The Minute After: Mississippi Valley State

  • 11/14/2014 9:42 pm in

Thoughts on a 116-65 win over the Delta Devils:

I. Indiana showed splendor. The spacing, the ball movement, the shots which all seemed like they were going to fall. The numbers are absurd: 116 points, the most-ever in the Tom Crean era. Eleven made 3-pointers, more than the Hoosiers made in any game a season ago. Five players in double figures (James Blackmon Jr.: 25, Max Hoetzel: 19, Nick Zeisloft: 16, Robert Johnson: 15, Yogi Ferrell: 15). A mark of 1.44 points per possession. An effective field goal percentage of 75.4. An offensive rebounding percentage of 54.5 and a free throw rate (FTA/FGA) of 62.7. They made 27-of-37 from the line.

It’s nice and it’s fun, but it came against the Mississippi Valley State Delta Devils. This was a David vs. Goliath matchup with Goliath swallowing the opponent whole.

Indiana showed slop, too. In this up-and-down affair, the Hoosiers turned it over on 30 percent of their possessions heading into halftime. They were much cleaner in the second half with just six turnovers, but a 23.5 turnover percentage by game’s end is reminiscent of last season and isn’t going to be as easily negated when the Hoosiers’ shots aren’t falling like tonight against better competition.

II. Three games straight of a consistent Hanner Mosquera-Perea. Yet again, he stayed out of foul trouble with just one in 21 minutes. He snagged a career-high 12 boards and just missed a double-double with nine points. (A 3-of-7 mark from the line saw him miss double-digit scoring.) Yes, he was again loose with the ball and a little wild at times, but he knocked down another jumper from the right corner and even had a bucket in the post that started with his back to basket.

We also got to see the debut of Jeremiah April. He hit a contested jumper out of the right corner for his first bucket as a Hoosier. In nine minutes of play, April also grabbed two boards and added a steal, block and an assist. It’s a limited sample size, but April appears to not be as big of a project as some other big men in the Crean era — though that’s not to say he doesn’t have a lot of work to do to find minutes this season despite IU’s lack of depth up front.

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III. If there’s one word to sum up the freshman class early this season, it may be this: confidence. Blackmon and Johnson know what they’re doing and go about their business on the court. Hoetzel, though overzealous at times, isn’t afraid to attack the rim or shoot the trey. He even was running and initiating the offense late in this one with all of Indiana’s ballhandlers done for the night. And Priller and April in limited minutes have met the game head on.

Speaking of Priller …

IV.  Let it be known: The Assembly Hall faithful loves Tim Priller. He entered the game to much applause in the second half and quickly went to work — a block followed by a tip-in on the other end. The “Tiii-iiim Prill-er” chant rang down from the rafters. When Indiana faces more worthwhile competition and returns their suspended players, Priller is unlikely to see the floor much. But when he does, the crowd appears primed to go bananas during Priller Time.

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  • IUMIKE1

    Thought about those two things myself last night. With JBJ being so much more of an overall threat than HMP I look for opposing coaches to go at him more than HMP most of the time, plus if that’s their plan they also kind of get a double dip on that strategy since, most of the time, HMP will be the one sliding over to try and stop JBJ’s man if he gets around him. Just one more reason that we have to get a whole lot better overall on D, especially the help and recover D.

  • IUMIKE1

    I know, I started to do a, ” holy bouncing basketballs Batman, I’m agreeing with cooper ” thing. lol Just goes to show how many ills winning can cure even if it was MVS.

  • IUMIKE1

    Agreed, already has a good bball IQ. However I did have to holler a little bit after he lost the ball for the second or third time after trying to dribble down the court instead of passing it ahead, but I seen Yogi and JBJ have the same thing happen to them as well. I know that’s pretty much nit picking and the good part is that all of them seemed to clean that part of the TOs up after halftime.

  • IUMIKE1

    CRAP, had not seen that !! I had just made a comment to a friend watching the game with me that we were in good shape with a really talented kid in CA and I thought with their connections to Indiana and IU that we had just as good a chance as anyone else. Do you know who is he down to and / or why we aren’t on his list anymore ?

  • E Foy McNaughton

    Bold prediction for this Freshman class. It will be a special one, top to bottom. JBJ, if he stays 2 or more years will go down as an IU great. RJ / MH will be all B1G conference players by the time they are done. EH will be a solid starter his JR/SR years. JA may become special with that length and those soft hands. TP will be a very solid roll player / post player.

