What to Expect: UNC Greensboro

  • 11/28/2014 8:11 am in

After nearly a four-day break between games, Indiana resumes its 2014-2015 season tonight at Assembly Hall with UNC Greensboro, a member of the Southern Conference (SoCon).

The game will be broadcast live on the Big Ten Network at 9 p.m. ET with Josh Lewin and Stephen Bardo on the call.

Indiana (4-1) was humbled on Monday evening when Eastern Washington came into Bloomington and upset the Hoosiers, 88-86, ending Indiana’s 43-game non conference winning streak in Assembly Hall.

Tonight, the Hoosiers will have their first chance to rebound from the loss with a game against the UNC Greensboro Spartans, who come into Bloomington with a 1-4 record and a lowly No. 302 rank on KenPom.

PERSONNEL

The Spartans have heavily relied on their starters through their first five games this season as bench players have played a total of just 22.9 percent of total minutes. Only 25 other teams in the country have had their bench players play fewer minutes.

That starting lineup consists of three sophomores, one junior and one senior — all of whom are at least averaging 65 percent of UNC Greensboro’s minutes this season.

Sophomores Tevon Saddler (a 6-foot-6 guard) and RJ White (a 6-foot-8 forward) are two of the most active Spartans. Saddler (pictured), who chose to return to the program after considering transferring, is averaging a whopping 35 percent assist rate this season and has been directly involved in 34.3 percent of the Spartans’ possessions this season — ranking No. 19 in the country. White, meanwhile, is strong on the boards with a 24.4 percent defensive rebound percentage and also has a 4.8 percent steals rate thus far this season.

6-foot guard Clay Byrd rounds out UNC Greensboro’s sophomore starters and is playing in 82.4 percent of the Spartans’ minutes this season. He also rarely turns the ball over — at just a 3.4 turnover percentage.

6-foot-5 Kayel Locke is the lone usual junior starter for the Spartans and is most effective in getting to the free throw line. 6-foot-7 senior Nicholas Paulos rounds out the UNC Greensboro starting lineup, and he has played in almost all of the team’s minutes this season (93.9 percent). He also rarely gets fouled — at just a 1.3 foul rate per every 40 minutes of action.

Other Spartans the Hoosiers should expect to see include 6-foot-8 sophomore Jordy Kuiper and 6-foot-9 junior Ben Dickinson — both of whom are averaging an offensive rebound percentage of above 10.

A QUICK TEMPO-FREE GLANCE

UNC Greensboro has been a middle-of-the-pack team through its first five games in most efficiency ratings, and its 1-4 record certainly does not back up any of its performances thus far. The only win has come against DII team Chowan University — and even then the Spartans only won by 14 points.

What the Spartans do better than average as a team, though, is offensive rebounding. Their 32.9 percent rate ranks No. 137 in the country, and their 49.6 effective field goal percentage also ranks above average at No. 122. Still, as an overall offense, UNC Greensboro averages just .95 points per possession, ranking No. 259 in the country.

On the defensive side, while the Spartans force turnovers (a 21.6 turnover percentage, ranking No. 109) and steals (11.0 percentage, ranking No. 80), overall the defense as a whole struggles. They have allowed 1.06 points per possession to their opponents — 28th worst in the country — and have allowed a 56.8 eFG%, as well.

WHAT IT COMES DOWN TO

Indiana’s offense shouldn’t have much of a problem with UNC Greensboro. The Spartans struggle to stop the 3 (allowing a 41.5 3-point field goal percentage this season), and given the rate they have allowed opponents to score, the Hoosiers shouldn’t have a problem putting points on the board tonight.

Where the Hoosiers might struggle, though, is on the boards once again. Through their past two games, the Hoosiers have allowed 96 points in the paint. And though the Spartans don’t necessarily score much inside — just 47.1 percent of their points are 2s — they have capable rebounders and a size advantage that the Hoosiers could once again struggle with.

UNC Greensboro also does not have the 3-point shooting threat that Eastern Washington possessed, however, the Hoosiers will have to find a way to keep the Spartans from making easy baskets in the post if they want to ease their way to a fifth win.

Otherwise, Indiana might have another battle on its hands tonight.

QUICK FACTS ON UNC GREENSBORO

Location: Greensboro, North Carolina
Enrollment: 18,400
Established: 1891

 

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  • Lance76

    I would like to see Holt play. He needs experience if he is going to contribute this year. I can also see that coaches do not want him in a situation where his confidence is inhibited early on in his IU career. Win, learn and move forward.

  • Robie Malcomson

    I am really hoping that Indiana will try to do a more improved job of protecting the basket and try to limit the amount of times UNC Greensboro will drive easily to the basket without contention. (I saw this many times during the Eastern Washington game. I think this was one of the most frustrating aspects of the previous game.) I am fully aware of the amount of inexperience and youth on this team, so I can except last game as a teachable moment for the team to improve on that aspect.)

