Indiana vs. Minnesota Gameday

It's Senior Night in Bloomington as D.J. White, Lance Stemler, Mike White and Adam Ahlfeld play their final games at Assembly Hall. While Indiana is trying to keep its Big Ten title hopes alive, Minnesota has designs on getting a marquee road win to try to enhance its chances of receiving an at-large invitation to the NCAA Tournament…

Game Particulars: Indiana (24-5/13-3) vs. Minnesota (18-10/8-8)
In a season that's been loaded with a slew of peaks and valleys, Indiana welcomes Tubby Smith's Minnesota Golden Gophers to town for Senior Night. Indiana needs a win – and some help from either Penn State or Northwestern – to keep its Big Ten title hopes alive and to send seniors D.J. White, Mike White, Lance Stemler and Adam Ahlfeld out on a winning note in their home finale. Minnesota, meanwhile, needs a win to enhances its NCAA Tournament resume. The Gophers are also looking for some payback after the Hoosiers overcame 26 turnovers to win in Minneapolis 65-60 in mid-January.

Indiana is also looking for its ninth win in its last 10 Senior Nights. The only blemish came four years ago when Wisconsin topped the Hoosiers 70-52 to wrap up a 13-14 regular season that saw IU miss the NCAA Tournament for the first time in 18 years.

IU is coached by Dan Dakich, who took over for Kelvin Sampson 12 days ago. Dakich is 2-1 at IU and 158-141 in 10-plus seasons as a head coach. Minnesota, meanwhile, is coached by Tubby Smith, who is 405-153 in 17 years as a head coach.

The game will be televised by the Big Ten Network with Matt Devlin (play-by-play) and Trent Tucker (color commentary) calling the match-up.

Indiana 2007-08 Schedule

Minnesota 2007-08 Schedule

Indiana Hoosiers (24-5/13-3)
PG- Armon Bassett(6-1, 176, So.) – 11.4 ppg, 2.4 rpg, 3.2 apg, 48.7% 3 pt. shooting
SG- Eric Gordon (6-4, 205, Fr.) – 21.4 ppg, 3.3 rpg, 2.5 apg, 37.5% 3 pt. shooting
WG – Jamarcus Ellis (6-5, 210, Jr.) – 7.0 ppg, 7.1 rpg, 3.6 apg, 40.2% FG shooting
F – Lance Stemler (6-8, 210, Sr.) - 4.7 ppg, 3.1 rpg, 0.7 spg, 32.5% 3 pt. shooting
F – D.J. White (6-9, 230, Sr.) – 17.0 ppg, 10.4 rpg, 1.6 bpg, 60.7% FG shooting

Minnesota Golden Gophers (18-10/8-8)
PG- Lawrence McKenzie (6-2, 180, Sr.) – 11.8 ppg, 2.3 rpg, 3.0 apg, 42.2% 3 pt. shooting
SG – Lawrence Westbrook (6-0, 195, So.) – 8.2 ppg, 3.4 rpg, 2.6 apg, 39.7% 3 pt. shooting
WG – Jamal Abu-Shamala (6-5, 210, Jr.) – 3.7 ppg, 1.9 rpg, 0.8 apg, 33.3% 3 pt. shooting
PF – Dan Coleman (6-8, 225, Sr.) – 12.4 ppg, 6.1 rpg, 1.2 bpg, 48.4% 3 pt. shooting
C- Spencer Tollackson (6-9, 260, Sr.) 10.2 ppg, 4.2 rpg, 1.0 spg, 52.5% FG shooting

Indiana 2007-08 Statistics

Minnesota 2007-08 Statistics

Will Indiana do a better job of limiting its turnovers?– Somehow, Indiana found a way to win in Minnesota in mid-January despite turning the ball over 26 times. Eric Gordon turned it over seven times while Jordan Crawford and Armon Bassett added four miscues apiece against Tubby Smith's aggressive on the ball defense. While Minnesota's hounding defensive approach played a part in IU's troubles, the Hoosiers' carelessness didn't help either, and that's the area Dakich's team must shore up. Tubby Smith's tenaciousness on defense is always going to force foes into some mistakes, but IU must eliminate the unforced mistakes if it wants to be successful Wednesday night. Gordon and Crawford, in particular, need to keep their turnovers in check. Both had some inexplicable turnovers in Minneapolis that had Coach Kelvin Sampson joking that he told both that they needed to start throwing the ball to the white jerseys. But if they struggle in that area again, it won't be a laughing matter.

