2014-2015 Player Profile: Nick Zeisloft

  • 10/23/2014 8:40 am in

With the start of college basketball season on the horizon, we’re taking a long look at the conference at large as well as Indiana’s roster this month. Today, we continue our look at Indiana’s roster with Nick Zeisloft.

When word broke in early July that Indiana was looking into adding Illinois State transfer Nick Zeisloft, the news was met with some skepticism.

With scholarships at a premium and a solid contingency of guards already on the roster, what was piquing the staff’s interest in a 35.9 percent 3-point shooter with two years of eligibility remaining?

Tom Crean addressed that question shortly after it was announced that Zeisloft would be coming to Indiana with immediate eligibility.

“The addition of Nick allows us to spread and space the floor even more and play with more pace,” Crean said. “More importantly, we are adding a young man that has been raised well and has been well coached throughout his career. He brings a physical and mental toughness that has allowed him to play at a strong level and brings leadership and maturity to our program.”

Our first glimpse at Zeisloft came in August in Montreal where he averaged 8.8 points and hit 11 of his 20 attempts from behind the 3-point arc in 21.4 minutes per game. Zeisloft looked confident in his shot and it seemed as if he’d already earned the respect of his teammates despite being with the program for less than a month.

The start of practice and last week’s Big Ten media day in Chicago have only confirmed that Crean believes Zeisloft will be an important part of this team.

In IU’s practice on Monday, Oct. 13, the redshirt junior was right in the thick of things throughout the afternoon offering encouragement to his teammates and acting as one of the team’s vocal leaders. And at Big Ten media day on Thursday, Oct. 16, Zeisloft was one of two Hoosiers to come to the Hyatt O’Hare as a representative of the program.

Statistically speaking, it’s tough to project what’s expected out of Zeisloft. Sports Illustrated and Dan Hanner project that he’ll average just 5.2 points and use 15 percent of the possessions when he’s on the floor, but given his production on the Canada tour, those numbers may be on the low side.

Given the other perimeter pieces on Indiana’s roster, Zeisloft won’t be a primary focus on the scouting report for opponents, so he should be able to find space and open shots. And when you consider that he turned it over on just 9.7 of his possessions last season at Illinois State, he could be a player that Crean turns to in late game situations when the Hoosiers need quality possessions.

Bottom Line: Zeisloft will definitely be a rotation player for the Hoosiers this year and it’s not out of the question that he’ll start his fair share of games. On a team that is going to be lacking in experience, his veteran presence should help the Hoosiers navigate sticky situations, particularly away from Assembly Hall. And his shooting stroke and ability to take care of the ball should make him an upgrade over two of the players he figures to replace in Austin Etherington and Evan Gordon.

Quotable: “We’re very close. We love spending time with each other, and those are the teams that really off the court and on the court, when they connect like that, they really get to that next level. So that’s one of my favorite things right now and there should be plenty more coming around. It’s just the start right now. We’ve got a long process and we’ve got to take care of that process every day.” — Zeisloft after a recent practice.

Previous: James Blackmon Jr., Max Hoetzel, Robert Johnson, Tim PrillerJeremiah April, Emmitt Holt, Troy Williams, Stanford Robinson, Devin Davis, Collin Hartman, Hanner Mosquera-Perea

Filed to:

  • Alford Bailey

    Great guard play wins a lot of games and we do not have a lottery pick to spend 30 seconds per possession trying(but failing) to get the ball to. The conference is WAYYY down with the exception of Wisky. My hope is for a fun season where we shoot the ball pretty well, have good chemistry, improve defensively and win a lot of games. If not and we struggle again as most have predicted my hope is Glass will make the decision make a move, take his time and hire the right guy and unite Hoosier Nation once again moving forward towards a return to consistent greatness.

  • Bradford

    Our 95% confidence intervals for three point shooting against Canadian opponents are: Zeisloft 32-76%, Blackmon Jr. 18-56% and Priller 23-88%, lol.

  • SCHoosier

    I think he was saying to the freshman…”this is a guy I would like u to emulate as a leader, worker and student athlete.” NC wishes they had a couple of those right now): As for VJ3 TC didn’t HAVE anybody else!!!!!???

  • ForeverIU

    I hope you don’t mind me posting this from your twitter, Alex.

    The totals on that list add up to 69.6 ppg.

    No predictions for Devin Davis? I say at least 5 ppg for him, then 5-6 ppg small change from other contributors. In which case our total comes to 80 ppg. If that’s our average, no way we are not top 3 in the B1G!

    “Some #iubb projections via the @SInow Big Ten preview:”

  • CreanFaithful

    John Wooden? One of the biggest cheaters in history with the most stacked teams… sorry, whether he could coach or not, he is not relevant.

