WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. – Check out 20 photos by Jamie Owens from Indiana’s 83-67 loss to Purdue at Mackey Arena in the embedded photo gallery after the jump. See more images and purchase prints from J. Scott Sports.
Indiana is not afraid to admit it: Preparing for Purdue is not like preparing for a typical opponent.
Year in and year out the Boilermakers and Hoosiers play for state bragging rights in the Big Ten’s oldest rivalry — dating back to 1901. Wednesday’s game in West Lafayette will be the 202nd all-time meeting between the two schools.
But this season specifically, the Boilermakers present a challenge the Hoosiers have worries about — playing two regulars who are taller than 7-feet. In contrast, the Hoosiers have not played anyone taller than 6-foot-8 in meaningful minutes during recent games.
“Teams are always going to try to play bigger against us,” junior guard Yogi Ferrell said. “That’s what I would do, personally, if I was a coach — just try and pound it inside. So what we have to do is just prepare very well for their bigs. We know they’re big inside.”
The added challenge of preparing for Purdue comes on short preparation following Sunday’s loss at Ohio State — in which the Hoosiers allowed the Buckeyes to shoot better than 63 percent on 2s. The Buckeyes, though, chose to play small against the undersized Hoosiers. Purdue prides itself on its size advantage.
On Monday evening, Indiana coach Tom Crean spoke at his weekly radio show hosted by Don Fischer and recapped the Hoosiers’ win over Maryland and loss to Ohio State, while also looking ahead to Wednesday’s game at Purdue.
Below are news and notes from what the Hoosiers’ coach had to say:
— Firstly, Crean reflected on the Hoosiers’ 89-70 victory against Maryland, saying the result showed how good they can be “when everything is going right.” Crean also commended his team on how they were able to take away things from the Terrapins bigs, especially in the second half — as first half leading scorer 6-foot-9 Jake Layman was held to just two points in the final 20 minutes.
— After going 7-for-32 on 3-pointers in the Hoosiers’ first five Big Ten games, junior Yogi Ferrell went 13-for-19 on 3-point attempts in Indiana’s two games this past week. Crean said Ferrell shooting 3-pointers before and after practices in the leadup to the Maryland game helped get his shooting confidence back — that the net only got bigger from there. Crean also mentioned that it appears Ferrell has been the biggest beneficiary of having 6-foot-7 Collin Hartman as a starter, as it gives opponents yet another shooter to cover and one less defender to guard Ferrell.
— Since the Hoosiers’ trip to Montreal, one of Crean’s biggest priorities in coaching his team has been producing guard rebounds. The harder the block-outs are, the more guard rebounds there will be. But on Sunday against the Buckeyes, the Hoosiers didn’t grade out high in that category, Crean said. He said the Hoosiers have to also understand the sheer importance of rebounds — and how that affects their transition offense, as well. “If a guy is not a participant in the rebounding on the defensive end,” Crean noted, “It’s gonna be hard to play him.”
Indiana sophomore Devin Davis, who returned to school this semester after a traumatic brain injury in early November, will not play this season.
On the ESPNU college basketball podcast this morning with Andy Katz and Seth Greenburg, IU coach Tom Crean said that Davis has returned to classes, but not on a full-time basis, and that the hope is that he’ll be fully recovered for next season.
“He’s got a lot of different things that he’s having to deal with and continuing to build his therapy,” Crean told Katz. “He’s making progress, the doctors say he’s making progress and his attitude is great. There’s certainly no way he’s going to play this year, obviously, but hopefully he’s going to have a full recovery and an even better understanding and maturity to be able to go next year.”
The Big Ten held its weekly coaches teleconference on Monday morning to review the fourth week of conference play. Here are some notes and quotes from Tom Crean’s appearance:
· Opening statement: “Well we’ve got a short time here after playing yesterday to get ready for Purdue who is playing very, very well. So our focus is on that and at the same time, we’ve got to continue to learn from our week. We did some really good things in our Maryland win and we turned back around against Ohio State and did some good things, but we didn’t do enough of them. And Ohio State played very, very well and we’ve got to continue to understand how to get people out of their comfort zone, how to take away strengths of the other team and at the same time, continue to play to our strengths. Part of the challenge is making sure that we’re teaching these guys constantly what enables them to win, why they’re successful and keep moving on and moving forward with all of those type of things and that’s what we’re looking forward to doing today and as we get ready for Purdue.”
· On the status of Robert Johnson: “I didn’t realize this until we saw it on the film, which is really disappointing, when he fell, there was actually, it looked like, a red folder or papers that were laying close enough to the court that he slipped on, that were on the baseline by the cheerleaders. It’s one of those inadvertent things you hope never happens, but it did and they were just laying there as he finished his layup. So we didn’t realize that at the time in the game, at least I didn’t realize it until we saw it on the film, but I think the best news for Robert is that he went back into the game and now we have to continue to monitor it in a very close way and hopefully it doesn’t linger. But he was treating it last night and moving forward with that. It’s really going to be … we’ll just go and see what happens at the end of the day and see how he feels and as we get closer tomorrow and I don’t think it’s anything that is going to be long lasting, but there’s nothing that says it’s going to be OK for this game either, so it’s too early to tell I think.”
Indiana came into Sunday’s game at Ohio State with a plan of attack.
It wanted to give the Buckeyes multiple battles to fight on the offensive end of the court. On defense, it wanted to take away the effectiveness of guards D’Angelo Russell and Shannon Scott. Neither plan worked.
On an afternoon in which they turned the ball over at their second-highest rate this season and failed to stop both Russell and Scott, the Hoosiers found themselves with their second Big Ten loss this season in an 82-70 defeat at the hands of the Buckeyes.
“We knew what was coming,” Indiana coach Tom Crean said. “We just didn’t do a very good job of executing.”
As had been the case through their prior 19 games this season, the Hoosiers’ offense sparked the team early on Sunday afternoon. With an 8-for-8 start from the field, the Hoosiers had an 18-12 lead in the first half against the Buckeyes. Converting baskets wasn’t an issue for Indiana on Sunday. Finding offensive consistency was.
It’s been just two weeks since Indiana and Ohio State played to a 69-66 Hoosiers win in Assembly Hall. But plenty has changed since then.
For Indiana, 6-foot-9 forward Hanner Mosquera-Perea was declared out with a knee injury. For the Buckeyes, two newcomers — Jae’Sean Tate and Anthony Lee — have made their way into the starting lineup.
After playing three games each since their last meeting, the Hoosiers and the Buckeyes will play once more on Sunday in Columbus at Value City Arena. And despite the changes in each squad, Indiana coach Tom Crean said on Saturday it still is the same Ohio State team the Hoosiers beat two Saturdays ago.
“They’re everything that they were and they are a product of playing in a tough league like the rest of us are,” Crean said. “There’s going to be some good nights, some tough nights, but they are outstanding.”
With the introduction of Tate and Lee — a former Indiana recruit — into the Buckeyes’ starting lineup for their latest game at Northwestern, it has given the Hoosiers another two names to watch out for outside the likes of D’Angelo Russell, Marc Loving, Sam Thompson and Shannon Scott.