Indiana vs. Charlotte Gameday

The last time Charlotte was in Bloomington, the 49ers won 74-73 on a controversial last-second halfcourt shot by Brendan Plavich. Indiana gets a chance to avenge that setback when Coach Bobby Lutz's squad arrives for an 8 p.m. contest at Assembly Hall Saturday night

Game Particulars: Indiana (3-2) vs. Charlotte (2-3)
Indiana gets a chance to get back on track when it faces Atlantic 10 foe Charlotte (2-3) Saturday at 8 p.m. at Assembly Hall. The last time these two teams tangled in Bloomington was in 2004, a game that saw the 49ers Brendan Plavich hit a halfcourt shot at the buzzer to beat IU, 74-73. This marks the sixth time in the last seven years these two teams have tangled, with IU owning a 4-1 edge. Indiana won at Charlotte 71-54 a year ago, the only contest in the series that has been decided by more than 10 points.

IU is coached by Kelvin Sampson, who is in his first year as Indiana's head coach and owns a 3-2 record in Bloomington and a 458-259 career mark. Charlotte, meanwhile, is coached by Bobby Lutz, who in his 9th year at the helm of the 49er program and 18th year as a head coach overall. Lutz owns a 156-99 mark at Charlotte and a 337-190 mark overall.

The game will be televised by ESPN-Plus Local, with Jim Barbar (play-by-play) and John Laskowski (color commentary) calling the match-up.

Indiana 2006-07 Schedule

Charlotte 2006-07 Schedule

Indiana (3-2)
PG- Errek Suhr (5-8, 155, Sr.) – 2.2 ppg, 1.4 rpg
SG-Armon Bassett (6-1, 176, Fr.) – 6.0 ppg, 3.0 rpg, 3.4 apg, 28.6% 3 pt. shooting
WG – A.J. Ratliff (6-3, 188, Jr.) – 6.8 ppg, 2.0 rpg, 25% 3 pt. shooting
PF – D.J. White (6-9, 251, Jr.) – 12.6 ppg, 7.2 rpg, 2.0 bpg, 50% FG shooting
C - Ben Allen (6-11, 256, So.) – 1.4 ppg, 3.6 rpg, 30% FG shooting

Charlotte (2-3)
PG- Carlos Williams (6-1, 190, Jr.) – 9.0 ppg, 3.0 rpg, 2.0 apg
SG –Leemire Goldwire (5-11, 190, Jr.) – 17.0 ppg, 4.8 rpg, 2.6 apg
WG- DeAngelo Alexander (6-6, 225, Sr.) – 17.2 ppg, 7.4 rpg, 2.2 apg
PF – E.J. Drayton (6-9, 225, Sr.) – 11.8 ppg, 10.8 rpg
C – Antwon Coleman (6-7, 275, Sr.) – 4.0 ppg, 2.0 rpg

Indiana 2006-07 Statistics

Charlotte 2006-07 Statistics

What's the status of Charlotte guard Leemire Goldwire? – The 49ers' second-leading scorer at 17.0 points/game, Goldwire sprained his right ankle in Wednesday night's game against Mississippi State and his availability for the Indiana game is uncertain. Charlotte didn't practice Thursday and Goldwire was to be evaluated before practice today. His absence would be significant. Goldwire leads the team in 3-pointers, assists and steals and averages 34.0 minutes/game. He's also adept at attacking the basket and getting to the free-throw line, where he's shooting 93.3 percent (28-of-30) this season. If he's unable to go, freshman Ian Anderson (7.0 ppg, 42.3% 3 pt. shooting) will likely start in his place, a significant drop-off in productivity and experience.

