The Minute After: UNLV

  • 11/25/2015 8:35 pm in

Thoughts on a 72-69 loss to the Runnin’ Rebels:

LAHAINA, Hawaii — Riding high off a strong performance against Creighton on Thursday, Indiana seemed primed to make some serious noise in Maui.

But the Hoosiers leave uttering but a whimper. Three games of evidence show this: Indiana did not play well at the Lahania Civic Center. A 1-2 record and sixth place. Both sides of the ball need serious work right now — confusion, chaos and calamity abound.

The same issues reared their ugly heads again this afternoon. For all the talk about Indiana having one of the best — if not the best — offenses in the country, the Hoosiers didn’t show it against UNLV. They mustered just .94 points per possession against the Runnin’ Rebels. There were moments where the ball movement went flat and Indiana’s uptempo attack looked stale.

But most concerning is the turnovers. Some ugly numbers again today. On 28.7 percent of their possessions, the Hoosiers gifted the ball back to UNLV, resulting in 22 points. Indiana is turning the ball over all over the court on plays it simply should not be. It’s mental and fundamental stuff that Indiana struggled with here in Maui.

“Common sense things,” Tom Crean said after the game.

It’s also Indiana trying to ride the big wave instead of playing it safer in the shallow water.

“Home runs, trying to make plays that weren’t there,” Crean said.

“Troy (Williams) can’t throw a no look pass, he can’t do that,” he added. “That’s not what we’re doing.”

When you are turning it over on a quarter of your possession or more, it gives you so many less opportunities to put the ball in the hole. It allows for less margin for error everywhere else in your offense — which means today’s 10-19 performance from the line is all the more deadly to your team’s shot at the W.

Cleaning up the turnovers can go a long way towards making IU capture its potential. When the Hoosiers strung possessions together without a bunch of slop, they were efficient and effective. They went on runs and got back into things. Down 15 in the first half (27-12), the Hoosiers pulled back to within one (31-30). They turned the ball over zero times during that stretch which lasted five minutes and 23 seconds of game time.

“You look really good when you keep it simple,” Crean said.

Indiana wants to play fast and Crean is right that some of their best offense is out of speed, as he said after the game. And he’s also said here more than once that he recognizes a slow down could be in order. But it’s hard to see Indiana slowing down enough where they become a probing half court team exclusively. A clean up of the simple stuff is probably the best course to offensive success with the group that’s assembled and with how Crean’s offensive system operates at its best.

On defense today, Indiana did well enough to win, giving up an average-ish .98 points per possession. But too often the drives right to the rim were there again. And when the Hoosiers mixed things up and went zone, UNLV carved it up with drives and cuts to the rim.

Crean has often cited the inexperience and thinner than expected front line as part of the defensive problems. But his perimeter players are leaving much to be desired as well.

Indiana gets Duke next week and that’s going to be a harder test for this group than anything they saw in Maui. The hidden truth behind the Wake Forest loss is Indiana lost chances to rack up good non-conference wins for the tournament committee. Just Duke and Notre Dame remain.

Yes, it’s only six games in. But with the way things went here in Maui, a tournament-ready resume is now something to keep an eye on. It must be earned. Because as we saw this week with the rain and overcast conditions in the land of the cruel sun, there are no givens despite the expectations.

Filed to:

  • Ole Man

    No; he can’t. The owner of the board, Alex, has specifically banned political speech.
    As for you, your “nick” explains it all. I’m sure you’re anti anything truly American.

  • bear

    It will take Brad to get this program back to where it should be, I cant see him leaving the NBA anytime soon. What about Coach Alford?

  • dwdkc

    Your first paragraph is fine. Your second one is out of place. There is a reason politics aren’t discussed on this board. And it’s not very convincing as an argument–no state has been more distinctively right-wing governed than Kansas the last several years, and I haven’t noticed Bill Self having any problems bringing in good players. People are already in a pretty nasty mood. Congrats, you’ve found a sure way to make it worse.

  • Freemason

    Why do agents and coaches sign with different teams, to play for free? How does UK get all these recruits?

  • dwdkc

    Alford is not the answer. He hasn’t shone any more coaching chops than Crean, and there was that really concerning incident involving a sexual assault with one of his players.

  • Jacob K

    I hope youre kidding about NBA coaching. If anything, its the complete opposite. College coaches are always selling…to alumni/boosters, potential recruits, etc.

    NBA coaches just get to coach basketball. Thats it. Brads not going anywhere, and its delusional to think otherwise. Convincing millionaire professionals vs young amateurs to buy into team philosophies seems way more appealing…and I think Brad is smart enough to realize that.

  • Jacob K

    Stevens is a pipe dream…but with Marshall theres atleast a chance. Hed be the home run hire imo.

    Fife is interesting…

  • Jacob K

    Not happening

  • enickman

    I hear a lot about no way Brad leaves the NBA. I just don’t believe it. Anybody will go for the right offer and I personally think Coach Stevens would come back to Indiana if the opportunity was offered to him.

  • Jacob K

    Bennett was our first choice but turned us down. Cant blame him, IU b ball was a dumpster fire at the time.

  • straight no chaser

    I hope bigotry is not right-wing, and I did not say it was. Unfortunately some bigots are hijacking the right.

  • BoxingGlobe

    Why did Cheaney leave IU? I heard it was a fight with Crean.

