Izzo evaluates IU following 73-56 MSU win

  • 01/04/2014 9:01 pm in

When Michigan State played in Assembly Hall last season, the Spartans couldn’t overcome Indiana’s playmaking and experience en route to a 75-70 loss.

One year later, certainly under changed circumstances, now No. 5 Michigan State (13-1, 2-0) came into Assembly Hall on Saturday afternoon and left with a 16-point victory, a 73-56 drubbing of the Hoosiers (10-5, 0-2) on their own home court.

After the game, Spartans head coach Tom Izzo shared his thoughts on where Indiana is at, at the moment, and why the Hoosiers have potentially lacked success against the elite teams of the country thus far.

“This is where (senior Will) Sheehey and (sophomore) Yogi (Ferrell) have got to be men,” Izzo said. “They’ve got to stand up. Tom (Crean) has been through it. He’s rebuilt programs. He’s done it. He know’s what it’s like. He’ll be fine.

“But with those young freshmen, that’s where your upperclassmen really have to stand up and explain how it is and understand how it is.”

In the early goings of the 2013-2014 season, Ferrell has upped his individual performance, but the Hoosiers overall have struggled with turnovers and playing in the big moments of games. Against Indiana on Saturday, Izzo had his players switch on defense often, guarded Ferrell with three or four different guys and packed his defense in. He would live with freshman forward Noah Vonleh shooting 3-pointers.

Do what the game plan is and make adjustments, accordingly, Izzo said.

After a late first half run put the Spartans up, 33-24, heading into halftime, Michigan State dominated the second half even more, holding Ferrell and Vonleh to a combined three shots. Ferrell took all three. At one point, the Spartans actually had a 19-point lead.

“I think Yogi’s having a hell of a year,” Izzo said. “We did a decent job on Yogi, ’cause he’s been dynamite. And Vonleh is going to learn a little bit that conference play is a little bit different than non-conference play, too.”

As many struggles as the Hoosiers had, though, Izzo thinks many of their issues, especially with such a young team that featured three freshmen (Vonleh, Troy Williams and Stanford Robinson) playing at least 25 minutes on Saturday, can get resolved. He thinks Indiana still has the potential to improve this season. In fact, Izzo expects it.

“You know, you’ve got two key people in there in Williams and Vonleh that they’ll need a little adjustment, but I think by the end of the year, this is going to be a very good basketball team,” he said. “I really do. Especially if Yogi keeps playing like he is.”

Hoosiers struggle in second half

For a defense that allowed opponents to only shoot a 42.6 effective field goal percentage coming into Saturday’s game, Indiana particularly struggled in the second half against Michigan State on Saturday.

Up nine points heading into the second half, the Spartans pulled away after shooting a 67.3 eFG% in the final 20 minutes, led by senior Keith Appling’s 6-for-9 mark from the field and nine points off Hoosier turnovers.

“They had too many open looks off their break,” Sheehey said. “We did a good job stopping the initial break, but their secondary break, we didn’t challenge enough shots.”

And for as much as Indiana’s defense struggled in the second half, the Hoosiers’ offense struggled, too. The offense shot only 43.5 percent from the field (38.9 percent on 2-point attempts) and hit only three 3-pointers.

And for a team that prides itself on getting points in the paint, Indiana had only 10 in Saturday’s final 20 minutes. And Vonleh, the Hoosiers’ 6-foot-10 facilitator, was held to zero points and two rebounds in the half.

“They do a great job with help-side defense, I feel like,” Ferrell said. “They especially packed the lane a lot.”

“(Vonleh)’s got a find a way to get more touches, easier touches,” Sheehey added. “He’s got to work harder to get open, and we’ve got to work harder to get him open.”

Filed to:

  • Coach Tom Izzo is a class act!
    i hope our Hoosiers don’t start “beating themselves up. This isn’t the time for that. Believe in yourself, we do.

  • myrddin

    ““(Vonleh)’s got a find a way to get more touches, easier touches,” Sheehey added. “He’s got to work harder to get open, and we’ve got to work harder to get him open.””

    He gets easier touches when IU starts shooting better on the perimeter.

    What, it’s not some ancient buried secret.

  • John Temple

    Except for Yogi, this IU team has no shooters. Now with Fischer gone, they have no one behind Vonleh that can produce quality minutes. Perrea was invisible again and Hollowell has descended into some basketball black hole. Why he is getting so many minutes is a complete mystery. Davis & Robinson both need more time and it should come from Hollowell. Williams is still flashing moments of athleticism but too often plays out of control. Free throw shooting was atrocious tonight. This would have been a much closer game if the Hoosiers could hit the front end of one & ones. And finally, please explain why Johnny Marlin is playing instead of Evan Gordon. Marlin doesn’t have Evan’s quickness, decision making or shooting skills. More and more, I question whether TC can get this team to the next level.

