Indiana vs. Michigan Gameday

There are still seven teams in the Big Ten that Coach Tom Crean's team has yet to face this season, but on Wednesday the Hoosiers will complete their season series against Michigan at Crisler Arena. Hoosier Nation previews the game, complete with match-ups, statistics, keys to the game, and quotes from both players and coaches about the contest…

Game Particulars: Indiana (7-8/1-2) at Michigan (8-7/2-2)
Just two weeks into the Big Ten season, the Hoosiers look to complete the season sweep against Michigan Thursday when the two teams square off at 9 p.m. (ET) at Crisler Arena in Ann Arbor. Indiana handed the Wolverines a 71-65 setback in the Dec. 31 Big Ten opener, thanks in large part to the play of Verdell Jones and Christian Watford. Jones finished with 20 points, eight rebounds and five assists, while Watford contributed 19 points. They're going up against a Michigan team that has been an enigma. After losing to IU, the Wolverines bounced back with impressive wins over Ohio State and at Penn State, only to follow that up with a homecourt loss to Northwestern Sunday. A top-25 team early in the season, this is a virtual must win for the Wolverines, whose next four games at against UConn, Wisconsin, Purdue and Michigan State.

IU is coached by Tom Crean, who is in his second year as Indiana's head coach and 11th year overall. Crean owns a 203-129 career mark and led Marquette to the NCAA Tournament five times. Michigan, meanwhile, is coached by John Beilein, who is in his third season at Michigan and in his 32nd year as a head coach overall. Beilein owns a 39-43 mark at Michigan, and a 590-361 record overall. Last week, he signed a contract extension that will keep him in Ann Arbor through 2015-16.

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

Indiana 2009-10 Schedule

Michigan 2009-10 Schedule

PROBABLE STARTERS
Indiana (7-8/1-2)
PG- Jeremiah Rivers (6-5, 214, Jr.) – 7.0 ppg, 5.6 rpg, 4.5 apg, 40.4% FG shooting
SG- Jordan Hulls (6-0, 172, Fr.) – 5.1 ppg, 2.2 rpg, 1.8 apg, 37.8% 3 pt. shooting
WG – Verdell Jones (6-5, 183, So.) – 13.1 ppg, 3.5 rpg, 3.2 apg, 41.7% FG shooting
SF – Christian Watford (6-9, 220, Fr.) – 12.6 ppg, 5.5 rpg, 0.6 apg, 41.6% FG shooting
PF – Bobby Capobianco (6-9, 238, Fr.) – 1.8 ppg, 2.2 rpg, 0.2 apg, 9.3 mpg, 40% FG shooting

OFF THE BENCH:
Derek Elston (6-9, 220, Fr.) – 6.1 ppg, 4.3 rpg, 0.9 spg, 48.7% FG shooting
Devan Dumes (6-2, 192, Sr.) – 6.1 ppg, 2.4 rpg, 1.2 apg, 34.0% 3 pt. shooting
Tom Pritchard (6-9, 248, So.) – 4.9 ppg, 3.9 rpg, 0.6 apg, 63.8% FG shooting

Michigan (8-7/2-2)
PG – Laval Lucas-Perry (6-3, 185, So.) – 6.3 ppg, 2.5 rpg, 2.1 apg, 35.2% 3 pt. shooting
SG – Stu Douglass (6-3, 185, So.) – 6.9 ppg, 2.2 rpg, 2.6 apg, 32.5% 3 pt. shooting
WG – Zack Novak (6-5, 210, So.) – 7.5 ppg, 4.5 rpg, 1.7 apg, 28.4% 3 pt. shooting
WF – Manny Harris (6-5, 185, Jr.) – 19.7 ppg, 6.9 rpg, 4.7 apg, 2.0 spg, 28.4% 3 pt. shooting
PF- DeShawn Sims (6-8, 235, Sr.) - 17.3 ppg, 7.0 rpg, 0.9 apg, 52.0% 3 pt. shooting

OFF THE BENCH:
Darius Morris (6-4, 180, Fr.) – 4.5 ppg, 2.1 rpg, 2.7 apg, 43.3% FG shooting
Zack Gibson (6-10, 220, Sr.) – 4.3 ppg, 2.3 rpg, 0.7 bpg, 54.3% FG shooting
Anthony Wright (6-6, 235, Jr.) – 1.4 ppg, 1.1 rpg, 0.7 apg, 11.1% 3 pt. shooting

