That’s A Wrap: Yogi Ferrell

  • 04/03/2014 10:21 am in

Welcome to “That’s A Wrap,” our player-by-player recap of the 2013-2014 Indiana Hoosiers. Today: Yogi Ferrell.

Ferrell (32 games): 17.3 points, 3.9 assists, 3 rebounds, 52.1% eFG, 82.4% FT in 33.8 minutes per game.

Few players in all of college basketball had more asked of them than Yogi Ferrell, who saw his role shift from a facilitator as a freshman to a lead scorer who was also tasked with running the team as a sophomore.

And as the numbers show, Ferrell handled the major shift in his role brilliantly.

In the preseason, one of the major story lines surrounding IU was Ferrell’s perimeter shot, which was a weakness during his first season. It didn’t take long to see the fruits of his offseason work as it took just nine games for Ferrell to make 23 shots from distance, matching his total of 3-pointers made as a freshman.

Despite taking difficult and contested 3-pointers all season as the focus of the opposition’s scouting report, Ferrell managed to shoot 40 percent from behind the arc as a sophomore (on 220 attempts). That was a major factor in his improved effective field goal percentage of 52.1, up from 45.4 percent as a freshman. His percentage from 3-point range was up nearly 10 percent from his debut season.

The Park Tudor product finished third in conference games in scoring at 17.8 points per game, just behind Nebraska’s Terran Petteway and Iowa’s Devyn Marble.

Ferrell also improved as a ball handler and decision maker as a sophomore as his turnover percentage dropped by six percentage points despite having the ball in his hands even more. His turnover rate was still far too high (18 percent), but it was easily the lowest of IU’s rotation regulars. He finished seventh in assists in Big Ten play with 3.8 per game.

Another sign of Ferrell’s growth was his play in big games. IU finished just 4-6 against ranked opponents, but IU’s point guard had a way of elevating his play against marquee conference opponents, particularly at home.

His 25 points on Jan. 14 led the Hoosiers to a win over Wisconsin, which came into Bloomington riding a 12-game winning streak over the Hoosiers. His 27 points, including seven 3-pointers, against Michigan on Feb. 2 single-handedly shot down the Wolverines. Ferrell also shut down Big Ten player of the year Nik Stauskas in that win, a feat few in the conference would accomplish.

If there was any knock on Ferrell’s sophomore campaign, it may have been an inability to consistently guide teammates through adversity, which he brought up following IU’s conference tournament loss to Illinois.

“Maybe we just don’t know how to overcome adversity,” he said. “Next year, we’ve got to hold guys more accountable, make some guys angry, get in some guys faces sometimes. I didn’t do that enough this year not knowing how they’d respond to it.

“Next year is going to be a different story.”

Bottom line: As one of the most improved players in the Big Ten, Ferrell was certainly deserving of the second team all-conference honor he received and there was a case to include him on the first team, but IU’s poor finish in the standings prevented that from happening. With Will Sheehey moving on, this is clearly Ferrell’s team now and his offseason improvement and ability to lead will be major factors in how much improvement the Hoosiers show next season.

PreviouslyStanford RobinsonTroy WilliamsCollin HartmanNoah VonlehDevin DavisAustin EtheringtonJeremy Hollowell, Hanner Mosquera-Perea

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  • FinEndNow

    James Blackmon Jr is the 21st McDonald’s All-American to go to Indiana. We’re 6th behind UNC, Duke, UK, KU and UCLA. Still 13 behind UCLA.

  • bloomingtonian

    There was one from the baseline that looked like a floater. If you can hit it consistently coming from the top of the key off the dribble to the point where opposing bigs have to respect it, it draws him out and opens up the backdoor baseline cut from either side of the basket. When you have wings that can both shoot, and finish at the rim, it makes it really hard to defend. The defense has to pick their poison. If defenders stay at home, you hit the floater in their face all day. If the defense hedges and leaves their man, you get somebody else a high percentage look.

  • Hoosier Hall

    Quinn Buckner has to be pretty high on that list. Michael Lewis too…

  • Hoosier Hall

    How is UK not way ahead in that race? They get 5 or 6 every year…

  • fourputtsforsnowman

    We don’t know, but I also saw many situations where I interpreted the YF behavior as being at odds with teammates. Others, obviously, disagree to the point that they don’t want anything mentioned. We’ll see how it plays out next year.

