The Minute After: Penn State

  • 01/13/2015 9:56 pm in

Thoughts on a 76-73 win against the Nittany Lions:

Assembly Hall was in a deep slumber.

Despite the pace Penn State’s defense let Indiana get out and run at, the Hoosiers lacked energy and sharpness. The crowd, even with the students back, wasn’t bringing much. It felt more like a preseason game with little consequence than Indiana’s fourth Big Ten game of the season.

On a night Hanner Mosquera-Perea and Devin Davis sat on the bench in IU warmup gear, Emmitt Holt had no rebounds in 13 minutes. It wasn’t until Ryan Burton entered the game at the 12:03 mark in the second half that Assembly Hall came to life. Burton, unlike some of his teammates up to that point, starting getting after it with hustle, energy and effort. The Assembly Hall faithful rose from its seats in admiration. When Burton subbed out at the 6:43 mark, he’d picked up three offensive boards, two of which led to second-chance scores for the Hoosiers — a Troy Williams bucket and a James Blackmon Jr. 3-pointer. Those three offensive boards were half of Indiana’s total for the entire contest on a night it only rebounded 20 percent of its misses.

Burton entered the game with it knotted up at 51 apiece. When he departed, the Hoosiers found themselves up 10 points at 69-59. Despite limping to the finish line and Penn State nearly tying it at the buzzer, it was the turning point of the contest and aided the Hoosiers to their victory.

Robert Johnson and Stanford Robinson kept the Hoosiers afloat in the first half. Robinson still had a few wild shots and didn’t always make the right decisions during his court time tonight, but the difference is he actually made buckets (3-of-6) this time around. Robinson is highly skilled at getting to the line. Back using his left hand, he also hit all six of his free throw attempts to end the contest with a season-high 12 points. Indiana has been pretty ordinary at getting to the line so far in conference play (9th in free throw rate at 33.1 percent). Robinson, if he can play a little more within the flow of things and within himself, can bring a lot of value in that regard.

Johnson had 12 points at half scoring at the hole, from distance (2-of-4) and at the line (2-of-2). He finished with a game-high 20 (7-of-11). Indiana also hasn’t shot it well from 3-point range so far in conference play and started this one out rough as well, hitting just 3-of-11 in the first half. But the 3-ball fell much better after halftime and the Hoosiers finished the contest 9-of-21 (42.9 percent), more in line with what we’re used to seeing. It helped keep a bit of distance in this one as well, as both Johnson and Collin Hartman (eight points, five rebounds) hit 3-pointers in the closing minutes.

Not the prettiest night of basketball inside Assembly Hall. But the fact is this: It’s a W. Indiana moves to 3-1 on the Big Ten season and is tied for the conference lead. And at this juncture in the season, how much more can you have hoped for, really?

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  • Gregory Spera

    This is my main problem with this team. What you refer to as a “lack of intensity” and “lackluster effort.” What Alex called a “lack of fight” after the MSU game. Not seeming to get their best effort on a consistent basis. People saying that they are a bad defensive team, only because defense is hard work. Does not reflect well on the program as a whole.

  • I think that sounds the opposite of superficial, actually. Superficial means worrying about appearances more than anything else.

    I’ve always been a Stan supporter, but I still think he can clean it up a little bit more.

  • I hope so. Driving and driving and driving should be part of it, if only to try to get them into foul trouble early. I fear the opposite.

  • I’d be extremely pleased to go 2 and 2 for the next 4. Maybe drop another one or two the rest of the season…and win all the rest. This is what I’m predicting, optimistically.

  • Speed

    My opinion is based on the fact that you can’t be a great team without a tough defense and good rebounding, two things this team seems to be lacking although I will say our D has been getting better despite what was shown against Penn.

  • Eugene Debs

    Yeah, might be a bit early yo start shoving Crow in people’s faces. Stan has been very bad up to this point.

  • calbert40

    Agreed. The reason this team can play exceptionally well against a team like OSU, which should be a match-up nightmare with a 7’0″ center, but mediocre against a team like PSU is intensity, desire and focus.

    Hopefully they grow in this area throughout the year. Otherwise, we will probably win games against teams like Maryland, but lose against Rutgers.

