The Minute After: Wisconsin

  • 01/26/2016 10:56 pm in

Thoughts on an 82-79 overtime loss to the Badgers:

Yogi Ferrell did all he could.

With the Hoosiers struggling on offense, their senior leader was an absolute stud — especially down the stretch. He nailed a 3-pointer to give Indiana a two-point lead with 1:13 to go. After Nigel Hayes made two at the line to tie the contest, Ferrell back cut on Ethan Happ off the right wing. Max Bielfeldt made the pass out of the right corner and Ferrell hit a lay-up to put Indiana back up two with 23 seconds left.

It was a miraculous play and maybe, just maybe had won Indiana the ball game.

But Hayes — who went to the line an insane 22 times — was fouled by Indiana yet again with nine seconds to go. He hit both. Tie game.

With nine seconds remaining and a chance for the game winner, Ferrell entered Indiana’s final possession of regulation a perfect 6-of-6 from the floor in the second half. So how could you not go to him? But he didn’t get a great look. It was a weird angle from the left side as he tried to duck around Hayes instead. It didn’t drop.

The Hoosiers just didn’t have enough in OT. And so it was their 14th straight loss at the Kohl Center in a competitive, back and forth, wild, exciting Big Ten content.

A lot of weird stats in this one. As Alex wrote, it’s pretty tough to win on the road when the opponent sports a free throw rate of 77.1. Hayes got 17 of his 31 points (one off his career-high of 32) at the charity stripe. Wisconsin made more (28-of-37) than IU attempted (18).

“The 19 free throw differential certainly was a head-scratcher,” Tom Crean said after the game.

And you put yourself in a deeper hole when you turn the ball over on 25.3 percent of your possessions — especially on the road — as the Hoosiers did tonight. Bad Troy had three. Thomas Bryant had five. Indiana started the second half with four straight miscues.

But the crazy thing was, Indiana actually won the points off turnovers battle by scoring 21 to Wisconsin’s 19. Because Wisconsin, with a turnover percentage of 21.3, didn’t do great with the ball, either. And with the Hoosiers rebounding 41.9 percent of their misses, they scored six more second-chance points than Wisconsin (14 to 8). And any time Wisconsin got up by more than a few, Indiana came right back at them.

The Badgers went up eight points with 1:10 left in the first half. Indiana answered with seven straight — including five of Ferrell’s 30 points — to go into halftime down one. And down six with just 3:59 to play, the Hoosiers ripped off five straight to get back within one in just 50 seconds of game clock. They never died. They didn’t wilt. They didn’t run from the moment. Indiana just continued to stick right with it.

But in the end, the free throws from Hayes and the domination from Ethan Happ coupled with Indiana’s offensive problems were just enough. While Green Room Guy Thomas Bryant got the broadcast spotlight, had a few rim-rattling dunks and posted a 16 and 7, Happ got the better of him. Bryant has been automatic in the post when he gets the ball in the paint, but Happ was that and more tonight against Bryant. He scored time and again on him and ended the contest with 25 points.

And this may have been the game Indiana finally felt the effect of James Blackmon Jr. out of the lineup. Outside of Ferrell and Bryant, Indiana didn’t have much in the way of offense. Williams provided a spark for a bit in the second half, but finished just 4-of-14. Nick Zeisloft missed all three of his 3-point attempts and a putback late in OT that would have had Indiana down just one with 10 seconds to play. Indiana was just 2-of-10 from distance outside of Ferrell. For as brilliant as he was, the Hoosiers had to rely too much on him and lacked the balance and array of contributors they’ve gotten at other times this year.

This game also ended Indiana’s streak of holding seven straight conference opponents under a point per possession, as Wisconsin scored 1.09 to Indiana’s 1.05 tonight.

This was not a bad loss or a season killer. Let’s face it: Indiana wasn’t going to win every road game this Big Ten season. There were points the Hoosiers could have bowed out. There are numbers that say they had no business being in this game. But they took Wisconsin (57 on KenPom after the win) all the way to the bitter end in a tough environment.

