In today’s edition of Banner Morning:
• IU opens the season against Western Illinois
• Who is and isn’t healthy for the season opener
• Lofty expectations for Trayce Jackson-Davis
Welcome Hoosier fans to today’s edition of Banner Morning — your daily rundown of IU basketball news and notes.
I’m Cameron Drummond, and the 2019-20 season begins tonight.
Indiana begins its 120th season of college basketball tonight inside Simon Skjodt Assembly Hall. The Hoosiers will play Western Illinois for the fourth time ever at 7 p.m., with the game set to be broadcast live on BTN Plus, an online streaming service.
The game will be re-aired on the Big Ten Network at 9 a.m. on November 7th.
Jacob Vinson, Jordan Gould and Mary Kate Hamilton will broadcast the game.
IU’s 84-54 exhibition win against Gannon on October 29th served as a good enough precursor to Tuesday night’s main event, in particular because of the key role Armaan Franklin played in the win.
Archie Miller said Monday that guard Devonte Green will be out for Tuesday’s game with a hamstring injury, and that guard Rob Phinisee’s status is still unknown as he works his way back from a lower abdominal injury.
Al Durham is 100 percent go-to-go though after he sat out a 10-day period, including the exhibition game, as he recovered from a knee bruise, providing a bit of experience in the IU backcourt to compliment the youth of Franklin.
Expect to see Durham handle a significant amount of the ball-handling responsibilities tonight for the Hoosiers.
With injuries having sidelined Green and Phinisee for just about all of October, Miller admitted that the health of his backcourt players “has been the biggest concern” in the final month of preparation before the season.
Tuesday also figures to be the regular season debut for Jerome Hunter, who played 17 minutes during the Gannon exhibition.
Miller singled out being confident with the ball as the biggest key to these first initial games for Hunter, as the natural rust that built up with his lack of playing time has made turnovers a concern for the redshirt freshman.
In the frontcourt, the play of freshman Trayce Jackson-Davis has already excited both the IU fanbase and Miller himself. On Monday, Miller said that through 25 practices, Jackson-Davis leads the team in “practice points,” a metric used by the IU coaches to determine standout players during Indiana’s practice sessions.
Jackson-Davis is the leader in this category by an astounding 100 points.
His size and athleticism should show out against Western Illinois, a team with a 7-foot tall presence in freshman Alex Brantley, but without the basketball savvy and skill of a McDonald’s All-American.
For the links mentioned in this edition of Banner Morning, visit assemblycall.com.
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We’ll be back tomorrow with a new edition of Banner Morning. Until then, keep your elbows in, your eyes on the rim, and go Hoosiers.