At the Buzzer: Indiana 74, Illinois 47

  • 02/25/2016 11:03 pm in

CHAMPAIGN, Ill. – Quick thoughts on Indiana’s 74-47 win over Illinois:

How it happened: After a shaky first half in which Indiana trailed 28-27 Illinois at intermission, the Hoosiers offense kicked it into high gear in the second 20 minutes. Indiana managed just .84 points per possession in the first half, but exploded from the perimeter in the second half. The Hoosiers connected on 15-of-26 shots after half and simply bludgeoned the helpless Illini. Yogi Ferrell (27 points), Thomas Bryant (14) and Nick Zeisloft (14) were all terrific offensively as the Hoosiers moved to 23-6 overall and 13-3 in the Big Ten. One more win will clinch at least a share of the conference title for Indiana.

Standout performer: Yogi Ferrell is making his move in the Big Ten player of the year race as the senior guard hit 7-of-9 shots from the field in the second half including 5-of-6 from distance. He finished with a game-high 27 points. With the Hoosiers one win away from clinching at least a share of the Big Ten title, Ferrell belongs in the discussion for the league’s player of the year award.

Statistic(s) that stands out: After an ice cold first half in which the Hoosiers hit just 3-of-15 3s, IU flipped the script after halftime and knocked down 10-of-17 3s in the second half en route to a ridiculous 1.62 points per possession.

Final stats:

bigtenstats

illinoistempo

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  • Ole Man

    Wow, you beat me by seconds!! LOL!
    Don’t know if he’ll get the respect needed for COY, but he deserves some votes.

  • ForeverIU

    We did pretty well staying in the game the first half as we adjusted to Rob not being with us.

  • BL

    Yeah we definitely see it differently. More importantly, I really dislike these conversations where we end up taking sides regarding these kids. I love ’em all, including Nick. We would definitely not be as successful without him.

    Anyway, we won. Let’s celebrate. Have a good one Ole Man.

  • ForeverIU

    I’m just a soul whose intentions are good …

  • Ole Man

    Back at ya…it’s never personal.
    And just so ya understand where I’m coming from, Nick started out rougher than a corn cob–thought he might have been trying too hard since it was his last time playing in front of his home state’s crowd.
    Second half, he scored 11; and shut down his man on D.
    He, Yogi, and TB basically were the scoring for IU in the second.

  • vicbert caladipo

    That whole idea was a train wreck, but worked to our advantage as the loud mouth of dd was in groces ear all night.

  • Ms hoosier

    I tip my hat to ya ole man! It’s hard to beat you to the punch.

  • vicbert caladipo

    Damn you’re an Animal!!!

  • ForeverIU

    I also love Max. Didn’t score much but gave us two nice baskets and kept a lot of Illini busy in the paint. I love his hustles.

  • ForeverIU

    DD high-fived (or four-knuckled, or whatever you call it) Groce after the first-half-ending Illinois three. I was about to strangle him through the TV screen.

  • BL

    I recognize Nick shot better in the 2nd half. I’ll have to go back and watch my recording to check out his D; that wasn’t my recollection. No doubt YF, TB and Nick carried the offensive load in the 2nd half. That said, in my view this game was won on the defensive end and in large part based on the play of OG and JM. I hope Coach recognizes that, especially if we go into Iowa without RJ because the way we played D early in this game, Iowa would have put us to bed very early. Just a different perspective.

  • Jim Miller

    I read it was a thigh bruise

  • I think OG turned the game in the first half. Defense was struggling and then, BAM, OG comes in and suddenly things are locked down. Then I think NZ was good in the second half, and hit a couple of big threes. But I have to give the nod to OG’s defense as key–the team is simply different when he’s on the floor.

    But seriously, ultimately, the second half belongs to Yogi. He simply killed them.

  • I’d have to go back and watch again to look more closely at NZ’s defense. It’s been better than it was, but I seem to remember a couple of times that he lost his man on the second half. Couldn’t have been too many times, because Illinois was just shut down for the most part. I wouldn’t take anything away from NZ, he’s a huge part of this team. But defensively, nobody has had the kind of impact that OG has had.

  • Without wanting to take anything away from NZ, but I agree about OG. But also agreed–they’re all just great kids, period. I love this team.

  • And OG just keeps playing. Nothing fazes this kid, which is amazing for a freshman.

  • I’d have had you committed.

  • dwdkc

    I was watching him on D, a couple of times Illinois guys tried to take him and his footwork and lateral quickness was very good and nowhere to go. Also does an excellent job off the ball. The kid knows what he is doing out there. The pass to Bryant was a thing of beauty. Wait until he gets comfortable with his shot and he will challenge for lots of PG minutes next year.

  • dwdkc

    Not just OG but the whole unit out there when we went on the 16-2 run. Morgan, Max, and Niego also with Yogi of course.

  • dwdkc

    Don’t forget Hartman. He played most of the game on Hill and mostly pitched a shutout. His best game on D as a Hoosier.

