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Indiana vs. Butler: Crossroads Classic gamethread and more

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Notre Dame Purdued in their pants in the 2nd half for the second straight Crossroads Classic in the first game, and lost to the Boilers 86-81. Now, the Hoosiers take on the annoying little engine that could (twice).

Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports

Sources tell Crimson Quarry that, at least for today, the "Butler way" is throwing beer bottles across downtown establishments, yelling and cursing at elderly Indiana fans, and forgetting that two straight losses in the national championship game don't make you a blue blood.

Anyway, here's what Kyle Swick says about this game:

The first thing that's probably jumping out at you here is that Indiana is a dang top-30 defense, fueled largely by limiting second chances and being one of the very best in the nation at forcing misses. While a lot more goes into perimeter defense than how many makes you allow, it can't be ignored that Indiana is 2nd in the country in that area, allowing only 25.1% of their opponents' 3PT shots to fall so far this season. Some of that can certainly be chalked up to the competition, but only three of Indiana's opponents (thus far) are below average when it comes to firing from range.

Butler won't be the fourth, they're making 38.7% (Indiana sits at 38.8%) of their threes and 55.8% (the Hoosiers hit 57.5%) of their twos. Nearly 40% of Butler's field goal attempts come from behind the arc, which isn't that far behind Indiana's current rate of 40.8%. The similarities don't end there, as Butler is assisting on 54.7% of their made field goals (126th) while the Hoosiers do so 55.2% of the time (117th.) As you can see, Butler isn't all that different than Indiana offensively, both have one giant weakness (Butler's offensive rebounding, Indiana's turnovers) while Indiana is better at getting to the line. It's no surprise both offenses are fairly close to one another, efficiency-wise.

Defensively, Butler struggles with fouls, putting guys at the line more frequently than average and struggles to run guys off the perimeter, with 37.6% of their field goal attempts allowed coming from behind the arc, which makes them 210th in the country. They are good rebounders and excel at turning opponents over, which is always concerning for the Hoosiers, who rarely need any assistance when it comes to coughing up the ball.

Personnel-wise, the Bulldogs aren't as deep as the Hoosiers (98th in bench minutes, Indiana is 37th) but they're far more experienced (128th / 312th). Their nucleus consists of three seniors and two juniors. PG Tyler Lewis is a transfer from NC State in his second year at Butler, he has an assist rate of 36.5% (35th) and an eFG% of 71.9 (14th) but he doesn't take very many shots. Avery Woodson is a transfer from Memphis and hits 41.8% of his threes, Indiana cannot afford to let him get clean looks from deep. Andrew Chrabascz, a sort of poor man's stretch forward does a good job of getting to the line and can hit an open three if you give it to him. Tyler Wideman is their main man in the post, a menace on the glass at either end and can finish through contact. He's shooting 70.5% on his twos and leads the starters in Free Throw Rate.

Kelan Martin is the team's go-to guy on the wing. He's gobbling up 31.1% of the possessions and 34.4% of the shots when he's on the court and only Chrabascz is playing more minutes than him. His eFG% of 34.4 isn't stellar, but he's capable from just about any spot on the floor. He represents a huge matchup issue for Indiana because his size and athleticism means you can't expect to stick one of the guards on him. Since the Bulldogs start three forwards, I wouldn't expect Indiana to counter with their familiar three guard lineup for very long. Assuming OG Anunoby is healthy, I would expect him and Juwan Morgan to play the majority of the minutes along with Thomas Bryant, giving the team defensive flexibility to guard all three Butler forwards without sacrificing on offense.

And for some last-minute news: OG Anunoby is warming up and is not wearing a brace on his injured ankle. It appears that he is good to go.