1:53, first overtime: Illinois 53, Indiana 50
Pruitt got four shots there. One was bound to fall.
3:21, first overtime: Indiana 50, Illinois 50
Rod Wilmont has had one of those games where he just can’t do much. He got caught up by the double team there and was left taking that freaky lunging shot. The Hoosiers need more than two points and two rebounds out of him tonight.
End of regulation: Indiana 50, Illinois 50
I’m rarely ever right about anything. This time, I’m honestly not happy about it. This is going to leave us no time to write.
Interesting call, going with a shot for Bassett. He’s certainly got the nerve for it.
0:20, second half: Indiana 50, Illinois 50
Oh, does Kelvin Sampson have a flair for the dramatic or what? I mean, seriously, calling a time out exactly at the 20-second mark?
What’s the call here, Indiana faithful?
1:11, second half: Indiana 50, Illinois 50
Yawn. Anybody having any fun?
Meachum came up pretty big at the line for an Illini team that has hit only 9-of-17 foul shots.
Just what we needed. A controversy.
So apparently Frazier’s 3-point shot counts. And Keeling’s foul also counts. A possible 5-point play. If Pruitt hadn’t missed that free throw horribly.
This is just getting wild.
3:49, second half: Indiana 46, Illinois 42
Ratliff was calm on that 3-pointer. Think he’ll keeping the shots? Wilmont is 0-for-5 from 3-point. Ratliff is 3-for-4.
5:27, second half: Indiana 43, Illinois 41
Bassett hit that HUGE shot. Now, he’s getting worked on during this time out. Looks like he is cramping up.
7:48, second half: Illinois 39, Indiana 37
I’m sensing Indiana’s first overtime game of the season coming. That is all.
11:04, second half: Illinois 34, Indiana 33
Bassett to Keeling again. Freshmen roommates feeling the vibe tonight.
Carter’s the dangerous man for the Illini here late. He’s been matched up with 6-4 Rod Wilmont and will be able to get a shot pretty much at will.
Pruitt and Randle are in foul trouble, and Illinois has gotten nothing from it’s guards. Calvin Brock has been the most active, and recently Trent Meacham has been pesky but that’s about it.
13:47, second half: Indiana 30, Illinois28
Shameful plug for Doug coming. You’ve been warned.
He predicted in our podcast today that this game would come down to which team makes plays late int he game.
I know, I know…a very long, thin limb. (Sike.)
Still. That’s what it’s down to here at the United Center. The Illinois crowd has kicked in and the Hoosiers are making road mistakes. Sampson’s desperately trying to calm them down right now.
15:42, second half: Indiana 30, Illinois 24
Indiana would really like to be an inside-out team, but mostly it’s an outside team.
One play can change that, especially in a game so tight.
Keeling’s excellent feed through a double team combined with Rod Wilmonts court awareness led to that D.J. White jumper. The Hoosiers will hold onto this lead if they make two or three more plays like that. Illinois just won’t know how to counter.
Neither of Illinois’ starting guards has scored a basket yet. Chester Frazier, who had 21 points last night, is 0-for-3. Rich McBride, who hurt the Hoosiers in Champaign, is 0-for-2.
Half: Indiana 24, Illinois 21
Twenty minutes in and this game is going exactly as everybody thought it would. There are so many fights for the ball. There’s really not much basketball flow, but if you’re a true Big Ten fan this is what you love. Rugged basketball.
4:23, first half: Indiana 22, Illinois 16
The Illini went at least five minutes without a field goal for a stretch there. Both teams are playing very thick defense through the middle of the court.
7:54, first half: Indiana 18, Illinois 14
Okay, so while I wasn’t look the Hoosiers snuck Ben Allen out there. He didn’t last long and was replaced by Xavier Keeling. No Stemler yet.
But Keeling just crept in backside to take that feed from Bassett after a hard-charging drive to the lane. Bassett’s been matched up against McBride at both ends, and that’s a tough assignment for him. McBride is 205 pounds and uses all of it. Bassett’s just 176 and not naturally a very physical player. He got the better of it there, though.
Earl Calloway’s got five boards already. The pushing and shoving for the ball in the paint is so tough that many rebounds aren’t being grabbed until the ball is out past the arc, where Calloway usually stands.
11:50, first half: Indiana 12, Illinois 8
Doug pointed it out below, but just in case you missed it, A.J. Ratliff appeared to hurt his left wrist a bit under the basket. He’s been OK since then but it’s something to watch.
Mike White’s been a brute in the paint but he’s got three fouls already. Lance Stemler will have to come off the bench for him soon and he’ll probably have a lot of the same troubles. Look for the Hoosiers to really start pressuring the ball out top. It’s probably their best hope of stopping that big trio of Illini down low.
15:28, first half: Illinois 6, Indiana 3
Mike White with two tough early plays to draw fouls. Indiana has been able to do that against Illinois and would benefit greatly from not having to face so much length the entire game.
D.J. White atoned for his mistake with a great piece of offensive rebounding off a Mike White missed free throw, and then D.J. finished it by going high in the air and dropping a hook shot through the rim.
How’s the view from home, ya’ll?
18:30, first half: Illinois 6, Indiana 0
Sampson just looked at D.J. White like White just drove a brand new BMW into a lake. White left Pruitt open for that easy feed and basket.
Illinois has the edge in number of fans for sure but it’s certainly not overwhelming.
White, White, Bassett, Calloway and Wilmont to start for the Hoosiers.
Wisconsin 70, Michigan State 57 — So the Badgers pull away to win by 13 and await the winner of the Illinois-Indiana, which figures to start a few minutes after the scheduled 9:10 Eastern time.
