The Minute After: New Orleans

  • 12/22/2014 9:55 pm in

Thoughts on a 79-59 win against the Privateers:

Despite New Orleans mucking things up with 13 first half fouls and trying to contain pace, the Hoosiers blitzed out to a 22-point lead at half (44-22) and looked well on their way to an easy victory. As it should be.

Yet, the Privateers outscored Indiana in the second half (37-35) as the Hoosiers played through a ho-hum final 20 minutes. We can nit-pick this as some cause for concern, but let’s not. On a night Gardner-Webb beat Purdue in West Lafayette — marking the ninth loss for the Big Ten to teams ranked outside the KenPom top 150 and fourth outside the top 200 — getting out of this one alive and unscathed is enough.

Further: The Hoosiers had just one day in between games after an emotional one up in Indianapolis on Saturday. The students are on break. Christmas is looming Thursday with a trip to Assembly Hall East (Madison Square Garden) coming right after that this weekend. There’s a lot on their plate these days and plenty of ways to lose focus.

A 20-point win with relative ease considering the circumstances should work for everybody, right? Good.

Hanner Mosquera-Perea continued his blocking ways against the Privateers with four, matching his total from Saturday’s tilt with Butler. After Emmitt Holt’s 15-point breakout performance against Pittsburgh three weeks ago, a debate about who’s the superior frontcourt player appeared like it could be a season-long storyline. But the junior, for now, has put that to bed. Beginning with his ridiculous start against Louisville, there’s been more of a tenacious, let’s-go-get-it vibe from Mosquera-Perea over his last several games, and he’ll need to bring that sort of intensity game in and game out during conference play. He chipped in 12 points (4-of-6) and six boards this evening and now also leads the Big Ten in field goal percentage.

Mosquera-Perea isn’t the team’s top rebounder in terms of defensive and offensive percentages, but he’s near the top in both categories. And with the team employing a gang rebounding mentality, regulars like Troy Williams and Collin Hartman are giving Indiana some much needed help in those areas with strong effort.

The Hoosiers were about even on the boards tonight (31.3 OR% vs. 31.8 OR% for New Orleans) and there were a couple black marks in other categories. After showing great ball control over the last couple contests, they turned it over on 19.1 percent of their possessions this evening and shot just 58.3 percent (14-of-24) from the line. They also gave up 44 of 59 points in the paint, though New Orleans scored just .87 points per possession.

Beyond that, it was what we’ve come to expect from Indiana on the offensive end. Six Hoosiers scored eight or more points due to ball sharing in the halfcourt and quick buckets in transition with top scorers Yogi Ferrell (17) and James Blackmon Jr. (14) leading the way. Mosquera-Perea (12), Hartman (8), Williams (8) and Robert Johnson (8) rounded out the club. Indiana closed this one out to the tune of 1.16 points per possession. Good, but not out of this world.

This was the last guarantee game for Indiana and it’s about time. After its second MSG trip this month, a road tilt against Nebraska comes New Year’s Eve. Based on the way the middle of the Big Ten pack has played in the non-conference, the Hoosiers look to have a nice opportunity to leapfrog some teams they were picked to finish behind.

Filed to:

  • SilentBob

    Is Ryan wrong or ESPN wrong? ESPN says we were actually beat by 2 in the 2nd half. Also said Johnson, not Robinson, finished with 8 pts.

  • Miamihoosier

    Agreed. Beat Georgetown, and i’d call this a very successful non-conference seson. Blackmon is due for a big game

  • Real American

    First! Great recap as always.
    At this point, a win is a win, especially with another B1G loss at home tonight. This time by PUke. It seems like the front court is rounding into shape. Hopefully, JBJ & RJ are not hitting the freshman wall as they have seemed to have slowed down some. Looking forward to the Georgetown game. Looks like a good last non-conference game before the crazy B1G ten season starts.

  • E Foy McNaughton

    I wish I could have watched the game (boo BTN)… But I’m happy with the season so far and the growth of this team.

    If we win against Georgetown – 2 losses in our schedule is about as good as we could have hoped for.

    My predictions in the B1G now are:

    1. Wisconsin
    2. OSU
    3. Maryland/IU
    5. Minnesota/Iowa
    6. MSU/Nebraska

    And I don’t care after that… Which foreverIU and I have had them predicted in the top 4 all along.

