Indiana set to battle rival Purdue

  • 02/20/2016 9:23 am in

It’s been eight years since Indiana and Purdue have met with both teams ranked in the Associated Press top 25. That will change today when the No. 22 Hoosiers and No. 17 Boilermakers battle in Assembly Hall in front of what is sure to be the liveliest crowd so far this season.

Purdue will pose a challenge that no other team in the Big Ten can present – two 7-footers and another solid big man at the power forward position. A.J. Hammons and Isaac Haas, who are 7-foot and 7-foot-2 respectively, can be dominant. Hammons has come on to lead the Boilermakers in scoring at 14.6 points a game, while freshman Caleb Swanigan leads the team in rebounding at 8.5 a game. Hammons himself is no slouch when it comes to rebounding either, averaging 8.2 per game.

“We’re going to need everyone on our front-line tomorrow to play really good minutes,” Tom Crean said. “It’s good that Juwan is coming off such a strong game. OG could get inside and play. Collin has guarded bigger people before. Thomas and Max are going to have to do a great job for us. It’s having numerous starters in my mind, which I think we do.”

Built as a tall, defensive team, Purdue has one of the most imposing frontlines in all of college basketball. However, the Boilermakers have struggled at times offensively which has proven costly in their five conference losses.

KenPom.com ranks Purdue as the No. 7 defense and the No. 60 offense in the country. IU is ranked No. 14 on offense and No. 60 on defense.

Thomas Bryant, Max Bielfeldt, Collin Hartman, Juwan Morgan and OG Anunoby will be counted on heavily to hold their own in the post because of the significant size advantage Purdue will hold. A major key will be Bryant staying out of foul trouble.

In the backcourt, the matchup to watch will be the dual of senior leaders. Yogi Ferrell and Rapheal Davis, the reigning Big Ten defensive player of the year, will likely square off at times.

Earlier in the week, Davis, who is a friend of Ferrell and has worked out with him in the offseason, was asked what makes him so tough to guard. Davis wouldn’t answer, saying he couldn’t give Ferrell that kind of satisfaction.

“I think Indiana-Purdue, regardless if we’re both 0-20, having that game is going to have enough juice for itself,” Ferrell said. “Battle of the state obviously. That significance of that game whether we’re both winning programs or losing programs, is still going to be very high level.”

If IU is able to get its offense going, especially from the outside with Nick Zeisloft and Robert Johnson, it could help negate the advantage Purdue holds in the frontcourt.

Despite many fans saying beating Purdue is a requirement for a season to be considered a success, Crean says he doesn’t really look at it like that.

“We want to get our 22nd win, it’s a big game,” Crean said. “I don’t really look at it like checkmarks. Obviously you want to beat Purdue, they want to beat us, we want to beat Nebraska, we want to beat everybody we play.”

Filed to:

  • Ms hoosier

    We got to win this game. Don’t know if I can take losing 3 in a row Puke!! Is there going to be any recruits at the game?

  • BL

    I believe this would be four in a row. Don’t worry, streak ends tonight.

  • BL

    We’ll win if we keep the PU bigs from setting up in or near the paint, and don’t let Davis get going. Love to see TW have another big game; needs to rebound like a mad man and get his shots in the flow of the offense. TB needs to make Hammons work on the defensive end but be smart with the ball. Love to see him flip the script and get Hammons in foul trouble. Yogi must have a solid game; he will. All timer would be seeing TW or OG bring the house down with a posterizing dunk over one of the PU bigs.

    Go Hoosiers!!!

  • Aceman_Mujezinovic_07

    I HATE to say this, but if need be it wouldn’t be a bad idea to throw a zone at them once in a while to help keep TB and MB out of foul trouble. As long as you find Davis they’re not a great shooting team and their guard play is their weakness so it would still be possible to force some TO’s.

    Main thing is we have to shoot well from the outside. Also, NO stupid wild drives to the lane where we try to throw up a circus shot and draw a foul. Officials won’t give IU 50/50 calls even on their home floor so please don’t count on that to be part of the gameplan! The layup and dunk attempts need to come from good, crisp ball movement just like the Hoosiers did against Iowa a week and a half ago.