Alando Tucker showed why he’s the best player in the Big Ten, scoring 21 points and grabbing six rebounds. Interestingly, he tied for the most assists on the team, too, with four. And only one of his baskets was not a 3-pointer. Just for good measure, he had a game-high two steals.
Michigan State has come storming back here to cut the lead to six with 12:50 left.
Wisconsin is still the much more poised team, though. None of those guys will even be fazed by this.
Oops, we’ve done it again. Another podcast is available right here.
Iâ€™ve got 20 minutes before my Geography lab. I’m going to try and cover more ground than Jamaal Tinsley driving away from the 8 Second Saloon, so hold on for the ride.
â€¢ Brandon McGee and his Crane took down archrival Lincoln Park Tuesday night, 54-52.
â€¢ Jai Lucas recently announced his top four schools… and Indiana wasnâ€™t one of them.
â€¢ Some Eli Holman e-mail highlights:
Holman and Richmond play Menlo-Atheron at home tonight. It is there first home game in the North Coast Section tournament so far. Holman said he is expecting his home gym to be â€œpacked.â€
â€˜Eâ€™ didnâ€™t sound very optimistic when I asked him about playing in all-star games this summer:
â€œI donâ€™t know of any All Star games I will be playing in. I hope I will playin’ some, but I understand the politics that goes into those selections.â€
I canâ€™t remember if I put this in the column or not, but this was by far my favorite quote:
â€œMy goal is to come in and start, but their are guys already in the program that are going to be fighting for minutes too. Its competitive, but in the long term if it helps the team, whatever role I have to play is fine by me.â€
â€¢ I wasnâ€™t invited to IUâ€™s inaugural basketball awards banquet, but here are the awards I would have given out if I had been:
â€¢ Best actor/s in a silent screen play: IUâ€™s assistant coaches.
â€¢ Andre Owens Lifetime Achievement Award: Joey Shaw. Remember when Owens played for IU? He had a decent freshman year (at best), transferred to Houston, and then somehow ended up in the NBA. I remember seeing Owensâ€™s name in a NBA summer league box score and being flat-out shocked. I would hate to see Shaw leave, but he has some interesting similarities with Owens.
â€¢The Rick Ross Award: Mike White. You might not get this if â€œrapâ€ is synonymous in your head with â€œevilâ€ â€“ but Mike White and Rick Ross were created from the same cloth.
Mike White was introduced to Hoosier fans with Rick Ross playing in the background. Literally, at Hoosier Hysteria. I remember not knowing a lot about White, then seeing him come out of the tunnel with Rossâ€™s â€œPush it to the Limitâ€ blaring out of Assembly Hallâ€™s speaker system. From that moment on, I knew White would win this award. Please, go download some Rick Ross, youâ€™ll thank me.
Thatâ€™s all Iâ€™ve got for today. Iâ€™ll update everyone this weekend
with the recruitâ€™s play in postseason action. Sayonara.
I don’t see a way Indiana doesn’t make it to the NCAA Tournament.
Joe Lunardi over at ESPN thinks the Hoosiers would eliminate themselves if they somehow ended up playing Penn State on Friday and losing.
Stranger things have indeed happened — I heard Dollinger has a date tonight — but the Nittany Lions winning two games this weekend is highly improbable.
Anyway, Lunardi’s got Indiana as a No. 10 seed playing No. 7 Boston College in Winston-Salem.
As much as I respect Lunardi, I’m not going to analyze the Hoosiers-Golden Eagles game. It’s just too early. Too much can happen. No way does Indiana get a No. 10 seed if it wins two games this weekend.
I did, however, look up the weather in North Carolina and find it to be 66 degrees and sunny. I’m cool with that but I’m still holding out for New Orleans.
Anyway, this whole tournament selection thing remains a mystery, as it probably should be. It’s a subjective process carried out by people deemed smart enough to handle it. No mathematical formula is ever going to work, so this has got to be the way it’s done.
But there’s good news for Indiana on that front: Gary Walters, the head of the selection committee, spoke to reporters earlier today from Indianapolis, where the committee is beginning its deliberations as I write.
Walters smartly steered away from saying that any criteria held more weight than any other. But he did say this:
“(W)e have to continue to look at the performance of the teams within the unbalanced schedules of their respective leagues. But, frankly, we also have to look at the unbalanced schedules outside the league. Some teams have been able to fatten up in the pre-season or on home games while other teams have had a more arduous path as it relates to their non-conference schedules. Those will be issues that we’ll have to probe into very, very carefully.”
Now, Walters is the AD at Princeton so I’m not sure I’m supposed to be able to understand all that, but I read it as being positive for a team such as Indiana, which didn’t win a really significant road game (the UConn game is debatable) but did play well at Duke, Kentucky and Michigan State. It certainly didn’t over-indulge on easy home games during the non-conference season.
Anyway, I’m interested in hearing what you think. What’s a proper, fair seed for these Hoosiers? Where would you like to see them open the tournament? How many of you are planning a trip?
Look, we’re well aware of the fact that our faces are made for radio. We own mirrors.
But why didn’t someone tell us we had voices only for newspapers? Geez.
Nevertheless, we gave this podcast thing a try. In the immortal words of Frank the Tank from Old School, “Everybody’s doing it!”
You can listen to it by clicking here. And it’s free. The government would have a serious problem with us trying to charge money for something like this.
Ah, yes. Another Wednesday morning spent chatting with you fine folks. I, for one, am excited.
It’s a quiet time of year, filled only with conference tournaments, March Madness speculation, the giving of awards and the blatant abuse of the company’s copying machine to reproduce 200 brackets for your pool, which you are determined to make the sweetest in all the land.
So, stop on by. We can chat about what teams might eventually fill that bracket, or anything else you might have on your mind.
Click here to join us. We hope you will.