Fischer comes up big for Hoosiers

Luke Fischer scored 10 points, pulled down two rebounds, had an assist and three blocked shots in a career-best 19 minutes off the bench in Sunday's 90-66 win over Kennesaw State.

Take away Cody Zeller and Indiana hasn't had great luck with big men over the last several years.

There have been many more busts than big time performers, no question about that one.

But Luke Fischer is quickly beginning to look like he will much more of a contributor than someone that just looks good getting off the team bus.

In many ways, Fischer grew up a little bit in his college basketball career Sunday against Kennesaw State. He scored a career-high 10 points in a career-best 19 minutes off the bench to help lead Indiana to a 90-66 victory over Kennesaw State at Assembly Hall.

Fischer's numbers: 10 points on 4-of-5 shooting, two rebounds, one assist and three blocked shots.

In a play reminiscent of Zeller Sunday, Fischer caught a long pass in transition and scored on a layup.

His coach took notice.

"It was really important to us today to get over the top on the break,'' said IU coach Tom Crean. "It's got to be important to us every night because we're capable of that.''

As for his freshman big man, Crean said he thinks it's all about getting more comfortable.

"He's really getting into shape and he's getting more comfortable,'' Crean said. "He's playing through mistakes. He's playing up to a fatigue level which is helping him. He had seven deflections at halftime (today). I almost started him in the second half but I didn't want to have both he and Noah in if we would have a chance to get the ball up the court and continue to run our break.

"Luke is knocking on the door right now of being a really productive player for us.''

IU senior forward Will Sheehey said he has seen a real change in the way Fischer has been playing and it starts with practice.

"He's more comfortable in practice, really been more aggressive,'' Sheehey said. "And that has really been translating into games. He is posting hard, playing hard on defense which translates into offense as well. Maybe he had a block or steal on one end, ran down and had a dunk on the other end.

"If he continues to do that, he'll be a good player for us.''

Fischer just takes it all in stride. He has enjoyed his first 13 college games and now he's looking forward to having a few days off to head home to Germantown, Wis. and see his family. The Hoosier players left town pretty much once the game ended and don't have to be back until the day after Christmas.

"I'm looking forward to (getting away),'' Fischer said. "For a lot of us, this will be the first time going back home since school started. It will be nice to see our families and stuff like that. Also give us a break before the Big Ten season starts and the real action begins.''

Based on the way Fischer has played recently, one can only expect he'll be right in the middle of that real action, too.

Follow Terry Hutchens at Twitter.com/Foxsportshutch


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