  • ATG08

    Few players in Division I basketball had to change their game from one season to the next like Yogi did this past year. Thus, we experienced some of the headaches and head-scratching that came with some of his in game decisions, at times. But make no mistake, we were LUCKY to have him on the floor as I don’t even want to think how much worse this season could have been without him.

    My hope is next year he is able to find more of that score v. distribute balance between his first two years at IU. He should be able to, I expect improvement from Stan, Devin, and Troy (and HMP). And with the addition of JBJ and RJ, (and MH to whatever extent he is ready to play and shoot) Yogi should have much more reliable options.

    My concern is understandably in the post, but no amount of hand-wringing is going to change that — we will just have to see how recruiting/improvement by guys on our roster plays out. Yogi, the seniors are gone, this is YOUR team and everyone is ready for you to take control on and off the court. What a great asset to the team. Go Hoosiers.

  • ForeverIU

    Reading that Chris Obekpa is transferring from St. John’s, a 6 9 lethal shot-blocker. Who better than a Nigerian with proud roots to fill Noah’s shoes, ha? But unlikely to be eligible this coming season.

  • inadvertentelbows_stillhurt

    Who will lead next years team!?!..Yogi has been a bball star his whole life but not a vocal leader…JB star his whole life ..never has had to be vocal leader ..especially when your dad is the coach…CTC never been a ….never mind can’t wait till next season…

  • inadvertentelbows_stillhurt

    I’m not sure the “in your face” approach is the way to go..but I like the fact that Yogi acknowledged changes need to be made for next season..and after his freshman season he was told he couldn’t shoot and he smashed that in the off season I can only imagine what next year will be like after him thinking he may not have been a good enough leader…stay tuned in…

  • IUBizmark

    Isn’t the floater forbidden in the Crean offense? His system utilizes contact (which guards typically initiate on the drive at the rim).

    Either way, can you imagine next year having the pure stroke of JBJ outside and the dribble drive/slasher ability of Stan? Yogi can do a bit of both so defenses will really have to bone up on their scouting and know who they’re guarding immediately.

  • inadvertentelbows_stillhurt

    I’m hoping for more of the drive and dish Yogi to come back…I’m curious to see if CTC is thinking more uptempo or more sets for shooters…

  • bloomingtonian

    I haven’t heard of the floater being discouraged like the corner 3. I don’t see why it would be. I see your point about Crean liking his players to get to the line, especially Yogi, who will be our only returning player who gets to the line and shoots above 70%. But the floater can be a high percentage shot. Just ask Tony Parker.

  • Alford Bailey

    Yogi for sure next year and that’s what you want from your point guard. Should have been the true leader this year but then you had Will so…

  • dwdkc

    With someone to dish to, I think there’s no question. And yes with a guard-dominated, smaller lineup dominating minutes, no question that is what we will have.

  • Alford Bailey

    Looks headed to Oregon or Baylor. Lavin is losing guys at a rate equal to Crean.

  • dwdkc

    Although you can’t completely predict what you’ll get from freshmen, that certainly looks like the betting favorite for starting 5 now. Stan is strong enough to bang with 3s; Troy will really have to develop his D. Probably easier for him to do so guarding bigger and slower players than fast players anyway. Expect a lot from RJ too off the bench spelling the other 3. Will definitely need another big contributor for depth; don’t know where that will come from after DD. Preferably 6’9 or bigger.

  • Alford Bailey

    Hollowell and Kevin Ware to visit Georgia St. Interesting.

  • drewheck

    They already have but they’re gone now so hopefully we won’t get held back any longer

  • Miamihoosier

    Yogi is one of the most underrated players in the country. I am obviously a big fan, but if you look at his stats, the jump from freshman to sophomore, you have to see the potential is there for him to be an all-American next season. Treavon Jackson and Derrick Walton are the next best point guards in the league, and they aren’t really close. He successfully broke the defense down all last year, with no one to kick the ball out to. Look how many assists he lost to bad shooting. That won’t be a problem next season. Jimmy B Jr. is going to light people up. Robert Johnson too. UConn has no business in the final 4 this year, but a guy named Shabazz Napier said “I’m the best player on the floor, you’re not beating my team tonight” …Yogi can do that for us the next 2 years.

