Maryland holds on to beat Indiana 68-66

COLLEGE PARK, Md. — The final shot missed the mark, an off-balance heave that sent Yogi Ferrell to his backside as the buzzer sounded. As No. 19 Maryland whooped and hollered in celebration of a 68-66 win over Indiana, Ferrell bowed his head and pounded both fists on the floor before looking up and screaming at the rafters.

It was the lasting picture of defeat in a back and forth game that was one of Indiana’s most competitive games away from Assembly Hall this season. But there was no consolation to a loss that saw handfuls of misses layups and a couple botched dunks in a game where every basket mattered.

Ferrell scored a game-high 23 points for Indiana, which returns home to face Minneosta on Sunday at 7:30.

Jake Layman broke a 61-61 tie on a layup with a minute remaining in regulation. James Blackmon missed a corner 3 out of a timeout and Maryland built its lead to four points before Troy Williams answered with a layup. Layman upped Maryland’s lead back to four points with two free throws, but Ferrell hit a big 3-pointer on the opposite end with 14.3 seconds left.

Indiana fouled Dez Wells with 12 seconds left, sending him to the line for two shots. Wells missed the first, made the second and IU called timeout to set up a final play.

Ferrell brought the ball up the floor and missed a 3 at the top of the key, before grabbing the loose ball and heaving an off-balance shot at the goal as time expired.

The game brought 18 lead changes, including 12 in the first half when the teams combined for 11 3-pointers. Ferrell hit each of his first four shots beyond the arc, scoring 13 of his points during the initial 20 minutes.

It was especially important production while freshman teammate James Blackmon Jr. struggled from the field. Blackmon started 1-for-11 from the field, shaking his head in frustration after missing his 10th shot of the night.

But Blackmon’s second made field goal gave Indiana its first lead in the second half, a dunk leading to a three-point play that put IU in front 48-47 midway through the period.

With the game tied at 51-51 on a Ferrell layup with 6 minutes remaining in regulation, IU watched Maryland take a six-point swing that included three points each by Jared Nickens and Dez Wells. It was the Terps’ largest lead of the night. But IU continued to cut its way back into the game, tying things at 57-57 on a banked 3-pointer by Ferrell with 3:30 left.

Jordan Fuchs, a tight end who was officially added to the roster Wednesday morning, did not play.

Indiana once again did well keeping Maryland off the line, where the Terps have been one of the most efficient teams in the nation. The Terps had only eight attempts in the first 36 minutes of play before finishing 10-for-14.

Indiana shot 25-for-67 from the field, with Blackmon and Robert Johnson shooting a combined 5-for-27. Williams missed two dunks, but scored 17 points.

Each team had 10 3-pointers.

This story will be updated.

57 comments

  1. Tough – horrible loss. Lost second place in the league – a chance to get back into the national rankings and most importantly the game. I lost count of the missed opportunities in this game. We brought our C game tonight and lost to a team that we are better than. Its one thing to miss contested shots – but we missed more wide open looks than I recall this season. We out rebounded a bigger team – only had 6 turnovers to Maryland’s 13 – and still managed to lose.

    You can certainly not fault YF for missing the final shot. Great crossover to be wide open – but I have no idea when looking at the rim clean he missed TW standing alone under the basket. You have to see him all alone.

    http://s110.photobucket.com/user/elmondohummus/media/nonsmileys/B9ndhUtCYAA7uC__zps3tiaatok.jpg.html

    Biggest missed opportunities.

    1. TW’s 2 missed dunks. First one trying to put a little too much mustard on the hot dog. Second was much the same – great back cut alley oop that he decided to go for the one hand style points instead of the sure two hand dunk.

    2. CH missing the go ahead run out layup with the game tied at 61.

    3. Missed block out on the FT line after Wells made the first and missed the second ( score 52-51 at the time ) – instead they knock down a 3 – YF pushes the ball down the court and gets blocked at the rim and starts UM on a fast break for a Wells layup. Huge 6 point run from a missed FT line block out in a 20 second span.

    4. JBJ just awful shooting the ball. I wish in todays game CTC would have sat him more and got NZ a few more minutes or even MH. Just someone to maybe help get us through JBJ’s bad night.

    This was a big loss to a team we are better than.

  2. Crimson, great post. Although we had the last shot, we had plenty of others. We shot the ball 18 more times than they did and hit only 1 more. That’s the stat of the game & of course Johnson and Blackmon basically accounting for all of those misses when it gets down to it. 5 for 27. Blackmon, when he’s not hot, is a liability on the floor, aside from being a decoy I suppose. He’s simply awful in all other aspects of the game, particularly on D.

