With the recent news that Victor Oladipo and Cody Zeller will indeed be heading to the NBA draft, the speculation as to who will be playing when, where, and how much for the Hoosiers come next November is plentiful.
Before the 2012-2013 college basketball season got underway last month, the Indiana Hoosiers’ pre-season All American Cody Zeller was featured on ESPN the Magazine, Sporting News, and Sports Illustrated’s covers. SI labeled him the “best player” on the “best team” (with the best pants, for good measure).
So if being the most popular man in Bloomington wasn’t already enough pressure on the sophomore center, he then had the entire nation’s attention shifted to him.
Tonight’s game felt a little blah. The atmosphere on a Monday night in Assembly Hall was a little blah. The play on the floor, for stretches, was a little blah.
And yet, Indiana still dominated North Dakota State just like a #1 team should en route to an 87-61 victory.
Cody Zeller was, not surprisingly, the most impressive player on the court. He showed a little bit of everything: his post game; confidence shooting the 15-17 foot jumper; the ability to handle the rock; his superlative ability to run the floor; and so much more. His 22 points and 9 rebounds paced the Hoosiers.
The other story of the night was Remy Abell and Jeremy Hollowell off the bench. Abell has yet to miss a shot this season (7-7 from the field) and Hollowell continued to show confidence and assertiveness on offense.
We broke it all down on tonight’s show, including some great observations from Zach (who was at the game) about the interactions between Victor and Yogi as well as Christian and Jeremy.
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Indiana went into tonight knowing that it was virtually guaranteed of victory barring some kind of miracle. No miracle took place, and the Hoosiers picked up their 21st victory of the season with a ho-hum 75-56 win over North Carolina Central.
After a slow, decade-long erosion that saw Indiana fall below Purdue, Notre Dame, and even Butler in the Basketball State both in terms of on-court play and recruiting, we have now re-emerged as the recruiting leader in a state stocked with talent and beaten Purdue, Notre Dame, Butler, and Evansville this year to reclaim our place as the on-court leader as well.
Hey, it’s called the Hoosier State for a reason. And we’ve scratched and clawed our way back to the state living up to its official nickname.
And we’ve done it with class, with kids who go to class, and in a way that’s built to last.
Well done Tom Crean. Very well done.
The coffee always tastes a little better the morning after beating Purdue, and such feelings have been far too few and far between lately. So proud of the team after last night’s win. Victor Oladipo took IU’s road monkey, snatched it off everyone’s back, and stuffed it into the Mackey rafters where it can stay.
Update: And as Chronic Hoosier just tweeted out, Indiana governor Mitch Daniels has introduced modifications to the state flag after last night.
Oh, and random thought: Tom Crean is now 46-72 at Indiana…but he’s 18-6 with one new #40 making his mark on the floor, and one former #40 who you may be familiar with now back helping to lead this program again:
My email address has always been firstname.lastname@example.org for a reason. Good to have it back in Bloomington.
Okay, time to turn the page and get ready for the Super Bowl and then the February/March stretch run. Last night’s win reconvinced me that this team has the potential to be special. I can’t wait to see how we come out against Illinois on Thursday. Big chance to really harness some momentum and finish this season strongly.
Nice win today for Indiana. The Hoosiers defeated Penn State 73-54 after trailing 29-27. Cody Zeller kept IU within striking distance in the first half, and then his teammates stepped up and put together their best half in a long time.