NCAA tournament “Round of Two”. Indiana Hoosiers v. Rutgers pregame thoughts and optimism.

I woke up today feeling like Jack Skellington…

WHAT! IS! THIS!!?!?!

Oh what a wonderful feeling! My breakfast is tasting better, the birds are singing prettier, and by God I’d say I have a pep in my step this morning. Our boys have grown together quick enough to say to hell with the growing pains. When most were expecting an underwhelming season with a developing gameplan, our boys mustered together a season that has us still holding our breaths with each shot into the month of March!

Mike Woodson has already managed to give me something Archie Miller had failed to in his entire tenure as Head Coach of Indiana, a season where I’m not resigned to mediocrity by the end of February. After taking loss after loss in that 5 game losing streak, Indiana spit out its loose teeth and in a  “Rocky”esque effort the Hoosiers finally began punching back and now have an absolute showdown with Rutgers over a spot in the NCAA tournament.

Hail to the Chief!

I titled this “Round of Two” because this game today is just that. This is the first round in the NCAA tournament! Both teams are on the first four out or last four in on most of if not all the major bracketology reports available. Meaning this win is absolutely crucial to not only your team’s victory, but also your closest bid competition’s downfall. That’s double dipping on your own success if I’ve ever heard it.

Being essentially win and your in here, the Hoosiers are behind the wheel of their own destiny. And while yesterday, I wrote my Love Letter to this year’s Hoosier squad, I would be lying if I said my heart won’t be pumping out of my chest, hanging on every shot praying for that Hoosier victory. I know it’s selfish to ask for more when I truly believe this Indiana team owes the fans absolutely nothing, but I’m begging you basketball gods!!! Let my Hoosiers pull this one out today!

I won’t ask for anything else! Just give me more of the excitement I feel in this moment! When your team’s playing for something, everything’s better in life. So sad reading that after typing it, but I STAND BY THAT! I mean come on let’s be real its the same reason half of all of our timelines are clogged with Hoosier posts separated only by the millionth picture of your coworkers baby you could give two about.

We live for this. We live for March. We are a different breed of fan. Our blood runs Crimson (as most does I guess, but NONETHELESS!!!). Give me the stakes. Give me the highs and I’ll gladly take those lows. I mean… this is Indiana after all.

If Xavier Johnson could turn his pair of games into a trilogy of greatness I see no reason why Indiana doesn’t march into Assembly Hall and handle their business. This is a special group of young men and when it’s clicking Indiana can run with anyone. Win and you’re in here, and based on how frequently the top teams have been losing this year, seems like if you’re in, you’re in contention to mess around and win the whole darn thing!

1 more solid game from Xavier and we are talking best trilogy I’ve seen since Lord of the Rings.

So gather your loved ones around your biggest, baddest TV. And let’s all root on our boys who have absolutely battled this season as they look to cement a position in the NCAA tournament. See you all on the other side! Here’s to some more heart attack level stress inducing games to come.

LUX ET VERITAS!!!!,

This hopelessly optimistic fan boy

Also, if you came here looking for stats. I do apologize… there are nerdier sources available for that.

Indiana loses a Heartbreaker to Wisconsin. There goes the Big Dance…

Going into this game. Mike Woodson had to be feeling some pressure. I mean these aren’t trul HIS guys. By that I just mean he didn’t really recruit anyone other than our transfers and I will add keeping Trayce Jackson-Davis to that, because as far as I’m concerned he had to recruit him to IU from the NBA draft. Even though these aren’t really HIS guys Mike Woodson came into this game seeking to keep this year from looking straight out of the Archie Miller era. Get everyone’s hopes up in December. Play like crap and tank any shot at the tournament come February. Mike Woodson needed this win to prove to Hoosier Nation and the Indiana boosters that he is going to be changing this program right out of the gate. And what did we just witness…

Not. That.

Devastating. Absolutely devastating. Last night, Wisconsin beat Indiana 72-69. In what was a dramatic game coming down right to the last minute. Indiana got beat in the Holy Cathedral of Basketball that is Assembly Hall. At one point in this game Indiana missed 8 of 13 layups. That with any missed free throws is unacceptable. Indiana seems to leave points on the table as often as a team can sometimes.

What a heartbreaking turn of events. This season looks poised to end just like the last few seasons. In disappointment. God forbid they hole the NCAA tournament in the middle of the season. If that were the case we’d be March Madness mainstays. Our first half of the season and the second always look like it would have to be two entirely different teams playing them.

The annual tailspin is full speed ahead right now, and you know what really sucks… It doesn’t even bother me like it used to. This Indiana team has gotten me used to getting my hopes up only to fall. I’m basically a master at coping following losses like this at this point. So sad.

