The Minute After: Penn State

zellerdunk

Thoughts on a 74-51 win against the Nittany Lions:

I. Slow starts have befallen the Hoosiers on occasion this season, but save for an early 3-2 deficit, they established themselves as the dominant team from the onset in this one. They were aggressive on both ends of the floor — their patented mix of turning defense into offense in transition and ball movement and making the extra pass in the halfcourt. And the sometimes-energy-deficient Christian Watford was anything but during Indiana’s early stretch which pushed the lead out to double digits — where it remained for much of the night. Watford had eight of Indiana’s first 10 points thanks to a 3-pointer and two scores at the bucket, the second of which he converted into a three-point play after getting fouled.

By half, Watford had 13 points and five boards. By the time he left the floor late in the second half, he had 16 points and eight rebounds on 5-of-8 shooting. When he’s got it going — and specifically when he’s finding the balance between his 3-point shot and looking for opportunities at the bucket — it’s just another thing the opposition is going to have to worry about.

Indiana scored 44 points in the first 20 minutes, had 14 field goals on eight assists, scored 1.28 points per possession and shot 51.9 percent from the floor (6-of-11, 54.5 percent from 3-point range). They also got to the line and shot it well — 10-of-13 for 76.9 percent. Penn State shot just 34.4 percent, scored just .78 points per possession and were clearly giving up some in the talent department.

II. And there was the start of the second half — a sloppy, messy, gross affair. It put this game into quicksand. Indiana only had five turnovers at half; it had eight in just the first 6:47 in the second half. Penn State wasn’t able to gain much of an advantage in this frame of time, however, because it had some issues with the ball of its own (six in that same 6:47 timeframe). (The full tale of the tape on this: Indiana’s 17 turnovers were only converted into nine points on the evening by the Nittany Lions.) This stretch — one in which Indiana scored just six points — was a factor in the Hoosiers not pushing this one up into the 80s for their final tally. The other? the Hoosiers left a decent amount of points at the line, as they shot just 57.1 percent (12-of-21) after halftime. This all meant Indiana scored just .88 points per posession after half, and Penn State a paltry .69.

III. A random assortment of thoughts to follow: Not like anyone was thinking otherwise, but Jordan Hulls regained his shooting stroke this evening. (In fact, some of his shots were quite pretty — like nothing but the bottom of the net variety.) Hulls hit 2-of-3 from distance, 4-of-6 from the field (including a jumper after a sweet crossover in the second half), and converted on 4-of-5 from the line. He scored 14 points in total and added two boards and two assists.

Part of the reason Victor Oladipo was shooting a hyper-efficient 81 percent at the rim this season heading into tonight’s contest was on display on a few opportunities for him tonight: He’s smart.  There was the jumpstop in transition that allowed him an open look as the Penn State defender went by him; there was him curling up and around to the other side of the basket later in the second half to get a cleaner look. (The latter of which he’s done time and again this season.) Oladipo also hit his one and only 3-point attempt tonight — where he entered the game shooting a cool 45 percent. He’s not forcing things beyond the arc — just 20 percent of his looks are coming from distance — but he’s shooting well enough that when it’s there, he’s taking and hitting at a high rate. Oladipo had 10 points on 4-of-6 shooting and added six boards and three assists.

Will Sheehey will continue to win the Motel 6 Sixth Man of the Game award more often than not as long as he keeps doing what he does … Cody Zeller got a lot of easy looks in transition from his teammates and added a dunk early thanks to a hedge and steal which he took down to Indiana’s bucket for a dunk. He left a bit at the line (5-of-9), but left the game as the team’s second-leading scorer (15) behind Watford and an efficient 5-of-7 from the floor.

  • MillaRed

    Coach actually called a TO after a made basket when we were up 18. I know it isn’t what you are talking about but that is indeed a rare occurrence. I was actually pretty proud of the guy.

  • HoosierPat

    Yogi is the only true point guard we’ve seen at Indiana since CTC was hired. You don’t have to be a great shooter to be a good point guard. He’s smart, he’s a good ball handler, and a solid defender.

  • HoosierPat

    Yogi is the only true point guard we’ve seen at Indiana since CTC was hired. You don’t have to be a great shooter to be a good point guard. He’s smart, he’s a good ball handler, and a solid defender.

  • MillaRed

    There has been discussion around the level of Cody’s general improvement etc. But one thing is for sure, there is not a big in the country that can handle the ball in the open court like Cody and it’s not even close.