  • PBzeer

    That was the famed “Matador Defense”.

  • ForeverIU

    Our opponents have been prancing around like ballerinas in the heart of Hoosier Paint! Let’s show them what the real Fort Hoosiers looks like. LOL!

  • Hoosier Hall

    We need Emmitt Holt to help in that department. He is a known shot blocker and shouldn’t be any worse on the boards than what we’ve already seen. Gotta get him involved at some point otherwise it’s just a wasted scholarship.

  • ForeverIU

    Absolutely, and I want Hanner to play even through his lesser games.

  • David Macer

    I think both Holt and April (to a lesser extent) get some minutes tonight. Like many ITHer’s I don’t want to see any more “ole'” defense. Move your feet, beat the ball handler to the spot, make him change directions.

  • ForeverIU

    I’d love to see April if his ankle has healed.

  • TorontoHoosierFan

    IU needs to win this game handily to restore some faith in Hoosier land. Would be nice to see a little bit of defense.

  • Hoosier Hall

    Heck yeah. I’m definitely not advocating for Hanner’s minutes to decrease. We need him and Emmitt to help control the paint. Our guards are talented no doubt, but the combo of Holt and Perea have a better chance of defending the lane and controlling the boards.

  • Hoosier Hall

    Saw a picture on Twitter that showed Priller in a boot… Not sure what that’s all about but I would love to see Jeremiah start getting some spot minutes (if he’s ready).

  • Hoosier1158

    Right, he needs to be playing now before the B1G season starts when we will really need him.

  • fourputtsforsnowman

    …and a play or two for JBJ. He struggled a bit last game and the coaches didn’t seem to help him get going. We can’t forget that he’s a freshman.

  • unclekerfuffle

    I would hope the emphasis for our Hoosiers tonight will be on improving interior defense specifically and overall defense in general along with rebounding.

    This seems like a great opportunity to focus on those three aspects of the game and not worry about our offense; offense is probably a constant regardless of how we rebound or defend.

    Work on the most glaring weaknesses and the rest should take care of itself.

    Good luck tonight, guys.

  • Cthomas

    It means he has fallen behind April on the depth chart.

  • ForeverIU

    Another one boots the dust? LOL. No, I think the booty has become pretty standard, even as a precautionary thing. I think Hanner walked around with a boot part of last season (and Noah, even when he was a starter).

  • ForeverIU

    What should be UNC’s maximum score against our defense tonight (I mean for us to say that we played good defense)?

  • Oregoniu

    No excuses CTC, let’s see Emmitt and draw our own conclusions about his readiness to play. If he screws up just a “New York Second” you’ll pull him any way and sub one of your smallest guards to take his place on the post..

  • dwdkc

    I think most of us would be happy with a shutout after the last game. No seriously, we need to see major intensity and nonstop effort after the defensive debacles of the last 2 games. Time to see how they respond.

  • BeatWisconsin

    So I generally support Crean. I have made a deal with myself. If Crean does not play Holt and/or April a combined minimum of 10 minutes tonight (preferably lots more), then I will admit my faith in Crean is mis-placed.

  • FinEndNow

    i don’t see what there is to lose by playing those two. That is what these games are supposed to be for. Time to put them in. Can’t get any worse than what has been on the floor already.

  • Rob Mullins

    Holt is the primary one I want to see and then April. I don’t know if April will be B10 ready but Holt WILL be needed come B10 schedule time. I would like to see 2 of the 3 Hanner, April and Holt on the floor most of the game so we can see what we would look like with some size

  • And One

    This game will tell us a lot about how the rest of the year will go. Without making excuses, I really believe fatigue played a role in the debacle (maybe too strong a word) that was Monday’s game. I want to see how they respond. I expect a business-like 20 point win, 8 of them from Holt.

  • ForeverIU

    So … Butler beats UNC and Georgetown, which in turn lost by only three points to Wisconsin. Anyone still doubting our non-conference SOC? LOL.

  • Michael

    Go IU

  • IUMIKE1

    I’m assuming that you are referring to the “strength of schedule” and when it comes to that I have no doubts about the strength of it, where I have doubts about it is if we can win even one of the four (Gtwn, Pitt, UL & Btlr). I have watched a considerable amount of college bball yesterday and today, especially Gtwn & Butler, in a effort to compare amount of underclassmen, amount of minutes and those kind of things returning from last year’s team and then looking at how well they execute different things and have arrived at this conclusion: We are going to have to see a whooooole lot of improvement to just not get embarrassed let alone win them.

  • IUMIKE1

    Taking into consideration how much room for improvement there is, who the opponent is, where they rank in several categories, it being a home game and Crean having had ample time to make things at least a noticeable amount better, I’d have to say that we would need to hold them to where their final score is no more than sixty six. I will be especially watching how we defend the high pick and roll cause if their coach doesn’t try running it after watching film of our last two games then he should be fired, not after the game, but during the game. lol