  • Speed

    Didn’t get to see the game tonight but “Fish” said it was pretty ugly in the second half but it was expected due to short turnaround and a 22 point lead at halftime. Bound to have a letdown after a big win. Big Ten is looking pretty weak right now which is not necessarily a good thing come tournament time. IU is going to have to finish higher than expected if this trend continues in order to get any NCAA consideration.

  • ForeverIU

    LOL! Good to see you brother. I said top 3!

  • Speed

    A third place finish would do the trick!

  • E Foy McNaughton

    You did! I lacked your confidence.

  • E Foy McNaughton

    3rd place would mean a 3-4 seed in the NCAA –/ I’m sure we would all be happy to see that happen

  • Oregoniu

    Not a fun game to watch (saw it on BTN2go) and the color commentary was awful! Stan had another off night missing bunnies, forcing the action at times, and sloppy handle at times, and poor shooting especially from the charity stripe. That guy just doesn’t seem to have his head in the game. It did appear that the guys were tried from Saturday’s game. As Ryan said any win is good at this point in the year. Go Hoosiers!! All have a great Christmas!!

  • ForeverIU

    Hoya time! We’re due for a win in the Garden.

  • Ryan

    I’m wrong. Fixed. Thanks for the catch.

  • E Foy McNaughton

    And this was a trap game, 2 days after an important win, over Christmas break, before an important game with Georgetown — glad to have the “W”

  • KmanCRK

    Two most important things I like to see for an indication of how we played: What did HMP do, and what did Hartman do? These guys seem to be the biggest keys from one game to another.

  • E Foy McNaughton

    I like to watch for how Troy is playing (he’s getting more consistent and I keep hoping to see Stan play better (and he’s been consistently underwhelming this year)

  • Speed

    “Fish” was praising Hartman for his contribution tonight. He always seems to have a solid game.

  • jmoney

    Sort of a lackluster performance in the 2nd half, but I’ll take the W and the fact that we never really let them back into the game. Hanner is looking more and more comfortable, Troy is a match-up nightmare for any team, and Colin Hartman continues to prove his worth. Has anybody else wondered where would we be this season without Colin’s minutes?

  • who’syourhoosier

    Regarding Stan, I think he’s shook up about the fact that he doesn’t have a guranteed starting position. This is tied to the fact that he has shown immaturity in the off season, we all know about that, it seems he thought he would have a good year without dedication/maturity/whatever it takes to go to the next level. The freshmen came in and he hasn’t risen to the challenge. He has the ability but isn’t making it happen. Most of what I mentioned is pure conjecture, but to me it seems to fit, unfortunately for Stan and IU basketball. I hope he gets it together. Maybe this year will inspire him to put the time in over the summer and shock the world next year?

  • E Foy McNaughton

    I would have guessed, in the preseason, that we would have gotten Colin’s production from Stan. The facts that Colin can shoot and doesn’t have a lot of turn overs are sure nice, and he is doing it all … Rebounding, defending, passing …

  • E Foy McNaughton

    If JBJ and yogi don’t go pro, then I don’t see his minutes increasing … It’s becoming common knowledge that JBJ and RJ have incredible work ethics and they are already far more mature and consistent players than Stan.

  • John D Murphy

    If Santa is a Hoosier and why wouldn’t he be…here is what I hope he puts in each of our guys stockings:
    Yogi…a desire to play every defensive possession like it is for his life
    Troy…just a touch more control to go with the explosion.
    Hanner…complimentary move to go with his little sweeping hook.
    JBJ…defensive footwork.
    RJ…better movement without the ball on offense.
    NZ…better defensive recognition.
    CH…a shot fake.
    SR…judgement with the ball.
    MH…a post move.
    EH…defensive footwork.
    TP…a protein shake.
    JA…that CTC discovers he is on the team.
    Walk-ons … recognition from all for everything they do.
    CTC… a newfound love for teaching tough defense.
    And last but not only not least, but first, DD… continue to improve

    Merry Christmas fellow Hoosiers

  • E Foy McNaughton

    I liked DD’s best, and hope he gets enrolled in spring semester classes.

  • enickman

    You’d have a Hoosier Hit if you could put that to the Twelve Days of Christmas! Fun post!

  • indianaourindiana

    I agree that Stan has been struggling but I dont agree that he doesn’t have his head In the game. If anything it looks to me like he is pressing and trying way to hard to make up for the bad offseason/switching shooting hands. Whichever it is let’s hope he gets back on track soon. Happy with a win, beat Georgetown!

