The Minute After: Purdue

  • 03/04/2012 9:05 pm in

Thoughts on a 85-74 win against Purdue:

This started with a dominating performance from the Hoosiers.

The entire first half — and for the first 10 minutes or so of the second — Indiana didn’t give Purdue any room to breath. It was go-go-go, score-score-score. And when the Hoosiers weren’t grabbing defensive rebounds, pushing the pace and getting easy buckets in transition, they didn’t have much trouble showing patience and getting good looks in their half-court offense. There were extra passes. There were several 3-pointers hit (8-of-14 in the first half). There was Cody Zeller passing out of double-teams and finding the open man. By half, Indiana racked up some impressive offensive statistics (49 points, 80% eFG, 1.37 points per possession). It was a clinic and this team’s offense at its best: A mix of easy transition buckets, turning defense into offense, operation into and out of Zeller, ball movement, high energy, getting to the line, feeding off the crowd.

But Purdue, even when it found itself down 18 with 13:58 to go, still made a game of this one. The Hoosiers’ offense stalled midway through the second half and Purdue forced them into contested looks late in the shot clock. Robbie Hummel (16 points) and Lewis Jackson (17 points) got it going a bit. A D.J. Bryd 3-pointer cut the lead to just seven with 6:01 to go. Plenty of time to continue the comeback, plenty of time to deflate an Assembly Hall faithful that smelled blood in the water all game. But Indiana never really lost a handle on things the rest of the way out. Its lead bounced back up to 13, then fell to six with 1:20 to go on a Ryne Smith 3-pointer, then climbed back up to 13 once again on the strength of some strong free throw shooting as Purdue was forced to foul late in the contest. (Indiana in that departement for the game: 47.2 free throw rate, 19-25 from the line.) Two Lewis Jackson free throws with 40 seconds to go inched Purdue within 11, and that wrapped up the scoring on the evening.

The Hoosiers beat the Boilermakers yet again this season. With the win, they beat out Purdue for fifth place in the conference. And it’s also one that gives them 24 regular season wins coupled with just seven losses. For all this program has been through the past three seasons, that’s impressive. Damn impressive.

All five seniors — Verdell Jones (who was smart with the ball all night), Daniel Moore, Kory Barnett, Tom Pritchard (who got a bucket tonight), Matt Roth (who hit three big 3-pointers to open it up before halftime) — finished this one out on the court together in the final seconds. It’s a group that will hold a special place in the hearts of this fanbase, not because of conference titles or individual awards, but because they were here when no one else wanted to be, when Indiana was down and out, and they helped bring it all back.

But this run, this great story isn’t over yet.

For the first time in the Tom Crean era, Indiana has the opportunity to make some noise in the Big Ten Tournament. Oh, and there’s that NCAA Tournament, too.

Beam with pride tonight. Strap it in for what’s to come.

Filed to:

  • Andrew

    Um, why are you trying to “call out” AJ Guyton after we just put the finishing touches on a sweep of our archrival?  And it was extremely poorly presented, with no quote marks or context, so don’t be surprised that it’s difficult for people to understand.  This has to be one of the most bizarre posts ever after a great win.

  • Kelin Blab

    Wow Wow Wow………a sweep of Purdue.

    + I will admit it, at one point during the game I felt bad for Purdue because they were just so so awful. The talent gap is bigger than what PU fans think and if they think AJ Hammons is the answer…keep dreamin’

    + Simple question: How does anyone leave Matt ‘freakin’ Roth open…AT ALL. One 3, ok…two three’s, what are you doing, 3 three’s, scholarship needs to be pulled

    + Great Senior night and very happy for all of the Seniors. VJ and Pritch were solid

    + Whomever is in charge of traffic needs a raise. Got out and back to indy as easily as I got into the area.

    + Christian Watford is back, glad to see him fight through a tough part of the season….maturity.

    + Wanted IU to win by 20+, just couldn’t get there.

    + Love the fact they play at 2pm on Thursday…..me and Fish!

    + Walked out behind Yogi, lot bigger and taller. Could be 6ft tall now.

    + Thanks ITH for a great regular season of coverage….best in the business.

  • IUJeff

    I never felt PU was going to win it either but it was a little too close for comfort. 

    PU did win the 2nd half by 4 in our house though. 

  •  Well they’re obviously not gay so that “friction” probably refers to they both coach rival teams competing for a higher seed in an emotionally charged atmosphere.

  • LTTelamon

    I think it’s gonna take a run in the NCAA Tournament to get CTC that well deserved award – probably an Elite Eight run.

    That said, I completely agree with you.

