Five takeaways from Indiana’s loss to Indiana State

  • 11/11/2017 9:26 am in

The Archie Miller era got off to a rough start on Friday night in Bloomington as Indiana was blown out by Indiana State at Simon Skjodt Assembly Hall. Indiana State hit 17 3-pointers and led by as many as 30 in a surprising 90-69 win.

Here’s a look at five takeaways from the loss to the Sycamores:

· An incredible 3-point shooting performance aided by poor defense: Indiana State was red hot from the opening tip and Indiana simply had no answer all evening.

Some of the shots were tough and contested. Others were wide open. But once the Sycamores got comfortable and knocked down a few good looks from the perimeter, their confidence grew. Fans grumbled, energy was quickly sucked from the building and it quickly became apparent that this Indiana team has a long way to go.

That’s not to say Indiana State doesn’t deserve credit – the Sycamores put on an incredible shooting display – but Indiana never seriously challenged after going down by double digits early on.

Archie Miller didn’t mince words in the postgame and called his team “soft.”

“I think at the end of the day the fight, the ability to resurge, the ability to grind and get back into it, regardless of what things are going on, you’re always going to be in the game, that’s not there,” Miller said. “That’s going to take time. It’s going to take time. We have to go through these battles like we did tonight and we’ve got to get better from it.”

· On floor leadership lacking: In the offseason, junior Juwan Morgan said leadership wouldn’t be an issue for this Indiana team. It was a topic that was much discussed in the offseason after Indiana’s 18-16 campaign a season ago that ended with a loss in the NIT.

But through two exhibitions and the regular season opener, it’s become clear that Indiana needs more from its upperclassmen.

When the Hoosiers got knocked back on their heels early, there was no sign of someone stepping up on the floor to stop the bleeding. Morgan, Robert Johnson and Josh Newkirk combined for nine of the team’s 19 turnovers. As Miller said in the postgame, you don’t get beat like that “if you’re playing hard as hell.”

“We didn’t have the carry-over that we usually have from practice,” Johnson said. “That’s not the team that we are on a day to day (basis). And once they punched we never came together and punched back. And I think that was the deciding factor.”

· 19 turnovers after a combined 18 in the two exhibition games: Turnovers were a major problem for Indiana last season. Through two exhibition games, it looked like tangible progress had been made in decision making and taking care of the ball.

Friday night showed there’s plenty of work still to be done. The Hoosiers turned it over 19 times for a turnover percentage of 26.5. As mentioned above, many of the miscues came from Indiana’s most experienced players.

“I think that was just a product of guys trying to do things that they don’t normally do and that we don’t practice,” Johnson explained. “We didn’t have the same movement, and I think that just made it harder. And that was the result of that.”

· It’s one game: As alarming as the performance was, it’s also important to put it in perspective. It’s one game in a 30-game regular season.

Indiana is adjusting to a new system, new coaching staff and none of the players have won playing this style of basketball. Miller owned it in the press conference while also expressing confidence that this team will improve.

“I think the start of the game really crushed us tonight,” Miller said. “I mean it really did. If you look at the offensive possessions in that first four to six minutes, eight minutes and you then you look at the defensive collapses, that thing got away from us way too quick.

“And that’s when we don’t have the ability right now to figure out how to fix it. And we have guys playing at a much higher level too. Right now we had De’Ron (Davis) and I thought Juwan got things done for us a little bit, but we’ve got to get some guys playing at a consistent level. When we do that we’ll be better. We’ll get better. That’s the one thing, I think I have confidence of, we’ll get better.”

· First loss in a home opener since 1984, opponent record for 3-pointers in Assembly Hall: How long has it been since the Hoosiers fell in a home opener in Bloomington? 33 years.

The Hoosiers lost to Louisville at Assembly Hall to open the 1984-85 season, 75-64.

Indiana State’s shooting performance was the most 3-pointers (17) Indiana has ever allowed to an opponent in Assembly Hall.

Filed to:

  • HooHeel

    1984-85 – last home opener loss. Team went 19-14, 7-11 in conference. Went to the championship game of the NIT. Alford was a sophomore. Nothing to do with this team, just interesting.

  • Ms hoosier

    Let me just say, I’m glad we have a coach that don’t mind calling it what it is and makes no exuses!! Archie said his team was soft and played with no fight!! That’s the only way you overcome weakness!! You can’t moan and groan and say, “well we could get any breaks or we just couldn’t get our shots to go in”. I think Archie will address the problem and make some changes.

  • Benhyoung14

    A team doesn’t get soft in 1 off-season.

  • pcantidote

    It is going to be interesting to watch and see how this ISU team does over the course of the season. If they are just a middle of the road MVC team, which I suspect, then that is going to keep this loss stinging all year long.