  • Guyton25

    No students.. easy opponent.. this one was just a final relaxer before the season kicks into full force. No need to dawdle any longer on this one.
    This weekend’s Georgetown game will ready us for our first road test next week to start the BIG season. I think these next three games will be the pivotal point in revealing this team’s real potential and this season’s future.

  • Crimson&CremeFraiche

    I think that as his shooting efficiency increases with more reps plus some work his minutes will increase. Remember he is still learning to shoot with a different hand. But I think that Stan has the ability to be an elite defender. He has a natural instinct that you cant teach. He is super-pesky and gets around or through every screen effortlessly. He is a good rebounder for a guard as well, with good size. And he’s shown an amazing ability to get to the rim and create. He has the best euro-step in the B1G that I’ve seen. He obviously needs to play more under control, the Louisville game was a game was a big grow-up game for Stan and the rest of the team. Stan’s best is yet to come and he has as high of a ceiling as any Hoosier. As he refines his game, our backcourt becomes more and more dangerous. Sorry for rambling.

  • Blair McKee

    A lovely pre-Christmas snack. Nebraska has been a difficult game for the Hoosiers, and the Cornies have had their wake-up call against the Hadley School for the Blind (or whomever). They’ll be ready, it’ll be a long layoff and I am looking forward to a great game. Control the ball and the game is ours!

  • Jtime

    I’m still not sure it was a good coaching move to change a person’s shooting hand during year 2 of college. I understand it’s easy to second guess the decision now that it appears to not be working. But that’s a transition that takes a significant amount of time. Believe it or not, it affects more than just shooting.
    Guys that still aren’t sure which hand they should shoot with probably aren’t B10 players, much less Indiana. Stan can play defense as well as anyone on our team. He needs to focus on that and move back to his right hand immediately.
    I would gladly take last year’s Stan shooting 33% vs this year’s Stan even if he was shooting 40%. He’s lost out there right now.

  • N71

    Agree and Georgetown should be a good challenge. They beat Florida and played Wisconsin, Butler, and Kansas all close. They have a strangely large post player in Joshua Smith who is listed at 6’10” 350. Our fast pace won’t suit him very well.

  • N71

    Hartman has been great considering the injury and talent he’s competing with for playing time. By the time he’s a senior he and Devin will be cornerstone guys.

  • Hoosier Hall

    I’d put Illinois in that tier with us and Maryland. They look pretty good this year…

  • Hoosier Hall

    A little sloppy but a win for sure. I like RJ’s aggression but he has to get those fouls under control. I keep thinking Blackmon will come out of his shooting slump but it hasn’t happened yet (G-Town game would be perfect timing!). Can’t believe that bunny he missed in the 2nd half.

  • MK

    Are we really sure Crean told him switch hands? Sounded it was something that Stan came up with, actually at a suggestion from Sheehey (according to Bardo)

  • Jtime

    If I recall correctly. Sheehey initially suggested it, then after Crean and a shooting coach observed his guide hand’s role in the shot, they endorsed it. I had the hands reversed in my earlier post, he needs to switch back to his left. Appropriate given this banter.

  • SCHoosier

    Sure..lets keep it positive. Am liking Hanner’s development. Most complimentary thing I can say about HMP is that I now hold my breath every time he takes a charge!:) Sure don’t want him out of the action. ON Sat Hanner just run that 6-10 280 Gtown center into the bleachers. Make him groan..but think twice about taking a charge from him! Merry Christmas to all!!

  • SCHoosier

    “Slowed down is a good way to put it.” To be expected I guess..what works against cupcakes doesn’t work against studs.First road game against a truly hostile crowd and a pretty good NEB group should tell us a thing or two.

  • SCHoosier

    A spot on list for IU!

  • Kyl470

    Before I would have said picking IU at 3 is silly. But after watching the rest of the Big 10 I think a lot of teams are underachieving so far. I think IU can score better than any team in the conference. Yes I think our offense is better than Wisconsin. If our defense can just become average I could see this team winning double digit conference games.

  • marcusgresham

    Make that fat boy run. He gets winded quickly.

  • marcusgresham

    It’s not like he was Larry Bird with his left hand.

