WHAT LOOKED GOOD:Let's begin with the defense against an Ohio State team that appeared to have more size and more athleticism especially with IU freshman forward Noah Vonleh missing the game with inflammation in his foot. Sure, Ohio State got some good looks inside and ended up scoring all but one of its field goals in the paint. But the Hoosiers did a good job taking away the things they could, switching on all screens and making shots difficult. Ohio State was 0-for-11 from 3-point range marking the first time an IU opponent hasn't hit a field goal against the Hoosiers since the 2003 season. Interestingly, the last time was also against Ohio State. But when the Buckeyes needed a shot from anywhere beyond 15 feet it simply wasn't too be had. And that included the free throw line. Ohio State was 14-of-23 from the foul line. In the first half alone, the Buckeyes missed seven free throws. What also looked particularly good for Indiana was the way players stepped up in Vonleh's absence. Hanner Mosquera-Perea had arguably his best game as a Hoosier. He had eight points and 3-of-4 shooting, pulled down five rebounds and blocked three shots in 15 minutes. Will Sheehey followed up his career-high 30 point effort with another solid game. He had 19 points on 8-of-12 shooting from the field including 3-of-5 from 3-point range. In the last two games, he is 21-of-32 from the field. Yogi Ferrell did a great job as IU's floor general and led IU with 20 points. He didn't have a great shooting night but hit some key baskets and made 7-of-8 free throws. Evan Gordon also came up big off the bench for IU with nine points and three assists in 19 minutes.
WHAT NEEDS TO IMPROVE:Ohio State did score 48 points in the paint which was to be expected with Vonleh out of the lineup and the Buckeyes with a significant height advantage. Still, players like Lenzelle Smith Jr. just seemed to be able to do whatever they wanted to do as far as driving the ball to the basket on the Hoosiers. Indiana had 18 turnovers again which led to 17 Ohio State points. IU needs to do a better job at times of recognizing what players should get the ball in obvious foul situations late in a game. One inbounds pass went to Mosquera-Perea, who is a decent free throw shooter but not accustomed to late game pressure situations. The same could be said for Troy Williams. With IU leading 66-60, Yogi Ferrell gave up the ball to Williams in a situation where the Buckeyes couldn't wait to foul the freshman. That was an 81 percent free throw shooter throwing it to a 67 percent foul shooter. Williams made the first and missed the second. But late in the game, the ball has to be in the hands of Ferrell, Sheehey, Gordon or even Austin Etherington. Those players are better equipped for the last second pressure situations.
FOR STARTERS:With Vonleh out, IU coach Tom Crean went with a starting lineup of Sheehey, Williams, Etherington, Ferrell and Jeremy Hollowell. Those five combined for 53 of IU's 72 points and 21 of the 34 rebounds. That group made 17-of-37 shots from the field. They also had 12 assists, 11 turnovers, two blocks and five steals.
YOU RANK ‘EM, WE BEAT ‘EM That was a sign in Assembly Hall Thursday night for the Iowa and it has been a theme for the Hoosiers of late. IU has now knocked off four top 25 ranked teams this season, all at Assembly Hall. The wins have come against Wisconsin, Michigan, Iowa and Ohio State. There's a chance that Nebraska may be ranked this week and if so the Hoosiers will have a chance to get their fifth ranked team on Wednesday night at home.
INDIVIDUAL OBSERVATIONS: Here's a look at my own thoughts on a few Indiana players from Thursday's win over Iowa:
1. WILL SHEEHEY: The senior forward is playing with a great deal of confidence and should be entrenched in the conversation for Big Ten player of the week. He has 49 points in the last two games including a career-high 30 against Iowa. In those two games, Sheehey has hit 21-of-32 shots from the field. Most impressive of late has been his 3-point shooting. For most of the year Sheehey had shot in the 20's in terms of 3-point shooting percentage. He has made at least one three, though, in seven games in a row and is 11-of-25 from 3-point range in that span. Sheehey also had a pair of defensive gems one-on-one against Craft in the closing minutes. On one he took the ball away and the other he stripped it and it went off of Craft and out of bounds to the Hoosiers.
2. HANNER MOSQUERA-PEREA:: The most significant thing I noticed about Perea on Sunday was simply that he looked more comfortable. He still was a little robotic at times but overall he worked hard to get position inside, caught the ball with two hands in the post and made a couple of nice post moves. The ally-oop late from Yogi was a huge play as Perea scored on a layup and was fouled by LaQuinton Ross. That was the fifth personal on Ross. Perea made 3-of-4 shots from the field, had five rebounds and blocked three shots.
Troy WILLIAMS: Crean said he thought Williams played one of his better games and is continuing to show a great deal of improvement. He had eight points including 4-of-5 free throws. He had three assists and two turnovers in 32 minutes of action. One of his assists was a sweet pass on IU's first basket of the game to Etherington who scored on a reverse layup.
NEXT UP: Indiana (17-12, 7-9 Big Ten) will return home Wednesday to play Nebraska at Senior Night. The game will tip at 7 p.m. ET on the Big Ten Network.
Follow Terry Hutchens at Twitter.com/Foxsportshutch