BIG TEN REVENGE GAME OF THE WEEK:
The last time these two met, the Wolverines smacked the Hoosiers around like a red-headed step child that nobody wants…That 30 point beat down was one of the worst losses for coach Crean, so you know that he is doing all he can to get the boys ready for some payback and to take that very bad taste out of their mouths.
We went against these Hoosiers and won our Big Ten Play of the Week on NW…However, with star guard Blackmon Jr, back in the lineup, we like the Hoosiers at home and below are some KEY EDGES which I feel will lead to them to revenge and victory today.
KEY EDGE #1:……Indy’s Offense is still Potent!
Ok, I know what your thinking…but the truth is that the Hoosiers offense still possesses the ability to light it up…In fact, the Hoosiers currently lead the Big Ten in FG% shooting at 48.7%…And they are also 2nd in the Big Ten in scoring offense averaging 81.3 ppg…Michigan, on the other hand, is ranked 6th in the conference averaging 74.5 ppg.
One thing to note and which I feel will benefit the Hoosiers is the fact that the Wolverines is ranked last (14th) in the Big Ten in FG% defense, allowing opponents to shoot 47% from the field…In addition, they are also last in 3PT FG% defense, allowing 40.8% from long range…This is not good stats to have against this Hoosier team because they are solid at shooting inside the arc where they average 55.2% in 2PT % shooting, which ranks 15th in the nation…And, they are solid in long range shooting, averaging 38.5% overall and 40% in games played at home.
Side Note: Indiana ranks 17th in the nation in Effective FG% shooting 56.2%.
And lastly, Indiana’s guard Blackmon, Jr is back in the lineup and healthy…He is an important key to this Hoosier offense and is just one of 10 finalist for the Jerry West Award which is given to the top shooting guard in the country…Blackmon missed 3 games with a lower leg injury but did return in their last game against Purdue and put up 11 points in limited action.
Today, in his 2nd game back, he should be more than ready to go full throttle…Again, his presence on the court is huge for the Hoosiers as he is currently ranked 4th in the Big Ten in scoring averaging 17.3 ppg…And, he also leads the Big Ten averaging 3.0 three-pointers made per game as well.
Side Note: Indiana’s Blackmon, Jr, is a two-time National and B1G Player of the Week….And earlier this month, he became the 50th player in Indiana’s history to reach the 1,000-point mark and is 46th on the all-time scoring list with 1,087 points.
In the Hoosiers first game at Michigan, and although they got smoked by 30 points…the Hoosiers offense still had a super solid shooting day all around…In fact, in that first game, Indiana shot 54.5% for the game, from the field…That was the 9th time this season and 3rd time in conference play, that they shot over 50% in a game…In addition, the Hoosiers also shot 53.8% from long range, which was also the 11th time this season that they have shot better than 40% from down town…And more currently, the Hoosiers in their last two games vs Wisconsin and Purdue, they have dropped 18-of-37 bombs for an average of 48.6%.
Side Note: In the first game vs Michigan, Indiana had 5 different players that accounted for the 7 three-pointers made in the game.
Side Note: Indiana is the first school to have 7 players (Anunoby, Juwan Morgan, Blackmon, Jr., Bryant, Newkirk, Johnson and Green) record a double-double in the same season since North Carolina did it in 2009-10.
If the Hoosiers can shoot this good on the road at Michigan even though they were demoralized in the blow out…and they were able to shoot solidly vs the Big Ten’s best two teams in Purdue and Wisconsin…then I have no doubt that they can do so again in their house vs the Wolverines.
KEY EDGE #2:…..Indy’s Defense has Stepped It Up!
Yes, the Hoosiers have lost their last 2 games…but they were playing the conferences best two teams in Purdue and Wisconsin…In those two losses, the Hoosiers defense really stepped up their game, holding both Purdue and Wisconsin to an average of just 67 points…In addition, the Hoosiers defense also held Wisconsin and Purdue to just 41.2% shooting from the field and just 26.3% shooting from long range.
In the game at Wisconsin, Indiana’s defense held Wisky to 19 made field goals for the game and just 65 total points…That was not only the fewest field goals allowed this season by the Hoosiers, but it also was the fewest field goals made by Wisky this season as well…In addition, the Hoosiers defense also held Wisky’s offense to just 39.6% shooting from the field.