  • MillaRed

    I would also argue that the turnovers were actually uglier than they were in the box score.

  • MillaRed

    I think this is a commonly known fact. I’ve been there myself. The ball is just plain lighter. It throws it all off. Fact is Yogi is a good shooter and if he doesn’t figure it out in the next 3/5ths of the season he will in 2013. Aside from the weight training I think there is a little confidence lacking that he will overcome.

  • Eastwood88_2

    Wow fellow Hoosiers, I would have thought we lost last night. First half was great. Watford getting the rim and making things happen. Must have been his “TIDE” that got him pumped up. If you follow him on twitter, it was quite funny last night. Cody continues to get pushed around and missing rebounds. Not sure if his will change anytime soon.
    Second half, they played like a team playing Penn State. I have read posts on greatness, this and that, but Marcus said it right….IT’S PENN STATE!!!! The offensive rebounds were due to them having five guys within two feet of the basket. When we finally got the ball, what happen? Fast break! Michigan, Illinois, Minnesota, etc are not going to do this as then know our tendency to run. Easy baskets are the last thing any big ten team wants to give us so relack.
    As for the +/- comments on Hulls and Ferrell below, I am not buying it. For one, back in the summer I swore up and down that these two could not defend together. I am wrong. Under estimated Yogi’s ability to play defense. Hulls is Hulls. He creates and shoots better than anyone on our team, but has trouble staying infront. It is what it is. Both are too fast for opposing 6-5 guards to stay in front. They get inside and distribute. I like the two playing together. Minnesota is big all around, so it should be a good test.
    All in all, very happy with last nights performance. The bottom of the big ten is garbage.

  • CreamandCrimson

    Not for my liking but I can’t really point to their performance and say they deserved more. I think Hollowell defends and rebounds well but he is a basket case every time he gets the ball right now. Hanner Perea picked up three fouls in about three minutes. I’d love to see them get more minutes but they really didn’t look very good in their time on the court last night.

  • HoosierTrav

    Thank you. This was much better to watch than what we had seen at Iowa. This team had a chance to beat Wisky @Wisky. Our offensive efficiency will come. What I’m liking is the fact that we were noticeably improved from the last game. I’m looking forward to gauging this teams ability this Saturday against Minnesota. The Hall will be ROCKIN!

  • SUNY_RIT_IU_Grad

    I am calm and tranquil after two road wins to start conference play. It’s a great day, love my Hoosiers! Now, beat Minnesota this weekend…

  • SUNY_RIT_IU_Grad

    This team doesn’t need to be there yet!.. They need to get better each week, and be there in March! It’s a marathon not a sprint! As you know…

  • SUNY_RIT_IU_Grad

    This team doesn’t need to be there yet!.. They need to get better each week, and be there in March! It’s a marathon not a sprint! As you know…

  • Brklynhoosier

    You know what — re VO, you’re so right. And if I’m an opposing coach, thinking last night was his worst game of the season — 10 pts, 6 rebs, 3 assists (w/ a 3-pointer to boot) — well, that’s gonna keep me up nights.

  • WatchingYogi_atYogis

    Yeah, to be clear, I think that they are our best backcourt tandem as well. And the sense of urgency expressed by some of the bloggers on here, that we simply cannot play them together against bigger teams seems refuted by their efficacy against Georgetown.

    But I do think that the score is a pretty relevant indicator of success in college basketball. As you allude to, there will be anomalies with any stat. While I’m not sure I see where you are going with the analysis of specific defenses along with this, there are certainly more factors to the team’s performance than just whether Hulls and Yogi are in together. Maybe Zeller happens to play a greater proportion of minutes with them than without them in together? I really don’t know. At any rate, over the course of number of games, as the sample size gets larger, many factors will approach an even constant. Especially in tights games, such as Georgetown, Butler and Iowa above, if the rest of the lineup combinations were constantly forced to pick up the point differential we were losing with them playing together, or vice versa, you’d have a fairly good argument for them either being a liability or the tandem that carries us.

  • b_side

    Think it had to do more with the 17-point lead than anything else. These guys are human. They came out with a killer instinct to get the crowd out of the game to start.

    Empty arena, huge halftime lead and vastly inferior opponent = 2nd half lull. Add on the fact that the incessant fouling by Penn State made this really ugly. There was no offensive flow whatsoever. Perhaps that was Chambers’ way to slow the game down. Didn’t help on the scoreboard, but it sure helped control the tempo.

