The Minute After: Duke

  • 11/30/2017 12:39 am in

Thoughts on a 91-81 loss to the Blue Devils:

They turned the entrance of Simon Skjodt Assembly Hall into a big movie screen tonight. Inside the Hoosiers and Blue Devils battled in an epic blockbuster, trading baskets and playing at a high level in one hell of an entertaining contest.

The audience had their popcorn ready, their cheers and boos and shouts and taunts as loud as ever raining down on Branch McCracken Court.

The No. 1 team in the nation came to Bloomington tonight and the Hoosiers did what they’ve done in recent history at home against highly-ranked opponents: Brought high effort, intensity and energy, fed off the crowd and put themselves in position to win in the closing minutes of the contest.

But Duke had a little more gas left in the tank during winning time. And so with it, despite multiple leads by the Hoosiers in the second half, went the shot at the upset.

Indiana got a number of strong individual performances in this one. Duke freshmen twin towers Marvin Bagley III and Wendell Carter got a lot of hype going into the game and rightfully so. Bagley was an absolute force at times this evening (23 points, 10 rebounds) as was Carter (18 points, 12 rebounds). They were a lot for the Hoosiers to handle. But after emerging from a foul-trouble-ridden first half, De’Ron Davis (16 points, five rebounds) showed for a stretch in the second half he can tussle with the big boys, too. When the Hoosiers went to Davis, he put in some serious work on the block for buckets against whomever Duke threw at him. Some late missed free throws down the stretch from Davis hurt Indiana’s ability to keep it a little closer, but it was still a strong performance from the sophomore.

Robert Johnson brought it on both ends tonight. He was tasked with guarding Grayson Allen for the majority of the contest. And while Allen did drop in 21 points, it did not come easy, as Johnson really made him work for most of what he got. Johnson also looked poised and aggressive for most of the game on offense, finding his way to the basket for scores on a number of occasions en route to a team-high 17 points. Juwan Morgan continues to stuff the stat sheet (14 points, six rebounds, two blocks, two steals). Collin Hartman’s minutes went up as he continues to work back into game shape following his groin injury. He delivered 11 points, three rebounds and an assist in 16 minutes of action.

Offensively, the Hoosiers did a great job of attacking the basket and moving Duke’s players around against the Blue Devils’ man-to-man defense. Duke’s defense isn’t super elite as it sits just inside KenPom’s Top 50, but Indiana’s 1.18 points per possession despite just a 5-of-21 mark from 3-point range and 16-of-26 mark from the line was still solid. And the turnovers continue to be a huge improvement over a season ago. Indiana’s now turned the ball over 10 or fewer times in its last three games. According to an IU spokesperson after the game, its the first time since at least the 1996-1997 season that’s happened.

It’s not a win. And it’s a little tough to swallow the closing run the Blue Devils went on after Indiana looked to have a serious shot to pull this one out for a large chunk of the second half.

Still, from the shaky start of things a few weeks ago to giving Duke a serious run for its money tonight? Indiana fans should be happy with the progress as Big Ten season arrives early on Saturday.

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  • Outoftheloop

    You are totally wrong!

  • Alex Bantz

    YOu have got to be kidding me. Ghost fouls left and right on the Hoosiers. Carter got away with at least 2 over the backs and chucked davis around with no calls.

  • Ivan Renko

    i agree, meant to include him but accidentally didn’t

  • sd chuck

    Nobody on that bench is having a better time than Race! Always smiling, rooting for teammates. He should be a beast next year!

  • sd chuck

    Just guessing but I bet if I put a quarter in the jukebox, you’d hear a different song than the rest of us!

  • Hardwood83

    Johnson looked good because he was playing against that d-bag Allen all night. compared to him anybody looks good. Allen is a dirty, whiney, arrogant pr1ck, just like his coach.

  • randy

    Yes, he literally tossed Davis to the ground once to get a rebound and then went over Davis’ back another time and the officials called it on Davis. Carter also used the chicken wing every time inside. So, this Duke fan is out of his mind.

