4 storylines for IU’s game vs. Wisconsin #iubb

1. OG Anunoby’s continued development
The first two games of Big Ten play have brought encouraging results from Anunoby, perhaps the most raw of IU’s three scholarship freshmen. Anunoby is averaging 9.5 points and 5.0 rebounds through his first two conference games, and he’s coming off a career-high 11-point performance at Nebraska. Anunoby has also flashed confidence while lining up beyond the arc, and has connected on all three of his 3-point shots over the opening week of the league season.

2. Follow-up defense from Indiana
The Hoosiers have yet to develop anything close to a defensive identity but found at least a small point of pride in Saturday’s effort at Nebraska. Shavon Shields and Andrew White III, the Cornhuskers’ two top offensive options, finished with a combined 34.7 percent (8-for-23) shooting figure against IU. The Hoosiers will see a similarly tough duo in Wisconsin’s Nigel Hayes and Bronson Koenig tonight. Hayes and Koenig are the two standout holdovers from last season’s national runner-up squad, and are averaging a combined 29.6 points per game between them both.

3. 3-point party?
Wisconsin’s defense has done fine inside the arc, holding teams to 43 percent on 2-pointers. The Badgers’ approach to perimeter defense, however, hasn’t been as bright. Wisconsin hasn’t been awful defending 3-pointers, but it does rank 13th among Big Ten teams in 3-point percentage defense with a .376 mark. Only Illinois’ 38 percent figure has been worse through 15 games. IU, of course, will take any opening it can find from deep. Indiana leads the Big Ten and ranks fourth nationally in 3-point percentage (45.1) and has shot 40 percent or better from long range 30 times over the last season and a half.

4. Which Thomas Bryant shows up?
Is it the Bryant that couldn’t stay out of foul trouble at Rutgers, or the one that established himself as a go-to, low-post presence at Nebraska? IU is obviously hoping for the latter. By all accounts, Bryant was receptive to the teaching points that were in store for him after he logged only six forgettable minutes in his conference debut. IU has found success when it feeds Bryant with regularity, and the freshman center leads the Big Ten with a 73.1 field goal percentage. Even when he’s not scoring, his presence opens valuable offensive windows for those around him.