  • IUJeff

    Watched Moore, Roth, and the Pritch senior night speeches a while ago. Hard not to tear up a bit.  

    I like the way the team is talking about what lies ahead. They believe they have a chance to win it all and so do I.  

    It’s a quiet confidence. Kinda like what Zeller brought to this team. Thanks big fella. All of this is not possible if not for you.

  • SeattleHoosier

    Here’s a link to the senior night festivities.  Fast forward to about 1 hour and 10 minutes.

    http://video.btn.com/allaccess/?media=307024

  • SeattleHoosier

    Here’s a link to the senior night festivities.  Fast forward to about 1 hour and 10 minutes.

    http://video.btn.com/allaccess/?media=307024

  • Geoff_85

    My biggest concern is what happened when the Hoosiers were last on a roll like this…the January lapse. Having said that, Coach Crean addressed that lapse when the Hooisers beat Minnesota and said that this team wasn’t going to have another such lapse. His team responded by beating the piss out of Michigan State and then tonight, Purdouche. I hope they keep it rolling in the Big Ten Tournament, and to be honest, I like being the 5 seed and playing a potential confidence builder against Penn St. (I really, really wish it would have been Nebraska — revenge) before facing one of the top 4 teams. I hope the Hoosiers roll in the first game and keep this momentum going into a revenge game — haven’t lost one of those yet. Gotta beat PSU first though. It’s hard to beat any team 3 times in a season, especially one with a good player like Frazier and the effort that team brings, but the Hooisers should be ready. This tournament should be fun!

  • SirEric

    Jeez, if it wasn’t for scholarship trouble, I’d love to have Roth back next year. The dude is an absolute sniper.

  • Mop Lady

    any recruits at the game?

  • b_side

    Love what Crean is doing on the defensive end.  I think it throws off the opposing coaches’ game plan when we come out with these unorthodox matchups. 

    Also you have to think players watch film of who will likely be defending them, so they never get comfortable with our interchangeable parts.

  • Kennydescombes

    You just have to take it one game at a time.  The Big Ten tourney is more of a marathon as it is set up for possibly 4 games in 4 days.  But I would rather carry the extra momentum going into the NCAA tourney.  Lets not forget that we are talking about 19-22 year olds, who play basketball everyday anyways.  This is more of a test of focus than anything else. 

    Even if they get to play four more games before the NCAA tourney, they will have at minimal 3 full days off, possibly up to 4 and a half based on the location and the seeding.  But the schedule is far easier because they will only have to play twice on any weekend the rest of the way.  It is all about seeding (who and where you are matched, focus, effort, and who gets hot to decide who is the NCAA title team.  If Butler can gut their way into two finals in back to back years, this team is capable of laying it all out on the line and reaching the penacle of the game as well.  The only limitations is their focus, their intensity and will to battle through a team playing like a buzz saw, and force their will in order to play a game that advantages IU the best.  I like our chances no matter who we play and where. 

  • Kennydescombes

    You just have to take it one game at a time.  The Big Ten tourney is more of a marathon as it is set up for possibly 4 games in 4 days.  But I would rather carry the extra momentum going into the NCAA tourney.  Lets not forget that we are talking about 19-22 year olds, who play basketball everyday anyways.  This is more of a test of focus than anything else. 

    Even if they get to play four more games before the NCAA tourney, they will have at minimal 3 full days off, possibly up to 4 and a half based on the location and the seeding.  But the schedule is far easier because they will only have to play twice on any weekend the rest of the way.  It is all about seeding (who and where you are matched, focus, effort, and who gets hot to decide who is the NCAA title team.  If Butler can gut their way into two finals in back to back years, this team is capable of laying it all out on the line and reaching the penacle of the game as well.  The only limitations is their focus, their intensity and will to battle through a team playing like a buzz saw, and force their will in order to play a game that advantages IU the best.  I like our chances no matter who we play and where. 

  • MillaRed

    You guys have said it all. All I want to see is that top 15 ranking. They deserve it.

  • HoosierPat

    Great win tonight by the Hoosiers. Thanks and congrats to the “First Five.”. That group of seniors have truly helped rebuild Indiana basketball and have always represented the program, university, and state very well. I enjoyed the speeches from the seniors, especially Kory Barnett. Let’s keep on rolling through March!

  • Laueb

    I’m wondering how many more years  CTC’s voice has left? I’m sure he is yelling at practice, all during every game, and then just talking night and day
    to staff, recruits, family and friends. It didn’t sound good today during his speech or postgame interview.It makes my throat hurt just to hear him.

