Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Men's BB: Iowa Hawkeyes vs. Indiana Hoosiers (Take Two) VS.

GAME INFO: Wed., Jan 23, 2008 - 8:05 CST - Assembly Hall; Bloomington, IN
IOWA: 9-10 (2-4); RPI: 174 / Indiana: 16-1 (5-0); RPI: 25

TV COVERAGE: Big Ten Network - DIRECTV (Ch. 220) / DISH Network (Ch. 439) - Wayne Larrivee and Shon Morris will call the action.
LINE - Indiana is a 16.5 point favorite at home; 128 is the over/under.


Iowa came close to knocking off the Hoosiers in the their first battle earlier in the year in Carver - thanks to Justin Johnson's Insane Shooting Display. Indiana isn't, by any means, unbeatable, but they do get the job done. How? Rebounding, playing good defense, being efficient on the offensive side of the ball, and getting to the FT and then making those shots from the charity stripe. Sounds like a pretty good formula, huh? Whether you care for his ethics or his personality, Kelvin Sampson can coach. Iowa will need to keep an eye on Bassett in this game... If you recall, he didn't play much in the first game.

As I stated in the previous preview of Indiana, it's no secret that Lickliter and his staff despise the Hoosiers. They will be ready for this game, and so will the Hawks. I don't expect Iowa to come out flat, even though they done that quite a few times this year (eventually getting into it later on, however). Iowa is going to play hard. Tony Freeman looks to have found his groove, the guys down-low finally "get it", and the two freshman are getting better and better. Iowa has also been winning with Justin Johnson in a HUGE slump.

Keys to the Game for Iowa
1.) Get DJ White and DeAndre Thomas in foul trouble early. They are foul prone, and getting those guys immobilized will allow Iowa to focus on Indiana's sharp shooters (i.e. - Gordon, Bassett, etc...)
2.) Let Ellis, McGee, and Ratliff shoot all they want from 3 point land. Hell, stay 4 feet back and beg them to shoot it. On the season, they are a combined 12-58 from behind the arc.
3.) Don't focus too much on Gordon - overhelping could severely hurt Iowa in this game.
4.) Justin Johnson needs to get off the schnide in this game for Iowa to have a chance. Freeman has broad shoulders for a guard, but they aren't broad enough to carry the entire team. (That includes picking up after them.)
4.) Play solid, fundamental defense. There it is again.

I don't think Iowa is going to stay with Indiana as well as they did in Carver. The Hoosiers are going to have a great crowd in AH, Indiana is full strength this time, and although Iowa is improving, so are the Hoosiers. I am not saying Iowa doesn't have a shot in this one... any time they can play the D they are capable of, anything is possible. Iowa will need to play the perfect game, though... or turn it into another MSU-type game.

Iowa - 61
Indiana - 75

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