Indiana vs Kennesaw State Preview


Game Info:

Indiana Hoosiers (9-3) vs. Kennesaw State (3-10)

Assembly Hall, Bloomington

When: Tuesday, December 22nd at 6:00 pm ET on Big Ten Network and WIBC-FM (93.1)/IU Radio Network

Line: Indiana -32.5

Welcome to the game preview of the fourth and final absolutely pointless game on Indiana’s schedule.  When I say pointless, I mean genuinely unnecessary.  As a fan of Indiana, I should be getting mad about the way they play, not who they’re scheduling.  But why? Just what is the point of scheduling what is practically an exhibition game in the middle of your season, right before Big Ten Conference play? There is none. Nada. Nilch. Nope. No reason at all. But hey, it’s happening so we might as well talk about it.

First off, this game will be Indiana’s first game after their victory against Notre Dame on Saturday.  Saturday’s game provided a lot for Indiana both resume-wise and mentally.  For the resume, Indiana now has at least one somewhat impressive non-conference win. Mentally, it was a confidence builder.  It will be interesting if some of that confidence and momentum will carry over to this game.

Now, Kennesaw State. Their mascot is an Owl. That’s something.  They’re also the home of famous American Idol host Ryan Seacrest. Who knew?

Dec 19, 2015; Indianapolis, IN, USA; Indiana Hoosiers center Thomas Bryant (31) reacts to winning after the game against the Notre Dame Fighting Irish during the Crossroads Classic at Bankers Life Fieldhouse. Indiana defeats Notre Dame 80-73. Mandatory Credit: Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports

Basketball-wise, Kennesaw has played a relatively difficult non-conference schedule so far. This includes games against Louisville, West Virginia, Alabama, and LSU.  All of which were obvious losses. Kennesaw is led by senior guard Yonel Brown (16.8 PPG) and former Quinnipiac guard Kendrick Ray (15.5 PPG). Nigel Pruitt, a senior forward from Maryland, is expected to sit out his sixth straight game which is a big loss for the owls. Junior forward Aubrey Williams is the best bench contributor with eight points per game and a team-leading 7.2 rebounds per game.  Aubrey plays a very interesting role on the team, as he leads the team in rebounds even though he is only 6’6”.

As a team, the owls are 332nd in points per game at 63.5, 312th in rebounds per game at 33.4, 335th in assists per game at 10.4, and 277th in points allowed per game at 76.7.

The owls like to play a very flexible offense that can easily transition from up-tempo to slow pick and roll style basketball.  They’re coached by Al Skinner a former Rhode Island and Boston College coach. He has been to nine NCAA tournaments and won four conference titles as a coach.

More from Hoosier State of Mind

That’s really all the information I could gather on Kennesaw State.  But Coach Tom Crean was still able to maintain a straight face when describing Kennesaw, stating, “They’re extremely well coached. They run their offense at a really high level. Brown and Ray are shooting the ball, making a lot of shots. They’re very active.  They have played a tough schedule and they offensive rebound the ball really well.”

Now, this is the part where I usually discuss what IU needs to do to win the game, but really, do I have to do this?

Indiana needs to show up to the arena

on time

with at least five minutes left to play.

The 3 things I’m looking for in today’s game are:

O.G. Anunoby’s continued improvement.

  • Game after game O.G. has been building his value to the team and his offensive rebounding against Notre Dame played a pivotal role in IU’s comeback win.

Harrison Niego continuing to try to carve out as many minutes as possible prior to Big Ten play.

Niego has played a surprising role as a defensive specialist at times.  I’m rooting for the walk-on to get some big minutes today and possibly prove he’s worth some Big Ten playing time.

Nov 14, 2014; Bloomington, IN, USA; Indiana Hoosiers forward Tim Priller (35) runs up court during the second half against the Mississippi Valley State Delta Devils at Assembly Hall. Indiana defeated Mississippi Valley State Delta Devils 116-65. Mandatory Credit: Pat Lovell-USA TODAY Sports

Tim Priller

  • Tim Priller
  • Tim Priller
  • Give me more Tim Priller

Prediction: Tim Priller 1000, Kennesaw State 65