It felt like a marathon, but it’s just one game. The Hoosiers will be back at it Saturday against Minnesota. And if their Big Ten season so far is to be believed, they should be locked in and ready to go.

(Photo credit: Mary Langenfeld-USA TODAY Sports)

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  • Outoftheloop

    Thomas IS a freshman with lots to learn, but who has great talent, a great motor, and all of the tools needed to be great!

  • Outoftheloop

    But this is year 2! Add in his stats for year 1. However, wouldn’t we all like that salary?

  • Outoftheloop

    They actually could not have called more fouls than they did. Every time a kid drives or shoots is the limit!

  • Outoftheloop

    The only way to test that theory is to try the double team and to see what happens. Then to try something else if it doesn’t work!

  • Outoftheloop

    We didn’t win the first half either!

  • Now wait a minute.. Are you suggesting we didn’t deserve to win that game? I usually agree mostly with what you have to say.. But that is incredulous.. or ridiculous, which ever you prefer. The guys fought their butts off.. And if it hadn’t been for a ‘Hayes Parade’.. to the free throw line.. or even if that shot of yogi’s at the end of regulation or at the end of OT had fallen we would’ve won.. We deserved to win it every bit as much as those jerk badgers did. So really, I do not want to hear that we didn’t deserve to win that game. That is just way too pompous of a ‘take’ on it, for me. I can’t go there.

  • Wow, with the facts and details you provided I completely changed my mind. Really made me look foolish. Yes, he’s a great 3 point shooter, really we should get him more minutes and more shots. How I missed that I guy that averaged 5 points, and shot 26% from 3 last year for a 500 ball club not be the answer?

  • Go back to the Bend that goes South and take your Irish Mother with you.. That was a neutral court.. it certainly wasn’t a case of ‘Homer’ refs.

  • Noah was a lottery pick.. Ain’t no way TB goes lottery.

  • I agree, isn’t that something? How often did Troy kick the ball when he was just starting a drive, into two men that was destined to be taken away by one of them anyway? Man seems like I saw that replay at least four or five times, by Troy.

  • And then you could get on here and say, “Why can’t Crean just stick to a man to man”.. Why does it always have to be so complex our own team can’t even figure out what they’re supposed to be doing?”.. You know it guy, that is what you’d be saying when it opened up someone for two or three quick threes..

  • calbert40

    I certainly thought they played hard. They just played sloppy. If we want to win games on the road, we can’t turn the ball over on more than 1/4 of our possessions. It just can’t happen.

    If we had turned the ball over 14 times instead of 18 (I think), we win the game despite the refs.

    I certainly don’t think their effort was lacking. Just focus, especially those first 5 possessions of the 2H. Tighten those things up, and we walk out of there with a win.

  • You’re right, but we had better success containing nigel

  • Chappy Dan

    Another late play that went the wrong way is when Koenig extended his arm as Yogi went to draw a charge and they called that a block.

  • Chappy Dan

    Did you see where Hayes said “No one on your team can guard me” in the handshake line? Is that why you went 3-13 from the floor at our place Nigel? You should have said, “No one on your team can guard me…AT HOME.”

  • dwdkc

    He’s not the same player. He’s healthy, which he never was at Michigan. You complain about him going one/one, but he’s been extremely effective with his low post game. He’s only taking 3s in good rhythm, and is hitting a high %. He’s been giving us very good minutes. Are you even watching the games???


    Double teaming him would have done just the opposite IMHO. No need to foul if you have two on him, wide stance, arms straight up and make him pass it. The most any one UW player made from behind the arc was 2, by Hill, and one of those was a Sunday prayer that got answered at the end of the shot clock from 3 or 4 feet behind the line and if memory serves me right he was shooting in the 20’s from behind the arc before this game.


    OMG I so wish I could upvote that a bunch more times !