  • HoosierOpt18

    It is what you think. I was in the student section and couldn’t bring myself to say it even though I can’t stand Grayson Allen. Not a great look for us.

  • Adam Alva

    I hope thats what hes thinking too, i fear that with the 2 studs signing at Vanderbilt they may have the slight edge

  • Sandra Wilson

    Assuming we think the same player(s) is/are our best (pick one or two), where would you insert him/them into their lineup? So you’re saying Davis is getting winded and Miller knows it, but does nothing about it? And it does have something to do with Duke. When you are guarding some of the best, or the best, big men in basketball, it takes a toll on your stamina. It’s not the same as guarding the post from Indiana State. You could also say the same thing on our offensive end. There is also an emotional draining that happens when you’re playing a game like this. Regardless, conditioning had NOTHING to do with the outcome of this game. Team depth maybe, but not conditioning.

  • You shouldn’t get too much grief. Anybody who watched that game knows it was a hard-fought contest.

  • Sherronhasaheadache

    you need to re watch the game dude. Carter should have fouled out way before he actually did.

  • Sherronhasaheadache

    really proud of this team, took care of the ball, played really hard on D. a few more free throws and 3s drop IU wins it.

  • TomJameson

    I like that sentiment, but I’ll have to see some consistency in that area first. Don’t get me wrong, I expect to see it, just not going to count on the change from this one game. The Michigan game will be telling.

  • Michael Bebout

    cujo in the doghouse ? he did not play ?

  • TomJameson

    First of all, I don’t agree that IU conditioning is lacking. But Duke can put 2 lineups on the floor, with NBA prospects in both of them. They are a much deeper team. Most of the game they had 3 players on the floor that were much taller than anybody on IUs team. I would never expect Duke to get tired with the quality depth they have.

  • TomJameson

    I think there were very few forced shots. They were just taken out of their rhythm in the last 5-6 minutes by Duke ramping up their defense, and the officials calling so many fouls against IU.

  • RonMlarkey

    It is absolutely fair to say that our best player would probably be the 8th or 9th man for Duke.

  • Thanks!

  • Ole Man

    Well, we know that you’re a dookie troll who never attended the school.
    Bye whiny baby.

  • VAHoosier

    Yeah, Duke committed a lot of fouls on rebounds that went uncalled… May be one reason they are such a great rebounding team. And G. Allen used his off-hand to separate several times–easily could/should have been called for several offensive fouls.

  • Ole Man

    Hey; no need for that stuff.
    You make IU look bad.

  • Ole Man

    Attacking someone else’s character lowers you to the level of that person’s character.
    Think about it Clyde.

  • Tommy Morrsion

    I’m slightly surprised by the negative reaction to the game on this thread… I for one was NOT expecting this team to take Duke to the wire. I can pick apart individual performances, but what I saw last night was extremely encouraging for the rest of the year and Archie’s tenure. All of this after being demolished by ISU.

    As I said in a earlier post, we will have a better gauge on this team after our four game stretch on neutral and away court venues. But for now, I am proud of serious improvement I’m seeing. Isn’t that enough for November?

  • cbags05

    I agree. But we just don’t need that. Plus, he thrives with that type of harrassment. He gladly shoulders the burden of being hated for his team. It didn’t help us.

  • Tyler D

    That’s my best 5 as well. I think Archie will continue to be able to get smart, consistent effort out of these guys. Hard to blowout, let alone beat a team that plays hard and smart for 40 minutes.

  • Tommy Morrsion

    This is a ridiculous comment

  • RonMlarkey

    just sucks

  • IU_Alum_Gustin

    Coach can use the video of last night’s game to motivate DD and instill some confidence in him. IMO, DD took a significant step forward in his development and it was fun watching it.

  • Tyler D

    Not only was Collin straight up, Carter could have been whistled for the offensive foul hooking Collin on that one.

  • He is very clearly a pos who is good at basketball.

  • Chappy Dan

    how better?