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Nebraska Basketball: Indiana Preview

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Can the Huskers bounce back to a surging Indiana squad?

NCAA Basketball: Indiana at Iowa Jeffrey Becker-USA TODAY Sports

Indiana Preview

Date: Tuesday, February 20th

Time: 8:00pm CST

Location: Lincoln, NE

Coach: Archie Miller (1st year)

2016-17 Record: 18-16 (7-11 Big Ten)

2017-18 Record: 16-12 (9-7 Big Ten)

Previous Season:

The Hoosiers had a rough go of it last year. That for some reason seems like the M-O of a quite a few teams in the Big Ten. No, I won’t go into detail on who. You will just have to take my word on it.

Can you tell my ability to care about these teams and their recent history is starting to wane? I apologize.

Any who, Indiana ended the regular season tied for 10th in the Big Ten. In the tournament they made it all the way to the quarterfinals where they were soundly defeated by Wisconsin. Doesn’t it seem like a century ago when Wisconsin was good? Yeah, it was just last year.

The NIT was their prize for such a sub par season and they were beat in the first round to Georgia Tech. The Yellow jackets did make it to the championship game where they were beat by TCU. That can pretty much sum up Indiana’s season. They were beat by the runner up team in the NIT.

However, that was not the end of their season. The end came when they fired the beloved Tom Crean. After 9 seasons the Hoosiers decided to can the guy who gave us this

and this

and this

Farewell sweet prince.

Current Season:

The 2017-18 season has started out slow but the Hoosiers have gradually improved as the year has gone on. They are currently tied for 6th and should have a fairly good shot of making the NIT.

They are on a four game winning streak with wins over Rutgers, Minnesota, Illinois, and Iowa. None of which are world beaters but any winning streak this time of year can be huge. Right now, many teams are starting to limp into the finish line and hope to get healthy for the conference tournaments.

Indiana is lead by forward Juwan Morgan. The junior is averaging 16.6 ppg, 7.3 rpg, and 1.4 apg. This has been a coming out season for Juwan as his sophomore season was lackluster at best. This possible all Big Ten player will cause problems for Nebraska’s forwards. I would not be surprised if the Huskers get into foul trouble early trying to defend him in the paint.

Robert Johnson, who I assume didn’t sell his soul to the devil, is averaging 13.9 pgg, 4.5 rpg, and 2.6 rpg. The senior guard is the most visible leader on this team and seems to be headed in the right direction as the regular season comes to a close. He recently had a career high of 29 points against Iowa in Iowa City. While he will pose a threat to Nebraska’s guards we should match up well against him in Lincoln.

Prediction:

I know a lot of you folks would like some good news after the Illinois loss but this might not be it. Indiana, while they’ve meddled in the middle of the Big Ten all season, is peaking at the right time. Yes, they have beaten the bottom of the conference the last couple of weeks but they have done it in fine fashion.

Nebraska will need to not only play some of their best basketball of the season against the Hoosiers but also rely on the crowd to get behind them when it’s close. Coach Miller has them playing well and I do not see them letting up. This should be a good game for at least the first half.

Many are seeing this improvement as a good thing and that they are a real threat. I’m not buying it as of yet but I will not be surprised of they pull off the upset in Lincoln. The Huskers dominance has been lacking any real power recently in my mind. Indiana could easily come in and take the psychological advantage. Their stats as a team are okay but nothing special. I am only giving this to Nebraska because it is being played at home. Also, it probably won’t be pretty.

University of Nebraska 67 Indiana University 65