The Minute After: Wisconsin

  • 01/16/2013 12:24 am in

IUWisITH0015Thoughts on a 64-59 loss to the Badgers:

I. This comes as an unoriginal thought, as Dan Dakich made it known time and again in the waning moments of Wisconsin’s impressive win, but it’s still most certainly fact: The Badgers and Bo Ryan fear not the Assembly Hall faithful. On so many occasions this season, the Hoosiers have ridden the tidal wave of their home crowd to victory’s warm shores, its opponent cowering under the weight of it all. Ask North Carolina. Ask Minnesota at halftime on Saturday. Ask the number of non-conference teams that stepped into Assembly Hall and got their clocks cleaned from the opening tip. But not Wisconsin, not this tough group no one thought would challenge for a conference title with Jordan Taylor gone, Josh Gasser out for the season and no preseason ranking.

Mike Bruesewitz, the guy with the loud hair the fans love to hate, welcomed it all tonight, snapping and chirping right back at the students as they chanted “AIRBALL” at him. He would hit 4-of-6 from the line in the last 1:11 of the game to seal the victory. Traevon Jackson, who is stepping up in all the right ways for Ryan of late in a season where he wasn’t expected to do what he’s doing, hit a huge shot after a Cody Zeller turnover. That shot punched Wisconsin’s lead from three to five at the 2:25 mark in the second half. On paper, a five-point deficit with over two minutes isn’t insurmountable. But on an evening like tonight, with Indiana playing from behind all second half, it felt like so much.

And then there was Sam Dekker — no stranger to big moments — rollicking off the court after the win, screaming “11 in a row, 11 in a row” at the students. Because his team had indeed just defeated these Hoosiers for its 11 straight time. The Badgers also came into Assembly Hall tonight and held the highest-scoring offense in the country to just 59 points on 37 percent shooting from the field (20-of-54), 25 percent (3-of-12) from 3-point distance and only three fast-break points. It came in, played its game its way, the prodding of the defense and the draining of the shot clock until it found what it liked,  the low turnovers as to not waste possessions and control the pace. And Indiana — despite holding the Badgers scoreless for over seven minutes when it turned up the D for a stretch in the second half — still couldn’t get over the hump.

And then there’s Bo. Now 17-3 against the Hoosiers. Winner of the most road games in the Big Ten since 2001-02. As the buzzer sounded, Tom Crean blew through his handshake with him, some saying he even accelerated through it.

He’s sick and tired of the losing to this man and his never-changing system. But it continued tonight, and it’ll continue to stew inside Crean until Indiana’s next chance. Which, save for a meeting in the conference tourney, might not be until next season.

II. Indiana’s depth was once a large talking point as to why it projected to be so successful this season, but returns of late haven’t been pretty. After getting just three bench points against Minnesota, Indiana got just two tonight — a basket from Jeremy Hollowell. Will Sheehey, who’s energy has been infectious off the bench at times, has been lifeless; he’s not shooting well. Hanner Mosquera-Perea continues to be a freshman still learning the game. He was badly exposed on defense a few times tonight and his lone attempt at the basket was one to forget, a putback that badly missed. Remy Abell shot so well earlier in the year, and Crean praised him with good reason, but he did little in 14 minutes (0 points, three rebounds, one assist).

Someone’s time will come again out of this group. But on a night where Indiana badly needed a scoring punch or spark, the bench didn’t provide it. Of course, this could be extended to the starters as well. Jordan Hulls was sloppy (team-high three turnovers) and shot poorly (2-of-8). Outside of Zeller’s 9-of-15 performance and Hulls’ effort, the rest of the starting five (Christian Watford, Victor Oladipo and Yogi Ferrell) shot just 8-of-23.

III. Quickly: The sky is not falling. This team is still going to contend for a Big Ten title. But they certainly missed a chance to get some distance on the rest of the league tonight, and the road gets no easier from here.