    Double teaming a player in certain spots after he’s shown that we are having trouble containing him isn’t what I would exactly call complex or unusual. I for sure think we should have at least tried it before it came down to crunch time.


    That is why TC simply has to get over this, ” it doesn’t do any good or change anything to argue with the refs “, thing. When we’re getting jobbed, he’s gotta get in their a$$. This game was the perfect place and time to do it. It only takes changing one call in a game like this one to very likely make the difference . Hell, he could have legitimately been on them about UW chicken winging us over and over if nothing else. I don’t believe for a second that it never changes anything. I coached enough, and done it enough to know that it can and does if done the right way at the right time. If it didn’t change things would the likes of Izzo, Coach K, Pitino, Ryan and yes even RMK, (to name just a few successful coaches that do it), would do it like they do, heck no they wouldn’t.


    Pretty much exactly what I went on a rant about in a reply to HoosierKen73 above. Couldn’t agree more !!


    You know for a fact that he said that in the handshake line ?


    I’m not saying that he didn’t say those things, if I had to guess if he did or didn’t, I’d have to guess he did, but just wondering where you heard that he did and said those things. Someone posted above that he told one of the IU players, that no one on your team can guard me, in the handshake line.


    If all of that, plus the,” nobody on your team can guard me ” thing in the handshake line is true, then the kind of hate you described fits the bill imo.


    I agree that NZ is kinda streaky when it comes to his shooting, but that ” bum “, as you referred to him as, is probably the main reason that we left Minnesota with a W and has provided some other pretty timely 3’s for us this season as well. Yes, he missed an open 3 that might have won the game for us last night, but then again there were a lot of other things that just one more of or one less of might have made the difference as well.

  • Hey, I agree. It was the turnovers.. And don’t get me wrong, when I say this.. Yogi had a tremendous game for us… But it’s a darned shame, that last shot at the end of regulation didn’t go in. He makes that shot, we come away with the win.. yes it was contested, and yes, he was bumped, but that was largely after he got it off… He actually got it off cleanly.. But it didn’t go in. Same could be said, for his shot at the end of the OT period. he makes that shot, we escape with the win. I don’t know what it is, he hit that one three, a terrific shot that drew us up and gave us the opportunity for the win.. but with the chips on the line and the ball in his hands, he’s got to make that shot, if we’re going to win the really tight games. .

  • I agree with you, but he doesn’t need to get ”T’d” up, to get in their a$$ as you put it. But I agree, I think sometimes the reason we never get the benefit of the doubt on any calls is because he just doesn’t go after them hard enough.. that said, when MSU play at Kohl, Wisconsin took 19 more free throws than Sparty did, and I doubt that Izzo was just sitting by passively and letting that happen. There’s only so much you’re going to do to turn that around if the refs are in that mode of pleasing the Home’ folks with their calls.. But I’ll agree at least you like to see Coach’try.

  • You’re right. I had forgotten that one. No way was this game called on a ‘fair and balanced’ basis, to coin a Fox TV slogan…

  • Hey I guess I can agree with you , but remember double teaming, by definition leaves another guy open.. So they pop a couple of quick three’s and there is no crunch time.. we’re out of it.

  • CreamandCrimson

    I’m not projecting on where Thomas Bryant would be picked or whether or not he should go…the question “where is Noah today?” was asked, so I answered. There are a lot of players that I don’t think are near good enough for the NBA that make the jump. I have no clue how so many on this board (not you specifically) are so sure about what Bryant (or any other underclassman) should do or how they know what the best decision is for each player but I don’t have that skill.

  • CreamandCrimson

    “Just wondering where you heard that he did and said those things”:
    -I saw the smirk and stare down during the broadcast.
    -I read and saw pictures on the Hoosier Scoop (Herald Times) website as reported and photographed by Chris Howell. I don’t know what words were said in the handshake line (which is why I didn’t quote him on anything said in the line or indicate that he instigated the talking).
    -There is video (there’s a link on Mike Miller’s Twitter account) of Nigel Hayes saying “Madison Spike Lee” (Miller believes it was directed at Lyonel Anderson) during his press conference.