Indiana 2009-10 Statistics

Michigan 2009-10 Statistics

WHAT TO WATCH FOR
Can Indiana win the points off turnover battle again? – While Verdell Jones' 20 points and Christian Watford's 19 were key statistics the first time these two team met, the biggest stat for Indiana was the nine turnovers it committed. Eight of those came in the game's first 16 minutes, as Tom Crean's team committed only one in the game's final 24 minutes. As a result, Indiana won the points off turnover battle 12-7, limited the number of open perimeter transition looks Michigan's guards got, and won a game that few thought Indiana could in its first game without Maurice Creek on the floor. It's unlikely that IU can limit itself to one turnover in a half again, but it clearly can't come anywhere close to matching the 24 turnovers it committed at Ohio State. Those turnovers lead to fastbreak opportunities and wide open looks from behind the arc, two things IU wants to do its best to eliminate for Michigan. Shortly before leaving for Ann Arbor, Crean said decision making is the No. 1 thing his team has to be better at in its second Big Ten road game. The points off turnovers will go a long way toward revealing how successful IU was in doing that.

Will Jeremiah Rivers be as successful slowing Manny Harris as he was two weeks ago? - Lost in the midst of a big game for Verdell Jones and some clutch free-throw shooting from Jordan Hulls was the job that Jeremiah Rivers did on Manny Harris when these teams met on New Year's Eve. While some first-half foul trouble slowed Harris as well, the Big Ten's scoring leader was still limited to just 13 points on 4-of-11 shooting in 30 minutes, his second-lowest scoring output of the season. The credit for that goes to Rivers, who has the physical size, athleticism, and quickness to match up with the 6'5", 185-pound junior. There's little doubt that Rivers will draw this assignment again, and he'll be counted on to keep Harris under wraps. One of the keys to slowing Harris is to prevent him from getting easy baskets in transition off turnovers, as he is averaging 2.0 steals per game. That means Rivers will not only need to be good defensively when matched up against Harris, but also offensively by minimizing the turnovers that can free Harris up in transition.

Can Indiana count on another big game from Devan Dumes off the bench? - Dumes played a season-high 22 minutes against Michigan the first time around, scoring 11 points and making 3-of-7 from behind the 3-point arc. There's every reason to believe that Dumes will approach those 22 minutes again this time around, if not exceed them. Michigan starts a four guard line-up and puts five players on the floor that are willing to shoot from behind the 3-point arc. Indiana will likely start with a pair of frontliners in Christian Watford and probably Bobby Capobianco, but Crean will go four guards at times. The first time he did it against Michigan the first time these two teams met, Indiana went from down 17-14 to up 25-21 thanks to an 11-4 run. When Indiana had four guards on the floor in that game it outscored Michigan in each of those five stretches, doing so by a combined score of 31-18. Indiana will go four guards again Wednesday, and Dumes' contributions will be key. He gives Indiana a good 3-pointer shooter, some experience and can be a very good on-the-ball defender.

QUOTABLES
"This is the third of the four games we will have played in the Big Ten where we really see a four guard line-up. The difference with Michigan is its four guards and a guy that is really a small forward at the next level in DeShawn Sims. They pose a ton of problems." – Tom Crean

"When you go on the road, in shooting, you never know where that's going to be. You never know where foul trouble is going to be. You never know if you're going to make shots, make 3s. But you have to be able to go and make decisions. You have to defend, you have to be able to put forth great effort on the rebounding area, you have to get back on defense, and you have to be able to make decisions or you have no chance." – Crean

"We have to get back and play good transition defense and rebound. On offense, we have to make the extra pass and find the open man." – Jeremiah Rivers

"They were reconstructing a little bit after (Maurice) Creek's injury. Now they're a little smoother. Dumes has a big role, Jones has a bigger role. They're good." – Michigan Coach John Beilein

"We feel we're better prepared for (Indiana) than the first time, but I'm sure they're better prepared (too). It's an important game for both of us." – Beilein

"It's a game of easy baskets – the teams that get the most are the teams that win, the teams that give up the fewest are the ones that win on the other end." – Crean

"I told Bawa (Muniru) this morning, I want him to be able to play in these games, but again we're going against a four guard line-up. That makes it hard. I want to get Derek Elston more minutes. But again you have to be able to guard on the other end and guard the match-ups you have. It's not as much what you do on the offensive end as who you're able to guard the other way. Zoning a team like Michigan is a scary deal because of how well they shoot the ball." – Crean

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