Rutgers is our Daddy. Hoosiers run out of the RAC. Learn from it and then flush it. (Indiana-Rutgers short thoughts)

Indiana 48… Rutgers 63…

Now 2 days removed from the utterly deflating Rutgers performance, I am still left with the question, did Indiana really think they would not have to figure out what to do when our All-American is double or even triple teamed? The Hoosiers genuinely played like a double team was a revolutionary concept that the Scarlet Knight’s most deranged game planners installed. What a novel idea… Double the superstar… who’d a thought?

Trayce had Rutgers full attention.

6 losses. 6 losses to the Scarlet Knights who are absolutely the Hoosiers’ daddy. Trayce Jackson-Davis was double and triple teamed until the Rutgers a shell of himself as the Hoosiers visited the Scarlet Knights in Piscataway. After having been convinced of Trayce’s utter dominance of the will, I may have been ahead of myself. Because Rutgers once again owned the Hoosiers for the 6th time in row. In a season where this Indiana team has proven again and again that this season’s different, this game looked awfully reminiscent of a few of our more heartbreaking losses last season.

The entire team went absolutely ice cold from 3 point range, with the lone exception of Miller Kopp who was hitting the 3 like we all knew he could when he got to town. He went 5 for 9 on the night from long range. Other than him, the Indiana shooters went 1 for 16 from the three. Abysmal performance. Rutgers offered up the 3 pointer all night, and the Hoosiers had absolutely no response for it. As for the rest of our shooting, 30% from the field is not going to win many games, if any. (Although if there was one defense that could do it…)

Trayce was limited to 13 points, off of 5 for 11 shooting. The Rutgers Scarlet Knights made it their utmost responsibility to make sure that Trayce was not going to dictate the terms of this game, and they did so admittedly pretty masterfully. Unable to find an answer anywhere else, other than Miller Kopp’s resurrected range, there was no coming back from the Hoosiers’ overall offensive inadequacies.

Jalen Hood-Schifino’s absence was glaring in this game. The offense was missing some serious gas and the lack of Jalen’s ability to distribute was never subsidized by the play of his teammates. It’s not very often that a freshman not playing has such an impact on your team. That’s what makes Jalen special I guess, he has immediately come into Bloomington and opened up options at offense. His energy, athletic ability, and defensive prowess may not be replaceable, but the Hoosiers need to have a contingency nonetheless.

Jalen’s absence was felt throughout this one.

Indiana’s defense was great in some regards, terrible in others. The Hoosiers gave up 17 offensive rebounds in the game, with 13 coming in the first 13 minutes. There’s no coming back from boxing out that terribly. Rutgers came out hustling, out muscling the Hoosiers is no small feat this season (I have to hope) and the Scarlet Knights did just that. The Indiana defense was still able to hold Rutgers to 36.7% shooting from the field and an almost equally pathetic 3 point performance, shooting 28% from range.

While this loss hurts like hell, we have to believe that this team will be better for it. It is time for a nice look in the mirror for the Hoosiers. Time to find out who is going to be the back up plan. These upper classmen need to ask themselves what happened? How did this game look so similar to the losses of last year? In the most hyped season in some time, with a revitalized program, what lead to such an impression of last season’s lowlights. The coaching staff needs to address where the shooting is going to come from. 1 for 16 from 6 players is inexcusable, I have to imagine its almost statistically improbable if your team is intending to sink shots. The Hoosiers can’t shoot that poorly again right? RIGHT?! “We got to make shots from the perimeter, but we just got out-toughed tonight. I thought, I mean, from the beginning to the end, I mean, we couldn’t rebound the basketball with him. I thought that was the difference in the ballgame and that was the cushion that they needed.”, said Mike Woodson (via ESPN).

It was just a rough night, so with this one… I’m flushing it, hoping the Indiana Hoosiers shot the entirety of every practice since, and will go home with several things to take away from this loss, and utilize moving forward. Losses are going to come in the Big Ten season. That is a law of nature now. Indiana needs to rebound in a big way against Nebraska. A get right game is absolutely needed, with the Hoosiers’ next two matchups being #4 Arizona and #9 Kansas. Time to find some shooting before we know we will need it. 7-1 is still a phenomenal start for most teams, unfortunately our fans expect a lot from this squad this year, fair or not, and this one still hurts. As a hopeless optimist in most regards, I choose to be fully confident that this loss will be looked back at as a major learning moment for this team. I hope this leaves a bad taste in the mouth of our guys. Hopefully, a chip on their shoulder is just what this team needed.

This is me not complaining about the officiating. Because I would never say those idiots were playing to their audience. I wouldn’t do that…

Down with the Huskers!

LUX ET VERITAS!!!

-Burke

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