#7/8 Hoosiers Host Connecticut
Jan. 24, 2008
#7/#8 Indiana (17-1, 6-0 Big Ten) vs. Connecticut (13-5, 4-3 Big East)
The Opening Tip
The Indiana men's basketball team is ranked seventh by AP and eighth in the ESPN/USA Today Coaches poll. The Hoosiers will play the last of a three-game homestand when they host UConn. IU has won its last 13 games, the longest winning streak during Kelvin Sampson's two-year tenure, and is coming off a 65-43 win at home over Iowa. The Huskies posted an 84-83 win at Cincinnati on Wednesday night. The Hoosiers 17-1 start is its best since the 1975-76 team posted college basketball's last perfect season at 32-0. At 6-0 in conference play, Indiana has its best opening in the league since the 1992-93 team started 11-0 in the conference en route to a Big Ten title. The Hoosiers own the fourth longest home court winning streak in the nation at 29. The Huskies hold a 4-3 edge in a series which began in 1938. Last year, IU posted a 77-73 win over UConn in Hartford, but the previous season, the Huskies took home an 88-80 win in Assembly Hall. This will be the sixth time in seven years that a Kelvin Sampson-led team will face UConn. He is 4-1 in the previous five meetings.
Two-time National Coach of the Year Kelvin Sampson was named the 26th head coach in Indiana University history on March 29, 2006 and is in his second year with the Hoosiers and 25th as a collegiate head coach. He has notched 16 20-plus win seasons and is 493-269 (.647), which ranks 20th in victories among active NCAA Division I coaches. He is 38-12 (.760) in two seasons and is 27-0 at Assembly Hall, surpassing Branch McCracken who held the record for most consecutive wins at home to start a career with 25 from 1938-41. Both of Sampson's Hoosier teams have been nationally ranked. This year, the Hoosiers are currently enjoying their highest ranking of the season, while last year, they climbed to #19.
Coach Jim Calhoun is in his 22nd season at UConn and has a 515-196 record with the Huskies. He is a member of the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame.
The Hoosiers return to the road on January 31 for a game at Wisconsin to begin a stretch of three of four away from Assembly Hall. Indiana will visit Illinois (January 7) and Ohio State (January 10). The lone home game for IU will come on February 3 against Northwestern.
Indiana's 17-1 start is the best for a Hoosier squad since the 1975-76 National Championship team went 32-0 for the last undefeated season in NCAA history. At 6-0 in conference play, IU is off to its best Big Ten start since the 92-93 squad opened 11-0 en route to a Big Ten title.
With the victory, Indiana ran its win streak to 13 games, the 10th time in school history that Indiana has posted a winning streak of 13 games or more. It is the longest winning streak since 1992-93.
Indiana improved to 93-68 all-time against the Hawkeyes with Wednesday's victory. The Hoosiers swept the regular-season series with Iowa for the first time since 2002-03. Indiana allowed the Hawkeyes just 43 points, the fewest in the all-time series since a 45-39 IU victory in 1946.
The Hoosiers have now held three teams under 50 points this season, the first time they have accomplished that feat since 1996-97.
Indiana has now won 29 games in a row in Assembly Hall, the fourth-longest home-court winning streak in the nation. It is also the fourth-longest home winning streak in school history. Kelvin Sampson is now 27-0 in Assembly Hall in his career with the Hoosiers.
The Hoosiers had 10 steals in the contest to force 20 Iowa turnovers. The 10 steals were the most since December 29 against Chicago State and Iowa's 20 turnovers were the highest for a Hoosier opponent since December 15 against Western Carolina.
For the second straight game and the sixth time this season, the Hoosiers shot over 50 percent, going 25-for-47 from the field (53.2 percent). The Hoosiers were even more impressive inside the arc, going 22-for-33 (66.7 percent) on two-point shots.
Indiana improved to 29-3 when leading at the half and 27-4 when outrebounding its opponent under Sampson.
After Iowa scored the game's first four points, the Hoosiers went on a 14-3 run to take a 14-7 edge with 13:10 to play in the first half. Eric Gordon was 3-for-3 and assisted on two other baskets during the run.
D.J. White continued his impressive shooting from the field, going 8-for-13 for 19 points in the game. The senior added four rebounds on the night.
Eric Gordon finished the night with 17 points on 7-for-11 shooting. The freshman also posted one of his best games on the defensive end, setting a career high with four steals and matching a career best with three blocks for the Hoosiers.
Jamarcus Ellis continued to be an all-around force for the Hoosiers against the Hawkeyes. The junior scored 12 points and added eight rebounds, four assists and two steals.
Armon Bassett had another solid night from the field, going 3-for-3, 2-for-2 from 3-point range, for eight points. He added three rebounds, three assists and two steals. Over the last two games, Bassett is 9-for-11 (81.8 percent) from the field.
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