  • Michael

    Do they get the win without him? You tell me… But I doubt it

    The past really doesn’t matter. Do you think victor was thinking about all the times he screwed up while he was impacting the game his 3rd year?

  • KmanCRK

    I think fouls had something to do with Holt heading back to the bench we got pulled most of the time.

  • David Macer

    Me too Forever !!

  • KmanCRK

    I agree with the exception that Hartman shouldn’t be considered one of our ball handlers. He turned it over late in the game when RJ & JBJ were both on the far side of half court against pressure. That’s gotta be bad coaching to have Hartman involved against pressure and RJ & JBJ far away from helping out.

  • Eugene Debs

    Sure, we got the win. Just as we’ve gotten wins and losses with him in past games. My point is that one game (bad or good) isn’t a justification to completely alter everyone’s perception of a player. Stan has struggled. A lot. A whole lot. One game is one game. I hope it lasts, but critics do not yet need a bib for their meal of warm crow. Bag that back up and freeze it.

  • Outoftheloop

    A win is always GOOD! But the difference between 4-1 and 3-2 is huge in the current B1G standings. IU must win at IL! GO IU!

  • Outoftheloop

    It was a little more than “effort” It was questionable personnel use! Review the tape. Emmitt (13 min) was almost always paired with Nick (9 min) as a #4. I counted 4 offensive rebounds against Nick for second chance scores and Emmitt had 0 rebounds.

  • Outoftheloop

    OSU does not believe that it has/had a 7′ center (4 minutes, 0 rebounds)!

  • Outoftheloop

    Yes, count me in your group AND play Emmitt with Collin not Nick as the #4!

  • Outoftheloop

    I disagree! 10-3 and 12-6 = 22-9 = a great NCAA run!

  • Outoftheloop

    Actually Yogi and Stan play good defense. Troy is getting better (but he started at terrible). Robert and Collin are not bad. That leaves James and Nick who are bad! How can you criticize Emmitt when he is never playing defense against his equals? Max works hard at defense. What does that equal, very inconsistent defense!

  • Outoftheloop

    Yogi is the best in the B1G at understanding “time and possession”!

  • Outoftheloop

    I hope he heals very quickly. But most were calling for a different mix of minutes between Hanner and Emmitt. Some even uttered the heretical, “both together”. I like Emmitt and Collin paired together for 25 minutes/game!

  • Outoftheloop

    You see what you want to see. With Yogi, James, Robert and Troy (pick 3) paired with Collin and Emmitt, the offense looks good to me!

  • Outoftheloop

    Give Jeremiah 5-6 minutes with our best players to show us he is not ready! I know that he is needed at 6’10/240 right now!

  • Outoftheloop

    For 5-6 minutes at age 19 you are ready for the games!

  • Outoftheloop

    Yogi 6/2, Robert 1/0, Stan 1/0, Emmitt 1/0 and Ryan 1/0. That equals 10/2 Assists/TO. That is good passing!

  • David Gaines

    Stan is bringing his own flavor to the court. If you want to call it “wild ” fine . Just check the tape. Wild is what got him to Indiana. How ya like that 6 for 6 from the line though.

  • Outoftheloop

    I would like to know what other potential NCAA team from the major conferences added 2 great freshmen, 2 more good freshmen, 1 good re-habed sophomore who did not play much as a freshman, 1 mid-level transfer, and a walk-on that can play to 2 good juniors and 3 other good sophomores? That sounds pretty deep to me!

  • Outoftheloop

    By beating “great teams”! So far 3 down with more to come!

  • Outoftheloop

    Just play the kid 5-6 minutes and see what 6’10/240 age 19 can do!

  • Outoftheloop

    If you don’t play him with your best players you will never know! Give him a chance to show what he can do!

  • Outoftheloop

    Wrong! Stan is #2 in A/TO at 21/15 = 1.4 on the team!

  • Outoftheloop

    Not great but not “very bad”! In 2013-14 Stan was 32/47 A/TO = .68, now 21/15 1.4; shooting non-3-pointers .476, now .392; FT .600, now .537, rebounds/min .146, now .183. So he is better at rebounding and assists, not as good at FG % and FT %.