  • bvillehoosier

    Nice try. You’ve said things repeatedly regarding our state governor, and even got on another member here for having a funny obama avatar! I’ve read enough of your posts to know exactly where you stand and what point you’re trying to get across, using IU basketball as a veil I presume. Anyway, Happy Thanksgiving, I need to get my mind off IU sports and politics for awhile, later

  • bvillehoosier

    My post was hate and venom? Hardly. Just calling someone out for a completely off-base and off-topic post. Yours on the other hand, pretty much what I’d expect from someone on your side of the aisle. Always using inuendos to make a point, that kind of stuff must be on your mind a lot.

  • Mr. Mitchell

    Bubble team

  • dwdkc

    It sure hasn’t been a problem up until now. Guys think Crean is one of the best to help them get to the next level. That is a higher priority to some of them than a tournament run. This team doesn’t seem to have the right internal leadership. Yogi and Troy are not Vic or Jordy that way. Maybe Bryant is the guy who will change that but he needs some experience. It is clear though that Crean will have to find a way for this team to reach its potential or this year will be his last. I know very few expect them to do so but he will be given the chance.

  • Ole Man

    “liberal garbage”, “dems destroyed the state”, “hateful, leftish agenda.”
    Yep; that’s hate and venom. And quite typical of baggers.
    What innuendo? I was quite direct about you and your “buddy”. Two, learn how to spell, or at least how to use spell check.

  • Freemason

    How do you think uk gets all the recruits? $

  • Freemason

    Deep.

  • Ole Man

    Has nothing to do with your statement. Many of us cannot be bought by money.
    There are many things more precious than gold.

  • Freemason

    Has everything to do with being bought for money. What is free agency for? So players can go to a team for least amount of money? Not every person does it I agree but money buys people every day of the week. Why do people take jobs that pay more? The company is buying what they hope is a good employee. Money talks and bs walks ole man. Sure you’ve heard that before…

  • Freemason

    It has everything to do with it. Why is there such a thing as free agency? No player takes the most money, never. When a person accepts a job because the job pays more is being bought. People are bought everyday of the week. Money talks and bs walks ole man. It’s a fact of life. I know that someone of your caliber could never be bought though. LOL

  • Barancy Peloma

    I was talking about hoops (iu hoops specifically) ole man.

  • Freemason

    Not only, just the biggest motivator.

  • Freemason

    Right. Why is there this thing called free agency? So can go play for the least amount of money? In sports it’s all about money ole man.

  • Bud Jenkins

    Yeah when you have none; once you are a millionaire several times over, it has less of an importance….

  • Ole Man

    Wow…you’re clueless.
    You make ASSumptions.
    Sad for you that all you value is gold.

  • Ole Man

    Then get another icon related to Indiana or IU basketball.
    You can’t deny your icon is a political statement.

  • Freemason

    Wow ole man, I didn’t mean to hurt your feelings. Stay clASSy ole man. You are out of touch with the real world. I see your comments and you seam bitter. It’s just a forum no need to get a case of the red a$$. Sports are all about money period.

  • Barancy Peloma

    I’ve been to dozens of other sites and never had a problem.

    When i come here, it isn’t to talk politics.

  • Ole Man

    On this site politics are not welcomed.
    On other sites they may be, unless they are sports sites.
    Your icon is offensive…..to any decent American.

  • Ole Man

    Get lost creep.

  • Ole Man

    You are an idiot!

  • pcantidote

    For an “ole man” you sure do act like you are 12. Grow up.

  • Freemason

    Stay clASSy old man. Take in a bingo game, eat some fiber, and take a nap before you have a heart attack.

  • Ole Man

    You have nothing in life that matters, such as values.
    Bug off nutjob.

  • Ole Man

    ROFL! This from a nut job with a political nickname. Look in the mirror to find someone who needs to grow up.

  • Freemason

    Old man take it easy. You seam like a grumpy old man. You need to buy yourself some happiness. Trust me that to can be bought. I’ve seen a lot of your post on here. And you are just a miserable man. All you do is post negative things on everyone post. If you can’t handle people’s opinions maybe you should stay off here. I’ve seen you post to,people to stay classy and people tell you to practice what you preach. Your a bigot.

  • Ole Man

    Too bad you can’t buy a little class.

  • HoosierFan76

    No need to take things to a personal level – that goes for both you and Ole Man.

    It doesn’t matter who started it, it just needs to stop. There are plenty of ways to disagree without crossing the line.

    Sorry to have to intrude, and I thank you both in advance for keeping future discussions civil.

  • Kris Kompute

    3 straight final fours and arguably the best NBA pedigree outside of Kentucky? Go check his resume again.

  • Kris Kompute

    Players hate Fife. Alienated his entire team he recruited at IPFW. Hence why he left before getting fired.

  • Kris Kompute

    Not happening. Move on.

  • Kris Kompute

    Well, he’s not you. And they have a chance to be really good next year given their picks.

    Move on from this Brad Stevens pipe dream.

  • Kris Kompute

    Same way IU and every other school gets recruits.

  • Kris Kompute

    Me neither. He has absolutely no zone offense. That was banner #6.

  • Freemason

    Wrong! IU has toooooo much class kid,

  • Kris Kompute

    You’re so delusional. Every top 50 recruit is getting paid through their AAU coach. Believe what you want.

  • Freemason

    I was messing with ole man. AAU has ruined college and high school basketball. It’s a little strange that if a recruit is interested in a school that the school happens to by sponsored by the same sho company as his AAU team. Maybe I’m not so delusional after all. I do believe the that if I was half the intellectual person that you are Kris, I’d have my own sports blog.