Indiana-Kentucky: A position-by-position breakdown

  • 03/21/2012 10:01 am in

With the Indiana-Kentucky rematch only two days away, here’s a look at the position-by-position matchups. These are the matchups I believe the Hoosiers should use and are not necessarily the ones they used the first time or will use on Friday.

Marquis Teague (PG) 9.4 ppg, 4.8 apg    VS.    Victor Oladipo (SG) 10.9 ppg, 5.5 rpg

Teague, a freshman and former Pike standout, dominated the Hoosiers in the second-half of the first meeting. He used his quickness to get past Jordan Hulls with regularity, and finished the game with 15 points — most of them coming on layups.

Oladipo is quicker than Hulls and taller than Teague, and he should be able to stick with the Wildcats’ point guard. The Hoosiers could use Oladipo on a variety of players, but they can’t afford to let Teague beat them with easy baskets. They are going to have to settle for other guys making outside jump shots.

ADVANTAGE: INDIANA

Doron Lamb (SG) 13.2 ppg, 2.9 rpg    VS.    Jordan Hulls (PG) 11.5 ppg, 3.2 apg

The Hoosiers are going to need a much more productive game out of Hulls than they got against VCU. Lamb is a good shooter, so Hulls may have trouble staying with him off screens. But it’s a better matchup for the Hoosiers than having Hulls guard Teague.

Lamb scored 19 points on 5-of-14 the first time around, and Hulls had 11 points.

ADVANTAGE: KENTUCKY

Michael Kidd-Gilchrist (SF) 11.8 ppg, 7.6 rpg    VS.    Will Sheehey (SF) 8.4 ppg, 3.1 rpg

Kidd-Gilchrist kept Kentucky close in December by going for 18 points and nine rebounds. Sheehey had 10 points, including two huge 3-pointers.

Kidd-Gilchrist has about 30 pounds on Sheehey, so I like him in this matchup. Then again, Sheehey has routinely guarded guys significantly heavier than him over the course of the season, and he’s generally fared well. I wouldn’t expect Kidd-Gilchrist to explode for 18 and nine again.

ADVANTAGE: KENTUCKY

Terrence Jones (PF) 12.5 ppg, 7.0 rpg    VS.    Christian Watford (PF) 12.0 ppg, 5.9 rpg

This was one of the most talked about matchups heading into the first meeting, and it wound up being no contest. Jones didn’t show up. He had only four points and one rebound, and sat on the bench down the stretch. Watford, on the other hand, had one of his biggest games of the year. He scored 20 points, pulled down five rebounds, and hit the game-winner over Darius Miller as time expired.

It’s hard to believe Jones will play that bad again. I would expect him to play much better. But Watford won’t make it easy for him. He’s been playing well of late, and he’ll undoubtedly come out with a lot of confidence because of how he played against the Wildcats the last time.

ADVANTAGE: PUSH

Anthony Davis (C) 14.3 ppg, 10.0 rpg    VS.    Cody Zeller (C) 15.5 ppg, 6.4 rpg

Zeller got the better of Davis in the first matchup by getting the big man in foul trouble. Zeller had 11 points and seven boards, and Davis had six points and nine rebounds.

Davis has added a lot to his game since the first meeting in December. He’s a much more polished offensive player, and has even started stepping out and knocking down 3-pointers. Zeller’s experience guarding guys who can play on the perimeter should benefit him in this matchup.

ADVANTAGE: PUSH

Key bench players: Darius Miller (9.6 ppg), Kyle Wiltjer (5.4 ppg)    VS.    Remy Abell (2.8 ppg), Matt Roth (4.6 ppg), Derek Elston (4.5 ppg)

Miller would start for most teams in the country and he’s one of Kentucky’s best mid-range shooters. The Wildcats often go to Miller when they’re in need of a big shot, and he usually delivers. Wiltjer can shoot it, but it’s to the Hoosiers’ benefit when he’s in the game.

Abell has played well in the few games since Verdell Jones’ season-ending injury, and Roth is one of the best 3-point shooters in the country. Elston didn’t play in the first meeting, so it will be interesting to see how he is utilized on Friday. Elston’s main impact may come on the defensive end where he’ll be able to give Watford a break on Jones or spell Sheehey on Kidd-Gilchrist. Whatever Elston gives the Hoosiers on the offensive end is a bonus. Tom Crean barely used his bench in the first matchup, but may have to rely on them a bit more this time around.

ADVANTAGE: KENTUCKY

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  • IUJeff

    Remy and Vic just need to flush that skinny arm of Davis with the ball a couple times and we won’t have that problem any more. 

  • jpniles

    Thanks for the input. I actually agree with you about the erroneous assumption that UK has not been tested. I understand that the SEC is “down”, but UK’s non-conference schedule was way harder than IU’s. I would say the schedule argument is a “push” at best. Sure we played the likes of OSU and Michigan State. However, UK had two teams in their non-conference that are 1 and 2 seeds still in the Sweet 16 (UNC and KU) and they won both of those games. 