  • sd chuck

    Wow! Any time one team is making shots, and the other team is not, the team making the shots will win. 17 three’s, give ISU credit, I bet they win every game they make 17 threes. This team kind of like the Vonley team, nobody could shoot! Guards, looked awful! We also got beat up on the boards, final total did not reflect the game, Freddie snared some in the end brought that number to within 2. Archie has a lot to sort out. I would say they about to get a lesson about “heart”!

  • MoBanners

    I need to apologize to BTN… I thought they were gouging me for money when in reality they were saving from a horrific sight. Either way, I will watch every other game and cheer on this team win or lose. It may not be pretty this season, but I’m pumped for the future with Archie at the helm!

  • vicbert caladipo

    To those sipping the Archie Miller koolaid from April through October, you might want to make a switch over to Jack Daniels. It’s going to be a long painful year.

  • Maybe Arhie will start all freshman and Sophomores?

  • Banned on the Run

    Still looking forward to Sunday.

  • bball at nick’s

    It’s Famous Grouse (or one of its other cousins) for me, in good times and bad 🙂

    Speaking of, is there some Freudian explanation for why we settled for the 69 position? LOL.

  • Dialogos68

    IU has no frontcourt! Who can play with their back to basket? Who can backup Davis? So far Miller seems to think it is McSwain… Ouch! Is Priller this useless? Moore just wants to shoot 3s…

  • THRyan

    Our SENIOR guards were straight out-played by their guards. I love Rojo, but he needs to play like this is his last year. And its not the offensive production that worries me, its the leadership. I hope and expect Jones and Durham start over Johnson and Newkirk on Sunday.

  • iugradmark

    My random thoughts from the game:

    * The senior kids have had a history of starting slow in both halves of games. Not sure you can change that in them and perhaps it is time to focus on the future and take your lumps with kids that are going to be here for a while.

    * Not saying the game was poorly coached but no reason to save timeouts when the kids are playing bad or the other team is on a roll. Same goes for bench coaching. Assistants all seem to sit up near the front of the bench. Grab the kids and do some teaching.

    * I realize Archie’s approach is to sit kids with 2 fouls. When DD was our only effective scorer, not sure it makes sense saving him.

    * Not sure what was involved at half time to make the change to switch on the picks but that was obviously a better approach to the ISU shooters. Could we have made that change in the 1st half when the game was still in doubt?

    We have to play the kids that show heart moving forward. I like all the kids on the team but the upper-class kids in particular are really disappointing.

  • Mark Bando

    This team was soft last year

  • Steve Morgan

    All the discussion has been about how we don’t have front court depth, but it was alarming to see how badly our back court was outplayed. RJ and JN were rough from 3, but the number of missed shots from 10 feet in was worse, IMO. If we don’t have the threat of the 3 plus no threat in the midrange (did we hit one shot from midrange?), then everyone is going to pack in on DD this season. DD looks like he is ready to lead this team, but if we can’t space the floor with at least the threat of the deep ball, there isn’t going to be anywhere for him to turn.

  • Benhyoung14

    Yes sir, that is my point.

  • Mark Bando

    I’m going to agree with coach millers number 1 takeaway. This team is soft and needs to toughen up. Not that that would have overcome the three point barrage last night, it wouldnt have. But they folded like lawn chairs last night when the going got tough.

  • JCM

    Completely agreed. I am of the opinion that you have to break it to fix it, and as such, the game served it purpose.

  • JimmyChittwood

    So you’re saying the team with the most points wins? Huh, never made the connection. – Mr. Obvious

  • It’ll get better

    I’m going to just throw this out here. Crean was always considered a good recruiter, but bad at Xs and Os. I personally think his recruiting was always overrated. Yes, he got Zeller and Ferrell, but I feel like those dudes were coming no matter who the coach was. He also swung and connected on oladipo and OG. Other than those 4, I don’t see a player, including this roster, that has that “it factor”. It’s basically a bunch of role players that we can’t expect to be a good team. You combine role players with no heart and you get beat by teams like IPFW and ISU. It will get better once creans guys start weeding out and Miller’s come in.

  • Gary Cline

    Carry over from the teams collapse last year. Indiana just doesn’t have the players on their roster, and no leader or floor general. Going to be a long year and it will be interesting to see how Miller can convert this squad into a competitive match up for any team, if possible.

  • IdahoHoosier

    A few thoughts. 1. This is the same roster as last year, minus 3 pro-talent players who also scored a majority of the points. Scoring looks to be an issue. 2. These kind of results are bound to happen once in awhile(at least until IU gets more talent on the team) when we play more higher level opponents, which is what fans have been wanting. 3. Leadership has lacked for this crew for a least 3 years and now we see perhaps we can’t put ALL the blame on Crean’s coaching. At some point the players have to want it and actually play hard. A coach can only take you so far. 4. This is just one game so I’m not panicked yet, but hopefully some overly optimistic fans can cool off and realize this is Archies first year, this roster isn’t one of the most talented in the B1G, and we just lost 3 major contributors last year. These factors matter! A middle of the pack B1G finishworth visible improvements as the year progresses will be a huge success.