  • E Foy McNaughton

    And I think the defense is improving…. It’s not great, but rebounding is getting better, and team defense/communication is improving… That’s why I’d say a top 3 finish…

  • who’syourhoosier

    I agree, he simply hasn’t shown that he is ready for the next level of play. My view might be tainted by his summer antics. We still have a long way to go this year, he could surprise us all and improve every game. I hope that he has the intestinal fortitude to rise above whatever is holding him back. Regarding JBJ and Yogi, I expect to see them both on the team next year. I say that because JBJ needs to add some strength/weight. If he puts in the gym time then his draft number will be much higher than it would at the end of this year. Yogi simply needs to show some maturity and keep playing tough. I think he’ll have a shot at the NBA after his senior year. He is kind of close now, but I don’t expect that the scouts are breaking down his door, yet.

  • who’syourhoosier

    An excellent player and one who should be around for a few more years. Great guy to have on the team.

  • E Foy McNaughton

    Spot on with JBJ – he needs a year to grow into an NBA body ready for the next level. I’d love to have him 4 years, but realistically, 2 or 3 is likely all.

    On Yogi — he’s at best a 2nd round draft pick. I’m not undervaluing him as a point guard, I believe he SHOULD BE ON the top 10 point guard list (actually, top 5). But he’s listed at 6′, which means he’s probably 5’10” —- and not many have been able to make the jump to the NBA with that frame early. But, if IU made a run to the final four (I can dream a little), then he may push himself up into the 1st round like Larkin did a couple of years ago.

  • who’syourhoosier

    I think JBJ might be pushing himself a little to hard. He is trying to do it all his first year. I guess that he is hard on himself. He sees himself as a future NBA player and seems to be putting in the time and effort. Kids gonna have some bad days as we all do. I think if he relaxed just a little and had just a little more fun and enjoy the fact that he is starting as a freshman for one of the greatest basketball programs ever, then he will get back to hitting all of the 3s that we so desperately need.

  • E Foy McNaughton

    The only 2 games I’ve watched Illinois play where the Oregon & Missouri games, I wasn’t overly impressed. I thought they were good, but not really really good…. They have a couple of really nice players (Rice, etc). They are well coached and I may have only seen sub-par games. I could see them in the top 4.

    But any team in the group of 4-8 could get hot/gain confidence and move up.

    Also, apparently any team can also lose stinkers to NJTI, Texas Southern, Incarnate Word, Eastern Michigan, Garner-Webb (or whatever hyphen it’s called), Eastern Washington….. Maybe Guarantee games should not be named “Guarantee” any longer.

  • who’syourhoosier

    I couldn’t agree more. If we have JBJ for three years, then we have a chance at a final four run. This is especially true if we get some inside presence. I believe TW would be a senior with JBJ as a junior. If both those guys continue to improve, WOW! Now if we can just get them to stay that long before jumping to the NBA. I should also mention RJ hopefully Stan and EH and potentially CH and maybe MH. Have to love the depth of this team. Alllll of those guys have the potential be great. It would be nice to be a team with a bunch of talented upperclassmen instead of the team that has a bunch of talented underclassmen. If things continue to go well, I see it happening. This is also a reason that I believe CTC needs to stay. If he leaves then we go back to being crapweasels for another 2-4 years. I just couldn’t handle that. There is just too much upside with this team.

  • HoosierHuckleberry

    Kudos for your optimism! After watching bits ‘n pieces of most B1G teams so far, Wisconsin is still the team to beat. However, I think the opportunity exists for a lot of teams to more or less be the masters of their own destiny–IU certainly among them! Thanks to a reasonably favorable schedule, we only play IL, IA, MI, NE, MN, PSU, WI and Northwestern once. Home & Homes vs OSU, MSU, MD, Purwho and Rutgers. Much will depend upon which team shows up and which players bring their “A” games with them. I don’t gamble, but my likely order of finish: WI – OSU – NE -MD – IA – MSU – IL – IU – MN – PSU – MI – Purwho – Rutgers – Northwestern. Every team ahead of us can rebound, block out, play solid D (at times) and each also has at least 1-2 players who have been able to consistently light it up so far this year.

  • Ole Man

    Unfortunately, our only game against ILL this year is at the wrong AH.

  • fourputtsforsnowman

    On these threads last summer we all wanted yogi to develop a teardrop/floater, and perhaps a hesitation move after penetrating the lane. Yogi hasn’t shown those skills. He would need them, at a minimum, to play at the next level.