Game Info/How to Watch
Who? Indiana Hoosiers (1-1, #84 KenPom) vs. Seton Hall Pirates (2-0, #29 KenPom)
When? Wednesday, November 15, 6:30 PM, FS1
Where? Prudential Center, Newark, NJ
Pomeroy? Seton Hall by 12, 15% chance of victory
To say that Indiana’s start to the new season has been disappointing would be an incredible understatement. After getting run off the court by Indiana State in the season opener, the Hoosiers followed up with another uninspired performance in a nine-point win over Howard on Sunday. Now, Archie Miller will face a tough test in his first road game, as Indiana heads east to face #22 Seton Hall, led by National POY contender Angel Delgado.
Seton Hall comes into this game with a record of 2-0 after beating Farleigh Dickinson and Monmouth. The Pirates haven’t looked overly convincing on offense, but they are incredibly effective on the offensive glass, creating a ton of second-chance opportunities. Angel Delgado has picked up where he left off last season, as he has recorded a double-double in both games after recording a whopping 27 last year.
HERE WOULD YOU LIKE SOME FACTORS?
|Indiana (#57 adj. offense)
|Seton Hall (#32 adj. defense)
|Seton Hall (#27 adj. offense)
|Indiana (#165 adj. defense)
Basically, Seton Hall is built on two things: forcing turnovers on defense, and elite offensive rebounding. You know what Indiana isn’t good at? You guessed it, they can’t hang onto the ball on offense and struggle to finish possessions with a defensive rebound. Now, they head into a matchup with Seton Hall, who is ranked in the top 25 in Turnover % and Offensive Rebound %. It should also be mentioned that Indiana is ranked 271st in the country in defensive eFG%. Sure, some of that has to do with the fact that both Howard and Indiana State hit everything they threw towards the basket, but it also shows that Archie Miller’s defensive ideas haven’t been fully implemented yet. Seems like a horrendous matchup for Indiana if you ask me.
On the bright side, the Pirates come into this game after shooting just 28% from 3 against Monmouth. It’s been well documented that the 3-pointer has decimated the Hoosiers in the first two games of the young season, and a team that’s struggling from downtown could be just what the doctor ordered for Indiana. If Archie Miller’s squad can keep guys like Khadeen Carrington and Desi Rodriguez quiet from long range and finish possessions with a defensive rebound, then they’ll have a good shot at pulling off the upset.
With all that said, let’s be realistic here. This isn’t a game that Indiana is set up to win, especially given their slow start to the season. Angel Delgado is going to give De’Ron Davis and Freddie McSwain headaches all night with his bruising play down low, and it wouldn’t shock me to see one of Carrington or Rodriguez have a big night. Indiana will need to see a lot more from Robert Johnson and Josh Newkirk to give themselves a chance of victory.
STUFF TO WATCH FOR
- Backcourt play: It’s been well documented that Robert Johnson and Josh Newkirk have been extremely disappointing to start the season, and need to kick things up a notch if the Hoosiers want to have success this year. Luckily, Aljami Durham was able to pick up the slack against Howard, when he nailed three 3-pointers in the Indiana victory. Archie Miller announced that Devonte Green is questionable for this matchup, and this could mean increased playing time and even the possibility of a first career start for Durham. If Green does end up playing tomorrow night, I’d like to see him pick up more of the scoring load, like he did in the two exhibition games. Overall, Indiana is at a disadvantage in the matchup of these sets of guards, as both Khadeen Carrington and Myles Powell are both good players who can cause problems for Indiana on both sides of the ball.
- Freshmen making an impact: Justin Smith and Aljami Durham both played a huge role in Indiana’s win against Howard on Sunday. Smith recorded his first double-double in an IU uniform after scoring 16 points on 8-12 shooting to go along with 12 boards; and Durham buried three 3-pointers en route to a 16-point performance. If Smith can hit the boards like he did against Howard, he will be a huge help down low against one of the best rebounding teams in the country. Also, if these two freshman can keep up their solid offensive performances, that could prove to be key as offensive production has been inconsistent in the first two games. Clifton Moore had a disappointing debut against Howard, and Seton Hall could shape up to be yet another frustrating game, if he does see the floor.
- Defense and rebounding: I feel like I’m writing this for the 100th time, but Seton Hall is an elite rebounding team. They’re 21st in the nation in Offensive Rebounding % and have one of the most dominant big men in the country in Angel Delgado. Delgado is playing excellent basketball this season and is on the watch list for the Kareem Abdul-Jabbar Award, which goes to the nation’s top center. De’Ron Davis will draw Delgado on defense, and he’ll have his hands full all night. I’d be in favor of giving Clifton Moore minutes in this game, just to be able to keep up with the size of the Pirates down low. Delgado will be the star for the Pirates on offense, but Desi Rodriguez and Myles Powell can really score the ball from anywhere on the court, and could give the Hoosiers nightmares if they place too much focus on Delgado. If the Hoosiers can defend the three-point line and keep the likes of Delgado and Rodriguez from dominating the offensive glass, then they’ll have a chance.
I still want to believe in this team, I really do. However, there is a serious lack of offensive talent on this roster, and that will hold them back until Archie Miller’s brand of defense can really take hold. This one will probably end up being a long night for the Hoosiers, and could be over as soon as halftime.