Will Indiana go zone or man-to-man? - After giving up nine first half 3-pointers to a Michigan State team that ranks last in the Big Ten in 3-pointers made this season, Indiana scrapped its zone defense and went man-to-man for most of the second half Sunday. The Spartans still put 44 points up against Indiana in the second half, but those 44 points and 47.1 percent shooting paled in comparison to the 59 points and 77.8 percent first-half shooting effort. With just two games remaining before the postseason, Indiana needs to figure out what its defensive identity is going to be. The zone has worked well on occasion – most notably at Ohio State and at home against Michigan State – but it also was shredded at Illinois and at Michigan State. With the one-and-done format nearing, Indiana can ill-afford to be that inconsistent on the defensive end. If Indiana does decide to go back to the zone, watch to see if either Lawrence McKenzie or sixth-man Blake Hoffarber get hot. They rank sixth and ninth, respectively, in the Big Ten in 3-pointers made this season. If IU plays man-to-man, watch out for Dan Coleman, Minnesota's versatile power forward who would be a very difficult match-up for Lance Stemler.

Will Indiana play with more heart and passion than it has as of late? - That's the biggest thing that was lacking Sunday in the 29-point loss at East Lansing. Forget about the inability to get back on defense or the failures to answer on offense. As Indiana's hole got deeper and deeper, the Hoosier players' shoulders began to sag and heads began to drop. Maybe that was an aberration, the culmination of a tumultuous three weeks that resulted in the departure of Kelvin Sampson. Or, maybe it was a sign that everything this team has been through has beaten the team down to the point it doesn't have the fight it needs to battle back against a quality opponent. Wednesday night's game should provide some hints about which path the Hoosiers will take the rest of the season.

Will Mike White have the shortest senior speech in IU basketball history? Senior Night is always a highlight event each season for fans and players alike, and Indiana will say goodbye to four seniors following the game. Over the years many players have given memorable – and occasionally long-winded – speeches, but speculation is Mike White might give one of the shortest farewells in team history. The junior college transfer has never been one to fill a reporter's notebook during an interview in the last two years, and he slipped out of a media gathering Tuesday night when the other three seniors reflected on their experiences in Bloomington. Maybe it was because he needed to get home to begin putting together his list of things to say and people to thank, but…we doubt it.

"You'd like to wipe (the Michigan State game) away, but it happened. As long as you learn from it, that's all you can do. I think we've had our two best days of practice since Coach (Sampson) left. We'll see how it ends tomorrow night, but we took a step in the right direction after the game with yesterday's practice and today's practice. We're starting to see Coach Dakich as the head coach now. I guess it was a little bit of a transition." – Lance Stemler

"(Practice) has been tough. We've been going at it and working on a lot of things we need to work on. We've been battling and pushing each other doing the things we need to do to be successful." – D.J. White

"These two years have been quick. It feels like I just got to Bloomington, I remember when I was living with (Errek) Suhr and he was saying something about a speech, and I was thinking I didn't have to worry about that for a while. But it comes on quick." – Lance Stemler

"We know we'll have our hands full going to Bloomington against a very good Indiana team. I have unbelievable respect for those young men with the adversity they've gone through." – Minnesota Coach Tubby Smith

"Kelvin and I are good friends and I want to wish him the best. But we have a job to do and hope we can go there with the right attitude. The big thing will be how the players at Indiana respond. Every time they've had some adversity they've responded in a very good way." – Tubby Smith

"I've coached against DJ every year, having been at Kentucky…he's got such a heart and such a team-oriented guy. He does whatever is needed for his team to win. He's all about winning...he's very deserving of (Big Ten) Player of the Year." – Tubby Smith Top Stories