  • SCHoosier

    IU is lucky to have a quality talent like Yogi at the point. I expect Ferrell to lead this team next year. Part of that leadership..and an important part will be his willingness to share the ball and get it to the shooters in key situations. No more taking the last 8 shots of a game when IU is trying to come back. Yogi has offensive help now and he needs to demonstrate early and often that he understands that. YF should be a killer in the lanes next year with the shooters we will have to kick it out too. Lot of good things can happen…it will be interesting to see how TC draws up the offense to be the most effective..especially if we have no scoring threat in the post. I see Yogi having no trouble becoming the “man” for IU b-ball.

  • Snookafly

    I thought Noah’s family was from Liberia?

  • Snookafly

    Yeah, but only for the past 2-3 years or so.

  • Snookafly

    I’m pretty sure Michael Lewis is #1– I live near one of his old coaches. Given Isiah left early, I’m going QB for #2.

  • Born&Bred2BleedHoosierCrimson

    I see Yogi averaging the same amount of points, if not less, next year and more assists. He will be pre-season All B10 by all means…
    However, hopefully his shooting number remain the same or improve because he won’t be taking the same amount of shot attempts as last year IMO. If his percentages dip, expect his ppg to drop considerably with next year being more balanced offensively.

  • Outoftheloop

    Yogi will love playing with some real 3-point shooters! He will have a great season in 2014-15!

  • ForeverIU

    I didn’t know that, my bad. It seems I read something way back that mentioned Nigeria. Still a proud West/North-West African, lol.

  • Oldguyy

    Alex, I’m not sure where you got Ferrell’s turnover percentage as 18%. Sports-Reference has it as 14.8% and Real GM has it as 14.99%.

  • Snookafly

    lol. I only remembered because Liberia has such a fascinating history and when I heard his great granddad was president it kind of blew me away.

  • ForeverIU

    Fascinating indeed. I grew up in Lebanon and remember hearing about the mass exodus of Lebanese Liberians (many second- and third-generation) after the unrest there years back. I wonder if Noah’s family came to this country under such circumstances.

  • MillaRed

    Correct sir

  • 323SGrant

    Indeed. Bellamy was a big time player for IU.

  • Gregory J. Haggard

    I agree, although IU has been blessed with some very talented point guards through the years.

  • Gregory J. Haggard

    And that’s still a record.

  • Gregory J. Haggard

    LMAO, are you sure Knight didn’t tie him up?
    I think it had a great deal to do with his mother wanting him to play for Knight.
    And Coach Knight actually changed his style of play because of Thomas.
    He made the most of the weapons he had, and Isiah was a neutron bomb.

  • Gregory J. Haggard

    Having served a career in the military, I can say with authority that you are absolutely correct.
    It is important to know how much leadership a person needs.
    Some need very little, other need everything laid out by the numbers.

  • Gregory J. Haggard

    I agree, but you’re selling RJ short, that young man will surprise some here with his offensive savvy.

  • Gregory J. Haggard

    Blackmon is a pretty good point guard as well, so they are interchangeable depending on match ups.

  • Ole Man

    Don’t know the stats; but do know that Quinn Buckner has to be in the top three all time PGs in IU history.
    Quinn and Isiah led their teams to titles. Let’s hope Yogi can do the same.

  • Snookafly

    Wow, I just learned a lot about Lebanese Liberian– now that is interesting.

  • KmanCRK

    I’m not even sure I’d ever heard of Georgia St, until I saw they got into the NIT and we didn’t.

  • HannerTime Hoosier

    Lineup most beneficial to our guards, All we have are guards! Lol
    ‘Train’ Hanner?! Dude, this ain’t the circus. Lmao

  • HannerTime Hoosier

    Seriously, I could opine on a million tangents on ‘best backcourt in the country’! Wow.

  • HannerTime Hoosier

    Only cuz Beson was a prick to Bird & Knight did not know how to assimilate Bird into Iu to feel comfortable.

  • VAHoosier

    I took “getting in faces” as more of a colloquial expression–not necessarily literally screaming at guys, but just taking them to task for their lack of effort or focus. I agree most of our guys played with heart. But Yogi is in a position (unlike all of us) to see whether one or two guys were simply not giving it their best (JH, perhaps?). I am 100% in favor of Yogi calling those guys out. Hopefully Yogi is as mature as he seems and can do it in a way that inspires and motivates rather than causes dissension.

  • fourputtsforsnowman

    SCHoosier, …what you describe is exactly what I’m looking for next year. One nagging concern is that YF might want to put up points in hopes of jumping to the draft. Time will tell but he certainly showed that behavior this year. Another concern: how will he do with a larger, taller, more physical defenders?