  • AJ_IU_ColtsFan

    Really, though… the only legitimate complaints we can have about the game add up to IU not blowing PSU out by a larger margin. When expectations are so high that a 23 point margin is sort of considered insufficient, you know it’s a good year.

  • AJ_IU_ColtsFan

    Really, though… the only legitimate complaints we can have about the game add up to IU not blowing PSU out by a larger margin. When expectations are so high that a 23 point margin is sort of considered insufficient, you know it’s a good year.

  • Aceman_Mujezinovic_07

    There were some messy parts of this game:

    1) When IU went zone in the first half and gave up about 6 straight offensive rebounds late in the half.
    2) Early in the 2nd half when it became a 6th grade girls game complete with 14 TO’s in about 6 minutes.

    But this was a convincing, easy road win at PSU, unlike last year when it took some amazing three point shooting to pull out a close game. This is what IU is supposed to do to teams like this on the road or at home. I’ll take the win and Cody seemed to play a little tougher when he was going up with the ball last night. I still think he’s rushing things inside trying to avoid contact. I use the spin move in the middle of the second half as the my example. He catches the ball outside the right block, spins quick and beats his defender, the instead of taking one dribble and going up for the power dunk like he would’ve last year he tries to immediately go up from distance for some sort of floater or layup and the guy he spun by blocks the shot. If he wouldn’t taken one hard dribble and went up strong for the dunk then there’s no way that defender could’ve caught him from behind and got high enough for the block. It’s just one play but it’s an example of what I’m saying. Maybe he’s beat up or remembers some beatings from last year but he seems to be going up quicker and weaker this year instead of with authority?

  • calbert40

    The 2nd half was the worst I’ve seen them play all season, no doubt about it. However, I think we are all worrying a little too much about this.

    First, despite playing AWFUL, we extended our margin in the 2nd half. I’m not suggesting we should be happy with the level of play, but for all the TOs and poor decision-making, we still distanced ourselves from the opponent.

    Secondly, the D looked good. Of course, consider the opponent, but still, they played very well on that end of the court…even in the 2nd half.

    PSU is terrible. They played with a ton of intensity, but their talent level is very low. It has to be extremely hard to continue to play with so much intensity when you can basically do whatever you want. I’m sure that CTC will address their focus in the coming practices.

  • BBB

    That give-and-go and also his steal leading to the fast break dunk are evidence of why he has #1 pick potential. Anybody who thinks he’s your typical slow, tall, white guy clearly hasn’t watched him play a whole lot. He has ball skills on par with a lot of Big10 guards.

  • DeeLyle

    According to ESPN, we won the rebounded battle 31-30. Although we did get smashed on the offensive boards 13-6.

  • DeeLyle

    This drove me crazy. Especially when we are up 20 with 90 seconds left.

  • DeeLyle

    This drove me crazy. Especially when we are up 20 with 90 seconds left.

  • DeeLyle

    Interesting. Thanks again for culling the data…

  • DeeLyle

    Really hope Hanner learns from Cody that you don’t have to block a shot or make contact to have a significant defensive impact. Cody is one of the best at putting his arms straight up and forcing an offensive player to deal with it.

  • DeeLyle

    I’ve noticed that Cody tends to rush his free throws at times, which almost always result in a miss. If he just pauses slightly before shooting, he seems to have a much better result. It particularly noticeable when he has two shots. The first typically seems rushed and the second much better paced. Just something to keep an eye on….

  • WatchingYogi_atYogis

    Comments like the one above really make me wonder. When Dennis Rodman was getting 15 rebounds a game and the Bulls were winning championships, he was only scoring 5 points a game. Was he ready for the NBA?
    Yeah Yogi had another poor shooting night, just missing at least three threes. Of course, that’s what the whole game is about. You have to score.
    Hulls went 0-10 in the Iowa game. I’m not sure this guy is ready either. But we should definitely have him with “the ball in his hands.” He’s so much faster than Yogi, can push the pace and really put the pressure on the defense that way.
    Yogi “often makes the wrong choice.” The guy just cannot get us into our offense. I’d say give him one more game, if he misses a shot or turns it over, we should pull his scholarship.