  • Yes, true of course, great team effort. Just OG was something else, I think.

  • Worst thing I’ve ever seen during a game by a commentator. And by Groce, for that matter. I noticed CTC would have none of it. Oh, and it’s a fist bump.

  • CreamandCrimson

    I thought Collin Hartman played some nice defense on Hill as well…really everyone that spent any time on him did a nice job, OG certainly included.

  • CreamandCrimson

    As a Pacers fan…I’d certainly take Yogi over current back-up point guard Joe Young or back-up forward Solomon Hill. For now, I’m just glad he’s on our side!

    I know you all but guaranteed that IU would split the Purdue/Illinois games in an attempt to be pessimistic…is your optimism back or are you going to stick with what has been working? 🙂

  • CreamandCrimson

    I have no clue what’ll happen Tuesday night but we’ve put ourselves in position (with some help) that we don’t HAVE to win at Iowa to accomplish the goal of a B1G title. Plus, I think it’s very possible that both Maryland and Iowa drop a game outside of their respective matchups with us (MD at Purdue, Iowa at either OSU or UM)…it’d be amazing to just finish the job on Tuesday but we don’t absolutely have to do so thanks to last night’s second half.

  • CreamandCrimson

    I noticed that Seth Greenberg, our illustrious backseat coach for the evening (yuck), mentioned that Johnson was out with a “high ankle”…if that’s true and it is indeed a high ankle sprain, I’d be shocked if he was able to suit up on Tuesday night.

  • ArghSonOfOhCrap

    I heard Seth say that as well. I don’t know a lot about ankle sprains. If he is not in for Iowa I am hoping he will be good from Maryland.

  • CreamandCrimson

    I don’t know a bunch about them either…I’ve had plenty but my healing and treatment probably bares no resemblance to that of an elite athlete’s healing and treatment (a la Johnson). I will say that I know a high ankle sprain is not good and a quick recovery is not in the cards. Time will tell…here’s to hoping for the best.

  • ArghSonOfOhCrap

    Same here

  • CreamandCrimson

    I know it was part of the gimmick last night but he began the game by saying things like, “we” and “our bench” when discussing things occurring on the Illinois bench. He was yukking it up and Groce seemed to be engaging with him often (quite odd when you consider his job is on the line as his team continues to get pounded…guessing Illinois fans were none too pleased to see him joking around with a commentator during the action. Does it matter in the grand scheme of a big blowout? No, of course not but my goodness, ESPN needs to ditch the gimmicks on these broadcasts (Green Room Guys, Bracket Practice, Courtside Seats camera angles, Backseat Coaches)…it’s about the teams on the court, nothing more.

  • ForeverIU

    As long as my pessimism keeps us winning then I’ll stay pessimistic 😉 if there was ever a trap game it’s Maryland. We could still join the 5-loss club. LOL.

  • CreamandCrimson

    Good work, don’t change a thing because we are rolling at the moment!

  • SCHoosier

    Never saw a kid so athletic get beat off the dribble as much as he does. Amazing. Got hurt trying to dribble thru 3 guys again. Last night..good Troy stayed in B-town. Maybe he’ll scorch Iowa!

  • TomJameson

    Can’t agree more, but also wanted to just put NZ out there as well, his offense was good but he was really hustling on defense. No, he wasn’t perfect, but his hustle really made up for a lot.

    This whole team stepped it up on defense, just like they all stepped it up when they lost JBJ. What a fantastic attitude! CTC has to get some of the credit there.

  • BL

    CH and OG both shut him down. What a one/two punch. Guessing Hill saw this coming. He played like it.

  • TomJameson

    I don’t think he really gets beat off the dribble, he “just” tries dribbling where there is no place to go. You said it yourself, dribbling into 3 guys. lol Give CTC credit for pulling him.

    I think he does scorch Iowa.

  • TomJameson

    Those are pretty respectable jumps after one game this late in the season.

  • pcantidote

    For a change I am not really thinking about next year yet!

  • pcantidote

    It was a coaches moment because Groce was yelling NO NO NO and then the kid made the shot and he was like “great shot”. I wasn’t offended by it, I thought it was funny.

  • TomJameson

    You’ve said this a few times about Nick, and I agree completely. I actually focused on watching his game for a bit and was impressed with how his hustle made him a pretty decent defender. Nothing for anybody to complain about in that game!

  • ForeverIU

    Dan is still annoying and has no class. LOL.

  • zoldirtybird

    I know, right?

  • Ole Man

    Simply given credit when and where it’s due.

  • IUMIKE1

    Oh lord, please don’t let me be misunderstood.

    Guess that pretty much tells two things…..my age and what I enjoy besides IU bball. lol

  • IUMIKE1

    Perfect example of having had a really good game and an effect on the game, but it not showing up in the box score.

  • ForeverIU

    I’d rather channel Nina Simone, LOL. But all versions are good.

  • ForeverIU

    Ha, both are types of artistry that go together well.