Five takeaways from Indiana’s win over Kennesaw State

  • 12/23/2013 10:38 am in

Indiana closed out the non-conference portion of its schedule with a comfortable 90-66 win over Kennesaw State on Sunday afternoon at Assembly Hall.

Here’s a look at five takeaways from IU’s tenth win of the season:

· Yogi’s consistency: Through 13 games, sophomore point guard Yogi Ferrell has scored in double figures in every contest and has six games with five or more assists. One of our biggest questions going into the season was ‘How will Ferrell’s game evolve as a sophomore?’

The answer is that he’s increased his scoring responsibilities significantly without diminishing his ability to distribute the ball. On Sunday, Ferrell poured in 25 points, one shy of his career-high, and also had five assists.

“I’m trying to find different outlets and just find different ways to score,” Ferrell said postgame when asked about finding his consistency with scoring. “I’m kind of just playing the game really. Just trying to make the game as simple as possible.”

· Fischer continues to build confidence: It wasn’t a breakout game, but freshman Luke Fischer appears to be on his way to an important role in IU’s rotation with Big Ten play beginning next week. Through 13 games, Fischer is averaging just 2.8 points and 2.1 rebounds in 10 minutes per game, but his minutes are on the upswing in recent weeks.

On Sunday, Fischer played a season-high 19 minutes and scored 10 points to go along with three blocks, two rebounds and an assist. The freshman from Germantown (Wis.) continues to gain confidence after a preseason shoulder injury and appears ready to take on more minutes as IU enters the key portion of its schedule.

· Ferrell, Sheehey take ownership of turnover problems: Indiana had 40 turnovers in its two wins this weekend and the Hoosiers now rank No. 309 nationally in turnover percentage according to

Ferrell and senior Will Sheehey, IU’s leaders, were both introspective on Sunday when asked about what the team needed to improve upon as it readies for Big Ten play.

“That definitely starts with me and Will,” Ferrell said. “We’re definitely going to get on guys a lot harder. We can’t afford to give teams the ball in the Big Ten.”

“It starts with us two. They see us do certain things, they seem to do it,” Sheehey added. “I know for myself personally the past four or five games I’ve been careless with the ball, turned it over way too much. It starts with me, then goes down the line. We have to take care of the ball first and the rest will follow.

We’ll find out soon if the Hoosiers can curb some of the mistakes as Illinois, IU’s opponent on New Year’s Eve, plays a deliberate pace and does a good job of limiting its own turnovers.

· Rotation doesn’t change much from Friday: Indiana again played a large rotation on Sunday with Austin Etherington, Collin Hartman and even Jonny Marlin seeing first half minutes. Crean wasn’t ready to tip his hand specifically on how the rotation may change beginning on Tuesday, but it certainly seems like changes will be coming.

“I don’t know yet. I really don’t,” Crean said when asked about the rotation moving forward. “I’ll start looking at that as we start looking at Illinois, start looking at that over the next few days. I think a lot of that is going to come down to the consistency level that guys play with every day.

Crean mentioned offensive rebounding, blocking out, deflections, hustle, energy, scrappiness, bringing pressure and fatigue, getting to the foul line and ball movement as factors he would be evaluating.

“I think how many people figure that out, that will probably be the guys that can help us the most,” he said.

· Kennesaw State coach offers his assessment on how to play Indiana: Lewis Preston, who spent time as an assistant at Notre Dame, Florida and Penn State before landing the Kennesaw State job, was asked by Inside the Hall’s Jordan Littman for his thoughts on how to attack and find success against Indiana.

It was no surprise that Preston’s answer started with defending Ferrell, who is averaging close to 17 points per game.

“I would probably hawk Ferrell and make sure we limit his touches,” Preston said. “Make someone else have to beat us and run the show for them, which would probably be Sheehey. And then pack it in and see if they can make enough 3s to beat you.”

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  • Ole Man

    Appreciate that. Since retirement, I rarely crunch numbers any more!

  • Andrew Walker

    “I can make numbers dance and sing and say anything you want them to say……Numbers can and do tell lies.”