  • AgentaAllstar7

    I’m going to the game Monday.Im eager to see that kind of shooting in person! I pointed out last year and I know some agree that Coach Crean runs his offense best with built around shooters.Seeing his reactions last night I think he’s starting to think he maybe sitting on a very hot shooting group.Perea did enough ,just needs sharpening.Cant wait to see how TW and holt do with these shooters.If Stanford Robinson didn’t get motivated to get better watching his teammates at guard then he has no pulse.I have so much respect for Colin Hartman.These are early games but if this is who he is now then he deserves real minutes.

  • iuoiu

    O don’t worry SC, that will happen each and every game. I bet we counter that by making their 5 guy defend a swarm of drives to the basket by Stan, James, Yogi, Troy, etc. etc. They will look like a swarm of hornets out there trying to get swatted away by their big guys.

  • iuoiu

    You just need to see him, then you know. Blond Bombedshell.

  • IUMIKE1

    Your last paragraph holds what I believe to be an important point as well. When we give this team a ” grade ” at the end of the year this point should carry a lot of weight in how said grade is arrived at IMHO. Everybody has some ups and downs through out the season, but it’s like you said what we should examine is, is this team better, overall, at or towards the end of the season, than it was at the beginning of the season.

  • IUPatrick

    Robert Johnson, Robert Johnson! There is nothing to dislike about this kid. He is a playmaker, smart with the ball, goes to basket hard, looks for his teammates, rebounds and shoots well. And he does it quietly. Kind of a Joe Dumars type. You see all the threes going up from every one and you think that Robert hasn’t filled the stat sheet but only to find out later he has 15 points, a couple of steals, 5-6 boards and 4 assists. He is going to be the glue with Yogi this year. I do wish we were bigger but hard to fault these freshmen for their heart and determination.

  • IUMIKE1

    With JA just coming off a fairly serious injury I’d say that he was probably limited minute wise by the medical staff. I’m like you in that I want him to get every minute in the pre-B1G part of the schedule that he can as well, but for sure don’t want him to do anything to reverse his recovery.

  • Eastwood88_2

    He reminds me of WS his freshman year. NV was the black hole on offense last year. 7 assists in bigten play. I was pleased of the ball movement.

  • Dave Carnes

    That was my point I am not bagging on him but I think JB has the tools to put himself among the IU elite.That said poor Gordon stepped into a mess bigger than any 18 yr old could solve.

  • fourputtsforsnowman

    …well, and yogi also body blocked jbj on a layup…completely unaware of the situation. And hit an open 3 and then celebrated while his assignment drove the length of the court for a possible layup. And he tried dribbling between two defenders at half court for no reason (bailed out by a foul but risked another turnover). Honestly, jbj and rj looked like juniors and yogi looked like the frosh. I think yogi’s inability to play fundamental basketball (at either end of the court if you watch him) has led coach Crean to redeploy him to an “off the ball” or “outlet” offensive position. As I’ve said before, if yogi doesn’t improve he may even see his minutes decrease as the freshmen gain experience. Anyway, this team already belongs to the freshmen. Good.

  • AgentaAllstar7

    Ya I don’t know what happened with yogi there.Maybe going up against a smaller Pg threw him off some.idk but not concerned about that

  • Dave Carnes

    I saw some of that.But I would rather start there and go back then where we were last year with some of the guys scared to shoot.

  • fourputtsforsnowman

    by the way, Zeller made 2 key plays last night at the end of the hornets/suns game to seal the victory.

  • ForeverIU

    I have a love hate relationship with Yogi and you are absolutely right.

  • ForeverIU

    When he came in he gave the team a totally different character.

  • TomJameson

    With all the cutting to the basket going on, even a dominant center should be racking up the fouls. Especially with the quality of guards we’ll be throwing at them.

  • TomJameson

    You know CTC talked about that also, or at least inferred that they need to get the ball up court faster, but by passing and not dribbling. Running that fast means you have to dribble the ball way ahead of you, and the defense picked that apart in the first half. Don’t think that’s nit-picking, but not a real concern at this point either. Like you said Mike, the 2nd half was much better. 🙂

  • TomJameson

    I think the solid starters are Yogi, Blackmon, Troy, HP, and maybe RJ. After that I think starters can be NZ, Holt, Stan, and fill-in-the-blank-here. LOL But, IMO, the first 4 are going to be pretty solid.

