday’s game marked the fourth time the Hoosiers made at least ten 3-pointers in a game and their 16 threes were one shy of tying a program record.

Jake Kaplan is a freelance sports journalist based out of State College, Pa. He’s a former intern at USA TODAY and The Philadelphia Inquirer and will graduate from Penn State in May. Follow him on Twitter at jakemkaplan

  • Dr.D

    Yeah, but your two cents are crappy mangled pennies that have been run over by a train.

     Moore was in because he can dribble the ball without turning it over. Yeah, Hulls struggled a little at the end of the game, but he pulled it through. Why you freaking on Elston. He’s been playing great defense. And verdell has had some good moments as well – I didn’t notice him being particularly bad today.

  • Dr. D

    When they play athletic teams, like Kentucky, Roth simply can’t guard those guys. Also, there’s a lot of times where while he spreads the defense, he pretty much just stands around on the perimeter hoping to be left open. With Hulls and Watford shooting the ball well, it’s less necessary to have a shooter standing on the perimeter, whereas Oladipo can drive and draw the foul, and is a top notch defender. I do like Roth, and I do think he should play more (and they should run more screens for him when he’s in), but he does seem to take a bit longer to get his shot off.

  • Anonymous

    If what happened in Happy Valley doesn’t deserve the death penalty, I don’t know what does. Apparently, just calling players too much.

  • ChiHoosier

    I noticed this on the PSU side too. Whenever the players on the bench would jump up to celebrate a good offensive/defensive possesion, refs would comeover and point to the bench to tell them to sit down. I dunno if i noticed this more cause the refs actually made a point to go over to the bench or that PSU was overly excited and kept standing up. Either way something was going on with that.

  • Kfdchev

    I can’t speak to the etiquette of the officials at the college level but at the high school level at lesat in the state of Indiana it is part of an officials duty to instruct players on the proper techniques of the game if those situations present themselves. I have had a lot of players approach me and ask “how do I avoid that call or “what did I do wrong there”? And that is when the instructional time comes into play. I would take a look at some information as to the duties of college officials before I got my fur ruffled up over something that was actually done correctly to start with. It is very easy to criticize the job performed by another if you are not aware of that persons job description to start with.

  • SeattleHoosier

    Watford/Zeller get headlines last game, Roth/Hulls get headlines here.  Conclusion – this team brings a diverse offensive game making us really difficult to defend.

    Keeping my fingers crossed that we can keep it going in Columbus this weekend.

  • Hoosier n VA

    My favorite VJIII moment yesterday was when he was charging down court on a 1 on 3 break. I kept thinking he would do the math and figure out that he had at least 2 trailers unguarded behind him but instead he kept going strong….dang.  

  • Pinehurst

    In 76 IU beat ND 63-60, Ohio St. 66-64, Purdue 71-67, Mich. 72-67, and Purdue 74-71. I am sure some complained back then about not blowing away teams. 

  • CreamandCrimson

    Agreed Ace.  I always enjoy reading your opinions.  I don’t always agree but that’s one of the many things that make this site the best.

  • millzy32

    Constructive criticism is something that should be encouraged and not discouraged.  Anyone who wants to think all is perfect and that just because we won everyone played a great game isn’t really much of a fan and probably doesn’t watch much more than the final score anyway. 

    Truth is that the Hoosiers played a very good game for the most part but for the second straight game they let a game that should have been well in hand get way too close for comfort near the end.  Yes, a win’s a win but looking forward this needs to stop quickly or a major beatdown is coming in Columbus believe that. 

  • millzy32

    I can’t even pick my favorite VJII moment because there were so many that kept the game close.  If it wasn’t for the no look head down dribble charges or the missing the front end of one and ones then maybe it was the no look pass straight to the defender or the dribble off his shoe.

    He does keep the games exciting when they should be blowouts.  For that I guess Vegas is probably thankful. 

  • Anonymous

    Yeah that was the worst, as though it couldn’t have waited until the half.  Not to mention BTN already broadcasted the press conference.  And the split screen was not helpful.

  • Anonymous

    I don’t have a problem with fouls at the end of the game as long as they are going for the ball.  It’s when they don’t go for the ball and just grab a guy that I think an intentional foul needs to be called.   