  • Arch Puddington

    My keys:

    1. We gotta hit threes.
    2. Our half-court offense cannot get bogged down in a sumo-wrestling match. The best way for us to keep that from happening is to hit threes.
    3. We can win if Hammons goes for 25. Harder if he goes for 40, unless we hit a bunch of threes.
    4. If Hammons blocks 10 shots, which is also possible, we will have a hard time winning. The best way to keep that from happening is to take and make a bunch of threes.
    5. We gotta hit threes.

    All of this will be easier if Bryant can go more than 60 seconds at a time without committing fouls.

    #3FG

  • bleeding crimson

    Well, It looks like I will have to listen to Fish calling the game since Dan D will be calling the game with Bob. I wish Dan would just call the game instead of coaching the game. It he was such a great coach then why didn’t he take his great team on to win when you know who was let go?
    Also do we know who the Zebra’s are, could be the difference on who shots more FT.

  • ForeverIU

    Let’s not exaggerate their inside game. Hammons and Swanigan commit turnovers. But they are rebounding machines. Our two big guys will be plenty. We need more rebounding than points from Troy, although they sometimes go together (on offense).

  • bleeding crimson

    I hope we play more of a 1/2 to full court press so peeyoo doesn’t have time to set up and give their guards fits. Things we may need to do:
    I hope this is easy to read.

    Some Stat’s: –Totals– Avg
    Player/size – Min – PPG – FT% – TO – Blks – Reb
    Hammons/7’0 24 – 15 – 71 – 54 – 65 – 8
    Edwards/6/7 26 – 10- 82 – 43 – 11 – 5
    Haas/7’2 14 – 10 – 70 – 28 – 25 – 4
    Swanigan/6’9 25 – 10 – 74 – 16 – 5 – 8
    Davis/6’5 28 – 9 – 72 – 34 – – 4
    Stephens/6’6 14 – 6 – 60 – 11 – 4 – 1
    Hill/6’3 18 – 5 – 80 – 36 – 8 – 3
    Thompson/5’10 22 – 5 – 80 – 11 – – 2
    Mathias/6’4 18 – 4 – 93 – 16 – 1 – 2
    Cline 6’5 13 – 4 – 55 – 16 – 1 – 1

    Things that must happen.
    1. If they start big, then we need to start big, close the paint and get the Reb.
    If they start Hammons and Haas w/ Swanigan then we need to start TB, Max, OG or Morgan…maybe Troy, if Good Troy shows up.
    2. Stay out of Foul Trouble.
    3. Play Def and keep the TO’s down
    4. Do not put them at the line.
    5. Mathias and Cline probably shoots the 3 the best, shut them down.
    6. Play at our speed and put 1/2 court press on to create TO’s, they don’t take care of the ball that well.
    7. I’m not crazy about the match up problems so SOME Zone my work if they control the paint.

  • Koko

    I think he figured out announcing for espn and the other stuff he does, is a more stable gig and he can coach with no circumstances. I’m still trying to figure out how came up with IU as a final four team.

  • vicbert caladipo

    Folks I’ve read this numerous times on these threads, but it isn’t going to happen. No way Peeyoo plays all 3 bigs together. I’ve watched every B!G game they’ve played and only for a couple minutes in 1 or 2 games did Ham and Haas play together. Haas spells Ham for rest and foul trouble. Ham and Swan play most of the minutes together. What we want is for either Painter to get peed at Ham or he get in foul trouble. They are much more successful when Ham is out there. The guy to worry about and you heard it here first is Edwards. If he has a good game we lose. He was all big ten caliber early this season but has dropped off some in conference play. TW will probably be guarding him and better be ready for him spotting up for 3’s if TW stays too long doubling their bigs. Whoever Davis guards will probably be shut down…definitely will have to earn his points. He isn’t the reigning D player of the conference for nothing and he gave Forbes of MSU fits. While everyone is worrying about their bigs or all 3 playing together, we better not lose sight of their role players. Max better stay out of the paint for his shots or Ham will swat his shot all night. The best bet against Ham is to run him silly on both ends. When he gets tired he gets stupid and when he gets too stupid, Painter benches him. GO IU FLUSH THE TOILETMAKERS!!