  • IdahoHoosier

    Also I hope Archie will not be afraid to use those timeouts and sit older players who choose not to show effort. Send a clear message. Scholarship players don’t have to play if they aren’t going to fight.

  • Missing Moye

    I fully agree with this. I’m hopeful that after Archie’s comments about the starts of the games, that at a minimum he will shake up the starting lineup for the Howard game to at least send a message. Since Hartman won’t be available, I’d like to see a starting five Sunday of Durham, Jones, Johnson, Morgan, and Davis. I’d sit Johnson at the start too, but I’m just not sure who would take his spot at this point.

  • Missing Moye

    I won’t argue that these aren’t fair points, but I’m reluctant to be critical of coaching decisions this early on. I think there is some learning curve for Archie here as well, in terms of learning his players and how they react in game situations.

    I do agree about the slow starts from the senior guards. Newkirk, in particular, should be coming off the bench in my opinion.

  • calbert40

    I’m not concerned, honestly. This year is going to be an adjustment process. Much of the roster is comprised of players who didn’t chose to play for Archie, and Archie didn’t choose to play for him…at least initially. I thought, and still do, that this season would have many games where the results would surprise us – in both good and bad ways.

    I think Archie’s quote about the start of the game really crushing the team was correct. Call me crazy, but I think a butt whooping like this could be good for this club. Maybe they will realize they need to buy in more.

  • E Foy McNaughton

    Starting AD & CUJO will do one of 2 things, light a fire under RoJo & JN to toughen them up and/or provide an opportunity for players who will be more prone to develop toughness.

  • IU Hoosiers # 34, 1979-83

    Steve, hello. The game wasn’t televised here in Chicago. One thing that frustrated me with RJ last year was how slow he would bring the ball up the court to start a play. Did he do the same thing against ISU?

  • BeatDuke

    Prediction: I think Green really steps it up in the next game. He was the defacto leader in the two exhibition games, and then only got two shots yesterday. I think he will conclude that he MUST make something happen, or the Offense is in trouble.

  • D. Green.

  • Brad

    No reason to ring alarm bells. This season will be a huge learning experience for the team as they adjust to a new system. Archie needs a little time to build.

  • Steve Morgan

    I don’t actually remember him bringing it up that much; more DG and JN. And DG was really moving up the court. The problem there was that he was not a threat to score from outside, and without having to respect that, he didn’t get past many defenders. My problem was that RJ was absolutely schooled by Scott on D. He never adjusted to the fact that he was lighting it up from 3. He seemed content to stay inside the arc and let him shoot over him, which he did, and well. I think this is some of the toughness CAM was talking about in his presser. The inability to answer any of those big shots didn’t help things either.

  • IU Hoosiers # 34, 1979-83

    Steve, thanks for that. I really appreciate your feedback. Have a nice weekend. Bummer of a loss.

  • IU Hoosiers # 34, 1979-83

    I’m one of them. On my way to get JD apple.

  • Bigten0102

    1)This team will continue to improve but dont quite have the offensive power we have seen in the past. Our guards arent great in breaking down their first defender as well. 2)There was a TON of confusion in defending ball screens and careless turnovers continue to plague us.
    3)Not sure what is going on with RJ. Seems as if he is slowly regressing over his time with this team. I honestly hope the Fresh/Soph. get alot more minutes.

  • Ole Man

    What koolaid?
    What did the Coach do wrong last night?
    Let’s hear it.
    Instead of your insult how about some analysis?
    You shouldn’t drink and post.
    It obviously makes you say stupid things.

  • Ole Man

    19 TOs in the book. But at least 3 more really.
    The bricked 3 attempt by CuJo.
    And the two 3 pt brick attempts by JM.
    Those should be counted as TOs. None of them had a prayer.

  • inadvertentelbows_stillhurt

    Go recruit.. this year is dead

  • Donnie Vick

    Archie said he wanted to have balanced classes, but he’s got four signed and hoping for two more. It sounds like to me he’s counting on some guys taking their “talents” elsewhere.

  • HoosierOne

    Surprised at how few shots he took in this game. He should be taking a lot of shots if he’s the premier scorer….I agree that next game he will step it up. Might take a few games for him to realize he’s not coming off the bench for 5 minutes a night, but is expected to be a point leader on a regular basis.

  • vicbert caladipo

    I thought that myself.

  • vicbert caladipo

    Go for it my friend. Better than being uptight cranky and self righteous : )

  • vicbert caladipo

    Lay off the kids you cranky self righteous old man

  • Ole Man

    Is it your goal to move to the head of the ITH troll list?
    Nothing in my post was cranky or self-righteous.
    Speak to me about basketball.
    Or don’t speak to me at all.
    I don’t have time for trolls.