  • Anonymous

    I need to be put on a hypertension and anti-anxiety med for the next 2 months.  These games are hurting my health.

    Roth and Hulls were unfreakingbelievible! 

    We had too many turnovers.  I think at one stretch we had 3 straight turnovers without a field goal attempt.  That is inexcusable.

    Why did zeller sit almost the entire final 10:00?  He only had 3 fouls.

  • Anonymous

    I need to be put on a hypertension and anti-anxiety med for the next 2 months.  These games are hurting my health.

    Roth and Hulls were unfreakingbelievible! 

    We had too many turnovers.  I think at one stretch we had 3 straight turnovers without a field goal attempt.  That is inexcusable.

    Why did zeller sit almost the entire final 10:00?  He only had 3 fouls.

  • phil ross

    I don’t think you are 15-1, beat #1 and 2 being a average offensive team.

  • JerryCT

    Great satisfying games by Hulls and Roth. Not good for Jones

    I think VO might want to rethink how he plays Frazier and Cz how he plays Grahamm

  • MillaRed

    Which is now permissible. Good grief.

  • DeeLyle

    Hightower was annoying me too. I thought both jump ball calls (at least one involved Watford) he made should have been called fouls on PSU.

  • DeeLyle

    Hightower was annoying me too. I thought both jump ball calls (at least one involved Watford) he made should have been called fouls on PSU.

  • MillaRed

    The only thing that would have rectified that drive is if he rose up Lebron style and tomahawked on those guys. Oh I forgot, VJ doesn’t dunk.

    Honestly I don’t think that guy was set at all. But if you go 1 on 3 as you mentioned, you are not going to get many calls. Have no idea what that kid is thinking sometimes.

  • Anonymous

    They were a result of all of the above.  Penetration and kick-outs, crisp perimeter passing, ball reversal, screens…

  • Anonymous

    Any chance Crean is simply limiting his minutes when he can, knowing how tough an entire Big Ten season can be on a freshman big?

  • Anonymous

    I’ve been watching Roth when he’s out there lately and I think his movement without the ball is vastly improved over his previous years.  Keep an eye on him vs Minnesota…

  • Aceman_Mujezinovic_07

    Most of my opinion was about the crappy officials trying to coach IU players and step between timeout celebrations.  The other points were lighthearted and completely valid points!  There was no reason D Moore played over Remy yesterday.  Remy wasn’t turning the ball over.  He was a threat to score.  He played better defense!

    Hulls was shaky at the end of the halves with the ball just like Verdell normally is and Elston looked like he sped up his game 20 mph!  I’ve stated several times the last two days that I though VJ3 played great between minutes 20-and-5 of both halves but once the clock gets near that last TV timeout he loses it. 

    Those were all very correct and non-threatening observations.  I didn’t say to kick anyone off the team and I was trying to be funny with my opinions instead of mean like some people tend to be (none of my favorite posters!!!).

    I’d rather love my team and root for them with an opinion as to how they could get better than be a mindless drone just looking to cut down other posters. 

  • Aceman_Mujezinovic_07

    Most of my opinion was about the crappy officials trying to coach IU players and step between timeout celebrations.  The other points were lighthearted and completely valid points!  There was no reason D Moore played over Remy yesterday.  Remy wasn’t turning the ball over.  He was a threat to score.  He played better defense!

    Hulls was shaky at the end of the halves with the ball just like Verdell normally is and Elston looked like he sped up his game 20 mph!  I’ve stated several times the last two days that I though VJ3 played great between minutes 20-and-5 of both halves but once the clock gets near that last TV timeout he loses it. 

    Those were all very correct and non-threatening observations.  I didn’t say to kick anyone off the team and I was trying to be funny with my opinions instead of mean like some people tend to be (none of my favorite posters!!!).

    I’d rather love my team and root for them with an opinion as to how they could get better than be a mindless drone just looking to cut down other posters. 

  • Aceman_Mujezinovic_07

    Likewise . . . as do I C&C. 

  • Anonymous

    I agree, Remy should get more playing time.  Coach Crean said in his press conference that if he regrets not playing Remy more.