I mean Indiana has dropped the ball so often that coping with this exact situation is almost learned behavior at this point. I don’t see anyway Indiana turns this around and gets a bid in the tournament barring a miraculous run in the Big Ten Tournament.

This post was far less a recap of the game and more so a rant on the state of Indiana Basketball so I apologize.

-Burke

Down 5 players, Indiana loses to Northwestern, recap

FINAL: INDIANA 51, NORTHWESTERN 59

WOOF! That was brutal… What a terrible, terrible loss for Indiana. The Indiana Hoosiers need to get it together right away. This loss is an undeniable blemish on the tournament resume for the Indiana Hoosiers. Northwestern is not a loss that can be easily discredited for Northwestern’s stifling home court advantage. I mean just look at that fan support at their football games. Indiana’s shooting was absolutely terrible, the front court was no where to be seen, and Miller Kopp couldn’t buy a bucket to save his life!

In regards to that front court, Trayce Jackson-Davis got his double double. It is sad when you learn that it was on 4 of 14 shooting. TJD played 39 minutes for the Hoosiers, absolutely monster load for Indiana’s star player. The front court really had to manage the load with most of them active, it just so happened they failed to do so.

In a game where the Indiana Hoosiers were already DOWN WITH SELF IMPOSED SUSPENSIONS, we decided to add onto our own stresses with foul trouble. How bad was it? Galloway got his 4th foul, and we had to play him. Because he was 1 of 2 scholarship guards available to go. So ridiculous.

Photo Credit: Sylvan Lane

Now discussing those suspensions a bit…

Listening to Don Fischer before the game, we had heard Indiana would be shorthanded. Then I saw this.

We didn’t know to which extent! 5 Guys! 5 Guys! We got self righteous and suspended 5 guys. The details involving the 5 players suspensions needs to come to light because if this was an attempt to self police and handle something internally, silently, this had the adverse effect because why couldn’t it be said what rules were broken! the public demands answers! If its the weed and Woodson suspended them their are two HUGE dipshits in this story. Mike Woodson for caring about 18 and 19 year old kids tokin’ up a bit and Michael Durr. Michael Durr, being a 5th year transfer needs to know better. Losers all around and I just want to know what happened!?! Give us the details!

The tournament committee could look at this game and rationally think, they self imposed a suspension on 5 players so were 1 away from not having half their scholarship players. So hopefully that is a plus… hopefully.

Onto Michigan State.

-Burke

Josh Gattis texted the team. Left for the same job elsewhere? Michigan, husk of former self.

Gattis sent his farewell to his Michigan offensive players Sunday morning in a text obtained by The Detroit News .“Fellas, it’s with a broken heart i write this,” the text read. “I am resigning my position here at Michigan to go to another university. I have given everything i have to you guys and michigan. I sacrificed so much personally to stand in the fight with each of you which i would never take back. Unfortunately the past few weeks has told a different story to me about the very little appreciation i have here from administration. In life i would never advise anyone to be where they are not wanted and i owe that to my family and my integrity to hold myself to this standard! I Love each and every one of you to the bottom of my heart. Our memories will never be forgotten but our struggles is what makes us who we are today it’s what grew this love and will forever hold it together! i am the biggest fan of you, and biggest friend of you. Most importantly I am one phone call always if you need anything ever. Love you guys!”

Angelique S. Chengelis The Detroit News

Dear Lord… What an ugly exit for the Gattis yesterday. While many are saying that there are options within Michigan’s program to replace him, I really didn’t want to have to. But, who could blame Gattis for looking elsewhere… He has been done so dirty this offseason by the school’s administration and Harbaugh as well.

What Harbaugh did, holding Michigan’s entire future hostage as he mulled over his options, that is some inexcusable stuff right there. You’re in or you’re out man. THIS IS MICHIGAN! This is the job man… If he doesn’t get that this isn’t a job you look over other options while possessing, then I don’t thing he’s the guy for it. We need a strong reflection on the organization as a whole if we are going to move forward and be able to contend with top tier SEC talent during the CFP.

Keeping guys who aided us in our greatest year in the last decade or so should be key to contending against those top teams, your Alabama and your Georgia. Especially when the guy is leaving for the same position.

I FEEL LIKE IM TAKING CRAZY PILLS!!! THIS IS MICHIGAN!!! WHO LEAVES FOR THE SAME JOB ELSEWHERE!!!!

He must have been dogged so hard by the shotcallers of the program. The prestige of Michigan is second to none historically, and if we don’t get to work keeping guys that are essential to our success, all we are ever going to be is remembering the glory days. Figure it out Folks! It’s a mess…

Ryder W

This is Ryder‘s 1st story on Flyoverwire.com covering the Michigan Wolverines. If you would like to submit any work in order to contribute to our site and be a part of our growing community. Email flyoverwire@gmail.com with a story and we can get you started as a contributing writer.

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