Indiana has reached the halfway point of the Big Ten season with a 4-5 record.
The crazy thing for me is that this is about where I thought the Hoosiers would be sitting after nine Big Ten games.
When I made my preseason predictions back in late October/early November, I picked the Hoosiers to go 11-2 in the non-conference portion of the schedule with the qualifier it could easily be 10-3.
Then I picked IU to go 9-9 in the big Ten. Now, I didn't list out my picks in terms of what teams I thought they would beat and which ones I thought they would lose to in conference game play but just had IU somewhere in the middle of the pack at 9-9 going into the Big Ten Tournament.
In my prediction, with 11 non-conference wins, that would have given them 20 wins heading to Bankers Life Fieldhouse for the conference tournament.
Now, at 4-5 that means the Hoosiers would have to go 5-4 the rest of the way in order to get to 9-9. Possible? Absolutely. But who could really know.
I mean let's take a quick look back at the first nine games of Big Ten play.
While 4-5 doesn't particularly surprise me, obviously the way that Indiana got there does.
I would have thought IU would have lost at home to Michigan State, Wisconsin and very likely Michigan. Maybe Michigan was a tossup but had I known going into the game that Michigan would be 8-0 and IU would be 3-5 and the Wolverines would be an 8-point favorite I probably would have taken Michigan.
I would have thought IU would have lost to Michigan State on the road and probably Illinois, too. My prediction though would have included a road victory over Nebraska and a home win over Northwestern.
So go figure.
IU may be about where I thought it would be in terms of record but certainly not at any other level. I probably would have picked four of these games incorrectly.
But the only statistic that really matters nine games into the Big Ten season is that Indiana is 4-5.
So now what's the magic formula to get to 5-4 and 9-9?
IU has four home games remaining: Penn State, Iowa, Ohio State and Nebraska. I think IU comes out of that grouping with a 3-1 record. I'm not about to say what teams I think they'll beat or which ones they'll lose to but I think 3-1 is about right.
That would mean IU would need to win two games on the road.
Minnesota is always a tough game at Williams Arena but that's probably a tossup game. Wisconsin and Michigan will be extremely tough, however, IU has beaten both of those teams this year.
But something tells me IU can beat both Purdue and Northwestern on the road.
So add it all up and 9-9 doesn't really seem that far-fetched.
What will be interesting though is the reality that how IU gets there will likely be completely different than I think it will happen.
Follow Terry Hutchens at Twitter.com/Foxsportshutch