Jan. 9, 2009
Complete Game Notes in PDF Format
INDIANA (5-9, 0-2 Big Ten) vs. ILLINOIS (13-2, 1-1) Big Ten)
Saturday, Jan. 10, 2009, 3:00 p.m. ET
Assembly Hall - 16,618 (Champaign, Ill.)
Series Record: IU Leads, 82-78
Last Meeting: Indiana 83, Illinois 79 (Champaign, Ill. - 2/7/08)
TV: Big Ten Network (Dave Revsine and Jim Jackson)
RADIO: IU Radio Network (Don Fischer, Todd Leary and Joe Smith)
THE OPENING TIP
Indiana is in its 102nd season as a member of the Big Ten Conference and will visit long-time rival Illinois on Saturday. The Hoosiers are coming off a tough, 72-66 overtime loss at home to Michigan, while Illinois has had the last few days off since losing at Michigan, 74-64, last Sunday. Indiana won both meetings last year, 62-58 in Bloomington and 83-79 in double overtime in Champaign. Each of the last four meetings between the two teams have been decided by four points. It will be a homecoming for Champaign native (Central High School) and Hoosier freshman Verdell Jones III who was the Champaign News-Gazette Area Player of the Year. In addition, Matt Roth, who was Peoria Journal Star Big School Player of the Year, last year, also comes back to his home state. He played at Washington Community High School.
IU is third all-time in NCAA Championships (5), fifth in NCAA Tournament appearances (35), sixth in NCAA Tournament victories (60), seventh in Final Four appearances (8) and 10th in overall victories (1,640). Indiana has won 20 Big Ten Championships and has the best winning percentage in conference games only at 60.0%. No team has had more All-Big Ten selections than IU with 53.
THE LEAST EXPERIENCED TEAM IN BIG TEN HISTORY
Tom Crean and his staff will put one of the least experienced non-first year programs in Big Ten history on the floor in 2009. Of players who played in league games last season, Indiana returns just 19 points and 185 minutes of experience. The second least experienced team is Iowa with 405 points and 1418 minutes played. The average of the remaining nine teams in the league is 755 points returning and 2418 minutes. Overall, Indiana lost 98.8 percent of its scoring and 96.9 percent of its rebounding from last season. Senior Kyle Taber (28 points) and sophomore walk-on Brett Finkelmeier (2 points) are all that return from last year's 25-8 squad which advanced to the NCAA Tournament.
Indiana named Tom Crean as its 28th men's basketball coach on April 2, 2008 and he is 5-9 with the Hoosiers. He came to Indiana from Marquette where he was 190-96 (66.4) in nine seasons and made five NCAA Tournament appearances, including the 2003 Final Four. His teams have never faced Michigan. The Fighting Illini are coached by Bruce Weber who is in his sixth year in Champaign and has a 140-49 record.
ODDS AND TRENDS
Junior Devan Dumes is averaging 15.7 points and is shooting 40.0% from three-point range (20-for-50) in the last seven games. Nick Williams is tied for the conference game only lead in freshman scoring averaging 14.0 points in his first two Big Ten games. Indiana is third in the league in steals at 7.57 per game.