Filed to:

  • yimyames

    I didn’t understand why Jordy was tryin to create his own shot all night. As far as all the dribbling, that is Yogis job now. If Hulls isn’t shooting open threes then he needs to be on the bench. His D cost us more than a few times last night. I felt we needed to penetrate the Badgers D to at least get to the line, but every possession JH, was dribbling everywhere.,

  • Aceman_Mujezinovic_07

    The worst call of the night was that “grab” they called on Vic near midcourt late in the game! All he did was lean on the guy and let him go by as he worked around him! If that’s a foul on your home floor then they need to go to a computerized system and get rid of the blind officials!

  • Aceman_Mujezinovic_07

    I’d just wish him leaping ability! The dude jumps like my grandma!

  • Aceman_Mujezinovic_07

    Honestly, SC, they didn’t do much different on Zeller. I just watched the game again this morning and they still shut off the 3-point line and played Zeller pretty much the same way. What we did in the first half was ball screens and got our guards in the lane or got the ball moving side to side with the pass (old RMK reversing the ball technique). That allowed Zeller to catch the ball in good position and/or isolate his defender and Wisc had NO ONE quick enough to guard him.

    In the second half we started out like that was the plan but quickly went to the stupid, freaking dribble drive hand-off offense that DOESN’T work against Wisconsin. CTC has the better players and the better team and still lost to Wisc because of the system match-up. If we play them in the B1G tournament or next year, do you think that CTC will finally come up with something different against them instead of banging our heads against the wall with an offense that plays into their hands because they can keep up dribbling around the perimeter for 25-30 seconds every possession???

  • yimyames

    If he’s not shooting threes he is hurting this team. Last night he wasn’t shooting threes. After the last two games yogi has had, why was he not running the point every possession? I don’t get it.

  • yimyames

    If he’s not shooting threes he is hurting this team. Last night he wasn’t shooting threes. After the last two games yogi has had, why was he not running the point every possession? I don’t get it.

  • Aceman_Mujezinovic_07

    Three things stick out to me:

    1) We’ve played two truly physical teams this year (Butler and Wisc) and we’ve lost both games – gotta get tougher.
    2) Sheehey went into a slump after an injury last year. He seems to have tweaked his elbow and his shot is off and it seems like if he can’t score, he doesn’t have his head in the game – he has to learn to help the team when he can’t score!
    3) Evans’ contested, turn-around prayer after being smothered by the best defender in the league just seemed to demoralize our team! We’d worked hard to tie it up then he does that, but that stuff happens – this team has to get mentally tougher and stop panicking (ala Jordy’s jumping assist to Wisc)!

  • IUHoosiers23

    Exactly. His shot hasn’t been falling… fine. We can deal with that. But to just plain slack on the defensive end? I don’t get it. It’s like he was just going through the motions and he was mentally somewhere else.

  • IUHoosiers23

    Exactly. His shot hasn’t been falling… fine. We can deal with that. But to just plain slack on the defensive end? I don’t get it. It’s like he was just going through the motions and he was mentally somewhere else.

  • SCHoosier

    U may be right..will watch again today..seems like Cody had guys on both sides..still at 7 feet..hard not to find him. Of course with all the dribbling going on instead of sharp passing..post feeds were a lot tougher. Thanks.

  • SCHoosier

    U may be right..will watch again today..seems like Cody had guys on both sides..still at 7 feet..hard not to find him. Of course with all the dribbling going on instead of sharp passing..post feeds were a lot tougher. Thanks.

  • Aceman_Mujezinovic_07

    Yeah, I gripe about FT shooting a lot but that definitely didn’t hurt IU last night!

    Leaving 3-point shooters late in the shot clock and failing to run anything that actually resembles a half-court offense is what beat IU.

  • Aceman_Mujezinovic_07

    One big difference . . . Coach Knight was a really good game coach and strategy coach. I’m not sure Coach Crean has it in him? He’s an awesome recruiter and good motivator (i.e. – UNC this year and pUKe last year), but how does a team “come together” at by the end of the year if their coach doesn’t “come together” himself.

    Now, I’m not ripping on coach! In fact, I love the guy and think he represents IU basketball as best it could be represented. As a pastor I appreciate his outspoken faith and leadership of his players, but in my line of work being a good Christian helps you do your job better. Coach Crean is a great guy but I’m not sure how that’s going to help him become a better in game coach? Maybe he should pray about it! HA – don’t give me a hard time for this. I’m just trying to find humor in an incredibly disappointing loss!

