Game Particulars: Indiana (6-18/1-11) vs. Wisconsin (16-9/7-6)
IU's Tom Crean and Wisconsin's Bo Ryan are facing each other for the first time this season, but they're far from strangers. When Crean was the head coach at Marquette, his teams went 3-4 against Bo Ryan's Badger squads from 2003-08. Now, they'll go head-to-head for the first time in the Big Ten. Wisconsin enters the game riding a Big Ten-best four-game winning streak that has them back in contention for an NCAA tourney bid. After opening the year 12-9 overall and 3-6 in the Big Ten, Wisconsin has rattled off wins over Illinois, Penn State, Iowa and Ohio State. Ryan's team hasn't given up more than 52 points during the four-game winning streak.
IU is coached by Crean, who is in his first year as Indiana's head coach and 10th year overall. Crean owns a 196-114 career mark and led Marquette to the NCAA Tournament five times. Wisconsin, meanwhile, is coached by Bo Ryan, who is in his 8th year with the Badgers and 25th year overall. Ryan owns a 189-69 mark at Wisconsin and a 572-172 mark overall.
The game will be televised by ESPN with Dave O'Brien (play-by-play) and Steve Lavin (color commentary) calling the match-up.
Indiana 2008-09 Schedule
Wisconsin 2008-09 Schedule
PG- Verdell Jones (6-5, 176, Fr.) – 9.2 ppg, 3.0 rpg, 3.3 apg, 39.4% FG shooting
SG – Devan Dumes (6-2, 188, Jr.) - 13.8 ppg, 3.0 rpg, 1.4 apg, 38.3% 3 pt. shooting
WG - Nick Williams (6-4, 211, Fr.) – 8.9 ppg, 5.0 rpg, 1.0 spg, 43.2% FG shooting
PF- Kyle Taber (6-8, 220, Sr.) – 3.9 ppg, 5.1 rpg, 1.0 spg, 48.2% FG shooting
C – Tom Pritchard (6-9, 242, Fr.) – 10.6 ppg, 6.7 rpg, 0.9 bpg, 50% FG shooting
Wisconsin (16-9/7-6 Big Ten)
PG- Trevon Hughes (6-0, 193, Jr.) – 11.4 ppg, 3.2 rpg, 3.0 apg, 37.7% 3 pt. shooting
SG – Jason Bohannon (6-2, 198, Jr.) – 10.8 ppg, 3.1 rpg, 1.7 apg, 38.5% 3 pt. shooting
WG – Joe Krabbenhoft (6-7, 219, Sr.) – 8.5 ppg, 6.7 rpg, 2.6 apg, 50% FG shooting
SF – Jon Leuer (6-10, 225, So.) – 9.3 ppg, 4.2 rpg, 0.8 bpg, 49.7% FG shooting
PF – Marcus Landry (6-7, 230, Sr.) – 12.9 ppg, 4.4 rpg, 1.2 bpg, 50% FG shooting
Indiana 2008-09 Statistics
Wisconsin 2008-09 Statistics
WHAT TO WATCH FOR
How many more shots will Wisconsin get than Indiana? – Anyone who has followed the Hoosiers this season are well aware of one of their biggest problems – turnovers. Indiana is turning the ball over a Big Ten-worst 16.9 times/game in conference games and 18.3 times/game overall. Now, they go up against a Wisconsin team that is on the opposite end of the category in the league, turning it over only 10.3 times/game overall and 9.2 times/game in league games. If Indiana is going to give itself a chance to stay close with the Badgers, it can't have so many empty offensive possessions tonight. While the Hoosiers have shot the ball better in recent weeks, Tom Crean can't afford to look at the final stat sheet and see that the Badgers have attempted 10+ more shots than his team does. That means minimizing the turnovers and also doing a better job of keeping teams off the offensive glass, where Wisconsin is averaging 12.5 offensive rebounds in its last two games.
How many minutes will Matt Roth play tonight? - The return of Devan Dumes to the lineup will likely send Matt Roth back to the bench, where he figures to be IU's sixth-man. Now that Roth is likely back to a reserve role, how significantly will his playing time be impacted. During Dumes' two-game suspension Roth averaged 12.0 points and 34.0 minutes/game, the most of anyone on the team. In the four games before the loss of Dumes, Roth was averaging 23 minutes/game. Expect the see Roth drop back down to the mid-20s as far as minutes, but expect to see him be a big part of IU's gameplan tonight. The Hoosier freshman actually has a pretty good defensive match-up in Wisconsin shooting guard Jason Bohannon, who is a very good shooter but now someone who will overwhelm Roth his quickness or athleticism.
Can Nick Williams neutralize Joe Krabbenhoft? - There are very few players who can take over a game without scoring a lot of points or taking plenty of shots, but Krabbenhoft is that type of player. The Badger senior is only the fifth-leading scorer on the team at 8.5 points/game, but he leads the team in rebounding and is second in both assists and steals. He plays with a toughness that is emblematic of Coach Bo Ryan, and keeping him from dominating the game in ways other than scoring will be Nick Williams' challenge. In a lot of ways Krabbenhoft and Williams fulfill a similar role for their respective teams, it's just that Krabbenhoft has a whole lot more experience.
"It's a very typical Wisconsin team in the sense that you know they're going to be extremely well coached, they can score early or they can take you down late into the shot clock. They're going to stifle you defensively with the way they clog the lane and they are a very physical team." – IU Coach Tom Crean
"You talk about there is that element of perseverance that separates a lot of people, and Joe (Krabbenhoft) just wants the ball. He's got a nose for it, a knack for it, and he's relentless." – Wisconsin Coach Bo Ryan
"We have to keep them off the foul line. If there's one thing that was probably a little different when they were struggling a little bit is they weren't getting to the line as much. Our whole key is to play smart. We want to be physical and tough. We want to bring that aggressiveness that we have in practice and show at times in games. We want to do our best to make it a 40-minute effort. You can't win in this league, you can't win in any high-level league if you're not doing it over a 40-minute period of time." – Crean
"I don't think there's one guy on our team that can't give more…everyone can improve. That's what we're continuing to try to preach. I think that's why our practices are so good and competitive. There's never a time where we come in and give these guys any illusion that we've leveled off or they've leveled off." – Crean
"You can expect every time a shot goes up their blockouts are going to be pretty physical. If you go up for lay-up they aren't going to give you one. You can expect this to be a physical game." – Kyle Taber
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Indiana vs. Wisconsin Gameday
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