    I think it will go one of two ways. 1) It will be a close game and IU will win. 2) UK will win by 15. I have no facts to back this up. It is just a feeling.

  • Jeff

    It was just an example to prove that having a better game than your opponent doesn’t make you a better player or mean that they you always outplay them head-to-head.  Everyone on IU has played better competition than everyone on UK, so that means all of IU’s players will have better games than their counterparts, per your logic.  If you’re going to base this analysis off of ability and what the players have accomplished all year, Davis should get the edge.  Again, Cody has been phenomenal and has a great chance to outplay Davis, but only a very biased and ignorant viewpoint would deny what Davis has accomplished this year (and he would arguably have even more offensive impressive numbers if he were on IU or another team with less talent than UK).  I highly doubt anyone on this site would take Zeller over Davis if Zeller ended up at Kentucky and Davis at Indiana… 

  • Jeff

    It was just an example to prove that having a better game than your opponent doesn’t make you a better player or mean that they you always outplay them head-to-head.  Everyone on IU has played better competition than everyone on UK, so that means all of IU’s players will have better games than their counterparts, per your logic.  If you’re going to base this analysis off of ability and what the players have accomplished all year, Davis should get the edge.  Again, Cody has been phenomenal and has a great chance to outplay Davis, but only a very biased and ignorant viewpoint would deny what Davis has accomplished this year (and he would arguably have even more offensive impressive numbers if he were on IU or another team with less talent than UK).  I highly doubt anyone on this site would take Zeller over Davis if Zeller ended up at Kentucky and Davis at Indiana… 

  • SGHoosier

    Ultimately you dont get into the Sweet 16 by being a crap team. Its about who shows up on the day. If IU executes Crean’s plans, we can/will win.

  • WatchingYogi_atYogis

    From a matchup perspective, the main thing I remember from the initial matchup (prior to all the celebration, victory basking and YouTube moments re-lived), was Hulls’s matchups.  We started him on Lamb and I was screaming that we were in for a long night with Hulls trying to chase around their best shooter (arguably Miller has emerged as such- but that’s what I thought at the time).  After watching Hulls try to guard Teague later in the game and get beat off the dribble, I saw why CTC went with the former.  Simply put Hulls is a serious liability defensively against a team talented enough that there is nowhere to hide him or anyone else.

    The other thing I remember was how well we shot the ball in the initial matchup.  Hulls was a big part of that (though Watford was even bigger, even prior to the last 13 seconds).  We will have to shoot our way out of this one as well.  A lot goes into getting good looks, like defensive stops leading to breaks, Sheeladipo attacking off the dribble and moving without the ball and, of course, Zeller working the inside out approach.  But we need to shoot like Hoosiers.

  • jayrig5

    I’d think Watford would have an advantage outside on Davis as well.  Whichever player Davis is guarding, I like IU’s matchup with him away from the basket, either driving or shooting over him.  Plus that would open up the rim for drivers, as you said, as well as keeping him away from the defensive glass.

    Also, Watford can’t be guarding Teague, right?  I know he guarded opposing PG’s down the stretch, (post UK game) but the matchups work so much better with Sheehey on MKG and VO on Teague.

  • Squinkert

    I don’t drink the Anthony Davis POY kool-aid.  Is he good at defense and rebounding…… yes.  He hardly ever creates his own shot though.  So I think offensively he’s mediocre.

  • jayrig5

    True, but IU had one game in the non-conference against a #1 seed, and IU won that game. 🙂

  • Geoff_85

    That game was in Bloomington though…sure wish this one could be there as well.

  • Southport65

    Head to head match up’s, KY wins, but basketball is a team sport and this game will come down to who plays better together as a team. For that reason IU has a chance. Freshman
    sometimes choke in big games and Teague is a likely candidate to crumble. IU can win!

  • Southport65

    Head to head match up’s, KY wins, but basketball is a team sport and this game will come down to who plays better together as a team. For that reason IU has a chance. Freshman
    sometimes choke in big games and Teague is a likely candidate to crumble. IU can win!

  • Fouls Fouls Fouls will determine the flow of this game.  Both teams have little dependable depth.  We should keep our starters on the floor most of the game.

    IU is missing that spark plug off the bench.  No one can come in the game and say I’m going do this regardless of the opposition.  Meanwhile (that team from the SEC) has one D.Miller.  

    I believe (that SEC team) has all positional advantages. 

    IU advantage the game has yet to be played.  I also believe fatigue will play a factor in this match up.   Favoring IU.

    This is a game where hard work

  • SCHoosier

    Davis can score if and when he wants…and would on almost every other team. UK has so many offensive weapons..Davis plays well the role Coach Cal has asked for him. His offensive arsenal is twice as good as Cody’s right now..fact…supported by NBC scouting reports recently published.