    I had us losing this one, but it is one that got away. We have 6 more, and the 2 road games are against the 2 worst teams in the league. Although we should win out, anything is possible with this team. We can lose to or beat just about anybody except anyone in the Top 10. We just have to beat the team’s that beat us; purdue and MSU, two we haven’t played; Minn & Iowa, and 2 cellar dwellers that we should beat by 10 pts.

    And that my good fans would be an overachieving season, in my opinion. 13-5 if that happens, which would be a miracle. So I think we lose 1, if not 2 of those, and go anywhere between 11-7 & 13-5 with 20+ wins.

    All that begins with an attitude to whack Minn & purdue this week.

  3. (1). Post 1 + 2 = Some good observations. (2). J.B.’s value is if he is making shots. Negative to team otherwise because if he is not scoring points he is pretty average at big ten level of play plus his game goes down hill and his internal feelings negatively affects his game. If he does not get off to a decent start he needs to learn how to set on the bench for a while and watch. Then, maybe try it again later depending on how other players are performing. (3). IU is almost right in there with Northwestern. Maryland beats Northwestern by 1 @ home. Maryland beats IU by 2 @ home. (4). I would not mind talking about over achieving this year if there was a reasonable chance of things improving to some elite status in foreseeable future (recruiting, especially of 4.8 star or higher big men) @ and I do not see it. IU is right in there with Northwestern.
    .

  4. Sometimes when I watch this team, I’m amazed at our ability, given our lack of size, to continually get to the basket. Unfortunately, what also amazes me is out inability to finish once we get there. How many layups and close-in baskets did we miss last night? Seven or eight — Hartman’s blown layup in the final minute or so being the obvious one? Really, really gotta finish those.

  5. WOW ! A tough loss to take ! I too I had a us loosing ,but in a blow out. I feel so bad for Yogi what a performance ! And he takes the blame for the loss because the last one did not go in ? Class act all the way ! Blackmon is broke and a total liability throughout the game at both ends of the floor. Johnson could not buy a bucket but he does a lot of things that he does not get credit for. Blackmon totally quit and should have sat and watched. CTC made so many promises to his dad to get him here he plays him anyways and he killed us. Can’t fault Hartman , that kid is a keeper and works his butt off. Once again CTC panics and forgets he has people on the bench that can play . We only needed three points ! Williams blows two easy dunks because he only worried about making Sports Center and he does not play a lick of defense nor does he know any of our plays. I saw Yogi rip him a couple of times. Great athlete, does not grasp the fundimentals of the game . But the NBA does not care it’s all about potential . Last years team would have lost by 30 . That’s the upside for sure. But it all boils down to coaching and we know what that means . Maybe Chuck is that bench coach we have needed ? I have noticed he really gets involved in time outs and that’s a good thing. We have a perfect schedule right now and should be in control of our own destiny? We need to beat the Hell out Purdue and Minnesota , not take Rutgers and NW lightly on the road. Iowa and MSU are scary even at home ! Would have liked to see what the new guy brings to the table and where was Holt ? Conference road wins are the key to big dance. Great posts Crimson and AZ. !

  6. A great and exciting game! Thanks for all the posts everyone and I knew the first thing someone would mention (# 1 in CRIMSON’s post) was the missed dunks.

    I wonder if a past IU Coach would have taken a moment for some instruction after the first dunk miss……

  7. wow. had not seen williams that open under the basket at the end. surprised yogi did not get him the ball for the uncontested layup. that being said, yogi fast becoming my all-time favorite hoosier. he just continues to put the team on his back. if we make the tournament it will be interesting how har he takes us.

    blackmon continues to lead the nation in having his shot blocked. some of his minutes could have gone to hoetzel or holt. no excuse for williams missing easy dunks so he could show off. should have got a bench whipping after the second. did love when in the last minute during a timeout troy yanked blackmon by the arm when he was sulking and walking away from the team.

    hanner looks to be getting back into things. he may be a big help down the stretch. as noted above, where is holt?

  8. Thanks, coachv….I had seen Troy yanking someone but did not know who…

    Yogi has embraced the team, now it’s Blackmon’s time to do so or sit on the bench watching the team.

  9. IU men’s basketball program should always be good enough to beat a team like Maryland (this years team) on their court 10 to 15 points unless it is an exception (that 1 out of 10 year). Maybe this year is just the exception.

