Film Session: Michigan State

  • 02/23/2023 7:59 am in

Editor’s note: Ryan is out on paternity leave. Zion Brown will be writing Film Session in his absence.

After leading by nine points in the first half against Michigan State at the Breslin Center, Indiana surrendered a 22-7 run by the Spartans and never led again.

The game appeared to shift when Jalen Hood-Schifino received his second foul with 6:28 left in the first half. Mike Woodson and the Indiana coaching staff opted to sit their starting point guard for the remainder of the half, and Michigan State capitalized.

Indiana’s offense failed to produce effectively for the rest of the half, and a lack of pace weakened the Hoosiers.

On this play just past the halfway point of the first half, the Spartans shoot an airball. After Malik Reneau grabs the rebound, he kicks it ahead to Hood-Schifino. Hood-Schifino fed Trayce Jackson-Davis in the post, and IU’s big man quickly turned to shoot over his right shoulder to get the and-one.

Indiana’s next possession came after Michigan State made a free throw, but Hood-Schifino still pushed the tempo. He received an early drag screen from Jackson-Davis, who proceeded to slip the screen because of a hard hedge from Jaxon Kohler. After a quick look-off to the corner, Jackson-Davis finished over the help defender to give the Hoosiers their largest lead.

We saw a similar play from Indiana minutes later. But this time, it takes the Hoosiers almost half the shot clock to get into their action. The Spartans set up their defense well; this time, the ball screen turned into a post-up instead of a drive for Jackson-Davis.

The play after Michigan State took the lead, Indiana posted up Jackson-Davis. It took 10 seconds for IU to give it to him on the right block, and while Tamar Bates made a swift cut, Joey Hauser was ready to contest a floater from Bates.

The Hoosiers finished the half with another slow possession when they could’ve tried to go two-for-one. This was another post-up for Jackson-Davis that Kohler smothered at the apex, rewarding the Spartans the ball.

Michigan State continued to drop 3s over Indiana, and the Hoosiers never got enough flow to come back.

Indiana averages 68.3 possessions per 40 minutes this season. But in their last 10 contests, the Hoosiers have just one game with 68 or more possessions. The Big Ten is the second-slowest conference in the country (average of 65.4 possessions per 40 minutes), and Indiana has let that affect its pace in games.

Going forward, this team should strive to play much faster than it has recently. That doesn’t mean it needs transition points, but flowing into sets quicker would enhance the number of easy looks for Indiana.

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