  • marcusgresham

    It’s reminiscent of the ’66 Texas Western-Kentucky game.  Prior to the game, Don Haskins told David Lattin, his 6’11” center (and I’m paraphrasing,) “The first time you get the ball, dunk it.  Dunk it hard!  I don’t care if you travel, I don’t care if you charge, but you dunk that damn thing and you show those boys what they’re in for.”  It worked.

  • millzy32

    We may be outmatched in a lot of categories but here are some that we excel in.

    Most Athletic Players on the court:  Victor Oladipo & Will Sheehey
    Best Shooters on the court:  Matt Roth & Jordan Hulls
    Best Screener on the court:  Tom Pritchard
    Most Intelligence on and off the court:  Cody Zeller

    And here are a few that Kentucky excels in:

    Biggest Unibrow in basketball college or pro:  Anthony Davis
    Worst outside shooter on the court:  Marquis Teague
    Most likely to leave unscathed in another scandal:  Coach Calipari
    Most likely to marry their first cousin:  Kentucky fans

    Go Hoosiers it’ll be tough but it won’t be impossible.

  • Kfdchev

    None of the starters from either team have much tournement expierence if any. Kentucky better understand that one game is all you have……no second chances now. The player that worries me the most is Teague. He turned it on on the second half in Bloomington. I am afraid if we end up with Hulls on him he will have a night full of highlights and our season will be over. I couldnt stand the thought of UK going undefeated back in December and I can’t stand the thought of them hanging another banner……even if it would only hang there until the NCAA sanctions require them to remove it. You know that is how it will go down. History has a way of repeating itself!  

  • Hardwood83

     Not exactly accurate- Kentucky didn’t play Kansas. But point is well made. While I think IU has played a tougher schedule over-all, I don’t think that is much of a factor at this point.

     I agree with jpniles that a close game favors IU, because they’ve had more experience with them & all the pressure is on pUKe. Also because I think the Hoosier players have more character then the mercenaries from pUKe and that will (I hope) come out under pressure.

  • plane1972

    Great post, Oldwood. Couldn’t agree more.

  • Hoosierphoenix

    Maybe I’m just old, but doesn’t anyone else remember the regional semifinal game in 1984?  No need to analyze Friday’s matchup, go back and read the stories about IU’s win over UNC and how Dakich shut down MJ.  That UNC team had more NBA talent than this UK team does.  Analyze how Knight orchestrated one of the biggest upsets in NCAA history and you will know how this team can beat UK on Friday.  Knight never backed down from stacked teams and neither will Crean.

  • Kokomo_Joe

    Good post, but IU will lose another player off this roster for next year or someone will re-classify as a SR in high school because we will have 14 scholly’s for an overage of the NCAA limit of 13.

    That will work itself out, but think about what UNC, UK, OSU, Mich St, Wisc and Duke will lose heading into next season.

    We are a Top 10 program next season.

  • Kokomo_Joe

    Good post, but IU will lose another player off this roster for next year or someone will re-classify as a SR in high school because we will have 14 scholly’s for an overage of the NCAA limit of 13.

    That will work itself out, but think about what UNC, UK, OSU, Mich St, Wisc and Duke will lose heading into next season.

    We are a Top 10 program next season.

  • Outoftheloop

     There are many possibilities and not all of them lose a player-you only have to end up with 13 scholarships. My Guess is that Coach Crean has a plan that he thinks will not hurt anyone and will field the strongest team possible next season. You only get so many really good opportunities to hang a banner.

  • Bryan

    He’s listed third after Roth

  • jayrig5

    Actually, jpniles is right, UK did play (and beat) KU.

  • Walt

    Very funny, but pretty true too.    Go Hoosiers

  • Southport65

    The first game, second half, Teague played better not great. Hulls and Remy have it in them to play Teague. I saw it 2 times when hulls got the better of him and Remy did ok in the all star game. The key is to make him shoot the jumper where is not very good and keep him from going to the bucket. Whoever guards him VO,AR or JH they will need weak side help from Cody and Watford. MT does not like to get his shot blocked and if we can do that a couple times old MT will be a none factor. Cody and Tom P are key they have to help defend and guard Davis without getting in foul trouble. Also if Cody can take it into Davis and Davis fouls the SEC team has no replacement for Davis. We win!

  • Aubreyhouse

    or Notre Dame… 😮

  • DannerPerea

    Yeah, I was thinking the same thing….it’ll get into Teagues head a little if he’s pestered again by the guy who shut him down a year ago.

  • A_Schick

    I see what you did there….

  • A_Schick

    Atlanta is the second-largest out-of-state IU Alumni base just behind Chicago. I think there will be more Cream and Crimson there than UK fans realize. 

  • A_Schick

    Atlanta is the second-largest out-of-state IU Alumni base just behind Chicago. I think there will be more Cream and Crimson there than UK fans realize.