Notebook: Hoosiers outmuscled on the glass

  • 12/15/2012 10:18 pm in

INDIANAPOLIS — Cody Zeller didn’t provide much of an answer when he was asked about Indiana’s effort on the glass in Saturday’s 88-86 overtime loss to Butler in the Crossroads Classic at Bankers Life Fieldhouse.

While the final rebounding numbers showed Butler with just a 40-38 edge overall, the Hoosiers (9-1) allowed Butler to rebound 48.1 of its misses, a season-high for an IU opponent.

Indiana came into the game allowing an offensive rebounding percentage of just 26.4, which ranked 20th in the country.

When asked how he and his teammates allowed Butler to grab 11 offensive rebounds in the first half, IU’s star sophomore offered little in terms of an explanation.

“I don’t know, we’ve gotta figure it out,” Zeller said.

It sounds like the Hoosiers may begin to figure it out sooner rather than later.

“I’m excited about the rebounding drills we’re gonna do,” Crean said. “I’m not sure there will be many people that will be sharing that joy with me, but I know I’ll be excited about it because, right now, that’s an area we’ve got to really shore up.”

Butler’s success on the offensive glass led to 27 second-chance points and despite giving up some size across the frontline, the Bulldogs (8-2) won the points in the paint battle 42-32.

Crean didn’t point to one area in particular that contributed to the Hoosiers’ struggles on the glass, but it was clear that he saw rebounding as a major factor in the outcome.

“I think we’re going to be disappointed with some of our contact on the block outs,” he said. “Some balls bounced wrong that we’ve just got to go up with two hands and get ’em. But that’s not an excuse for us in the fact that we didn’t rebound well enough.”

HOOSIERS SLOW DOWN CLARKE … FOR A HALF

For a half, it appeared as if Rotnei Clarke, Butler’s leading scorer, wouldn’t figure much into the game from an offensive standpoint.

Victor Oladipo smothered Clarke, a senior transfer from Arkansas, for most of the game’s first 20 minutes and limited him to three points in the 18 minutes he covered him.

“He’s one of the best. He’s extremely athletic, and he’s real long with his arms,” Clarke said. “He can get into you and he can alter shots.”

But after in the second half and overtime, Clarke was able to shake free from Oladipo and Will Sheehey for 13 points on 5-of-12 shooting. Clarke said he noticed an opportunity to do more off the dribble against Sheehey than he did against Oladipo.

“I knew that I had an opportunity to probably get by him better than I would be able to someone like Oladipo who’s a little more athletic, a little longer, moves better laterally,” Clarke said. “When Sheehey was on me, I just wanted to take my chances and try to get into the lane.”

One of the key shots in overtime was a 3-pointer by Clarke with 1:41 remaining that pulled Butler to within one at 84-83.

“I think I did a pretty good job on him, but not too good since we lost,” Oladipo said of his effort on Clarke. “I’ve gotta go back to the drawing board, too. I could have played better defense down the stretch.”

Etc.

· Oladipo impresses Stevens: The Hoosiers finished with five players in double figures, but Oladipo was the most efficient as he finished 7-of-10 from the field.

A couple of Oladipo’s baskets were created by his defense, including a strip of Kellen Dunham and a layup to pull cut Butler’s lead to one at 74-73 with 23 seconds left in regulation.

“Oladipo is a heck of a player,” Butler coach Brad Stevens said. “As we walked out of our locker room, I turned to [assistant coach] Matthew Graves and I said: ‘I’ve never seen a guy that athletic.’ The good news is he was so fast we couldn’t foul him.”

· Watford ineffective: After leading Indiana with 21 points in last Saturday’s 100-69 win over Central Connecticut State, senior Christian Watford again showed inconsistency offensively, finishing with 10 points on just 1-of-5 shooting.

He also tied a season-low with three rebounds.

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  • SCHoosier

    Every time the ball went in the air..Butler just pounded whoever was underneath..Smith has a one inch vertical but out positioned Zeller most of the night. Of course other Butler defenders also packed the paint and surrounded Zeller with knees, elbows and arms..the Butler way. With Wat no help..and Yogi unable to hit the 10 foot jump shot with any regularity..Butler showed the B-10 how to defend. the Hoosiers. 1) Crash the O boards to stop the IU transition game 2) make IU defend the 3 (which they are not good at) 3) Be physical with IU’s front line because they will not respond. 4) Give Ferrell any jumper he wants (except a desperation 3 at the end of the game) Could be a tough conference schedule if this team doesn’t toughen up.

  • SCHoosier

    Every time the ball went in the air..Butler just pounded whoever was underneath..Smith has a one inch vertical but out positioned Zeller most of the night. Of course other Butler defenders also packed the paint and surrounded Zeller with knees, elbows and arms..the Butler way. With Wat no help..and Yogi unable to hit the 10 foot jump shot with any regularity..Butler showed the B-10 how to defend. the Hoosiers. 1) Crash the O boards to stop the IU transition game 2) make IU defend the 3 (which they are not good at) 3) Be physical with IU’s front line because they will not respond. 4) Give Ferrell any jumper he wants (except a desperation 3 at the end of the game) Could be a tough conference schedule if this team doesn’t toughen up.

