James Blackmon Jr. Archive

Video: Crean, IU players preview Butler

Tom Crean, James Blackmon Jr. and Collin Hartman met with the media on Friday afternoon to preview Saturday’s game against No. 23 Butler in the Crossroads Classic at Bankers Life Fieldhouse.

Watch both press conferences below:

Five takeaways from Indiana’s win over Grand Canyon

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Indiana moved to 8-2 on Saturday night with a comfortable 94-66 win over Grand Canyon at Assembly Hall. Here’s a look at five takeaways from the win over the Antelopes:

· The Hoosiers delivered a remarkable performance in taking care of the ball: Four total turnovers for a turnover percentage of 5.7. Those are numbers that would have been unthinkable a season ago, but Indiana has made significant strides in curing a problem that was the storyline of last season.

Through 10 games, Indiana ranks 37th nationally in turnover percentage according to KenPom.com and fourth among Big Ten teams (Illinois, Wisconsin and Michigan). Saturday’s performance in taking care of the ball included zero turnovers in the second half and earned strong praise from Tom Crean.

“Crazy. Beyond belief,” Crean said. “We’ll have to go back through the tape, see if that’s actually accurate, because, man, I never coached a team that had that few.”

· Troy Williams bounced back from a tough game against Louisville: Sophomore wing Troy Williams, who struggled in Indiana’s loss to No. 4 Louisville, came back with one of the better games he’s played in an IU uniform.

Williams was under control while still being aggressive and finished with 14 points, eight rebounds, two assists and no turnovers in 21 minutes. The raw, natural ability of Williams has never been questioned, but his decision making has been and after the win, he said it felt good to not be a “turnover machine.”

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Video: IU players react to win over Grand Canyon

Hanner Mosquera-Perea (11 points, seven rebounds and two blocks), Troy Williams (14 points and eight rebounds) and James Blackmon Jr. (18 points, six rebounds and three assists) met with the media following Indiana’s 94-66 win over Grand Canyon on Saturday night at Assembly Hall.

Watch the full press conference below:

Five takeaways from Indiana’s loss to Louisville

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Indiana dropped its second non-conference game on Tuesday night as the Hoosiers fell to No. 4 Louisville, 94-74, in the Jimmy V Classic at Madison Square Garden. Here’s a look at five takeaways from the loss to the Cardinals:

· Louisville brought physicality and Indiana was unable to match it: There were stretches where the Hoosiers hung in with Louisville relatively well and they even had a second half lead, but ultimately Louisville’s defense and physicality was too much to handle.

Louisville hadn’t been particularly good offensively coming in, but the Cardinals scored 1.22 points per trip, rebounded more than 50 percent of their misses and got to the foul line at a better rate than Indiana. Defensively, Louisville did allow Indiana to score 74 points, shoot an effective field goal percentage of 54.1 and score 0.96 points per possession (all season-highs), but this game was never really in doubt down the stretch as fatigue was brought to the game and the more physical, more experienced team prevailed.

“We got a lot of growth potential to get better, but the toughness level certainly and the glass level was hit tonight – we weren’t ready for that,” Tom Crean said of his team’s effort. “We’ve got a short period of time obviously when you have so many games as we have to get better at it.”

· Indiana was too careless with the ball: A lot was made of how Indiana would handle Louisville’s pressure coming in and Rick Pitino’s signature ball pressure didn’t take long to become effective. The Hoosiers turned it over 13 times in the first half and despite that, only trailed by five at halftime because of hot perimeter shooting.

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Video: IU players react to win over Savannah State

James Blackmon Jr. (18 points) and Yogi Ferrell (18 points, seven assists) met with the media following Indiana’s 95-49 win over Savannah State on Saturday night at Assembly Hall.

Watch the full press conference below:

James Blackmon Jr., Robert Johnson named to Wayman Tisdale Award watch list

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The United States Basketball Writers Association announced the watch list for the 2015 Wayman Tisdale Award, which honors the country’s top freshman, on Monday afternoon.

Two IU freshmen, James Blackmon Jr. and Robert Johnson, were on the 22-player list.

Here’s the complete watch list, per a USBWA press release issued on Thursday, is available after the jump.

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Five takeaways from Indiana’s win over Lamar

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It wasn’t the decisive win that was expected, but Indiana moved to 4-0 with a 85-72 win over Lamar on Saturday night in Assembly Hall.

Here’s a look at five takeaways from IU’s win over the Cardinals:

· IU’s defense struggles: Lamar came into Assembly Hall averaging .88 points per possession through its first three games. When the final buzzer sounded on the IU victory, the Cardinals had carved the Hoosiers up to the tune of 1.09 points per trip.

Most concerning from the performance was how easily Lamar was able to score inside. The Cardinals amassed 48 points in the paint and shot 65 percent on their 2s. A majority of the easy looks were the result of poor perimeter defense as Lamar found driving lanes with ease and either took them directly to the rim or dished off when help arrived.

“The bottom line is that we’ve got to do a better job of containing penetration, understanding scouting report defense and not stepping up on penetration when it comes,” Tom Crean said. “I thought we didn’t do a very good job of perimeter defense at all when it came to ball pressure in the first half and it came to dribble penetration in the second half, and then we got careless with our step-ups which gave them too many easy baskets.”

· Another efficient performance for James Blackmon Jr.: Another game, another strong effort from IU’s McDonald’s All-American freshman guard. Blackmon Jr. hit six of his 10 field goal attempts, knocked down all four of his free throws and finished with 21 points. He also grabbed six rebounds, a team-high.

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