Indiana vs. Northwestern Gameday

Indiana (18-9/8-6) looks to end its five-game road losing streak when it travels to Evanston, Ill., to take on Northwestern (13-15/2-12) Wednesday at 7 p.m. The Hoosiers – who expect to have point guard Earl Calloway back in the line-up - need a win to climb back into a tie for third place in the conference standings…

Game Particulars: Indiana (18-9/8-6 Big Ten) vs. Northwestern (13-15/2-12 Big Ten)
Indiana is hoping to get well Wednesday when it travels to Evanston, Ill., to face a struggling Northwestern squad at Wesh-Ryan Arena. The Hoosiers have lost three out of four to slip into a tie for fourth in the Big Ten standings with two regular season games remaining. But a third-place finish and a No. 3 seed in next week's Big Ten Tournament are probable for the Hoosiers if they can win their final two regular season games against Northwestern and then Saturday at home against Penn State.

IU is coached by Kelvin Sampson, who is in his first year as Indiana's head coach and owns an 18-9 record in Bloomington and a 473-266 career mark in 23-plus seasons. Northwestern, meanwhile, is coached by Bill Carmody, who in his seventh year at the helm of the Wildcat program and 11th year overall. Carmody, who spent four seasons at Princeton before taking over the Northwestern program, owns a 95-110 record in Evanston and a 187-135 career mark.

The game will be televised by ESPN2, with Terry Gannon (play-by-play) and Stephen Bardo (analyst) calling the match-up.

Indiana 2006-07 Schedule

Northwestern 2006-07 Schedule

PROBABLE STARTERS
Indiana (18-9/8-6 Big Ten)
PG- Earl Calloway (6-3, 173, Sr.) – 9.8 ppg, 3.0 rpg, 4.1 apg, 49.0% FG shooting
SG- Armon Bassett (6-1, 176, Fr.) – 9.5 ppg, 2.3 rpg, 2.9 apg, 42.4% 3 pt. shooting
WG – Roderick Wilmont (6-4, 205, Sr.) – 11.9 ppg, 5.5 rpg, 1.0 apg, 38.5% 3 pt. shooting
SF – Lance Stemler (6-8, 210, Jr.) – 6.9 ppg, 4.2 rpg, 0.9 apg, 32.7% 3 pt. shooting
PF – D.J. White (6-9, 251, Jr.) – 13.8 ppg, 7.0 rpg, 1.3 apg, 2.2 bpg, 51.2% FG shooting

Northwestern (13-15/2-12 Big Ten)
PG – Craig Moore (6-0, 180, So.) – 7.8 ppg, 1.9 rpg, 2.0 apg, 32.1% 3 pt. shooting
SG- Sterling Williams (6-2, 195, So.) – 4.4 ppg, 2.7 rpg, 1.3 apg, 36.1% FG shooting
SF- Tim Doyle (6-7, 220, Sr.) – 11.5 ppg, 3.2 rpg, 4.9 apg, 50.6% FG shooting
PF – Kevin Coble (6-8, 190, Fr.) – 13.3 ppg, 5.2 rpg, 0.6 apg, 49.8% FG shooting
C – Ivan Tolic (6-8, 235, Sr.) – 1.6 ppg, 1.3 rpg, 0.5 apg, 66.7% FG shooting

Indiana 2006-07 Statistics

Northwestern 2006-07 Statistics

WHAT TO WATCH FOR
Can Indiana limit its turnovers? – Ball security is an absolute must against Northwestern. The Wildcats' slow-it-down, control-the-tempo approach makes each possession more important than in a game where the score gets into the 70s or 80s, and that rarely happens against a Bill Carmody-coached team. Northwestern is giving up only 57.8 points per game and has given up 70 or more only three times in 14 Big Ten games. That's one reason why Earl Calloway's return to the lineup will be important Wednesday. Calloway ranks third in the Big Ten in assist-to-turnover ratio in league games, and he's a big reason why IU averages only 12.4 turnovers/game. If Indiana can minimize the sort of careless miscues it had in the second half of the loss to Michigan State it should be in good shape to pick up its second conference road win.

Will Indiana dominate on the glass? It should. Northwestern is among the nation's worst rebounding teams, getting out-boarded by an average of 8.6/night. The Wildcats are particularly woeful on the offensive glass, where they've corralled only 190 offensive rebounds as a team this season (Indiana, by contrast, has 313 offensive rebounds) and their leading offensive rebounder is 6'2" guard Sterling Williams with 27. D.J. White, Lance Stemler and Rod Wilmont need to take advantage of that and attack the offensive glass for putback opportunities.

Kevin Coble vs. Lance Stemler - While few outside Evanston know much about him, the 6-8, 200-pound Coble has been one of the Big Ten's most productive newcomers. The Phoenix, Ariz., rookie is averaging 13.3 points and 5.2 rebounds, ranking him third among Big Ten newcomers in both categories. He's also picked up his play as of late, averaging 21.0 points/game in his last two games and 16.2 points/game in his last five outings. He's also a weapon from behind the 3-point arc, shooting 39.2 percent on the season and 54.5 percent (6-of-11) in his last two games. He'll be matched up against Stemler, who's a similar player in that a lot of his offense is also generated from behind the 3-point arc. The Hoosier junior has been mired in a miserable shooting slump for nearly two months, but did knock down a couple of jumpers and could be poised to finally end his shooting woes in Evanston.

Matching the Emotion - On paper Indiana has a clear edge over a Wildcat team that is in danger of putting up its worst Big Ten regular season record season going 0-16 in 1999-00. But it is senior night for the Wildcats, who will be saying goodbye to Tim Doyle, Ivan Tolic, Vince Scott and little-used Joe Kennedy. There's always some added emotion and meaning to these kind of contests, and there's nothing the Wildcat seniors would enjoy more than capping their homecourt careers with an upset over Indiana. That's a possibility if Indiana doesn't play with the sort of energy IU fans have been accustomed to seeing out of Kelvin Sampson's team. Indiana needs to be prepared for an emotionally charged Wildcat team that will be doing everything it can to send its senior out on a good note.

NOTABLE…
Indiana has lost its last three games in Evanston, falling 74-61 in 2003, 63-59 in 2004 and 73-52 in 2005. Before that, IU had won its previous 13 games at Northwestern dating back to 1988…in Northwestern's 75-68 loss to Purdue last week, Kevin Coble and Tim Doyle combined to go 17-of-30 from the field, but the rest of the team was just 5-of-17… Northwestern leads the Big Ten in assist-to-turnover ratio (1.39), averaging 15.1 assists/game against a league-low 10.9 turnovers/contest…Northwestern has 190 offensive rebounds this season, while every other team in the Big Ten other than Minnesota has at least 300. The Gophers have 259…in conference games Northwestern is averaging only 50.7 points/game. The only other conference team that isn't averaging at least 60/game is Minnesota, which averages 58.0. Indiana, meanwhile, is averaging 68.7 points/game in conference games, which ties the Hoosiers with Ohio State for tops in the league…Tim Doyle ranks in the top 10 in the Big Ten in assists (4.9 – 3rd), steals (1.68 – 4th), assist-to-turnover ratio (1.7 – 7th), field goal percentage (.506 – 8th) and free throw percentage (.740 – 9th). The only Hoosier to rank in the top 10 in as many individual categories is D.J. White, who is second in blocked shots, fourth in rebounding, sixth in field goal percentage, seventh in offensive rebounds and third in defensive rebounds.

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