Indiana wakes up on game day morning looking to avoid a hangover from Tuesday's less than optimal performance against Syracuse and to use North Florida as the punching bag with which to do it. A mid-tier competitor out of the Atlantic Sun Conference, the come into today's game at 5-5. They've currently played the 54th toughest schedule in the nation and the 6th toughest run of defenses so far this year. These guys are battle tested early.
There's nothing particular standout about the Ospreys. They don't do anything especially poorly, but they don't do anything well either. Their defense is probably the worst part of their game as they give up 1.09 points per possession on average. On offense they're scoring just under the national average a 1.02 ppp.
On the personnel front they have the same problem that a lot of mid-major programs have. Size. They're actually just outside the top 100 in effective height but Indiana still checks in much larger than that. Again rebounding should be a major point of emphasis today. The Hoosiers were pretty good on Tuesday matching Syracuse's rebounding output, but that can be better. Look for Indiana to emphasize crashing the boards and getting a bevy of second chance points and transition baskets.
I know I've been saying this over and over, but look for Jeremy Hollowell to continue to try and get going in this game. He's spent the entire season on the struggle bus but these types of games are the ones where no one can really match up with his size and skill set. Same goes for Will Sheehey in this one. Those two guys are the two that are most needing a big game to find their confidence. This team can't compete with the top of the conference without them.
This should be an easy game and it would be acceptable to engage in some nail biting if it remains close. The transitive property of sports doesn't exist, but I would be remiss to not point out that Ohio State beat this team by 35 two weeks ago. So the Hoosiers need a big win to go back to feeling good about where this squad is headed. Pomeroy is calling for a 19 point win, but I'd expect more. Hopefully we're looking at a game that is short and sweet and over by half time.