  • ForeverIU

    The rebounds on this list add up to 27.3 … I think we get more from Robert and Hanner, maybe 3 more, for a total of 30.3 and another 4 from Devin, for a total of 34. And can’t forget Holt: let’s say 1-2 rebounds for a total of 35-36. Not bad at all, keeping in mind that with better shooting we can afford a few less rebounds on offense. Much of our game will come down to defensive rebounding.

  • CreanFaithful

    You read enough to know that Elston battled constant injury.

  • Michael Crawley

    I see Nick providing a leadership role and see him coming off the bench.

    TW, RJ, JBJ, HMP, DD, EH, YF should all get minutes before Nick but i have no creds only an opinion.

  • CreanFaithful

    He has not been named the “anointed leader,” although you keep saying it. He is however, with Yogi, one of the upperclassmen and most experienced college players. Heaven forbid that CTC try to develop his leadership more heading into the season…

  • CreanFaithful

    Even the sun shines on a dogs arse some days…

  • CreanFaithful

    Common sense – valued commodity, rarely displayed. Well done.

  • The Hound

    I hope, like Dane Fife, he commits a foul on a last second 3 point shot as we beat the #1seed on our way to the championship game.

  • AnonymousDave

    If you’re talking about playing Max, Tim, and Jeremiah then were going 12 deep not ten. Jeremiah is still in a boot right now and I don’t think he’d ready to contribute anyway. He has a long road and if he isn’t 100% ready for the cupcakes it’s going to stay that way.Tim and Max both need to makes gains in the weight room and improve on skills such as footwork and defense before being counted upon.

    We have enough shooting so running them would be more crippling than beneficial. If you plan on making a comeback shooting threes then you’re gonna be in for a long night. Coming back requires inside and outside work, getting to the line, and most importantly locking down defensively and securing every rebound possible. Max and TIm don’t really offer that right now. If we ever get in a situation where we need a three I’m not going to the guy who hasn’t taken a shot since halftime. After conference play starts I don’t really see them getting anything besides clean up minutes if we’re winning big.

    No offense to them, I love what they could potentially offer the team in the future, but relying on them right now would be silly. Being a 6’9 shooter is one thing, being a 6’9 shooter who can come off screens or create his own shot and have a quick release is an entirely different thing.

  • VAHoosier

    I was one of the few (maybe the only one!) who thought Nick was a good signing. We are obviously going to run a 3-guard offense, so I thought it made great sense to get some better depth at the position that will take most of our minutes. Do I think he will set the league on fire? No, but we don’t need him to.

  • fourputtsforsnowman

    Of course they are enough, when in agreement with mine.

  • fourputtsforsnowman

    True, they were exhibition games, but still, IU seemed to play as a team and that is a positive.

  • fourputtsforsnowman

    I really think this team will have JBJ and RJ running the team for extended periods. Yogi may be on the floor, but not playing “general”. I don’t think this team is built around yogi. Its built for JBJ, RJ and TW.

  • IUfanPurduePhD

    Anything below 30 (for each player) in league play would be criminal in my opinion.

  • IUfanPurduePhD

    His first two championships were not stacked teams.

  • Hoosier1158

    Verdell has the greatest assist in the history of IU basketball.

  • b_side

    In 2011-12, our two losses in March were to Wisco in the B1G tourney when a minor role player went off from 3. We also lost to eventual champion UK. That team had energy, putting up 80 in the Sweet 16. We all know a phantom 3rd foul on Cody may have been the difference. In sum, I wouldn’t characterize that team as tiring in March.

    I think the theory mainly comes from 2012-13. It’s warranted then, but unfairly generalized overall.

  • Michael Crawley

    I could not agree more! EH is going to surprise a lot of people this year. Don’t forget Syracuse and many others were recruiting the kid for next year and CTC pulled a coup.

  • Hoosier Taxidermist

    Up vote just for mentioning Sheehey’s name. Loved that guy and his poster dunks and enthusiasm.

  • AnonymousDave

    Firstly I wouldn’t say WAYYY down, but simply down. The spread of good teams might be as wide as it’s ever been. There is no clear team I’m 100% confident will challenge Wisconsin at this point, but there will be by the time conference plays roles around I can almost guarantee it.

    Secondly what evidence do you have that we will have GREAT guard play? Only player who isn’t a question mark at this point is Yogi and he even he is looking at taking a new role again. And this year is filled with great backcourts. Wisky, Nebraska, Ohio State, Michigan, Illinois, Maryland, even Michigan State has good guards with all they lost. So yes I am still failing to understand why someone thinks we can take this big of jump without some pretty good coaching. Yes I’m predicting top 5 and great guard play as well, but it’s going to take a lot of work from both players and staff.

