Crean, Hoosiers will look to end losing streak against Wisconsin

  • 03/15/2013 5:32 pm in


CHICAGO — Entering the Big Ten Tournament, there were only two conference teams the Hoosiers hadn’t beaten this season: Illinois and Wisconsin.

The Hoosiers took care of the first one in an 80-64 victory Friday afternoon at the United Center. They’ll get a chance at the second on Saturday.

No. 3 Indiana (27-5) will play the Badgers for the second time this season at 1:40 p.m. Saturday afternoon. Wisconsin won the teams’ only regular season meeting, 64-59, at Assembly Hall on Jan. 15. The Badgers beat Michigan on Friday to advance to the tournament’s semifinal round.

Tom Crean probably wouldn’t admit it, but Saturday’s game has to mean a little bit extra to him because of the opponent. Wisconsin is the only Big Ten school Crean hasn’t beaten during his tenure in Bloomington (0-9). Oh, and Bo Ryan is an old rival from Crean’s days at Marquette.

Why the success against the Hoosiers?

“I don’t know about anything that you’re talking about,” Ryan said. “What would I know about that? … I don’t even think about those kind of things. Never have. People that know me will tell you that.”

Wisconsin freshman guard Sam Dekker provided a better breakdown, but he wouldn’t go as far as to say the Badgers have Indiana’s number.

“It’s always a big stage,” Dekker said.” Indiana is a storied program, it’s always a game that we get amped up to play. Whenever you’re playing a team that that’s good and whenever you have respect for a team like that, you want to go out there and knock them off and let people know what you’re made of.”

Wisconsin (22-10) limped into the Big Ten tournament by losing two of three games down the stretch, and the Badgers didn’t exactly look like an elite team in the first half of Friday’s game against Michigan. But like they always do, the Badgers slowed the game down, mucked it up a bit, and won.

That’s the formula that has helped Wisconsin own Indiana of late. The Hoosiers want to get out and run. Wisconsin would like nothing more than to keep them from doing so.

“The past few times we’ve played them, we’ve done just enough to find some wins,” said Wisconsin forward Jared Berggren. “We’ve had some success against them. We know that they’re gonna be hungry to get some revenge on us.”

Playing to win

Every year around conference tournament time, there is talk of the fatigue associated with making a run to the championship game. Some will always argue losing on Saturday is better for the team in the long run.

Will Sheehey was asked after Friday’s game whether the Hoosiers’ goal is to win the Big Ten tournament title. Sheehey shook his head, and then smiled.

“Of course, man,” he said.

The reporter rephrased his question. Sheehey’s answer didn’t change.

“We wanna win it,” he said. “I think every team in it is equally as hungry as us.”

Regardless of whether the Hoosiers advance to Sunday and win the tournament, their seeding in the NCAA tournament is likely already secured. Indiana all but locked up a No. 1 seed with its win on Friday, and likely in the Midwest region. The only thing still to play for is the No. 1 overall seed, which isn’t all that significant anyway.

“I would hope we have done enough [for a No. 1 seed],” Crean said. “I think when you have the league the way that it is and you win it outright the way that we did. And I think one of the bigger things is the way we played on the road and the only home losses that Ohio State, Michigan, and Michigan State have are to us. And that says a lot, because those are three teams that can win a national championship and have been considered that way most of the year. So I would hope that we have, but that just remains to be seen.”

Inside the locker room

Here’s some of the best reaction to Victor Oladipo’s 360-degree dunk against Illinois on Friday.

“I’d give it an ‘8’. You should see what he can do. He can do better than that.”

— Will Sheehey

“I’ve seen it all. So anything you guys see that you think is ‘Wow!’ I just think is normal from him.”

— Yogi Ferrell

“There’s plenty of options, but I just went with the safer one.”

— Oladipo

Filed to:


    Guess we’re not the only ones thinking like we are about the outcome of some this year’s conference awards.


    Was thinking exactly that when I read his comments. Hope that quote of his that he screamed at the IU fans is posted on the IU team board in type that is 2 or 3 feet high. I know that the team is aware of all of this, they can’t approach it like that, they aren’t supposed to look at this game as a revenge game and all that, but my distaste for Slo Ryan and the Badgerettes is to the point that it just feels good typing that and picturing it on their board like that.


    Thinking that too, that this is a perfect time to get some more actual game time against a team that wants to do the exact opposite of what we want to do and against a team that has had our number to boot. Think this game goes a good ways in telling us what the rest of this season may look like. CW is a big key to how this game turns out IMHO it’s no coincidence that we played like we did against the Illannoy and that he also had a good game.


    I’m worried that he may have tweaked that knee yet again and that Crean is doing everything possible to have him back as much as possible for the Dance.

  • CreanFaithful

    I cannot be sure, because I was watching on TV yesterday. But, I did have ESPN Men’s Basketball page pulled up and it had a link saying “watch live now.” Perhaps it bounces you to ESPN3? Either way, looks like it’s available there.

  • MillaRed

    Wow, this writer is right up our alley…….

