After just five turnovers in the first half, the Hoosiers coughed the ball up 11 times against Minnesota in their 66-60 loss at Williams Arena on Saturday evening.
We’ll take a look at how Minnesota’s press and trapping sped IU up, as well as Troy Williams’ strong start in the latest edition of Film Session:
Stanford Robinson finds Noah Vonleh with a pass near the top of the key:
Vonleh surveys his options and opts to dribble right to hand off to Williams:
The Big Ten held its weekly coaches teleconference on Monday morning to review the sixth week of conference play. Here are some notes and quotes from Tom Crean’s appearance:
· Prior to the call, the conference announced that Wisconsin’s Nigel Hayes was named the league’s freshman of the week for the third time this season and Ohio State’s Aaron Craft was named the league’s player of the week for the second time this season.
· Opening statement: “Our focus right now is just on the week ahead and getting back to practice today after taking yesterday off and totally being locked into Penn State after we go through the corrections and the good and the not so good from the other night and what we can learn from that. We’re ready to roll.”
· Crean was asked about coaching a team that draws a strong response and how his message to his players about dealing with fan behavior has changed or evolved: “I think the biggest thing and obviously I’m sure that every coach in the country is going to be reminding their team of it today, if they didn’t yesterday … and the bottom line for us is that you can’t ever let anybody get in the way of your career, get in the way of the way of your responsibility to your team and most importantly, you can’t ever let anybody get to you in a way that’s going to affect you in a negative way.
“It’s a lot easier said than done, there’s no question about that. The bottom line is, the more that you can treat, especially on the road, which is hard, but the more that you can treat the noise and treat the barbs and treat all of that as just faceless and nameless, the better you’re going to be. Again, that’s hard to do. It’s very, very hard to do. It’s very easy to talk about it. It’s a lot harder to actually do it because you want people to have an incredibly competitive spirit when they’re playing. It doesn’t matter if you’re a coach or you’re a player, it’s very, very hard to turn that off. And if you turn it off too quickly, you don’t win games. But the bottom line is you’ve got to keep trying to remind people that the fight is within the lines. The fight is within the 94 feet. The fight is within the football field, the baseball diamond, whatever it is. You keep the fight in there, you keep your edge in there and you try to treat the rest of it just as noise that you work through.”
The Inside the Hall Big Ten Power Rankings are back for another week as conference play has passed its halfway point with less than a month remaining until the end of the regular season. This week’s rankings feature more shake-ups as upsets have become the norm this season in conference play.
Without further ado, check out where each team stands after week six of league play:
12. Penn State (12-12, 3-8, PPP: .99, PPP Allowed: 1.08) (LAST WEEK: 10) … The Nittany Lions had plenty of chances to bring home a victory on Sunday against an Illinois squad on an eight-game losing streak, but once again they couldn’t close out a win on their home court. It appeared the Nittany Lions were making progress, winning their past two on their home court against Purdue and Nebraska, but Sunday’s loss was more like their early-season struggles where they could not close out a home victory. (Up next: Feb. 12 at Indiana, Feb. 15 vs. Iowa)
11. Illinois (14-10, 3-8, PPP: .96, PPP Allowed: 1.04) (LAST WEEK: 12) … Well, the eight-game losing streak is finally over, and many thanks can go to freshman Kendrick Nunn’s game-sealing 3-pointer with about 22 seconds left, three of his 19 points on Sunday afternoon. Still, two of the Fighting Illini’s three conference wins have come against Penn State, so they don’t move up much after their first win in more than a month. (Up next: Feb. 12 at Nebraska, Feb. 15 vs. Ohio State)
Indiana’s up and down season continued on Saturday night as the Hoosiers followed up an 11-point win at home over Michigan with a six-point loss to Minnesota at Williams Arena.
Here’s a look at five takeaways from Indiana’s third straight road loss:
· Indiana had too many lapses at key points in the game: This has become a theme this season in games away from Assembly Hall and it was a major theme in the loss to Minnesota. Momentum is a difficult thing to keep on the road, but the teams who win with any regularity in hostile environments are able to sustain it. Through five Big Ten road games, Indiana has four losses by a combined 19 points and led in the second half of all four defeats.
On Saturday, it was a game of runs for both teams, but two key lapses were costly. The first was late in the first half when the Hoosiers had possession up eight and a chance to take the final shot. Instead, Troy Williams turned the ball over with 15 seconds to go and Minnesota scored on an easy dunk by Maurice Walker to cut its deficit to six at the break.
The second key sequence was at the onset of the second half as IU turned the ball over four times in the first 3:02 and Minnesota quickly tied the game at 38 on a free throw by DeAndre Mathieu. Neither sequence in particular is completely to blame for the loss, but both are examples of what’s holding the Hoosiers back from pulling out road games.
· Turnovers were a major second half issue: Indiana did a solid job taking care of the ball through the game’s first 20 minutes. The Hoosiers had just five first-half miscues for a turnover percentage of 15. The second half was a different story as Indiana had 11 turnovers and finished the game with a turnover percentage of 25.2.
Like many of Indiana’s road games this season, Saturday’s performance against Minnesota was a tale of two halves.
There was the first, in which Indiana built a double-digit lead for its second straight road game and appeared on its way to just its third win away from Assembly Hall this season.
And then there was the second, in which a collapse once again doomed the Hoosiers (14-9, 4-6), this time in a 66-60 loss at the hands of the Golden Gophers (16-8, 5-6) in Williams Arena.
“We had some turnovers in the second half, and we had some awareness issues at the end of possessions,” Indiana coach Tom Crean said. “And that’s what it was more than anything else. And in this league, it’s not possession-by-possession, it’s a pass-to-pass league.”
Indeed, such slim margins for error have been the difference makers for the Hoosiers in their first 23 games this season. At Penn State on Jan. 8, the Hoosiers trailed by as many as 15 points but limited mistakes in a second-half comeback victory, their only true road win of the season.
At Nebraska only two Thursdays ago, the Hoosiers led by 16 points but allowed the Cornhuskers to shoot a 66.7 percent effective field goal percentage in the second half in a 60-55 loss.
Tom Crean met with the media following Indiana’s 66-60 loss to Minnesota on Saturday night at Williams Arena.
Watch his postgame comments in the media player below:
Video courtesy of J.B. Bauer of LateNightHoops.com.
Noah Vonleh (12 points, 12 rebounds) and Troy Williams (11 points, three rebounds) met with the media following Indiana’s 66-60 loss to Minnesota on Saturday night at Williams Arena.
Watch their postgame comments in the media player below:
Video courtesy of J.B. Bauer of LateNightHoops.com.