How will IU match up with E.J. Drayton? - If Lance Stemler isn't able to start Saturday, IU faces a dilemma in how it matches up with 6-9, 225-pound forward E.J. Drayton. If Indiana opts to start D.J. White and Ben Allen, it would likely be forced to use White on Drayton, a tough defensive assignment for White considering Drayton's ability to step outside and generate offense away from the basket. Drayton will also be a challenge for the Hoosiers to keep off the boards, evidenced by his 10.8 rebounds/game. If White does in fact match-up with Drayton, don't be surprised to see Lutz's squad go to him early in an effort to get the Hoosiers' big man in foul trouble.

How will IU guards A.J. Ratliff, Roderick Wilmont and Earl Calloway bounce back from Tuesday's benchings? - Sampson sent a message in Tuesday's loss to Duke, sending Ratliff, Wilmont and Calloway to the bench for all but three combined minutes of the second half. While it's unclear if Ratliff and Calloway will return to the starting lineup Saturday, it's clear that all three will get an opportunity to redeem themselves against the 49ers. Ratliff and Wilmont, in particular, will play important roles on the defensive end of the floor. They'll likely share the assignment of containing De'Angelo Alexander, Charlotte's 6-6, 225-pound wing who averages 17.2 points, 7.2 rebounds and nearly 16 shots per game. Despite his scoring average Alexander is shooting just 33.3 percent from the floor and 27.3 percent from behind the 3-point arc, and it will be up to the Hoosier duo to keep him from getting many easy opportunities. This is a big game for Alexander, who spent two years playing for Sampson at Oklahoma. A Midwest City, Okla., native, Alexander departed Norman after being accused of plagiarism in a class 2 ½ years ago. He was going to be suspended for a semester, but instead opted to transfer to from the Big 12 school and landed at Charlotte.

Will D.J. White heed Kelvin Sampson's advice? - On Thursday, the Hoosier head coach talked about White needing to get a "swagger," suggesting the Hoosiers' 6-9, 251-pound big man needed to get a little tougher and meaner on the basketball floor. Instead of letting the game come to him, Sampson wants White to do a better job of battling in the post for position and then demanding the ball from his teammates. It's obvious why Sampson wants that from White – he's the team's No. 1 option on the offensive end, but his 12.6 points and 7.2 rebounds/game don't scratch the surface of White can do when he puts his mind to it. Saturday will give IU fans an opportunity to see if White takes that advice and tries to dominate in the paint.

The recruiting saga of Phil Jones finally ended with the 6-11, 250-pounder enrolling at Charlotte over the summer, but time will tell if Jones remains with the 49er program. The one-time IU recruiting target was declared academically ineligible by the NCAA, and he's not permitted to play or practice with the 49ers this season. Jones is appealing the NCAA's decision and has remained enrolled at Charlotte while waiting for the outcome of that appeal…another familiar name to IU fans might be 49er junior forward Sean Phaler, a one-time IU recruiting target whose journey has been a wild one. Phaler originally signed with UCLA three years ago, but was released from that commitment when Ben Howland took over the Bruin program. He landed at New Mexico, where he redshirted one season and then averaged 2.5 points in 2004-05. He departed New Mexico for Fullerton (Cal.) JC a year ago to be closer to his ailing father, where he averaged 8.7 points on a team that went 37-0. He's averaging 1.5 points and 5.3 minutes per game for Charlotte…Charlotte's E.J. Drayton has as many double-doubles this season (3) as IU's D.J. White has in his career…Indiana has made a marked improvement on the boards this season, out-rebounding all five of its foes while owning a +8.6 rebounding margin overall. A year ago IU had a +1.1 rebounding margin and was -0.6 in Big Ten games…Indiana has started four different starting lineups in its five games. The only two players to start all five games are A.J. Ratliff and D.J. White…Indiana is holding its foes to just 39.6 percent shooting from the field, while Charlotte is shooting just 38.8 percent from the floor in its first five games…D.J. White has more blocks (10) than Charlotte has as a team (7)…Charlotte is outscoring its opponents, on average, by two points in the first halves of its five games, but has been outscored by its foes by seven points/game in the second half. Top Stories