  • Victorbear

    We don’t have upperclassmen they got Creaned-

  • Gregory Spera

    The Hoosiers shot 39.6% for the game. They just struggle so mightily to put the ball through the hoop. Even on the break. It’s hard to win and hard to watch.

  • Jim

    It’s so funny reading our fans reactions this year. Last year he could coach, this year he can’t. Two years he could coach, three years ago he couldn’t.

  • Btown88

    How about Darius Latham? 3-5 minutes a half would give Noah a break and take some of the pressure off Hanner. He’d be a load and has skills.

  • Darrell Allen

    School in session! Seniors vs. freshmen! Harris is a great all-around player with an experienced and talented supporting cast! IU’s future looks bright, but today was definitely a learning experience by an elite team … key word “team”! If IU had Zeller & Olidipo back with this year’s team, they would look more like MSU’s team and the matchup would be very even! Without those upper classmen to match up with Payne & Harris, IU was at an obvious disadvantage! Disappointing result, but great game to watch. Go Hoosiers!

  • Kyl470

    What Tom Izzo meant to say was, “If I was coaching IU they would win 20+ games this year easy and finish in the top 3 in the Big 10.”

  • Gregory J. Haggard

    You have to credit the man, he is spot on.
    He had his team prepared to do exactly what was needed.
    A good game plan well executed, and good personnel to go with it told on the Hoosiers.
    I think, even though we have lost the last 2 games, there has been improvement.
    I saw more emotion out there, which I think shows they have a will to win.
    At least we now have a better handle on where we stand and where we need to improve.

  • Kelin Blab

    Vonleh is open plenty of times, but I have seen IU’s player just not throw the ball down to him. Would also like to see him handle it more on the perimeter.

  • HannerTime Hoosier

    Not true. I critiqued CTC in-game coaching last year & was blasted. Cody & Noah are not optimized in CTC offense, both have an outside game.

  • ScoopGeoff

    Yeah, I’ve been a Crean supporter, but I think you’re way off. He has always had his critics, especially when it comes to in-game coaching.

  • SCHoosier

    Of course they packed the lane..so will everybody else playing the Hoosiers. Take away NV..and limit Yogi’s drives..and you likely win the game because IU doesn’t have shooters to offset that defense. Our bench (TW-JH-DD-HMO and EG) was 3 for 17 yesterday. The defense allowed MSU to shoot 47% for the game. Let’s forget the TO’s and get back to trying to shut some people down. TOs and bad outside shooting is something the Hoosiers will have to live with this year ..unfortunately. Good D might turn a few games our way.

  • Nicholas Allen Cotner

    That he is!

  • SCHoosier

    When defenses make stopping entry passes their top priority..those passes become very tough to execute. Of course some screens might help..but we don’t seem to have these in the offense. Without a back up presence in the post…tough to allow Noah to roam outside..to help get him the ball.

  • Brklynhoosier

    Darius Latham is 6’4″.

  • Scooter

    Hilarious analysis, Vonleh has to find ways to get open. CTC said this a few days ago and now Sheehey. That mindset is a huge problem. They are blaming an 18 year old freshman for his limited shots and not getting the ball in the paint. It’s like saying Noah isnt good enough or deserves the ball in his hands. Ironically Hollowell averages more minutes than Vonleh and he is awful this season. CTC would rather funnel the offense through Hollowell more than or equal to Vonleh.

    1. Vonleh’s open frequently yet he doesnt touch the ball
    2. The kid is our best big and he only gets 5 shots a game over the last 10 games
    3. Vonleh is a scorer and hybrid PF who can play the floor, coach needs to get him off the blocks
    4. I counted at least 12 sets in the first half where the guard dribbled 20 seconds and Noah stood on the low or high post. This is the poor CTC offense that he calls and makes the players run.

    Earth to Tom Crean, learn how to use vonleh. He is sctually better with the ball than Zeller. And by the way Crean, Noah made 2 3’s on the road at Illinois. Get him some shots where a 6’10 guy isnt pounding him in the low post. Seriously Crean, find a way for Vonleh to move freely without the ball instead of standing still and counting the number of dribbles Yogi makes on each possession.

  • Scooter

    I was blasted as well. Seems like those who blasted us are fewer and fewer each game.

  • Scooter

    Crean has him standing around most of the time as well.

  • Blake Thompson

    17 point victory Alex.

  • Dagwoodsdave

    How can you recruit a bunch of players who can’t shoot?

  • Dagwoodsdave

    Unfortunately, it is not going to happen. There is nothing in the offensive system that looks to get players the ball. It is basically a one-on-one, drive to the hoop system. The four other players stand around and watch.