  10. It’s obviously a team, but kids are naturally competitive on the individual level…Yogi was unconscious…Let’s hope he stays that way…

    I remember when folks were hating on EJ when he had a horrific night of shooting against Arkansas in the NCAA tournament…Most didn’t care that EJ was battling through a wrist injury and a toxic witch hunt that was casting a sense of shame upon the program and many players not deserving such vicious and undifferentiated attacks…..Hearing the targeting of blame aimed at Blackmon is fine…I wonder if much of that targeting is the displacement of disgust that many would like to place somewhere else..? Will it ever help? Do you think Blackmon wants to miss those big shots that could have shifted momentum or taken some pressures off a team fighting to get over a deficit hump? It’s often just the need to see the first one find the well that sets into motion a very good shooting night…Even Blackmon’s dunk was nearly being refused by what was a very stubborn basket for him last night…Many of his offerings rattled around inside a rim that just wasn’t having it….Yogi had a different night… He even banked in a three.. It’s basketball. Would you want Blackmon to not be frustrated? For all that low key baller swagger he projects, he is just a kid…He’s a teenager..He’s seeing talent that he’s not used to rivaling his own…I hated the fact that EJ could never get pissed off and how he almost internalized the “sulking.” And I don’t think Troy was chastising the freshman for letting the emotions erupt…I think it was reaffirming support of his teammates and to snap him out of the trappings of getting overly frustrated…Immediately before the timeout, Blackmon had just missed an open look from the corner that would have been huge…Like most he had missed last night, it looked right on target but ended up just ever so slightly too long as it sailed off the back side of the iron…

    I don’t think you sit Blackmon…Crean did exactly the right thing by leaving him out there.. Don’t take away the swagger and send a message that you’re being benched because you can’t make a shot tonight…For all the criticism of Crean, in my humble opinion, it’s where he doesn’t add insult to injury that makes him the closest thing to a competent coach than anything else. He understands they want to win…He understands the individual emotions that can creep in when one player is lighting it up as if all the b-ball gods in his favor and the counterpart “new star in town” guard is having a miserable showing….You show confidence in your freshman and hope that he can see one fall…You encourage him to play through it and you project a sense that all(teammates and coaches) have his back….To do anything else is be caught in the same emotions of frustration that encourage “hating” on a player for being human.

  11. You’ve consistently been a supporter of Blackmon from the beginning, H4H…and I have to agree with your post. I’ve read (here) and heard (in conversation) a lot of criticism about Crean for his substitution pattern.

    Do you think Crean has adjusted his subbing pattern(s) and now, late in the season, is sticking with certain players (like Blackmon).

    I only saw Troy grab and yank some player. With their lack of size, they have GOT to stick together and I think Troy is the glue….

  12. And maybe the inability to handle the psychology of the game was why Knight, in his latter years of coaching, began to see his very talented teams come up short ….There was simply too much fear to play with the freedom that can still balance within a system of X’s and O’s/execution perfections…Knight no longer had to prove anything….Three banners and countless deep tournament runs can keep those demons away for quite some time….It was always on his players onus to prove…And when they didn’t prove, Knight was never to blame.

    But let’s not forget that it’s often very talented players that help a coach see the first one go in…Knight came to Bloomington with McGinnis and Steve Downing arriving in his lap….Big 10 victories weren’t so hard to come by with that sort of talent added to Knight’s fresh ideas and appeal…….Downing put the team on his back and surprise run to a Final Four in 1973 didn’t hurt Knight seeing “that first one go in” as well….But how quickly the chalkboard geniuses lose perspective and forget that when they had to prove, it was often talent they had no part in recruiting, that carried their load and kept the doubters and haters at bay…..

    Crean absorbs a lot of hate that could be directed at his young players….Don’t expect them to turn on him anytime soon. Personally, I prefer to watch kids play without the fear of an arrogant coach yanking them for every mistake or abandoning them when they have a cold shooting night. And if Zeller would have staying in candy-stripes for one more season, Crean would have likely seen one(a banner or Final Four trip) go in as well. ….In that scenario would Crean now be the expert authoritarian coach yanking Blackmon and sending him to the end of the bench…Maybe kick him on the shin a couple times and get into his face…? Possibly ….Success changes and infects some men with less than admirable manifestations.