  • Laueb

    I’m wondering how many more years  CTC’s voice has left? I’m sure he is yelling at practice, all during every game, and then just talking night and day
    to staff, recruits, family and friends. It didn’t sound good today during his speech or postgame interview.It makes my throat hurt just to hear him.

  • Christopher Paul Michael

    The jury might be out on painter still….just saying

  • marcusgresham

    I wondered the same and it sounded to me like there was something specific, not just a rivalry issue.

  • marcusgresham

    2:00 Thursday?  Sweet, that means I can get out of one appointment, go to my parents’ house and watch the game with my dad, who’s recovering nicely from knee replacement surgery (and glad to be doing so, as he’s an insurance adjuster and would be swamped at this point.)

  • NervousWreck

    Another stellar game.  Nice to see them playing their best basketball at the right time.  This is going to be an interesting/fun B1G and NCAA Tournament to watch – especially when we have this great group of kids on our side!

    A top 15 ranking is well deserved for this team.  Need to leap-frog over Wisconsin/Michigan to try and make that push for a 3 seed.  Seems to be a log jam right behind the 2 of them with Michigan 12, Wisconsin 13, IU 14.  It’s so great to be having this kind of conversation though….IU’s back and just like Crean said, so one wants us back!  Gotta love it!

  • marcusgresham

    I know the ultimate goal is to win, but could this also be a move to show NBA scouts that Watford, who will be a 3 in the league, is capable of playing defense on the perimeter?

  • WatchingYogi_atYogis

    Two somewhat related thoughts on Senior Night.

    First, I remember not too long ago that our team was actually dependent on Verdell Jones and Tom Pritchard for substantial roles. Over their career, that has thankfully changed. As much as I have nothing but good things to say about their careers, I’m pretty satisfied with the thought that no senior class in the near future will be as representative of the struggle that IU went through in the Sampson to Crean transition to field a team that could at least take the floor for our fans. Next year, Watford and Hulls will be more representative of the good positive growth of our program.

    And the other thought I had… Wouldn’t it be nice to be able to say that IU never lost to Purdue during the Cody Zeller era? I’m not sure how many meeting there will be in the series, but so far so good with the first two. That is progress.

  • WatchingYogi_atYogis

    Two somewhat related thoughts on Senior Night.

    First, I remember not too long ago that our team was actually dependent on Verdell Jones and Tom Pritchard for substantial roles. Over their career, that has thankfully changed. As much as I have nothing but good things to say about their careers, I’m pretty satisfied with the thought that no senior class in the near future will be as representative of the struggle that IU went through in the Sampson to Crean transition to field a team that could at least take the floor for our fans. Next year, Watford and Hulls will be more representative of the good positive growth of our program.

    And the other thought I had… Wouldn’t it be nice to be able to say that IU never lost to Purdue during the Cody Zeller era? I’m not sure how many meeting there will be in the series, but so far so good with the first two. That is progress.

  • Silkyslim

    Love the sweep of Purdue.  Our guys played GREAT team ball with enthusiasm !!! 

    Got to give props for PU’s Hummel that boy balls, he keep PU in a game that could have easily been a 20 point blowout !

    Also, proud for all our seniors who were key to IU’s success this year and showed awesome resiliency during the lean rebuilding years.  WELL DONE !!!

  • BKLock

    Congratulations to the Hoosiers for a great win over PU and for an outstanding regular season! You eclipsed my expectations for the year. Now lets make some noise in both of the upcoming tournaments! Yes, we are back!

    Thank you to the five seniors Barnett, Moore, Roth, Pritchard and Jones for sticking with a program that was rebuilding!  You could have jumped ship like many others did but you persevered and are now part of one of the biggest turn arounds in NCAA history. Thank you for your dedication and love for IU. 

  • Petefaggen

    Well said about the seniors. I enjoyed the speeches as well. I wish I could get a copy of Barnett’s poem. Classic.

  • Hoosier89

    Without Hummel they would be horrendous.

  • HoosierFromCt

    The speeches were amazing. Sad, funny, thoughtful, awkward (Daniel Moore) and clever (Kory Barnett’s poem – somebody needs to transcribe that ASAP and but up in the hallways of AH).

    Congrats, Seniors. I was a senior when you guys were freshman. Just crazy to think how much as happened since that first B1G win vs Iowa. 

  • The Cat

    The speeches are all on sportsline.  Go to BB, teams, and Indiana.

  • The Cat

    The speeches are all on sportsline.  Go to BB, teams, and Indiana.

  • HoosierFromCt

    Kemba Walker just read this and laughed. 