  • jermhoosierfan

    When Smith fouled out, Cody should have been screaming for the ball. You need to get your best player the ball in close games after he got their 2 best post players fouled out. He should be yelling for the ball. It is a matter of toughness that will be needed in going on the road in the B1G.

  • Kevin Tolliver

    If I remember right we tried a couple of times but made some bad passes, and turned the ball over. Im confused why Hulls was on running baseline all game and not up top. To good of a shooter and passer to be there. Not to mention if Will or Vic played the baseline they could get some offensive rebounds and drives to the basket.

  • Kevin Tolliver

    I think we should have played Hanner a few more minutes he looked aggresive

  • Kevin Tolliver

    I think we should have played Hanner a few more minutes he looked aggresive

  • Sherronhasaheadache

    27 second chance points? CZ totally outplayed by Smith not to mention rebounding which was poor,CMON MAN! on the bright side the pressure is off now not being #1 anymore and as well for CZ as being POY. thats not gonna happen,he may not be the best player on this team

  • Butler out-toughed us plain and simple. You have to give them credit. That came in and threw the first punch and Indiana never completely got its feet under them. Great to see Yogi hit some shots down the stretch of regulation there. Should help his confidence. Not sure what to make of Zeller getting manhandled by Smith. Wat didnt look aggressive. They ran nothing for Jordy all night, the best shooter in the country.
    For how average we looked we still had a great chance to win the game. I can appreciate how much this is going to help us in the future. Especially given what’s happened in Connecticut. This just doesnt seem like that big of a deal to me right now. Just need to work on toughness.

  • paynilia

    1- Cody looked tired again down the stretch. His conditioning is becoming a problem. (similar to tournament in Brooklyn earlier)

    2- Victor Oladipo is a 1st round NBA pick in my book. He brings it night in-night out while Cody/Jordan/Christian are all having off games.

    3- Crean is a terrific coach in general, but Brad Stevens gave him a clinic on X’s and O’s yesterday. Maybe the best in-game coach in the NCAA.

  • Benhyoung14

    Roosevelt Jones had 12 rebounds and Yogi had 8. Cody Zeller had 5. He was out rebounded by guys 6’4” and 6′. How does this happen? Lack of effort, and complacency, that’s how.

  • CreanFaithful

    I was thinking the same. It’s hard to say not seeing him in practice or knowing the extent of his injury rehab process though. When he came in, I didn’t notice a “size drop off”… while he is just 6’8”, he looks like a beast. Loved the way he posted up immediately and was looking for the feed (commanding the ball, which I know many of us would like to see more out of from Cody). I was really hoping to see him play with Cody, but it seems his minutes where simply meant to give Cody a breather in this one. Looking forward to seeing much more of this young man!

  • CreanFaithful

    Long shots = long rebounds. Butler shot 24 three pointers. Guards are going to pull down boards in games like that.

  • Benhyoung14

    6’4″ Roosevelt Jones – 12 rebounds in 29 minutes of playing time.
    7’0″ Cody Zeller + 6’9″ Christian Watford + 6’7″ Will Sheehey – 11 rebounds in 86 minutes of playing time.

  • Dick_Pepperfield

    I have finally figured out Watford. In all seriousness, he plays stoned. I guarantee it.

  • I don’t think Clarke will face that aggressive of a defense again this season and he still scored 19. He can play. Oladipo is simply the quickest player in the NCAA at his size. If he puts out that kind of effort night after night, nobody else will score double digits. The pace of this game I think actually favored IU, but their fast break was limited because Butler didn’t turn the ball over as much as most of IU’s opponents this season.
    Zeller is a once-in-a-generation player, but he does not have the experience of Smith.
    Overall, this is no time to panic, but the harder-working, more desperate team won on Saturday. IU needs to play more desperate (like they did against UK)

  • CreanFaithful

    How does that refute what I said? I’m confused… Either way, it is a valid stat to point out.

  • Benhyoung14

    I really wasn’t trying to refute it…just thought it might have indicated otherwise. I would have thought, or hoped that Sheehee and Watford being wings would have pulled some of those down. Either way it is something we can fix. It’ll also help when HMP, and Jurkin get up to speed.

  • Shots go up put a butt in somebody, no matter where you are on the court. Also, 3pt. shot does create long rebounds. Still no excuse..

  • Shots go up put a butt in somebody, no matter where you are on the court. Also, 3pt. shot does create long rebounds. Still no excuse..

  • What does IU do when Jordy is getting man handled defensively? Not his fault, but Jones is quicker, stronger and taller…