  13. JeffreyV-

    It’s damned if you do and damned if you don’t…….I don’t particularly like wholesale substitutions….But at the pace Indiana wants to play, you have to rest even the best conditioned of athletes.. Continuity is often in communication and familiarity with teammates…(especially in the “open” style of movement/spacing/driving/kicking.)….Wholesale substitutions(when you have to give starters a rest) may allow for more continuity than simply using a singular revolving door method….Separate “units” of three or four added to one or two “leaders” on the floor does make sense when there isn’t huge disparities in the talent going 10 deep on a bench…

    Maybe the numbers tell otherwise, but it does seem as if Crean is sticking with his starting five for longer stretches…And I like the fact he had them on the floor together at the end.. Of course, we’re assuming guys don’t foul out.while trying to keep that continuity…With as shorthanded we are on the inside, one would think more guys would be fouling out…

    As you get closer to March and the team dynamics you want tournament ready, committing more minutes to those “five” that a coach has determined to have greatest chemistry and results, does sorta naturally evolve away from what was earlier perceived as excessive substitution patterns….Why wouldn’t a coach want to use excessive substitution patterns early in the season? How else can a coach determine chemistry and how various players react to the pressures a game far different than the practice floor?

  14. Easy to point finger at both JBJ and Robert Johnson; you all miss the bigger picture of the problem. While CTC keeps TALKING about movement and keeping things simple; I don’t see ANYONE really moving without the ball and expecting to receive a pass. Usually they move to another spot on the perimeter and stand. When they do get a pass its either shoot a 3 pointer or drive and force up SOMETHING close to the rim. TW needs a mid jumper his shot selection is either a dunk or a free throw–nothing in between. Where is the player development?? What started with high hopes at beginning I see a group of players that have flattened out. If that is truly the case ..it does not bode well for the bench because they are getting (at best ) very limited playing time…in particular Holt and Max.

  15. I never saw Hoosiers with so many open looks in a game….As Geoff pointed out, if we hit anywhere near a normal %, it’s likely an easy road win….Gloom and doom is too easy. There was plenty of movement and Troy’s dynamic element of play, along with Yogi’s stronger floor game, is making for about as strong a version of “small ball” as you could ask for….I don’t want more Hoetzel…..Maybe a little more Holt..But in last night’s game, we weren’t being punished inside and we were getting plenty of looks…That 5-27 for Blackmon and Johnson wasn’t the result of forced or heavily contested shots…The offense and the level of difficulty to contain Troy was making those looks possible…It was just a night that many weren’t dropping….(including a couple dunks and Hartman’s layup that couldn’t get through the cylinder).. No need for doom and gloom…

    At Big 10 Media Day, this team was predicted to finish 8th or 9th….We could very well finish in 3rd or 4th if we take care of business at home…..We’re just fine….Chill.

  16. Where is the player development..? Really? You don’t see the far better floor game from Yogi this year? You don’t see the evolution of Troy and just how much his confidence has grown? You don’t see his better decision making and the level of comfort with his point guard? You don’t see the reduction of turnovers..? You don’t see better defensive effort and guys fighting through picks..? You don’t see better switching and switching back on defense? I’m seeing far more evolution and player development n this team far more than anything I saw during the Cody, Dipo, Watford, Hulls years. It may be a product of stronger assistant coaches…and simply better chemistry/camaraderie…. It’s of my humble opinion that this squad plays with a ton more resolve and fight. It’s the guys that aren’t demonstrating as much fight that Crean is limiting minutes….I have no problem with that.

  17. Knight arrived when McGinnis would have been a Junior but he left after his Sophomore year to play with the Pacers in the ABA. He never played for Knight but Knight did have Downing and Ritter who were the keys to that Final Four run.

  18. giving some of blackmon’s minutes to someone else when he is cold, which is often, isn’t punitive harv. is he entitled to minutes? he is a bit of a liability if he isn’t hitting. decent rebounder but a slow and unenthusiastic defender. terrible passer. poor ball-handler. i don’t know why you keep saying he is a great shooter because right now he is the worst shooter on the team this side of robinson. he scores a lot because he shoots a lot. but he hurts the teams chances of winning when he isn’t on. assuming everyone else on the team works hard in practice, don’t they deserve the same chance as blackmon to prove themselves? if he wasn’t so highly rated out of high school you might be singing a different tune.

  19. I don’t see “terrible passer”:…and I certainly don’t see “poor ball-handler.” He’s a freshman and he’s forcing things a bit. He’s got a good share of games to find the stroke again…He’s also coming off a pretty severely sprained ankle…and that could have added some balance issues on the jump shot.