    Thirdly are we really still talking about the chances of firing Crean in October with Hoosier Hysteria just a day away? Relax, if a coaching switch needs to be made it will be when Glass sees fit.

  • metalhead65

    I hope he does exactly what he was brought into do and does it well. but I also hope he like the rest of the team is allowed to do what he does best without having to sacrifice his game to fit the system. how many other times have we read about a kid and what a great scorer he is coming in only to see him score 4 points a game because of his defense if he plays at all. I know defense is part of the game but I want him to be able to take the shot when it’s there I am tired of seeing guys come in and not play because that is not their strong suit, you did not recruit them for that so let them score and they can work on that part, but with no inside game you will need to score as many points as possible so let them shoot!

  • inLinE6

    That was spot on. The truth was, Hartman was heavily recruited when he was ranked Top 25 in his class by ESPN, in his freshman year in high school. He committed early but then his stock kept sinking. His prime time was 5 years ago, IMHO.

  • Outoftheloop

    Last year it would have been #3 on the IU roster!

  • Outoftheloop

    No! Read my post! A 10 man rotation plus “2 spot subs”! Max can and will play in game #1! He is also capable of being a good rebounder now and much better after 1 year of strength and conditioning at IU. Shooting 3’s with defensive stops IS how you come from behind! You missed the information about Tim, his team relied on him for the last second shots, and they won!

  • Outoftheloop

    There are more than 2 years to look at. I still feel IU was not energized in 2011-12 in March. IU was definitely a tried group in 2010-11. IU has looked tired in every B1G Tourney game under Crean. Don’t tell me they “don’t count”. Matta at OH St and Izzo at MI St take them seriously!

  • Outoftheloop

    You are full of hot air! Name one instance of “cheating” by Coach Wooden with some facts and/or documentation. You can’t!

  • Outoftheloop

    It is not “criminal” if you can go 10 deep, limit your best players to 25 minutes +, win in the regular season, and come out smokin’ in March in the NCAA’s!

  • Outoftheloop

    I was talking about the interview just days ago at the B1G Meeting.

  • Outoftheloop

    Excellent point. Crean has a tendency NOT to give the non-McDonalds AA freshmen a solid opportunity to show what they can do on the floor.

  • Outoftheloop

    Probably correct. Much like Austin who just was not a great offensive player as a senior in HS. Good but not great.

  • Outoftheloop

    We all know that some very talented players do not always practice well (Iverson…et. al.). Crean recruited them for a reason. Put them on the floor and give them a chance to play. If they don’t play hard, are selfish, do not follow the Coach’s instructions, etc. then take them out.

  • IUfanPurduePhD

    If we go 10 deep, we’ve already lost the game (or we’re getting minutes for our bench players in a blowout win).

  • Outoftheloop

    That is absurd! There are millions of other possibilities, with maybe a dozen that are as “reasonable/probable” as your two: 1) IU is in the first half of a close game, IU has a tight 8 man rotation (Yogi, James, Troy, Robert, Stan, Hanner, Devin, Nick), IU needs another 3-point shooter to try his luck, put in Max; 2) same scenario, Devin is playing with Hanner and the combination is working, Devin picks up foul #2 with 10 more minutes to go in the first half, put in Emmitt; …the list goes on…

  • TomJameson

    I agree with that on the surface, but my point is that we don’t know what’s going on below the surface. We really just see the tip of the iceburg and guess at the rest. Lol

  • IUJeff

    I like that HG. There should be better than average results with this team though. A lot of nice players.

  • CreanFaithful

    Try Google before responding. It’s widely documented.

  • Outoftheloop

    I did. You are hopelessly lacking in any understanding of what constitutes “evidence” of cheating! Yes, I read the articles by Eamonn Brennan at ESPN, John Gassaway at Basketball Prospectus and Dan Wetzel at Yahoo Sports. They have “documented” gossip not evidence or facts of cheating. Not once in any of those articles can they say “player X drove this car provided by Sam Gilbert or his people.” Or “player Y was given the following jewlery and clothing provided by Sam Gilbert or his people.” They mouth gossip like “pretty much everyone knew about Gilbert’s role”… That is NOT documenting cheating. They also absolve Coach Wooden by saying :(Wooden and his successor coaches) worked to keep their players away from Gilbert.” There were never any legal prosecutions for anything, nor NCAA investigations for anything, just lots of rumors and gossip that could not be proved. As I said, “you can’t”!

  • CreanFaithful

    Alright man. I’m not into this convo. You win. Wooden was clean. LOL