    “Wisconsin has been pretty well-hated under Slo Ryan, mostly because nobody outside the state of Wisconsin has ever enjoyed watching a Wisconsin basketball game.”

  • MillaRed

    Wow, this writer is right up our alley…….

    “Wisconsin has been pretty well-hated under Slo Ryan, mostly because nobody outside the state of Wisconsin has ever enjoyed watching a Wisconsin basketball game.”

  • Guest

    This game is on CBS, last night’s ESPN thus why the Watch ESPN app worked. Thanks anyway


    Wouldn’t be surprised if he has heard a thing or two, ” off the record ” that confirmed some things that he had just been thinking up to that point and served as inspiration for that article.


    It isn’t on the Armed Forces Network ? I’m assuming that since he’s asking that it isn’t. A person would think that college bball, in this country, at this time of year, would, for sure, be provided for those, that provide us, with the ultimate team defense. I’m calling and emailing my senator right now and telling him that that needs to be corrected immediately. njk ( NOT just kidding )

  • iuoiu

    I’ve secretly wished Wisky would get matched up against VCU and their havoc defense in the NCAAs. I’d love to see what that would do to them.

  • AJ_IU_ColtsFan

    It was this:

    In his pregame speech, assistant coach Bacari Alexander held up a rock and said it symbolized Michigan’s unyielding strength. Then he pulled out an egg, marked with the IU logo. “Our opponent, they think they’re solid, too,” Alexander said. “But I see them more like an egg — hard on the exterior, but once you break through, what do you get?”

    “Yolk!” the players replied.

    Bring it home

    Michigan goes on the road and loses to Indiana but shines back in Ann Arbor. Gallery

    “So what happens when the rock and the egg meet? It looks like this, guys!” And with that, Alexander cracked the egg and Michigan stormed out of the locker room.

    As we all remember, IU won that game 81-73.

  • AJ_IU_ColtsFan

    “The yokes on them…” (*Groans*) OMG, where’d you hatch *that*?? 😉

    Sorry, sorry… I’m just hard boiled about puns. *rimshot*

    I’ll make up for it. One day, we’ll meet and I’ll shell out for a drink. *rimshot*

    I’ll warn you all, though, I don’t want anyone poaching these jokes. *rimshot*

    Oh, so you all wanna groan at me. Guess I just have to work eggstra hard at this. *rimshot*

    Whaddaya mean that joke was eggceptionally bad? *rimshot*

  • AJ_IU_ColtsFan

    Whoops, I posted an answer, but it seems that the forum antispamming stuff caught it. Sorry; it was just an ESPN link.

    In short, a Michigan assistant compared the Michigan program to a rock (strong all the way through) and IU’s team to an egg (cracks under pressure). It was a rah-rah speech to get them going, but the ended up losing that game (it was the first meeting in Bloomington).

    I was making the joke because the spiel was published in an ESPN column, therefore was reported nationally.

  • cdog

    I hope my friend from WI isn’t correct. He says they own IU. I wish I had a return response other than “for now”. Go IU.

  • cdog

    I hope my friend from WI isn’t correct. He says they own IU. I wish I had a return response other than “for now”. Go IU.

  • Aceman_Mujezinovic_07

    What the heck is IU and Crean’s problem?!?!

    I freaking hate Wisconsin (almost as much as I hate pUKe) and then we come into this game and do the same old stupid crap we always do against Wisconsin!

    CHANGE THE FREAKING GAMEPLAN!!! STOP burying it down to Zeller over and over against the best big man defender in the country! Stop passing up open shots to try and pump it inside against WI! That’s what they do! They pack it in and give us good shots and we refuse to take them in rhythm.

    We better hope we don’t play WI in the NCAA’s because Crean can’t beat them! I’m reacting on emotion but I freaking hate WI and we just can’t beat them!

    Pull your heads out of your butts and play your freaking game against them. NOBODY, and I stress NOBODY, should ever force their style so easily on one of the best teams in the country!

  • InTheMtns

    You are too funny! I almost went with a hard boiled one and an eggxactly one myself but just thought it would be tooooo much. Good job, Fans.

  • IUeconAlum

    If IU has to play WI in the tourney it’s a loss. We have better talent. That stats are all in our favor. We lost to them at home. We lost to them in Chicago. It has to be coaching right?

  • Dick_Pepperfield

    Why would they do that? They would be #1 in the south and go to Rupp

  • b_side

    Talking about the Sweet Sixteen/Elite Eight as opposed to the first two rounds. The South region is in Cowboys Stadium – not nearly as advantageous as Indianapolis.

  • Jeffrey

    The media and the so called “experts” have us not doing so well. I like these experts having us as the “underdogs”. I think Indiana can win it outright. They’re good on the road – have the best Big Ten record on the road in an unbelievable league. There isn’t anyone in that bracket which I actually prefer over the Midwest one – that remotely scares me. I have faith in our Hoosiers. I think they’ll rise to the occasion. Just my opinion. GO HOOSIERS!