  • WatchingYogi_atYogis

    Comments like the one above really make me wonder. When Dennis Rodman was getting 15 rebounds a game and the Bulls were winning championships, he was only scoring 5 points a game. Was he ready for the NBA?
    Yeah Yogi had another poor shooting night, just missing at least three threes. Of course, that’s what the whole game is about. You have to score.
    Hulls went 0-10 in the Iowa game. I’m not sure this guy is ready either. But we should definitely have him with “the ball in his hands.” He’s so much faster than Yogi, can push the pace and really put the pressure on the defense that way.
    Yogi “often makes the wrong choice.” The guy just cannot get us into our offense. I’d say give him one more game, if he misses a shot or turns it over, we should pull his scholarship.

  • calbert40

    Very interesting data. Thanks for compiling it!

    I would say, however, that we have too small a sample in the B1G to make any declarations regarding effectiveness. Without looking at the data, I’d still assume that a Yogi/Hulls lineup
    at Iowa was fairly ineffective mainly due to Hulls’ poor shooting. If Hulls would have hit even 4 of his 10 shots (below season average), it would shrink the B1G +/- gap considerably.

  • STLII

    Ok, It was a sloppy second half.

    But that was a reversal of what I thought would occur. After a week off, some hangover from the Iowa game and playing a awful PSU team I thought IU would come out flat and not really ready to go. I really anticipated PSU pushing IU for most the game and IU pulling it out late. Instead they came out focused and showed a winning commitment to put PSU away. Good to see we no longer play to the level of competition.

    Good Job by CTC getting them ready.
    I also got the impression he used the second half as teaching tool by letting the players figure out problems and make their corrections. There were a couple of times I thought he would call a TO and reset, but instead let them play through and resolve it on their own. That will be important in March.

  • WatchingYogi_atYogis

    Against Iowa, oddly enough Yogi and Hulls were +2 together, where the other lineups were also +2. So even when Hulls wasn’t shooting, we were just as effective as a team with him and Yogi playing together than not. It kind of makes you wonder how much of a defensive liability that lineup really is?

    But you’re right, the sample size for the Big Ten is really small and heavily influenced, now, by a blowout win over Penn State, that might be some of the most irrelevant data you can get. Also, for what it’s worth, last night Yogi struggled, more than with his shot.

  • http://www.facebook.com/joshobie Josh O’Brien

    Yogi below expectations? He’s second in the conference in assists and an excellent defender. His shot is improving. Plus, he lets the game come to him, very rarely forcing things. We don’t need him to score, we need him to do exactly what he’s doing.

    Regarding the other freshmen, I’m reserving judgment. As the season goes on I’d definitely like to see improvement, but only time will tell.

  • Benhyoung14

    It’s not March. I’d hate to be peaking now, and not in March.

  • Benhyoung14

    Did anybody else see the statistic that we were top 2 in the B1G in three point defense (opponents low 3p%)?

  • Ole Man

    I hate it when someone makes a valid point as you just did, and then someone gives you a “negative” because you’re not being rah rah.
    We all love Indiana basketball. Because we don’t always “cheer” doesn’t mean we love them any less.

  • MoyeFacial

    I’m not freaking out about this W… it was a W right? Just one thing though… allowing offensive rebounds has been our biggest problem this year. We have got to do something about it. Everything else will take care of itself.

  • IUMIKE1

    Beginning to think somewhere in the fine print of his contract his agent snuck in a big bonus if the number of unused time outs reaches a certain amount at the end of the year. If so it must be one hell of a business. lol

  • IUMIKE1

    Agree, any one of the things that you mentioned by themselves could end up making enough of a difference to end up with a loss against more conference opponents than just MN and whether it’s on the road OR at home.

  • azhoosier

    yep….left too many points at the FT line.

  • marcusgresham

    It wasn’t even the entire half, though. It was maybe the first 6-8 minutes of the half, but they still scored 30 after putting up a point in the first 6 minutes.

  • marcusgresham

    That’s why you have upperclassmen. Freshmen, for the most part, shouldn’t be counted on to come in and take over, from a talent or culture standpoint. The current batch of guys only did so because there was nothing in front of them.

  • marcusgresham

    That’s why you have upperclassmen. Freshmen, for the most part, shouldn’t be counted on to come in and take over, from a talent or culture standpoint. The current batch of guys only did so because there was nothing in front of them.

  • Geoff_85

    I’m right there with you. To be fair to Chambers, I think his first plan to slow the pace was to run 2-3 zone, but that did not work at all. Plan B was hack the s**t out of one of the best free throw shooting teams in the NCAA. Turns out they shot FT’s not so well, and you’re right, it uglied that game up badly.

Powered by WordPress. Designed and developed by Ryan. Read our Privacy Policy. // Back to Top