Indiana Heads to East Lansing to Battle Michigan State
Jan. 18, 2008
Indiana (11-7, 4-2 Big Ten) at Michigan State (11-8, 3-4 Big Ten)
THE OPENING TIP
Michigan State head coach Suzy Merchant enters her first season with the Spartans after spending nine seasons as the mentor at Eastern Michigan. She owns a career mark of 212-128.
NOTES OF INTEREST
IU head coach Felisha Legette-Jack claimed her 30th victory as the Hoosier mentor in an 80-77 double overtime win over Minnesota on Thursday, Jan. 17. It was her 84th career win.
In IU's win over Minnesota, all five starters scored in double-digits as Nikki Smith led all players with a season-high 21 points.
Whitney Thomas collected her second consecutive double-double and her sixth of the season with 12 points and 17 boards. She is averaging 17.5 rebounds in her last two contests.
Legette-Jack will return to familiar territory when the Hoosiers face Michigan State. She served as an assistant coach for the Spartans under current Duke head coach Joanne P. McCallie from 2000-02. As the recruiting coordinator, she was instrumental in forming the squad that took MSU to the 2005 NCAA Championship game.
SCOUTING THE SPARTANS
Michigan State held a one board advantage on the Wildcats, 36-35, and outshot Northwestern, 45.2 percent (28-of-62) to 42.1 percent (24-of-57).
The Spartans are averaging 65.0 points as a team on the season and 37.7 boards per contest. In Big Ten games, MSU is shooting 40.2 percent from the floor. Michigan State is led by DeHaan on the season with 15.4 points, 7.9 rebounds and 4.4 blocks per game. Keane is also averaging in double-digit scoring with 13.7 points per outing.
LAST SEASON VS. MICHIGAN STATE
Nikki Smith and Kim Roberson each netted 12 points in the first meeting, while Leah Enterline added 10 in the effort. However, the Hoosiers shot 25.0 percent (18-of-72) from the floor to the Spartan's 48.3 percent (28-of-58). Smith led IU again in the second meeting, this time scoring 16 points on four 3-pointers. Roberson scored 13 and Jamie Braun added 11 points.
SMITH FROM 3
She currently ranks fourth in the IU record book with 169 3-pointers made. Smith is three treys from taking over third place all-time, which is currently held by Cyndi Valentin (172 made, 2003-06). She has attempted 465 career treys and is currently fifth in the Hoosier record book with a .363 shooting percentage from the beyond the arc.
JACKSON ONE OF BIG TEN'S LEADERS
After ranking second in the nation in field goal percentage as a sophomore at San Jose State, Jackson ranks second in the Big Ten in field goal percentage with a 52.9 (91-of-172) shooting percentage from the floor.
Jackson is averaging 11.6 points per game with a season-high of 22 points in the Hoosiers' season-opener against Albany. She has netted double-digit points 12 of IU's 18 games this year.
DOUBLE THE EXCITEMENT
Thomas is followed by Amber Jackson, who recorded her third of the season after picking up 14 points and 10 rebounds against the Gophers on Jan. 14.
Jamie Braun owns two double-doubles on the season. her last was against West Virginia on Dec. 22 when she recorded 17 points and 13 rebounds.
WHAT BRAUN CAN DO FOR IU
She ranks seventh in the Big Ten in steals (2.06) and in scoring, and eighth in assists per game. Braun has led IU in scoring in nine games this season, including a 25-point outing against Ohio State on Jan. 10.
INSIDE IU WOMEN'S BASKETBALL WITH Felisha Legette-Jack
BIG TEN TOURNAMENT RETURNS TO CIRCLE CITY
New to this year's women's bracket is the addition of Saturday competition. The 2008 Big Ten Women's Basketball Tournament Presented by XBox 360 Live will be played on four consecutive days for the first time since 2001 when the tournament was held in Grand Rapids, Mich.
Check back soon