    I’m not the coach…You’re the coach and Crean is the coach…It’s not my decision to make with regard to entitlement….I’ve seen a lot worse get “entitlement” minutes…

    I stuck with Watford when most on here were throwing him under the bus…I have no problem with loyalties to a kid as talented to JBJ….You’ve got some issue…You’ve had it since you were spouting about his “Josie and the Kittycats” hairdo …along with your expressing a point of view that you wanted to attend UK.(because he was wavering on his decision a bit).. You can keep your grudge….But if the kid was lighting it up(which most honest assessments his talent know he’s fully capable), I still doubt you’d be over your grudge…You’re probably wishing every jumper he takes to miss….That must be a hell of a way to cheer on a Hoosier team….If it ain’t Crean’s incompetence it’s some other conflicted thought to make it all misery….Unless it’s Max Hoetzel, of course. Max can do no wrong. You talk of Max like Walton gushing over John Wooden while doing a UCLA game….Heaven forbid support the coach from Indiana currently attempting to bring your alma mater out of their irrelevancy…..

    JBJ is no Steve Alford…and that’s exactly why I love his game….Blackmon will be just fine despite those wishing his demise because he gave one inkling of thought to play for Crean’s friend down in Lexington…You know what I hate more than a kid that thinks of playing in Lexington…? I hate two friends, one in Lexington, and one in Bloomington, that can manage to spread oil all over each other(emulate each other to a large degree), but can’t seem to find a way to play each other in a regular season rivalry game that existed year after year for decades. I don’t hate on Blackmon for looking at the school his father played and then deciding on IU…It’s far more despicable that the two schools have such egotistical and self-centered mules running their basketball programs, that they can’t give the fans of both a great game.

    You have accused Blackmon to be fearful of the bench(or lots of minutes deemed to the bench) for a reason to not go to a “loaded” Kentucky…
    So the hell what? What’s the big deal..? Indiana Basketball, Tom Crean, and Fred Glass are just as fearful the loaded roster at Kentucky.. They were afraid to the point of ending all efforts to play them on a neutral court. Their fear has killed an entire rivalry series built for the fans and placed far more personal saving of face than James Blackmon could ever control in his shooting guard world…Talk about entitlement? Who entitled these two coaches to decimate a cross-border rivalry that had stood timeless as one of the most anticipated games of the year? Maybe Blackmon would have been more wise to play for Alford….rather than be part of the war between friends pretending to be enemies while holding great games hostage. And that’s funny as well….Think Pat Knight had a bit of “entitlement” when he was wearing the uniform..? Think Bryce Alford has a bit of entitlement?….Think Jeremiah Rivers had a bit of entitlement with a father so closely tied to Crean and the NBA..? Think Etherington had a bit of early “entitlement” considering it was his efforts that played a huge role in Crean landing Zeller….? Yeah, Blackmon sucks….He sucks so much more than the rest of those entitled ballers that somehow find/found their minutes…

    When in the hell isn’t it entitlement…? Think A-Hope recruits and the Tijan Jobes of the world got a bit of entitlement via Mark Adams…? Everyone under the sun uses the old dusty banners for entitlement…
    For God’s sake, let’s not make that a sole James Blackmon crucifixion party just so Max Hoetzel can be Max Hoetzel…”and that’s all we need to know….” Irony? Just a little? There’s some entitlement you can take to the bank.

    You are hilarious, coachv.

  20. As far as getting a clean, controlled shot off JBJ is the most effective player on the team getting to the basket. Yogi still gets in the air without a plan but he can ‘out athlete’ most defenders. JBJ, over the course of the season, has made a ton of penetrating moves look like uncontested layups because he has so much variation on his release and he does a great job of screening the defender with the rim. His ball handling is not not where he is an effective one but it’s not to shabby for a two.

    IMHO

  21. I think you also have to look at endurance when analyzing Blackmon as freshman….You also have to look at body types…Blackmon isn’t built like an EJ..And look how Yogi has bulked up…Yogi has had all the benefits of three years a great conditioning program…Yogi’s arms are nearly busting out his muscle shirt….Where in the hell does he get those biceps..? I’m amazed that his bulk isn’t becoming a hindrance to a smooth jumper… But the kid’s stamina is unmatched…Don’t know what Doc Libby is feeding Yogi during the summer months, but, wow, has he made it a point to be ripped and in phenomenal condition.

    It might have been better to rest Blackmon and keep him out of the Maryland game..Let the ankle heal fully and let him get some rest…The Big 10 is grueling and he’s not the bulky a kid…There’s been the usual heat on Crean and I think he understood that 8-4 would take some that heat momentarily off..Blackmon was possibly called upon just a bit too soon than a body was ready….Now he’s in a mental funk with the shot…so it’s a more difficult call to sit him and let him have the rest that should have been the Maryland game…Just a thought..