  • ForeverIU

    Proud Purdue Graduate

  • Ole Man

    Wish I could feel good about this game, but….

  • HooshWin

    Oh to be Inside The Hall tonight. Or even Yogi’s. Gonna be a rare and fun night in B-Town. Let’s do this.

  • I haven’t said much, because I’m with you on this one. Maybe it’s just leftover from last year, but I’m just not terribly confident. We can and should beat them, but which team will show up? The team that had The Run at UM and soundly beat Iowa? Or the team that lost to PSU and got pounded by MSU?

  • ForeverIU

    Purdue is overrated. They lost pretty much every game they played against a ranked team and went to overtime with MSU in West Lafayette. Let’s blow them out in AH. I’m more worried about Illinois.

  • Victoria

    This game is huge!! I cannot wait. GO IU!!!

  • As game time slowly (too slowly) approaches, I find myself thinking this is going to be Yogi’s game to win or lose. Can’t justify that position, other than that it’s his last chance to beat up on Purdue at home and I’m hoping he’s really up for the game. If his slump is over and he manages to both direct the offense and score, I think we win this one going away. If he’s a good point guard but still can’t shoot, I think it’s a close game. If he has a bad night, I think Purdue wins. Maybe that’s an obvious observation, but I’m almost saying that regardless of everything else (except maybe an entire game of nothing but Bad Troy). In short, other matchups aside, I think Yogi is the ultimate X factor.

  • SilentBob

    I disagree on this one Mark. I believe part of Yogis slump is because we have put unreal pressure on him to take over the game. With such a large size disadvantage, team basketball will be as big as ever. We absolutely can’t afford to have careless turnovers tonight, we will have to work for every shot on offense and can’t let such momentum sucking activities to take place.

    One area I will be looking at is the success of our forwards. Great forwards, especially lining up at four seem to be kryptonite for this Purdue defense. Butlers Jones and Chrabascz combined for 35 points, Malcom Hill lining up at the four dropped 30 by himself, Uthoff had 22 & 25, Hayes and Illikainen combined for 27, Robert Carter had 19, and Michigan really took off when it benched Duncan Robinson and switched Irvin to the four where he dropped 22.

  • Okay, I hear you. Like I said, I don’t have a strong rationale behind my thoughts. Perhaps I’m just hoping instead that Yogi has a big night all around. Agreed of course about turnovers and team defense.

  • pcantidote

    Everyone is right to be concerned about their front line, but keep in mind that not only did they lose at Michigan, but they were outrebounded. Michigan’s front line is much smaller and less talented than ours. It is all about effort and strategy.

  • pcantidote

    I am curious to see if PJ Thompson can hang with Yogi. He was supposedly back in a walking boot after the NW game. Part of me says Purdue put him in a walking boot visibly to the media on purpose to get us thinking he is hurt when he’s really not. If he really is hurt Yogi should destroy him.

  • BL

    In every game, YF has the ball in his hands more than any player. Accordingly, he always has a major impact on the game. I’m with you in hoping he has a great game. He’s due. If he has a special one, PU has no chance. I’m certain we all know what that game looks like. Nothing forced, shares the ball, shoots really well and executes several, very beautiful, playmaking drives.

  • Yep, exactly. And also, I want that for Yogi himself. He deserves to close out Purdue on a high note.

  • Great point. And I can’t imagine they won’t be pumped tonight, along with the crowd. If the energy isn’t high, there won’t be any excuse. Strategy and execution, now those are two very different issues. Fingers crossed so hard, I think I broke them.

  • BL

    Amen

  • Hoosierkamp

    Hooooooooossssieeersssss!!!!!!!