    I probably shouldn’t have even brought this up…Hayes didn’t hurt anybody and I wouldn’t have even thought twice about it if Yogi’s shot had beaten them at the buzzer. I still respect Hayes as a player but I’d be lying if I said his actions didn’t shift my perception of him a bit.

  • vicbert caladipo

    There’s one thing to be excited and confident, but another being an arrogant buttwipe. He should keep his comments to himself and his team. It’s not like they are going anywhere this year

  • I think right now, from most projections I’ve read, he’d be a 2nd round. Second rounder’s are not assured of getting into the NBA and most likely wouldn’t.. It’s not like the NFL or MLB.. second rounder would not have guaranteed money.. The only way you get a guaranteed contract is in the lottery.. So, I just think that unless he wants to just play anywhere.. for really not that much money after all of the expenses are taken out.. He is probably best off to stay put.. try to really get good for next year, when he might have a legitimate shot at being a lottery pick.
    If he was even a first rounder, it may be different. But where he is right now, Yes, he’s pretty good, but not really an outstanding rebounder like Noah was… he’s certainly a better scorer, but the big men in the NBA would stop him pretty easily..
    In short, he’s had some pretty good games, with flashes of very good play.. But he’s not NBA material just yet.. JMO.. I just think considering, he has a friend coming in next year and all.. I think ge stays..

  • Chappy Dan

    BTN caught it on camera.

  • Every minute of every game. He can put up some numbers against weak opponents but not against better teams. His line against Wisc, 22 min, 2 points, 1 rebound!!, 2 to’s and 5 fouls. How about against ND, 15 min, 2 points, 2 rebounds. He did score 18 against Rutgers, 16 against Illinois, and 13 against Northwestern so if we could change the B10 into the Big 4 he’d be 1st team B4 star.

  • In watching the replay, we were actually double teaming Hayes when he was supposedly fouled by Collin (Hartman’s 5th), right at the end of the game and those two free throws tied it up. But despite the double team Collin miss played the double team defense and let him get around him on his side, the non-help side.. leading to the foul and subsequent free throws.

  • Neil

    First you are wrong. Indiana had only 23 FT attempts in that game not 28. Also ND did not outrebound Indiana. ND did not hit more 3 pointers. ND shot 50% from the FT line compared to Indiana shooting alomost 90% from the FT line versus Wisconsin. With that said I’d say ND still probably should have won that game but also remember Yogi hit a 3 pointer with 3 mins. left to tie the game and that changed everything. Indiana did not get foul shots to tie the game like Wisconsin. Also, Colson missed critical FTs when the game was tied at 73 where Hartman made FTs to put Indiana up by two after Colson missed his. Once ND missed and Hartman made they fouled several times on purpose to extend the game with less than one min. left. These are two different games. The refs did not hand the game to Indiana and in fact one could argue they gave ND two FTs to go up by two with 1 min. remaining. Wisconsin was behind and tied it up then later took the lead with FTs only. Indiana only fouled once to exten the game. Also ND only had one player foul out while Indiana had 3 versus Wisconsin and WAY more total fouls were called as compared to the ND game.


    Wow, an Izzo coached team having that kind of discrepancy from the free throw line REALLY says something about how the zebras call it at the House of Horrors.



  • That’s right.. I mean she is a huge MSU fan.. but I don’t think she’d ba nay more myopic or slanted on her viewpoint than I But seriously, she said it was like the most ticky-tack fouls, hardly even touching the guy were being called against MSU.. and at the other end of the floor the Badgers were allowed to shove the MSU players around and even drive elbows into their chest on rebound positioning, at will. She also mentioned them getting away with ‘hooking’ to get around the defender, which wasn’t being called against the Badgers.. Sounded very much like our game up there.