  • dwdkc

    Thanks. I think the D and rebounding are related, are effort-based, and both were by far the best we’ve seen against OSU. A little disturbing they can let it slide as much as they did. They will need to get a chip on their shoulder and show they can play “bigger”

  • IUMIKE1

    ……don’t be a right handed Stan, get direct (ly to the left hand). lol

    100 points, good one Jack !

  • IUMIKE1

    Well put, and totally agree.

  • Hey I like Crean a lot.. I also believe, if he was ready, Crean would have him out there. I am in no way ‘knocking’ Crean. I just hope April does what is necessary to get out there. I’m sure he’ll get a chance in the next couple of weeks.. or I at least hope he does. I really don’t think he did that badly when he was put in for only a few minutes earlier in the season. I know the competition wasn’t what it is in the B1G, but I was hoping he be able ti contribute at least a little this year. We certainly can use his size out there.

  • Yes, but that loss was at MSU, and they played an extremely good game. Look what happened to Okulfor and Dook, on their own home floor last night against Miami.. They lost by at least twenty.. and that was Duke and it was at home.. So those things happen.. Not nice and admittedly no one had a good game.. Oh Yogi had an average game for him, not great.. If that happened to crean and he had the player that’ll likely go number 1 in the draft, you and a lot of the other’s on here would be demanding his head on a platter. I heard a commentary this morning on that game and they said.. Okulfor absolutely did not play. He didn’t rebound, he didn’t protect the rm, and he was awful.. Soooo Hanner I know isn’t even close to Oky, but I’m just saying.

  • You must be trolling for some other team on here.. IU is not a weak team this year.. They aren’t as good as we would have liked, yet.. and this loss will probably really cost us a very high finish in the B1G, which is disappointing.

  • Wrong.. He’s been injured.. there’s practice shape, and there’s game shape.. The two are considerably different. But I really don’t expect you to know that.. even though I guess you played D1 basketball…

  • Speed

    I’m not a huge CTC fan but I realize there are very few elite coaches in the world of college sports. Urban Meyer proved what an elite coach can do. He joins Sabin of Alabama. Coach K, Izzo, Calipari (gag) for his ability to recruit, are on a very short list of elite coaches. CTC is a very good person, probably a better person than most coaches. I do not believe he is a great coach a feeling shared when ESPN picked the top 250 coaches. He does deserve a lot of credit for taking IU thru a terrible period of time. I don’t think he can take us to the next level. I sincerely hope that he proves me wrong.

  • Ryan Pride

    HMP should under no circumstance ever be considered a tremendous loss. A tremendous loss would be losing JBJ, RJ or Troy.

  • I guess we’ll have to just agree to disagree. It is a tremendous loss.. If we lost one of the guys you mentioned, it could be termed a devastating loss. Tremendous is a little bigger than ‘big’. If a lady has some really nice very large cans, have you ever said.. “Wow look at those cans, they’re tremendous”. However if she walked up with triple ‘E’ s and smacked yo side of the head with tem.. that would be devastating…lol.. Hey it’s a matter of semantics. Ok, so I’ll say it is a very, very (that’s two verys…) big loss.. maybe not in the tremendous category.. Sorry, for the error in measurement… But still say those losses, i.e., JBJ, RJ, Troy, or Yogi for that matter, would be more like devastating..

  • calbert40

    I guess I don’t follow, Loop. Excluding HMP (8 mins, 2 rebs), the personnel usage was nearly identical to the OSU game.

    HMP: 8 mins, 2 rebs vs OSU / 0 mins vs PSU
    CH: 24 mins, 6 rebs vs OSU / 23 mins, 5 rebs vs PSU
    TW: 31 mins, 12 rebs vs OSU / 32 mins, 4 rebs vs PSU
    EH: 14 mins, 7 rebs vs OSU / 13 mins, 0 rebs vs PSU
    Burton: 0 mins vs OSU / 5 mins, 3 rebs vs PSU

    Our leading rebounder against PSU was JBJ with six. CH, TW and EH had nearly identical minutes in both games, but our combined “bigs” had 15 fewer rebounds against PSU than they did against OSU.

    To me that speaks to effort as the main cause over personnel usage, because the usage was almost identical.

  • bojak

    Here is my opinion on Crean like it or not. I don’t think he is in the category of a great coach. Is he a bad coach? No he is not a bad coach. I think Crean is just an average coach.