    Based on what you said I am incorrect and this quote below is also incorrect.

    “There is no indication, historically, that a stronger schedule “prepares” you more; nor, that a stronger schedule is necessary to become a national champion.”

  • Ole Man

    Nice try turning it back against me.
    Doesn’t work, however, as I’m not the one using numbers so vehemently in my debate.
    Have a Merry!

  • Andrew Walker

    “Someone go back and pull up IU’s SOS for Crean’s 1st three years. Let’s
    see how well all those early season losses served us back then.”
    Indiana NCSOS during Crean era
    09′ 83
    10′ 325
    11′ 326
    12′ 161
    13′ 237

    Besides the 09′ season the NCSOS for pre Cody Zeller years actually had a worse rank.

  • Andrew Walker

    Ole man said, “I’m not the one using numbers” but he also said,
    “Do some research. There is no indication, historically, that a stronger schedule “prepares” you more; nor, that a stronger schedule is necessary to become a national champion…There simply is no data supporting those conclusions…I will say this: having worked with numbers for much of my life…While numbers are concrete, they ignore the variables…I can make numbers dance and sing and say anything you want them to say…Numbers can and do tell lies… My experience gives me another, more outside-the-box take on those stats.”

    We can agree to disagree but it sounds like you’re using numbers to support your debate.
    I would also like to know what your “outside-the-box take” is.

  • marcusgresham

    I don’t want him getting the ball there when there are guards five feet away from him on either side waiting to cut under him and take the ball away.
    What I am tired of though, is seeing him fight for position, have some guy shoving the hell out of him until he gets frustrated, retaliates, and gets called for an offensive foul. I know I’ve seen him get hosed like that at least five or six times.

  • marcusgresham

    I would like to see a game or two against better competition but I can understand the schedule even more this season with so many guys who’ve never/barely played college games before. Don’t forget Kentucky would have been in The Hall this season if Criminalipari had a spine. I also think the season ticket holders have 9 B1G games so I don’t cry for their lack of quality games to see.
    I’d suggest finding an opponent in an area the coaches have targeted as a recruiting area but the one that comes to mind is the DC area and that will be taken care of once Maryland joins the conference. There have been guys the staff have looked at from California so maybe talk to UCLA, USC, Cal, Stanford. Possibly someone from Texas as it seems to be a pretty fertile area (but not Baylor for obvious reasons.) Noah came from the Northeast–UMass is on the upswing, or BC

  • marcusgresham

    One could also assume a coach with a championship-caliber team is more willing to play a tougher schedule because he doesn’t have to be as concerned with racking up a ton of losses.

  • marcusgresham

    Yeah, people forget that team lost to Texas-Pan American

  • Ole Man

    Thanks, Andrew! Merry Christmas.

  • NotTheRealSteveEyl

    Doesn’t that reflect year end SOS? With all the great teams in the BT, our SOS will be great.

    It’s the “W” column that’s going to be our issue. Everyone (myself included) would feel a lot better if we’d beaten ND. And UCONN.

  • NotTheRealSteveEyl

    Maybe Crean knew we would suck. If we have any hope of the tourney, we’re going to need every one of those wins.

    We lost to the three good-ish to good teams we played. It confuses me that so many people look at that and conclude we should have played more good teams.

  • NotTheRealSteveEyl


  • NotTheRealSteveEyl

    These numbers are meaningless for the current discussion.

    If you don’t have those teams’ pre conf SOS, the numbers can’t be compared.

    Of course their SOA is high- they played six tourney teams.

  • Speed

    The Big Ten will not let IU run and our half court game is terrible. I cannot understand why Crean does not work on that aspect of the game against a team like kenneshaw state.

  • millzy32

    This team has played 4 quality D1 teams in the preseason and lost 3 of them. The other wins are just fluff to get to the 20 win mark which is becoming less and less meaningful as the seasons go by. Is every team doing it? For the most part yes but that doesn’t make it right. I have no problem with them scheduling some cream puffs to get them ready for game action but to add games to the season just so you can add only cream puffs to boost the win total is wrong IMHO.