Indiana cruises to exhibition victory over Indianapolis, 90-72

With so many questions looming about the Hoosiers in the weeks leading up to the season’s first live matchup, a new-look Indiana squad proved plenty of things on Saturday night, charging ahead to a 90-72 exhibition victory over Indianapolis.

First, the offense looks much more efficient when dynamic freshman Cody Zeller is getting the ball. The Hoosiers struggled out of the gate to get the ball down low, and Zeller had a slow start himself. But that ended quickly at 7:12 in the first half, as Zeller caught a pass in transition under the basket and put it up quick, despite a strong intentional foul, for his first two points of his Indiana career.

From there, Indiana began to slowly dish the ball successfully to Zeller in the post, as the freshman went up strong to the hoop play after play, finishing with 16 points and a team-leading eight rebounds.

But Zeller wasn’t the only question mark that was answered — at least partially — on Saturday night. Wing Will Sheehey, who had been praised consistently in the past month for his improvement, led Indiana in scoring. Sheehey knocked down 8-of-11 shots — many of which came from mid-range jumpers and tear drop drives — for 18 points.

Zeller’s presence in the post brought plenty of opportunities to the Hoosiers’ perimeter players, as point guard Jordan Hulls didn’t miss a single shot — 3-for-3 from the field, 2-for-2 from the stripe — and Victor Oladipo added nine points and four rebounds.

And on defense — the unit coach Tom Crean said he spent the most time on since practice began — the Hoosiers forced Indianapolis to hit shots from the perimeter. The Greyhounds were successful on several occasions — especially with guard Adrian Moss, who scored 22 — but forcing them to live and die by the 3-pointer allowed Indiana to get plenty of transition buckets.

Crean admitted there’s still a long way to go offensively and defensively for the Hoosiers, but with live game action underway, Indiana showed it might just have a different identity this season than in years past.

Audio: Coach Tom Crean

Audio: Jordan Hulls, Victor Oladipo, Cody Zeller

39 comments

  1. Going to be a long season if we still can’t defend the 3, a problem we had last season. So what if we have Cody down low defending the basket? Good teams will kill us from behind the arc. I guess we still need to work on defense because giving up 72 to a DII school is not real impressive.

  2. Refreshing to see us have a post presence. Still concerned about VJIII and CW’s bad habits of dribble, dribble, shoot along with slow movement on closing out on D. Perimeter D still bad.

  3. I dont think Im as worried about VJ3 after 6 assists and 0 turnovers, I know its earlya dn a d2 school, but its always nice to see us double assists to turnovers!

  4. Its the first exib game of the year, no ones D is going to be clicking at all! If after 2-3 preseason games we are still not defending the three then start worrying, but not after 1 game! ALways something to complaing about isnt there?!

  5. CZ looked good rebounding and causing the other team to have few opportunities under the basket. Hope they steadily improve and make it fun for the fans this year.

  6. Crean seems not to care about this, but Hulls is a liability on perimeter defense, simply due to his lack of size/length. For 2 years, I’ve watched opposing guards take advantage of him. No knock on him, he cannot help his size. But I think his role should be reduced a bit if you want better perimeter defense. Last year when (early) we had Jones, Creek and Rivers on the perimeter, teams had trouble getting those shots off … we had 3 guys who with good size and quickness. Hulls has neither.

  7. CZ started tentative and a bit confused on offense. as the game progressed, he began to settle down and get into a rhythm. first collegiate game ever and he puts up 16 points and 8 rebounds, including a showtime alley-oop +1? i’m happy with it. only problems i saw coming out of CZ on the first exhib of the season is that he had 0 assists, and didn’t set a solid screen the entire game. every time he was setting a pick, he faded or rolled before there was even any contact. also, we definitely need more inside-out with him on the post. oladipo and sheehey were solid. i was also very impressed with remy abell in the limited time he was on the court.

  8. All I’m saying is if you had the worst perimeter D in the B10 all last season, claim it’s been the focus all summer through early practice you should be embarrassed about giving up 47% 3pt to a D2 school. I’m not talking about Crean either, the players have been hyping how much better they are. I want to be optimistic but I didn’t see a drastic improvement this game. Hopefully it shows up in a real game.

  9. Steve Spurrier won all his exhibition games with the Redskins by three touchdowns. He must surely be in the hall of fame. Good God, people.

  10. stlhoos: my experience with preseason games, in any sport, is not to “show off” what they’ve been working on. it’s to try a variety of options and see which works best to prepare for the regular season, and where individual players stand. i mean, we started a 2 forward 3 guard set, and every single player on our team saw time on the court.

  11. If you watched the game, you would feel better about the opponent 3pt percentage. Man of those shots were pretty unbelievable shots from WAY past the 3 pt line, and contested. It wasn’t like they were getting wide open looks.

    As long as you score more points than the bad guys, the good guys will win. We seemed to be in firm control of this game right from the get go. IMHO, that was a successful exhibition game.

  12. John from Beyond: I have to agree. You can’t forget to give credit to UIndy who was hitting shots from the deep perimeter at a pretty impressive rate.

  13. I liked what I saw out of Watford defensively, though he still looked a bit slowed by his Achilles. Watford took Adrian Moss, who led UIndy with 22 points, a couple times tonight and Moss only attempted one shot over Watford. Every other time he gave up the ball. That bodes well as far as Wat’s ability to guard smaller forwards going forward…

  14. You morons do realize how many teams lost their exhibition game, right? You also realize that we don’t game plan for these games. Oh wait, you wouldn’t know that because you don’t anything about basketball. Go back to your Purdue websites.