  • jmoney

    I love the Joe Dumars reference! RJ does a little bit of everything, and his poise as a frosh is impressive. I’m with you…this kid is going to be a stat sheet stuffer.

  • CreanFaithful

    Lol. Yogi’s minutes aren’t gonna go down… He made some sloppy plays. He is still the best player on the team.

  • E Foy McNaughton

    That is the best comparison I’ve seen. I had thought of Jim Thomas, but RJ is a better shooter.

    I think RJ starts 90% of the games this year. He is a better all around player than SR, a better shooter and better at protecting the ball. SR is special and will provide a spark, but RJ will be a fixture in the lineup.

  • b_side

    Duke, Zona, UCLA, UM and Florida.

    Not sure why we lost momentum.

  • CreanFaithful

    It was Shaggy – from Scooby Doo…

  • SCHoosier

    Agree..but let’s play somebody first..and play’em tough before all that kind of hype.

  • HoosierHuckleberry

    At the end of the season, I don’t think he’ll be considered as the best or most valuable Hoosier.

  • Zach

    Gotta be joking, Yogi is by far the best player on the team. So what if he was trying to make a highlight play on a two on one fast break, WHEN WE WERE UP 40. He was just giving the fans something to cheer about, which is nice in a blowout. He wouldnt do that in a tight game. The play where he ran into jbj was just bad timing, and is no indicator of his ability to play, stuff like that happens in basketball. Yogi has shown restraint against lower level opponents so far while letting the freshmen gain confidence. He could have put up 40 in all three games if he wanted too. Yogi is our best player and we will go where he leads us this season. He is a stud, no way around it.

  • Zach

    Rojo seems to be better than advertised, but i still think Stan has the advantage. We haven seen Stan play yet this year but he was really good last year, and i think people are forgetting that. He is a great slasher, and a great defender. I think he has a huge advantage over rojo when it comes to ball handling in the open floor as well. Did anyone else think he looked uncomfortable bringing the ball up the floor?Both seem to be good, and that is good news for iubb.

  • fourputtsforsnowman

    Lol…yogi’s minutes are already down. So is his role on the team (from his viewpoint). Yogi made a lot, not a few, sloppy plays. As is often the case with Yogi, most of the sloppy plays were high risk with little to no reward. IU is implementing a new point guard system and moving yogi to the weak side. Assuming the freshman develop as all evidence suggests, the ball won’t be in yogi’s hands like last year. IU will win games as a result. Yogi will be part of that, and win a few games for IU in spectacular fashion. But he won’t be the centerpiece. On the defensive end, Yogi is the weakest backcourt defender among IU’s better backcourt players. Watch. Just last night Yogi was too lazy to help our center when the ball went from yogi’s man into the middle near the free throw line. Yogi couldn’t be bothered to help defend. His minutes have to go down if that’s how he is going to play. I know you are a 110% IU fan and so am I, so let’s agree to watch and see.

  • ForeverIU

    Lol, no one is doubting how central Yogi is to our game, which should make him even more subject to scrutiny. One of our senior posters (don’t want to put him on the spot) once said that we live by Yogi and die by Yogi. That was last year. This year it’s live by Yogi or bench Yogi. Lol, I can criticize Yogi because I know he’s a toughy.

  • SilentBob

    Yea I understand both view points. He did seem a little selfish late in the game, but otherwise he looked pretty solid. He walks a tight rope between arrogant and confidence, and I personally love it. However (not a diss to Max nor do I think it’s a bad thing whatsoever) he has that Jimmy Clausen/ west coast vibe that I’m not sure Indiana people quite like. He smiles more than were used to lol. You can tell the kid has never got his car stuck in snow in the middle of nowhere Indiana. When in doubt look at the numbers. He had a great game. He kept shooting it even though he was cold from distance, which is what you want a shooter to do I think. He still managed to end the game going 6 of 12 from the field.

  • Michael Crawley

    I was at the game it was a lot of fun. I thought JA had no chance at seeing the court this year. Now im not so sure he looked like he has been their before he was definitely confident. He was good with his back to the goal he looked okay with his guy in front of him. He seemed to struggle when the smaller players made it inside and he did not box out very well. He ran the court really well for a big guy and he is faster then you think.