  • Andrew

    And 300 pounds.

  • Andrew

    Jordan, you mean.

  • Blake Thompson

    Ah, you got me. I’m never correcting someone again.

  • Jim

    Yes, he has had his critics, just like Bobby, Dean Smith, Phil Jackson, and every other coach ever to coach. My point is that it is always amazing to me how after a loss they come out of the woodwork pounding their chests to say “look at me, look was right about this coach”. Yet when IU is winning, you are quiet.

  • Jim

    What would he have said last year, that if he was the IU coach he would have won the Big Ten title and swept MSU? Since Crean did that as well, it is a bit ironic.

  • HoosierPat

    And hasn’t played organized basketball in a year.

  • Michael Crawley

    When Vonleh is open, which seems to be a lot, the lane is closed and we cannot make the entry pass (turnovers). There is no respect for our outside shooting so they packed in the lane. I’m not CTC so I do not know what the answer outside of making some 3’s. Troy Williams could get to the basket at will if we could open up the lane and Vonleh would have double doubles nearly every game. We have stud athletes who work in the paint or drive to the basketball we need the 3rd part of the game as well. IMHO… I still love watching the games

  • JJ887512

    It’s funny when a coach has talent he can coach and when he doesn’t all of a sudden he can’t coach!!! This team has some good young athletes who aren’t the best basketball players. Coaches need to develop these guys which I totally agree with but bad players = bad coaches!

  • HoosierPat

    These aren’t bad players. These are undisciplined players. The lack of discipline is a reflection of the coaching.

  • Oldfan

    I remember 3 years ago how bad our team was and Oladipo wasn’t even good enough to start. He took time to develop. Well these guys are going to need time to develop too. Troy, Noah, Devin, and Stanford are all going to be dramatically better in a year from now. With Crean’s ability to develop players, you just watch.

  • Eric Glen Lindenschmidt

    I believe he would have said that he would have kicked Syracuse’ a**, and went on to win a national championship, with that team!!

  • Gregory Spera

    Sadly, that’s the same thing I thought about Hollowell, Perea, and Jurkin last year.

  • Linda Knittle

    Izzo is a fabulous coach! he is one of the best!!!

  • Gregory Spera

    Yes he is. Let’s hope Crean learned something when he was up there.

  • BMusic

    No, it’s valid. Watch Payne work to get open on the low block, and then watch Noah. BIG difference.

    I’m not saying the fault is all his, but his intensity level is about 1/3 of Payne’s, and it’s a problem.

  • G-Rob

    I think Perea will be good next year and maybe a beast his senior year. Peter Jurkins body wont hold up for him to ever be a everday player. At one time I thought Hollowell was going to be really good, but now I have lost faith. He just doesnt seem to play with any heart or effort. Besides Yogi, the “Movement” has moved much.

  • TedHightowerSucks

    Noah not taking a single shot in the 2nd is unacceptable. I don’t care if you have to take 5 TOs to set up a post play, you do it to drive the point home that we must feed the post, especially during a blowout. Get that young man the ball – no excuses

  • Scooter

    You are correct. Remember when the fans used to rip VJIII for dribbling out top a lot? That is the same offense we have run 4 years later, no changes. No matter who is the PG, we have to watch the massive dribbling and high ball screen.

    Coach K, Izzo, Bo Ryan, Matta, Sean Miller , Brad Stevens, Self, and all the other top tier coaches adapt their offense to their players. Their offenses will morph season to season. At IU and Crean it is just more of the same.

    And whoever claims we run the dribble drive is false. The dribble drive penetrates from the wings and required movement and sliding into open spaces on the floor.

  • Scooter

    Victor Oladipo has tremendous drive like Dwayne Wade. CTC didnt develop these guys, their internal motor and make-up drove their improvement.

  • Andrew

    Nor has he played in the B1G. Keep going.

  • SCHoosier

    Well heck..its the dribble drive not the dribble pass):

  • HoosierPat

    I was going to say he hasn’t even played against our weak non conference level of competition… But he’s probably played better competition at the HPER.

  • Shawn Congo

    I don’t buy Jurkins health problem. That doesn’t come from playing .3 min against a low competition non-conference schedule. He has given up on Jurkin.

  • Alford Bailey

    Well said

  • 3AM Burrito

    Perea I think will continue to get better, he was obviously way overhyped as a recruit based only on his athleticisim. Hollowell I am concerned with, these BIG opening games he has been absolutely horrible, making pretty much same mistakes over and over.

  • 3AM Burrito

    Actually with Crean, if he wins its cause he has great players and if he loses its cause he can’t coach.

  • Gregory Spera

    I agree 100%! Wait… are you being sarcastic?