  15. The only guy that did a decent job stopping penetration was Moore.Listen to Waltman’s play by play— I wish he was the coach or at least an assistant coach.

  16. I could not find a “Box Score” for the game in today’s online reports. I know that the press gets these within minutes of the end of the game. So share, OK?

  17. YouWillNeverKnow
    You’re right.There are some morons who post here.Along with a few old arrogant, narcissistic, egomaniacs who have little regard for the opinion of others.

  18. Yes it is an exhibition game, which means your not going to go all out. Most teams will play down to your competition, the fact Zeller was productive is exciting. It’s going to be an exciting season with IU basketball beginning to turn things around. We shouldn’t expect them to be amazing but realistically we want to see them go .500 and see a lot of growth from Zeller and this team. With a top 5 recruiting class coming in next year, all signs point towards the rejuvenation in IU basketball

  19. JfB,

    Absolutely credit needs to go to UIndy. They were deadly from deep, deep. Who would have planned to defend regularly at that range? Congrats to them for their marksmanship. Congratulations to the C&C for the win.

  20. Ram, have we met? What an outstanding and accurate depiction of me. There is no doubt that most have no idea what they are saying.

  21. Here are some statistical gems:

    We beat UofI in nearly every statistical category. We had more rebounds, more steals, fewer turnovers, more assists, better FG%, better FT%. We only committed 20 fouls to their 32. We scored 90 points with well balanced scoring throughout the lineup.

    Much ado has been made of the opponent’s high 3 pt %, which was 47%, but their 2 pt FG % was a much more respectable 42%. Ours was 54%.

    Cody did pick up 2 quick fouls, but ended the game with only those 2. The guy is smart.

    Two of our biggest problems last year were fouls and turnovers. We kicked butt in those categories yesterday.

    I think it was Elston who said in a recent interview that they were anxious to play someone else, because they could “cheat” on defense in practice, knowing all the plays. Hopefully IU will rapidly improve against real opponents as the season goes on; they certainly have the right attitude.

  22. Now you all see why I have been telling you Cody Zeller is the most important recruit since Steve Alford and Damon Bailey.

  23. I thought IU looked ok.Zeller and Will were the best for IU on the floor.Watford and Jones were just like last year…lost.I do think IU will be better this year…but not a whole lot.At best 15-17 wins and 6th 7th in B10.Watford..Jones..Pritchard have to be role players for IU to win…they are great kid’s…just not very good basketball player’s.Remy Adell will take Jone’s time from him.Ethrington did not look to good…but it was his first time out.Starter’s for IU should be

    PG Jordan Hull’s

    SG Will Shehee

    C Cody Zeller

    F Victor Olidipo

    F Derreck Elston

    Watford Jones and Pritchard should play but for only 6-7 minutes at a time.They play no defense at all and all Watford want’s to do is shoot 3’s.All Jone’s want’s to do is dribble…all Pritchard want’s to do is foul.If Zeller can become the leader of this team by the start of the B10 season…IU will have a chance for the NIT.Zeller was the best player on this team last year when he was in high school…take charge..take over.

  24. didnt see the game. it was supposed to be on btn? giving up 72 to a d2 school is not a good sign at all.

  25. OK, look everyone, here’s the deal. First of all, yes it was a div2 team and yes they gave up 72 pts. But, it was the first actual live game. These games are meant to help see where your guys are at right now, so everyone gets plenty of playing time and a chance to show what they’ve learned. This is by far a good indication either way of what the Hoosiers are going to be this year. Wait until they play Butler on Nov.27 and then we will get a good indication of where they are and how the season will go……all in all not a bad exhibition game though!!!
    GO IU!!!!!

  26. There is not the same kind of separation between DI and DII in basketball as there is in football. In football the players might be 60lbs heavier at every position. The DI team will score every possession and the DII team will get crushed. It’s not like we were 8 inches taller at every position. Also, the score looked closer because Indy was draining 28ft three pointers. That might have been the best shooting performance from long range they will ever have. The fact of the matter is, they were shooting lights out from nearly half court and it still wasn’t close.

  27. If I had my druthers I’d druther game plan for an opponent who likes settling for defended looks at 24+’. They shot well from out there and any team(DI, DII or DXXVIII)playing them will have a closer game than expected. They should be feared by all their non-conference foes. It was a good 1st game and W for IU.

  28. For those of us who know the basketball world, we understand that one of the big differences between DII and DI is the level of athlete. In my opinion DII overall has the superior shooters and DI has the superior athletes. A great example on our roster is Matt Roth. He can’t get in the game for IU, but would be a perfect fit and starter at a school like UIndy. Less athletic fringe DI shooters = typical DII starters. Kids can shoot, they just can’t get past defenders consistently, finish in traffic or at the rim, rebound consistently, or defend quicker and longer players.

    Why anyone is discouraged that Matt Roth, Remy Abel, and Danny Moore didn’t do a great job defending the perimeter is beyond me. They took up a combined 30 minutes of backcourt time along with a couple other guys whose names I won’t hear again all year.

    It would have been bothersome if a DII team got 72 points and did it in the paint… yep, that would have been bad. I’ll take my chances if we can defend well inside out and hold teams to one shot.

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