  22. I’ve already made my comments on the game, but I’d like to address a couple themes of the comments…

    1. Blackmon needs to play 25+ minutes unless its a blowout one way or the other… it doesn’t matter how cold he is. He is a threat and someone that the defense has to pay attention to. At any point in a game his fortunes could change and he could knock down 3 straight 3’s and open things up. It’s not about entitlement, it’s about talent.

    2. player development… this is the wrong time to be bringing it up. It would be extremely unusual for it to happen mid-season… That’s when “team development” happens. Player development happens in the off-season. Right now coaches are game-planning, perfecting sets, introducing nuance to the offense and defense, working on glaring weaknesses from the previous game… Individual development is not part of the equation… especially this late in the season. Kids need a bit of rest. they have school work. you’re breaking down game film on team-issued iPads in your spare time instead of putting extra hours in Cook. That line of criticism should altogether cease.

  23. ^^^^I agree wholeheartedly with both those points(especially the comments pertaining to Blackmon’s talent level and how the fortunes can quickly change in a game)…The only thing that I would add is that I think player’ “development” can also evolve through in-game experience…The individual skills they have worked on can mature within the team setting.. A coach can have a hand in that in terms of play designs specific to each talent, what stretches minutes are delegated, and how he reacts to a player’s mistakes, etc…I think Troy’s in-game maturity has shown great development…It’s more than just his individual skills he brings to the table…If confidence and better decision-making are part of “development,” then it’s obvious Troy is maturing and impacting this team far more than what was brought to the total dynamics early in the season.

    “Kids need a bit of rest. they have school work…” Again, couldn’t agree more…And some kids are not as built for the grind and may need more rest at this point of the season.

  24. I agree with Don Lemon of CNN..Sports Illustrated went too far with the recent bathing suit issue cover…..Sorta sad what we’re putting out front of kid’s eyes in grocery store checkout lanes…Sorta sad what’s being sold as “trendy” and “beautiful” to young kids of both sexes.. A magazine that looks like a porn cover shouldn’t have “Sports” anything for its title… I know I’m sounding like an old square, but why is it so important to project this way…For me, it’s the need for corporate creeps to prove dignity never has too high a price.

  25. don’t get me wrong, i think blackmon is a talent. but now is not the time to reward playing time based on potential. now is the time to lock in your game for the stretch run. if you gave hartman blackmon’s 30 minutes and a mandatory 14 shots per game, what kind of numbers do you think the big 10 best 3 pt shooter would produce? at least as good as blackmon plus a lot more contributions thru the game. holt? think those guys can’t put up 16 pts with 14 attempts? just saying guys who decide to be scorers don’t always deserve the accolades they get. have you ever seen blackmon run a guy down from behind? and no, harvard, i’m not a hater. we are too old to use that word

  26. I said you were carrying a “grudge” based on your statements when he was recruited….I’m not sure if that grudge has gone away. EJ faced the same thing when he flipped from Illinois and decided he wanted to play for Kelvin and the Hoosiers….

    No harm, no foul…I just like Blackmon’s talent…I think he’s putting forth a lot more effort than you are giving credit..I don’t think this team does much in the NCAA unless Blackmon is a big part of the production fueling the overall confidence our team.. I have this hunch that JBJ will thrive in the NCAA tournament setting….Just a hunch.

    You are “entitled” to your opinion..

  27. I’m late to the party as usual, but there’s some great commentary here. Still, some people seemed to have lost sight that this was a great,competitive game start to finish. Nobody led by more than six points, and it was quickly tied back up after that. We were about 5-6 easy, gut-wrenching plays from winning comfortably, and missed a number of open shots. Maryland hit a lot of tough shots and made plays down the stretch. Even after all those missed opportunities, we were right there to win or force OT against a ranked foe on the road at the buzzer. It just didn’t happen. We’re close. Whether we can get over that hump and make some serious noise in March remains to be seen.

    One play I haven’t seen discussed that really bugged the s### out of me was the TW turnover driving into traffic on the baseline at the end of the half. Shot clock was off with under 30 sec to go. How was the entire team (and bench) not screaming for him to pull it back and hold for the last shot? We were fortunate MD didn’t convert, but closing out first halves has been an issue– at least for me– most of the year. It seems we mismanage them more often than not and I don’t recall ever seeing that discussed. Or have I just missed it?

  28. never been a big fan of holding for the last shot at the half. prefer to run our offense and take the first good shot just like any other possession. let the other team throw up a desperation shot. kind of a defeatist attitude to me.

