By: Cole Dunbar
Going into the game against Iowa many people believed it was a must win for Indiana.
The Hoosiers seemed like they were safe, like they were a lock for the tournament, but losing six games out of 10 is not something an NCAA tournament team does, so this one turned into a game that Indiana needed to win; not only was it a big game as far as NCAA tournament bubble watch goes but it had major B1G implications as well.
With a win, Indiana would have put themselves in a good position. They would have been ahead of Iowa with the tie breaker and right on the heels of Michigan State and Ohio State to try to make a push for one of those top 4 spots.
The game started off with a bunch of turnovers on both sides. Although IU may have had the lead briefly, it never seemed like they had any control of the game. The Hoosiers had way to many turnovers and bad fouls in the first half but to finish the half Robert Johnson hits a 15 footer at the buzzer and for as bad as IU had played, they were only down by 4.
The second half started off badly for Indiana as Iowa jumped out to a 9 point lead by the under 16 media time out.
The Hoosiers could not seem to get their feet up under them; neither the offense nor the defense seemed to half any energy. IU (mostly Nick Ziesloft) hit a couple big shots to cut the lead to about 5. The crowd started to get into it as Indiana seemed to be creeping back into it, but for everything IU threw at Iowa they had an answer.
Iowa played a very poised basketball game in the second half and it defiantly rattled the young Hoosiers. They started to force things. They started to miss shots they would normally make especially a lot around the rim. It just seemed to be one of those nights where they were not supposed to win.
So now what for the Hoosiers?
The hopes of being a top for team in the B1G tournament are gone and with one game left in the regular season, the Hoosiers could desperately use one more quality win.
Michigan State is not going to be an easy one, but one Indiana needs. After the game, Crean talked about trying to get the team’s 20th win saying “we have to bounce back in a hurry.” The players seemed deflated in the post-game press conference but when asked about their NCAA tournament hopes Yogi said “We’re not worried about that right now, we’re taking it one game at a time.” It’s good to see the players focused on what’s in front of them. Indiana will finish their season at home on Saturday against Michigan State; hopefully they can get a win and have more “rhythm” as Crean put it heading into the B1G Tournament.