    Also, Daniel Moore drives me CRAZY!  Not only should he NOT be playing college basketball on at IU, but he probably shouldn’t be playing college basketball at any B1G school (maybe he shouldn’t be playing on any college basketball team).  I will give Coach Crean credit, he has gotten some produce minutes out of Danny over the years…but we NOW have talented bench players who should be playing!

    Still happy that we won a conference road game.

  • Anonymous

    Interesting how so many of the comments are complaints about how individual players play offense, in a game where the offense scored 88 points!  My favorite ones have to be the complaints about Elston taking his single shot.  Meanwhile, the team gave up 82 points, and are giving up way too many points per possession in Big Ten play.  I’m hoping a lot of it is the absence of Sheehey, not only because he’s a pretty good and versatile defender, but also in the hope that some of the defensive problem has to do with fatigue in the other players with his absence.  It’s really a concern when the team gives up 45 points in the second half.

  • Southbostonjohn

    What happened to Jones free throw shooting and his head down driving the lane.  Was really   glad to see Coach take him out of the game at crunch time.

  • Jakincade

    Theatrics shouldn’t exist in officiating at this level. Highschool I can see the point in certain display but for Hightower to jumpstop into a good solid screen stance in order to show D Elston the proper way to set a screen was a bit much. If D Elston was questioning why he was called for a moving screen I’m sure Hightower could have had a verbal explanation instead on how to set a proper screen. I’m sure Elston knows anyways..thats kind of my point.

  • cooper

    Appreciate it. Thanks

  • cooper

    Appreciate it. Thanks

  • Hoos13rs

    I completely disagree. All parties involved will be punished individually and the program (what’s left of it) will attempt to move on. It doesn’t make sense to punish the people there now because they largely had nothing to do with it. Especially not the players.

    This was not a rules violation, it was a crime and should be handled as such.

  • Brklynhoosier

    I think you’re right re the fatigue — having Sheehey out has hurt us so many ways…  Though in the long-term, it’s prob helped us a lot, too…

  • Hoosier4life23

    Why wasn’t there a flagrant foul called at the end of that game? Who ever fouled roth should have been T’d up because there was no attempt at the ball. They even reviewed it and I was waiting for them to do it but they said they were looking to see if there was any elbows thrown. That was ridiculous!!! I mean how in the hell do you miss it it twice, the refs were surely on their side. 

  • Hoosier4life23

    Well they didn’t even call that foul against Roth flagrant after even looking at it on the monitor. What were they thinking because the kid never did go for the ball and grabbed him by the neck. I mean come on that’s a flagrant foul no matter where your at. I was so ticked they didn’t make that call.

  • Anonymous

    Was it just me or did IU actually play better during the interview?

  • IUFAN

    Well I have scrolled threw some post and my opinion is that every one should be happy.  VJ3 to me has learned his role on the offensive side atleast for this week.  I expect more out of Elston but we are 15-1 and any true IU fan has stayed with this page for last 3 years and non of us couldn’t even guess IU would be 15-1 at this point.  Every one had them losing 2 non conferance games so every one be happy and celebrate.

  • Anonymous

    That’s my point.  The fouling at the end of the game is out of control.  Michigan went so far as to pick out a lower percentage free throw shooter than Hulls or Roth and fouled him *before* the ball was inbounded.  Tell me *that* guy was going for the ball.  I know not everyone agrees on this point but the way I see it, rules are rules and are in place for a reason.  To ignore them at the end of the game so that the trailing team has a chance to claw their way back in is infuriating to me.  Just MHO…

  • Anonymous

    It is great to see Matt Roth really contribute to the # 7 team in the land. He plays very good defensive position, boxes out for rebounds, provides good weakside help defense, makes simple and smart passes, hits his shots, and is a total team guy. He is not the best athlete so guys can still jump over him, reach over him, and get a quick step on him. But he is a quality player who shows the improvement that playing four years under Coach Crean and his staff brings. In 10.7 min/game he is .576 % FG, .581 % 3 point, 1.00 % FT, 9 reb, 8 assists/ 1 TO, 1 Blk (how did that happen?), 4 steals, and 4.9 pts/game. I hope that he walks-on for a 5th year and gets to go to a Final Four with Indiana in 2012-13!.

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