  29. @OSU….@Purdue…@Wisconsin…@Maryland. ….Went 0-4 in those four recent road games.. It’s going to be only one solid road win against Illinois for a entire Big 10 season..The two remaining road games are against the bottom tier(Northwestern, Rutgers).. Winning @Purdue or @Maryland would have taken some question marks off this team….We better not stumble in any of these remaining home games…

    The indicator of a truly tournament worthy team is to win on the road against the upper half of the league teams you know you’ll be truly tested….Maryland was extremely disappointing because losing that one on the road leaves only the win in Champaign–Urbana as our “big” away game during the entire regular season campaign.

    Unless the bottom falls out, we will likely make the Big Dance….Nonetheless, coming up empty in the four recent road games steals a bit of my enthusiasm. The Maryland loss could come back to haunt….And after further contemplation, it makes me wonder if coachv’s ideas of pulling some of Blackmon’s minutes in favor of Zeisloft, Hoetzel, or Holt may have been the proper decision in a game where much of our road resume was hinging…

    We’ve lost some important middle rounds of the BIG heavyweight fight….If we don’t finish strong, we’ll begin to find the precarious fence on Selection Sunday….It no longer will appear the “breeze” of making the filed that I had predicted at the beginning of the season.. A lot of things have changed with that Maryland loss….We can get it back, but there are now extra pressures and more backs against the ropes.

    I don’t think the BIG gets more than five teams invited this year…No stumbling allowed from here on out.

  30. thanks for the reality check….and, truly, Illiinois looked really weak when we played them (which is not surprising since they were missing their two tough players…)

    The BIG difference, of course, is our home court advantage! Our fan base knows how to engage in the game for the entire game (which makes not stealing the win at Maryland all the more disappointing, as their fans were obviously clueless from the git-go).

    I’d like to see Crean AND staff wearing RED on Sunday. And I’d like to show the new coach at Minnesota what it’s like to come to Assembly Hall: “when you come here, we win”.

  31. and I agree, coachv…..unless Blackmon decides to engage on defense he should sit down and watch others play (unless he’s on fire, in which case it does not matter what happens on defense, I’ve decided).
    “Defense” means more than waving one’s arms. If Blackmon’s ankle is still hurt, let him rest it for the tournaments. (and I might be wrong, but I think Blackmon is going to be stifled in any tournament…our hopes rest with TW….and I don’t think TW is big enough to carry us in NCAA past the round of 32)

    This entire season…though I’ve grown to enjoy watching this team….I still believe you have to have a Presence, a Big Man, in the Post. And Layman was big enough to score quite easily when necessary…not a good omen for the future.

  32. Really good game and there should be only disappointment and little second guessing.

    Some very good comments by several people but I do happen to share some same thoughts with coachv. I really like Hartman’s play and alertness to the ball but he needs to increase his number of shots and it is up to his team on the floor to help make it happen. James Blackmon is a fine player and should not be taken out of a game when he is shooting a low percentage. And he should not have been removed in Thursday game because of some very good looks that did not drop. But you do take players out when that low percentage is influenced by bad shot selection or forcing things and he has had his share of those this year. James is a freshman and needs some slack, but you can’t teach by letting bad habits continue and thereby lose the most important opportunity of all and that is to make him a better player. I do not know of any player ever being harmed with a bit of watching from the sidelines as long as he knows why he is there. I am also a Hoezel fan because he has terrific fundamentals, good instincts and can shoot it. Given some time I think he could develop in to a Will Sheehy type of contributor to the team. I would like to see him get a couple more minutes a game when the situation is right.

    These spam protection sums are getting more difficult all the time.

  33. Harv, it’s all in how you frame it. It’s not a bad loss in the sense that there’s no way we should have lost. Or that we got blown out on our home court. Nobody on the selection committee is going to look at a close road loss to a ranked team and say that’s the one demerit that should keep us out of the tournament. But it is a bad loss in the sense that it’s a huge missed opportunity and resume builder. Hopefully it doesn’t come down to it, but we might have to look back at MD (and Georgetown) as the ones that got away. I’m sure you and most everybody on here gets that, but I just wanted to state it for the record.

    And CoachV, I agree with you to a point. I don’t necessarily think we need to always run the clock down and then rush a final play just to prevent another team from scoring. But one man’s “defeatist attitude” is another man’s “playing to your strengths.” Making defensive stops has not been our strength. I’ve seen our opponents make a last second basket and go into the locker room with momentum far too many times this year… and far too rarely for us. There has to be a compromise. Run the offense. If we can get a good look, take it. If not, at least hold it so they can’t capitalize. But by all means don’t force things only to enable a quick 4-5 point swing the other way. And while I’m at it, can we at least consider getting a 2-for-1 possession if the situation presents itself? I guess for me sometimes it just feels as if our goal is to ensure the other guy gets the last say of the half. Maybe it’s a matter of differing philosophies, or maybe I’m just focusing in it so it seems more obvious to me. Either way, it drives me bananas more often than not.