  • SCHoosier

    Ace..did it shock you how badly we got beat by WIS taking it to the hole. I counted at least 5 scores where late in t he possession the IU defender got left in the dust for an easy bucket..even Yogi got beat one time. Sheheey was 3 feet behind his guy.

  • Aceman_Mujezinovic_07

    He really struggled to get it going after he injured his ankle last year even after he came back. I think injuries play tricks with this kid’s mind? He really seems to struggle to help the team if he thinks he isn’t scoring or can’t score.

  • SCHoosier

    Usually he’s dancing around in the pre-game..face full of excitement..he’s looked like Dead Man Walking with his body language last two games..can’t stay up on D and shot not falling. Not the best 6th man in b-ball last two games by any measure. Looks distracted by something. Even sitting quietly on the bench sometimes where before he was always on his feet like an assisstant coach. Go figure.

  • Aceman_Mujezinovic_07

    Maybe this team has not learned how to be the “favorite” instead of the “underdog” because I completely agree that they’re not playing with the same desire to prove something this year!

  • jpniles

    I so agree. When you miss double digit scoring, it is hard to beat solid teams. Will and Remy are energy guys… they provided none in the last two games. The thing that gives me hope is that this will not last. Will will not be in a slump forever. He won’t let himself do that. Remy is only a sophomore. He will learn. Yogi is only a freshman, he will continue to get better and do what he needs to do to get the right people the ball. I am just as frustrated as anyone (especially since I have to talk to my relatives in Wisconsin), but we need to back up from the ledge.

    I think we do it to ourselves. Do we realize how hard it is to win a championship? How many great teams have fallen short of that goal? Are we really going to judge our entire season by whether or not we hang a banner? I understand that we are antsy to win #6, but c’mon. Crean is a good coach. Our team is a talented team. Let us not start calling for people’s heads.

  • Aceman_Mujezinovic_07

    I really thought IU’s help defense was terrible! I’m not sure why but it’s like Zeller and Watford have learned to turn their head away from the ball and refuse to come off their men just a step to offer some help? But I agree there is NO WAY Vic, Will, or Yogi should be getting beat off the dribble by the Wisconsin players who were obviously slower and less athletic!

  • Wyatt

    Not really sure why we haven’t at least tried putting Perea and Zeller on the court at the same time. My ideal lineup would be Yogi, Vic, Sheehey, Wat, and zeller with Hanner, Remy and Hulls being the first three off the bench. Our defense is just awful. What happened to Peter Jurkin being this amazing shot blocker?? give the kid some PT

  • Wyatt

    Not really sure why we haven’t at least tried putting Perea and Zeller on the court at the same time. My ideal lineup would be Yogi, Vic, Sheehey, Wat, and zeller with Hanner, Remy and Hulls being the first three off the bench. Our defense is just awful. What happened to Peter Jurkin being this amazing shot blocker?? give the kid some PT

  • STLII

    that is a total crock….. Over the last two years ( with talent on board) CTC has won 80% of his games.( as a reference RMK was around the mid seventies for his time at IU with similar talent) over that time he is 43-11. he’s won big games at IU and has done a good job of rebuilding the program. Last nights’s game was a disappointment, but the bottom line is IU lost because they shot 37% for the game. Hulls among others could not buy a basket. In a slowed paced game FG% matters due to the limited number of possessions. Is IU better at a fast pace, yes but they played strong , outrebounded WI and played good defense for most of the game. You speculate about those other coaches and how they would win with this IU talent. I would remind you that Painter had a large amount of talent a couple of years ago and won nothing. As for Stevens, overall a good coach, but at the end of the day CTC will have a national championship and Stevens, and Ryan, will not…

  • IUMIKE1

    Yea, but he hasn’t proven he can make the shot even when he does get up off the floor a decent amount (for him) at least if he pump faked he could probably draw a foul and he has proven he can make free throws.

