Indiana vs. Michigan State Gameday

It's Senior Night, and Kyle Taber will say farewell to Indiana basketball fans after five stormy years with the IU basketball program. If Taber hopes to go out a winner in his final home game, his team will need to spring a monumental upset against a Spartan team that has already wrapped up at least a share of the Big Ten title and still has hopes of securing a No. 1 seed in the NCAA Tournament…

Game Particulars: Indiana (6-22/1-15) vs. Michigan State (23-5/13-3)
It's Senior Night for Kyle Taber and the Hoosiers in Bloomington, but it's the Michigan State Spartans who have designs on celebrating after tonight's match-up with the Hoosiers. Coach Tom Izzo's team can wrap up the outright Big Ten championship tonight with a win over an Indiana team that has lost seven in a row and 18 out of its last 19. One of those losses came to the Spartans in East Lansing, when the Hoosiers saw a close game early in the second half spiral out of control in a 75-47 loss at the Breslin Center. Michigan State got huge games from Draymond Green (15 points, 12 rebounds) and Chris Allen (16 points) off the bench in the win. Assembly Hall hasn't been the friendliest of venues for the Spartans as of late, as Izzo's team last won in Bloomington in 2003.

IU is coached by Tom Crean, who is in his first year as Indiana's head coach and 10th year overall. Crean owns a 196-118 career mark and led Marquette to the NCAA Tournament five times. Michigan State, meanwhile, is coached by Tom Izzo, who is in his 14th year with the Spartans and owns a 328-135 career mark.

The game will be televised by ESPN with Brent Musberger (play-by-play) and Steve Lavin (color commentary) calling the match-up.

Indiana 2008-09 Schedule

Michigan State 2008-09 Schedule

PROBABLE STARTERS
Indiana (6-22/1-15)
PG- Verdell Jones (6-5, 176, Fr.) – 9.9 ppg, 3.1 rpg, 3.7 apg, 42.4% FG shooting
SG – Devan Dumes (6-2, 195, Jr.) – 13.1 ppg, 3.0 rpg, 1.5 apg, 37.7% 3 pt. shooting
WG - Nick Williams (6-4, 211, Fr.) – 8.6 ppg, 4.6 rpg, 19.4% 3 pt. shooting
PF- Kyle Taber (6-8, 220, Sr.) – 4.4 ppg, 5.2 rpg, 1.0 spg, 49.5% FG shooting
C – Tom Pritchard (6-9, 242, Fr.) – 10.2 ppg, 6.5 rpg, 1.2 apg, 50.2% FG shooting

Michigan State (23-5/13-3 Big Ten)
PG- Kalin Lucas (6-0, 180, So.) – 14.6 ppg, 2.1 rpg, 4.6 apg, 37.8% 3 pt. shooting
SG – Travis Walton (6-2, 190, Sr.) – 5.4 ppg, 2.4 rpg, 3.4 apg, 44.8% FG shooting
WG – Durrell Summers (6-4, 195, So.) – 9.1 ppg, 3.3 rpg, 39.1% 3 pt. shooting
SF – Delvon Roe (6-8, 225, Fr.) – 6.1 ppg, 5.5 rpg, 56.5% FG shooting
PF – Goran Suton (6-10, 245, Sr.) – 10.0 ppg, 7.8 rpg, 53.6% FG shooting

Indiana 2008-09 Statistics

Michigan State 2008-09 Statistics

WHAT TO WATCH FOR
Kyle Taber's speech – Ohh…the stories Kyle Taber could tell if he wanted to following tonight's game. If this was A.J. Moye or Sean Kline, maybe IU fans could expect some fireworks during Taber's Senior Speech, but don't count on the soft-spoken Evansville native to step to the microphone and use the opportunity to do a tell all of five crazy years with the IU basketball program. Despite that, it will be interesting to see how he handles any recognition he's willing to offer to former coaches Mike Davis, Kelvin Sampson and even Dan Dakich. Indiana doesn't lose very often on Senior Night, but it will have its work cut out for it to keep the game close against the Big Ten champion Spartans. But no matter how this game unfolds, it would be nice to see all of the fans in attendance stick around long enough to pay their respects to a player who arrived at IU in the fall of 2004 as a walk-on and has survived some of the most tumultuous times in the history of IU basketball.

How will Devan Dumes perform in his return contest against the Spartans? - Devan Dumes had a game to forget the first time around against the Spartans, and it wasn't just because he scored only five points and committed five turnovers before fouling out in 19 minutes. Dumes had a trio of incidents with three different Spartan players where his overly-aggressive use of his elbows was called into question by officials, ultimately resulting in his ejection from the game. On top of that, Dumes wound up being saddled with an additional two-game suspension by IU Coach Tom Crean. If Indiana has any hopes of staying close tonight, it is going to need a very big game from its leading scorer. He'll need to not only remain in the floor, but he'll need to knock down shots from behind the 3-point arc. Indiana made only three 3-pointers in the first meeting between the two teams, and IU likely will need to triple that total tonight.

Can Indiana maximize its possessions? - You can dissect a match-up all you want, but there are some fundamentals that Indiana has to do if it hopes to give itself a chance. First and foremost for Tom Crean's team is limiting turnovers. Indiana turned the ball over a season-low 11 times Saturday against Penn State, and as a result gave itself a chance to win. In the first meeting with the Spartans, the Hoosiers turned it over 21 times and as a result lost by 28. Taking care of the ball is especially important against a team like the Spartans, who will turn opponent turnovers into fastbreak baskets more often than not.

QUOTABLES
"They're so deep and talented. It's one thing to have depth, it's another thing to have the consistency of depth, and it's a whole other thing to have the talent inside of that depth. They have that. They can put numerous players out on the court." – IU Coach Tom Crean

"Indiana has been playing so much better – it's unbelievable the job Tom Crean has done there. They were right there with Penn State, had a three-point lead late and actually gave Purdue a pretty good game…we realize you can't take anything lightly in this league." – Michigan State Coach Tom Izzo

"They're very talented and very tough-minded. There's no question they feed off Tom. They always have. There's a never say die, never quit attitude to them. They execute at a very high level, and there are some things do as well as anyone in the country. They run their break as well as anyone in the country, they rebound as well as anyone in the country." – Crean


Peegs.com Top Stories