Side Note: Indiana is ranked 4th in the Big Ten allowing just 32.5% from 3pt land.
In the Hoosiers last game vs Purdue, they were able to hold the Boilermakers offense to just 69 total points and 42.6% shooting from the field…In addition, Indiana held Purdue to just 6 made three-pointers for 28.6% average…This was a solid defensive effort as the Boilermakers came into the game as the best 3PT FG% shooting team, averaging 42.3% from long range.
Side Note: In Indiana’s last 2 games, their defense held Purdue’s top scoring offense, averaging 81.6 ppg to just 69 points…And they also held Wisconsin’s offense averaging 74.4 ppg to just 65 points.
Side Note: Indiana averages 4.8 blocks per game, which ranks 39th in the nation…while Michigan averages just 2.8 per game, which ranks 244th.
KEY EDGE #3:……Indy can Bang the Boards!
Indiana is a solid team when it comes to rebounding…Currently, the Hoosiers lead the Big Ten in rebounding margin with +8.4…Indiana is also currently 4th in the conference in offensive rebounding averaging 12.4 per game.
Side Note: Indiana ranks 9th in the nation in Offensive Rebounding % at 35.8%, while Michigan ranks 250th.
Michigan is ranked last in the Big Ten in offensive rebounding averaging just 8 per game…And, they are also ranked 13th in the conference in rebounding margin with -1.3.
Vs Wisconsin, Indiana grabbed 7 offensive rebounds and scored 10 points off of them…Then vs Purdue, the Hoosiers grabbed 11 offensive rebounds and turned that in to 15 second chance points.
Side Note: Michigan averages just 30 rebounds in road games…while Indiana is averaging a solid 41 rebounds in games at home.
Side Note: Soph Bryant is now 7th in the Big Ten in rebounding at 6.9 per game and 7th in blocks (1.4).
KEY EDGE #4:……Michigan Sucks on the Road!
The Wolverines may have beaten the Hoosiers by 30 points in the first game…But, there is a reason why they are now an underdog…And that reason has to do with the fact that they Suck on the road and have only won 2 games away from the Crisler Center.
More specifically, the Wolverines are just 2-6 SU and 3-5 ATS in road games this season…However, in true road games, the Wolverines are 0-6 on the season…That’s right, the Wolverines are 0-6 in True Road Games this season…Today’s game at Indiana, is another True Road Game.
Bottom line is this is a very important game for both teams as they both are seemingly hovering on top of the bubble right now.
Michigan though, is coming off a big rivalry win over Michigan St, in which they played for quintuple revenge and routed the Spartans by 29 points…Because of that, I feel that their focus and energy will not be as intense as it will be for Indiana…And that makes them vulnerable for an ass whooping by this desperate, good shooting Hoosier team.
Indiana has won 17 of the last 18 meetings in Bloomington and have gone 14-4 ATS as a host in this series…And with so much on the line and at stake for the Hoosiers getting to the Big Dance, I am expecting them to treat this as a do or die game, which means trouble for this Wolverine team that has not won a true road game yet this season…Indiana in their house, backed by their fans who will undoubtedly hype up the atmosphere, will get it done tonight…So with that said, lets ROCK-N-ROLL!…..GO HOOSIERS!
Side Note: Michigan is 0-4 ATS in their last 4 games played on Sunday.
Side Note: Michigan is 1-5 ATS in their last 6 road games.
Side Note: Michigan is 5-11 ATS in their last 16 games vs Big Ten opponents.
Side Note: Michigan is 4-12 ATS in their last 16 games vs teams with a winning record.
Side Note: Indiana is 4-1 ATS in their last 5 home games.
Side Note: Indiana is 4-0 ATS in their last 4 home games vs teams with a losing road record.
Side Note: Indiana is 10-3 ATS in their last 13 games following an ATS loss.
Side Note: Indiana is 10-4-1 ATS in its last 15 games at home vs Michigan.
Side Note: Indiana is 19-8-1 ATS in their last 28 games vs Michigan.