  • UKfan

    Well the UK fan is back and what did I tell you guys? From the beginning of the year I said top 6 finish in the B1G and a berth in the BiG dance. After your play against us I knew that your squad was truly legit. I also said during the bad times that everyone should step back and remember that outside a few teams that IU could beat anyone. Congrats on being back In the discussion and on a great year. Good luck in the tourney.

  • calbert40

    Great ending to a great rebound season!  Looking forward, I think we are playing our best basketball of the season right now, and we are going to be a team to be reckoned with in March.

    I think our NCAA seed will be determined this weekend, and I believe we have the opportunity to jump a seed line with every win.  If we lose to Penn St, I’m thinking a 5.  If we beat them, but lose to Wisky – 4 seed.  Beat Wisky, but lose to MSU – 3 seed.  If we win the whole thing, the selection committee will have a tough time keeping us off the 2 line at 28-7 with wins over UK, OSU, MSU, ND, UM, PU twice, etc.

    Gotta take care of business first, but I think we are playing better than any other team in the B1G right now, and NO ONE wants to play us!  Go Hoosiers!

  • Geoff_85

    I believe it was about the handshake after the first game. It seemed like that was amended at the end of this game.

  • Alberson90

    Anyone else legitimately sad that Matt, Tom, and VJ won’t be around next year? It’s getting a little bit dusty in my room right now… yikes.

  • Alberson90

    Anyone else legitimately sad that Matt, Tom, and VJ won’t be around next year? It’s getting a little bit dusty in my room right now… yikes.

  • kenny george

    Way to go HOOSIERS! what a game, a nite and a thrill!!!! now it’s time to get ready for tourney fun and fame!!! keep taking care of business guys…..

  • Oldguyy

    Gotta give credit where it’s due to Lewis Jackson, too.  Purdue will miss them both next year.  🙂

  • cpmichae

    MSU will probably be sitting in the #10 position too! log jammin’

  • cpmichae

    MSU will probably be sitting in the #10 position too! log jammin’

  • Eastwood88_2

    Shortest mill a post of the year. Called happiness

  • mrjonessodaandme

    If he is going for his PhD, that’s something a school practically pays for. He could just walk on. I don’t know if he is going for another degree or not though.

  • CreamandCrimson

    What a tremendous end to a really, really fun regular season.  The group of seniors have worked so hard and been through so much to help get IU back to this point.  Every single guy on this roster has put everything into this program and they have earned this tremendous regular season and a spot in the NCAA Tournament.  It’s been way too long since we saw IU’s name pop up on Selection Sunday, that is going to be a sweet moment and I think we will make it well worth the wait.  Some things I noticed…

    -I am very happy we don’t have to face Robbie Hummel anymore.  I wish him the best of luck moving forward and have nothing but respect for him.  Great player.

    -Hulls is playing very good basketball right now.  His defense hasn’t been crippling recently (actually playing some good help defense lately), he isn’t turning the ball over as much (1 TO), his shooting form has returned and he is distributing the ball very well (5 assists last night).  Good to see.

    -Will Sheehey was great.  16 points, 5 rebounds on 5-7 shooting. 

    -Watford was good.  Very good.  19 points and 6 rebounds with some pretty good defense on Lewis Jackson.  I love the wrinkle CTC has thrown into the defensive game plan.  Watford on the opposing point guard has helped our defense.

    -VJIII had another game with solid contributions.

    -We love VO’s defense, we love his explosive drives to the rack, we love his energy.  His best asset might be his rebounding.  He led the team (again) with 8 boards). 

    Overall, we were +6 on the glass, +5 on assists, only -2 on TO’s (Purdue leads the country in fewest turnovers per game) and had 5 blocked shots.  Of course, the most important stat of the night was our record against Purdue this season….2-0.

  • mrjonessodaandme

    Don’t think the 2-line is quite in reach. Get to the B1G Finals and we’d be high in the dicussion for a 3 (maybe a lock depending on what teams above us do). A definite 3-seed if we win the thing.

  • IUbasketball_professor

    I love it how people were hating when IU stumbled at Iowa. Many were asking whether IU had peaked too early in the season, guess not huh?

  • IUbasketball_professor

    I love it how people were hating when IU stumbled at Iowa. Many were asking whether IU had peaked too early in the season, guess not huh?

  • BCharles9295

    Felt bad for them, seriously?  To hell with the Boilers.  They would never show us any quarter and loved thumping us in our down years (don’t we all remember the thug Barlow’s cute li’l choke gesture?  Of course who’s laughing now?), so why should we pity them? 

    This was a great win and a great season.  Congratulations, Seniors.

  • Southern Michael

    It’s my understanding that he is going to be a Grad Asst. next year