Previewing Iowa

Indiana meets a struggling Iowa team, which has lost 5 of its last 7 games. This meeting in Iowa City is a must win for the Hoosiers.

Indiana will attempt to land its second straight victory at Iowa when the Hoosiers travel to Carver Hawkeye Arena at 9:00 p.m. on Wednesday.

For Indiana the keys are simple: rebound and defend. The Hoosiers are 11-1 when outrebounding their opponent, and they have a 10-1 record when holding the opposition under 40 percent from the floor.

The Hoosiers need production from their other seniors. The time is now for a seasoned group of veterans like Indiana's seniors to step up. Tom Coverdale has not scored in double figures for the past four games shooting 11-for-38 over that span. Meanwhile, Kyle Hornsby cannot find any open looks at the basket. He is averaging 2.5 shot attempts per game. Hornsby needs to be more aggressive and continue working without the ball in order to find more open looks. IU will need him to make big shots against the Hawkeyes.

Iowa needs to find a way to shut down Jeff Newton. Newt was named Big Ten Co-Player of the Week after registering consecutive double doubles against Michigan and Wisconsin. Newton averaged 20 points and 11 rebounds over the week and joins Bracey Wright and Tom Coverdale as the third Big Ten Player of the Week on Indiana's roster this season.

The matchups in the upcoming game favor Indiana. Iowa does not rebound particularly well, and the Hawkeyes lack the quickness to attack Indiana's perimeter defenders. Like Indiana, Iowa plays a three-guard system. No Hawkeye matches up well with Bracey Wright, so look for Indiana to get the ball to Wright early and often. Wright will have a size or quickness advantage on any player Iowa puts on him. Look for Jeff Horner or Chauncey Leslie to start the game against Wright with Coach Alford making adjustments throughout the game.

Leslie will be the biggest challenge for the Hoosiers to stop. He leads Iowa with an average of 16.1 points per game. Leslie shoots only 24 percent from behind the arc, but shoots 50 percent from the floor overall, stressing his ability to score inside the arc. He has the ability to consistently knock down perimeter jumpers; he just prefers them to be inside the 3-point line. Leslie has a small frame, but he is quick and elusive when penetrating. These small, quick guards have bothered Indiana throughout the season. Marshall Strickland defends well and will be better suited to guard the quick Leslie than Coverdale.

Coverdale will matchup with former Indiana Mr. Basketball Brody Boyd. Boyd is the most prolific 3-point shooter in Indiana high school history, proving he can shoot the ball. This year, however, Boyd cannot find his range, shooting only 31 percent from 3-point land. Still, Boyd can catch fire in any game. Coverdale needs to stick with Boyd while making him work on the opposite end.

Iowa will have the advantage at the power forward position, where A.J. Moye will spot Iowa's Sean Sonderleiter eight inches. Sonderleiter has solid skills around the basket, but he is a freshman. Moye might be able to take advantage of his quickness advantage and experience to counteract the size disadvantage. Indiana needs Moye to be assertive on the defensive boards in order to support Newton inside. Indiana's big men also need to keep a close eye on forward Glen Worley. Worley did not start last game against Penn State and responded to the benching with a 15 point night. He served as a catalyst for Iowa's second unit and Alford plans on using him as a sixth man again against Indiana. Worley plays well around the basket, doing the little things Iowa needs to win.

The biggest question for Wednesday's game is the status of George Leach. Indiana misses Leach's inside presence and shot blocking ability. He covered up many of Indiana's struggles by stopping guard penetration earlier in the season. The Hoosiers could use Leach to make a run down the stretch this season. Top Stories