  34. First time post. Why doesn’t CTC get NZ more looks from beyond the arc. CTC should run three or four set plays a half to get NZ open looks. He in my opinion is the best pure shooter the Hossiers have.

  35. Not to belabor the point too much, but outside of IU I don’t watch much basketball (with the exception of March Madness, a Pacers game here and there, and maybe the NBA playoffs.) I do, however, watch a lot of football. And possessions matter. I keep close track of who gets the last possession of the half, and who gets it to start the second. It probably matters a lot more in football than in hoops, but in many situations that one possession can determine the game. So it was on Wednesday. When I see us give up a basket or two either way– especially to close the half– I can’t help bit wonder throughout the rest of the game how much that will matter at the end. Maybe it’s just my thing.

  36. slk,

    of course we should bring our shooters off screens but evidently this is too complicated for our “coach” to figure out.

    punjab,

    there does not have to be a compromise. as a coach, if you don’t think you can match wits with the other coach then by all means hold for the last shot of the half and worry that momentum will carry over to the second half and no amount of your coaching ability can overcome that. worry about 2 for 1 possessions and let 35 seconds run off the clock in the last minute of the game because you are only behind 2 or 3 points. me? at the end i foul a lot in the last minute or two when behind hoping i can give my team an advantage or two with some good coaching. of course indiana doesn’t really run an offense so i guess it doesn’t really matter. unless you consider 3 man weaves and high ball screens an offense. what does harvard call it? perpetual motion to nowhere. no, he has a better name for it.

  37. CoachV, it’s all not about matching wits. That comes accross as pretty pompous. Even if the most fundamentally sound team– whose coach drew up the perfect, witty play– runs their sets to a tee, they still have to rely on the ball going through the hoop. Let’s assume nothing goes wrong. If you leave any time, you still have to defend. And if you give the other team enough time, either they get a chance to counter tactically and run a set (in which case, you gambled wrong in giving them enough time to do so,) or it results in a chaotic play, which typically relies on player instinct, ability, and sometimes sheer luck. How much matching of wits goes into that last phrenetic 10 seconds? (Let’s assume that both teams are in the bonus already, since that’s what happens about 75%of the time, and fouling and giving up free points probably isn’t you’re best option…)

  38. (Side note: I saw a hilarious pie chart the othe day that illustrated something to the effect of “percent of grammatical errors you find while proof-reading: 2%; percent of grammatical errors you find just after you hit send: 98%. And so it is.)

  39. geoff

    we are the victims of another huge snow storm today, dumping as much as 2″ in some areas. need another reason to go to florida?

  40. Not too cold at all. About 60 with really intense sunshine. It dropped off pretty quickly when the sun set. Honestly, we need some more snow.

    The best part may have been that it was how my wife wanted to spend Valentine’s Day…riding her Bonnie.

    Those are both nice rides. I used to go watch the manatees somewhere in Canaveral. Don’t remember the spot. I once stopped on the Miccosukee Reservation for an air boat ride through the Glades with a very knowledgeable Native American fellow. This was before they had the big casino. It was pretty amazing.

    I did miss the twisties when I lived in Florida, though.

    A buddy of mine who lives in Jax used to come up and ride the Blue Ridge Parkway and Tail of the Dragon when I lived in NC. They sell T-shirts near Deal’s Gap that read “11 miles, 318 curves”. My friend showed up once wearing a shirt that said, “Florida. 318 miles, 11 curves.

  41. We got lucky on this one… supposed to get 18-24 and somehow we ended up with 2… still have 40-50 mph winds, but no sign of any more snow. Pissed that both my men’s league games were prematurely cancelled. Now I have no outlet before tonight’s very important game… East surprises the West (146-138) and Kyle Lowry is MVP.

  42. Nothing like a roaring fire and crackling logs in the hearth to put the harsh winter into a warm place…..The more beautiful of the sexes desires such basic survival instincts to bring wood in from the bitter elements…Poking at the glowing amber ….watching the flames reestablish themselves from the sturdy and reliable ‘keeper of the warmth’ in his rugged natural setting…. I wouldn’t trade having rare command the fortress of hearth and reliant hearts the curvy companion in flannel and jeans for any amount of average bikini sun and average daily heat amongst the breezes of easy life or air conditioners running nonstop.

  43. Oh, so mercy is your wife’s first name….and the last name is amber? Mercy Amber…sounds like a hot centerfold model.

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