The Indiana Hoosiers men’s basketball team are looking to rebuild their program under new coach Archie Miller, but they have been very inconsistent early in the season. The Hoosiers had their chance to pull off a big upset over the top ranked Duke Blue Devils, but a late cold stretch ultimately cost them the game.
Indiana used the extremely loud crowd in Assembly Hall to their advantage early in the game yesterday. It was a tightly contested game with both teams swapping the lead throughout the first half. Duke ultimately held a small four-point lead at halftime. The second half started off very similar to first 20 minutes of the game. Duke held a one-point lead with only four minutes remaining, but the explosive Duke offense was too much for the Hoosiers. A big run at the end of the game gave Duke a 91-81 victory.
Archie Miller has to be pleased with the way his team played last night. The Hoosiers played a near flawless game, but the talent disparity was simply too much to overcome. Marvin Bagley III and Grayson Allen are two of the best players in the country right now, and they were practically unstoppable in the final four minutes.
Indiana now has four wins through their first seven games this year. They will get an early start to conference play when they host the Michigan Wolverines on Saturday, December 2. If they continue to play with the same effort as the Duke game, then they will win a lot of basketball games this season.
During the 2016-17 NCAA men’s basketball season, the Indiana Hoosiers were one of the more disappointing teams. After finishing strong the prior year and making a run in the NCAA tournament, the Hoosiers finished with a record of 18 and 16, including 7 and 11 in the Big Ten. This ultimately was good for 9th place in the conference, which was not enough to qualify for postseason play.
To make matters worst, the team also is losing several players to either graduation of the NBA Draft. In order to develop the team and grow for the future, the Hoosiers need to be able to recruit. While the team has made some progress this year in recruiting, it appears that they will lose at least one of their key targets for their 2018 draft class. After a tough recruiting process, the Hoosiers ended up losing Nahziah Carter to the University of Washington (https://hoosierstateofmind.com/2017/06/11/indiana-recruiting-hoosiers-lose-on-nahziah-carter/).
Nahziah Carter was one of the higher rated targets for the Hoosier’s draft class. He was considered a three-star player, but had a playing style that would make him fit will in the team’s rotation in a couple of years. Nahziah Carter was also highly sought after by a number of other schools as well. He originally signed to play with the University of Dayton, but opted to rescind his commitment after he started receiving more interest from the more major programs.
While Nahziah Carter has opted to go to the University of Washington, the Hoosiers still have plenty of other recruits to look forward to. The Hoosiers are considered to have one of the top 25 recruiting classes for the next two years and also one of the top three in the conference. The Hoosiers also had several freshman and sophomores last season that made a big impact on the team. While they have lost some talent, there should be enough depth to allow the team to make a run in the coming year.