  • IUMIKE1

    Couldn’t agree more on the the last mantra you listed and I might add that, IMHO, his minutes should be less if his shot is not falling. Let alone when he is over matched in addition to his shot not falling.

  • IUMIKE1

    Couldn’t agree more on the the last mantra you listed and I might add that, IMHO, his minutes should be less if his shot is not falling. Let alone when he is over matched in addition to his shot not falling.

  • It just seemed like down the stretch they knocked them down and we didn’t. Didn’t know the numbers. Obviously not as big of a factor as I thought.

  • TheCrew

    Not trying to be rude or start any argument here, but during Wisconsin’s 7 minute scoring drought in the 2nd half it seemed as if every time Indiana took the ball to the hoop there was a foul called. I remember very clearly 4-5 drives in the paint where a Badger player barely came in contact with an IU player and was whistled for the shooting foul. I am admittedly a Wisconsin fan, but many basketball viewers only see the bad calls one way. Wisconsin did get some nice calls, but please remember that bad officiating is a two-way street.

  • Indiana lost one game at Assembly Hall last year. This year, the way we lost in terms of effort and hustle reminded me a lot like last year as well. Not to mention that Cody was the only one to actually look alive in either game. I think we can win out the rest of our home games. I know we’ve lost to Wisconsin 11 times in a row now, but don’t over react too much to that considering it didn’t take a whole lot to beat us there for Crean’s first 3 years. I mean, don’t get me wrong I hate Wisconsin but that is just the case. Crean still is establishing the new Indiana dynasty that we’ve been waiting for. And just a sidenote: I hate reading comments saying how bad of an in-game coach Crean is. I disagree. I do believe we’re the only team in the nation that is ranked in the top 10 in both offensive and defensive efficiency this year. Could be wrong, but still, point goes to show that Crean knows what he is doing. I honestly think the way guys like Hulls and Sheehey played is a testament to why we lost. I mean, where was the effort and energy? Even after Crean lit into Hulls in the first half, Jordy just didn’t come back and play the way we’re used to seeing.

  • Wyatt

    Stevens has been to two…Crean hasn’t. Crean has a more talented team, more recruiting tools, more of a fanbase. Same can be said for Wisconsin. Anybody who doesn’t think he got outcoached doesnt know basketball.

  • Kelin Blab

    His D cost us….Jackson made 3 shots and the other guard made 4, they were 7 for 16….

  • Kelin Blab

    Out coached how? They are 15-2, ranked #2 still, and leading the country in scoring, with TWO all American candidates. What am I missing here. what did Bo do last night that was so great….they didn’t score off their flex.

  • Kelin Blab

    The dribble drive has allowed IU to lead the nation in scoring. Who needs a screen, when you can score without one.

  • Aceman_Mujezinovic_07

    I’m not saying abandon the DD, KB. I’m just saying you have to have a plan B against these kinds of teams because the DD obviously doesn’t work against disciplined defensive teams like Wisconsin.

  • Miamihoosier

    Dear HKHBadger: I have 10 championships at the local Division 2 Rec league where getting players to refrain from using their cell phones during timeouts and taking smoke breaks at half time tends to much harder to do than at the D1 level….I’ll probably win a national championship before coach Crean.

  • Miamihoosier

    Dear HKHBadger: I have 10 championships at the local Division 2 Rec league where getting players to refrain from using their cell phones during timeouts and taking smoke breaks at half time tends to much harder to do than at the D1 level….I’ll probably win a national championship before coach Crean.

  • Miamihoosier

    I think you are reading the comment as if I’m referring to their program. They didn’t beat us 11 times this year. Of course they were light years better than us in Crean’s first 3 years. The point is, it’s early, and I think Crean is a good enough coach, to show these guys what went wrong and to fix it enough, to cruise by them at tourney time………

  • yimyames

    There were other times he got beat off the dribble causing a wing to help, leaving an open three. Now you can blame some of that on poor rotations, but in the end it started with hulls.

  • Barancy Peloma

    tom crean doesn’t believe in screens. a screen is an example of half-court strategy. crean has no half-court strategy. take away his transition game and he’s toast.