    Say what u will about the competition but they played well as a team. I have never seen a player like JBJ my gosh he can do it all. It takes 1/2 sec for him to get open and he does not miss. RJ is a beast and the chemistry between him and JBJ was awesome.

    Yogi not only was he the floor General that did a crossover and the guy just fell out of the way. I almost felt sorry for the kid. Yogi is playing with a chip on his shoulder he and he was iintetense.

  • HoosierHuckleberry

    Perhaps MH smiles a lot because he gets what being a Hoosier is all about and is grateful to be one of those fortunate enough to wear the “Stripes”. Perhaps I’m not even close…if he ever gets a car stuck in the snow while cruising the state, as long as he’s not near West Lafayette or South Bend, he’ll learn what Hoosier Hospitality means.
    I like his upside! He’s young and I look for him to ease off the trigger a little bit and share the rock in the games ahead.

  • CreanFaithful

    “I know you are a 110% IU fan and so am I, so let’s agree to watch and see.”
    – Agreed. And as with all things, only time will tell.

    “Lol…yogi’s minutes are already down.”
    – Yes, in a blowout, he only played 30 minutes. BTW, that was the most minutes of any player on the team.

    “IU is implementing a new point guard system and moving yogi to the weak side.”
    – Crean wants interchangeable parts, so that we can frequently mix up the attack. Expect Yogi to continue to play off the ball in games like these. It’s a great opportunity to develop our other guards. Also expect him to handle the ball more in tighter games.

    “Yogi made a lot, not a few, sloppy plays. As is often the case with Yogi, most of the sloppy plays were high risk with little to no reward.”
    – 3 turnovers. More than I would like to see, but not what I would call a lot, but maybe a few was poor wording.

    “On the defensive end, Yogi is the weakest backcourt defender among IU’s better backcourt players.”
    – Have you listened to analyst speak on this topic? He was regarded as our best on ball defender last year. The only two that are close are Rob (not there yet) and Stan (not consistent, hopefully that changes this year). Zeisloft? Blackmon? Nope…

    “Just last night Yogi was too lazy to help our center when the ball went from yogi’s man into the middle near the free throw line. Yogi couldn’t be bothered to help defend.”
    – First, it’s one play. Second, CTC has talked repeatedly this offseason about emphasizing permitter players sticking with their man vs helping. Too good of a shooting league according to Crean.

  • Michael Crawley

    I agree with you about JBJ his nickname should be SilkyJ

  • Michael Crawley

    Turnovers were bad 14 in the first 1/2 but the second half with their starters only 4. Not to bad. The locked down on dribble drives in the second 1/2

  • IUMIKE1

    Agreed, plus there was more than one occasion where he could have put up a shot without it being considered forced but chose to make the pass and allow one of the freshmen to shoot it.

  • SilentBob

    Haha yea I was just using that as a kind of figure of speech to say you can tell he has a different upbringing than a lot of the natives. That isn’t a problem at all though. As long as he is a hard worker and a good mannered kid then he will be well appreciated here. He has huge upside and I’m very excited to see where his career takes him.

  • TomJameson

    I reread this response and I’d like to emphasize my up-arrow by saying “yeah!! what he said!!” LOL

  • TomJameson

    Evansville scored 116 (to 45) in their season opener against Earlham. A record 71 point victory.

  • TomJameson

    Just a few things to throw out there. All my opinion, but well worth what you’re paying for it. LOL FIRST of all the team as a whole looks really good. Great shooting! Can’t say much more about that. The middle may not be nearly as bad as we first thought it could be. Rotation of Hanner, Emmit, April, and yes, even Tim will at the very least “get us by” some of the better completion. Over all, looking pretty good right now. SECOND thing is the “okay, take a breath” part. I know I’m getting really excited watching this team and I have to keep reminding myself about the competitive level. So let’s remember that the competition will get really tough as we go on, everyone hitting everything they throw up will not happen every night, Hanner may foul out in 5 minutes some night (you know some official will be gunning for him :), and the luck factor may completely leave us some night. I think we all know we can have some bad nights. THIRD thing is that even when I try to slow myself down I’m still excited about this team. They are fun to watch, they look like they play well together (JBJ and Yogi laughed about that collision), and the pieces fit better than I thought they would. Myself, I’m going to slow down, not be too critical, and enjoy watching this team play, not matter where they take us.

  • Rkeg

    Texas Southern lost to Eastern Washington by 24 – SMU will be our first true test of this young team