Indiana basketball sends No. 18 North Carolina packing with 77-65 win

Indiana Hoosiers forward Trayce Jackson-Davis (23). Mandatory Credit: Trevor Ruszkowski-USA TODAY Sports
Indiana Hoosiers forward Trayce Jackson-Davis (23). Mandatory Credit: Trevor Ruszkowski-USA TODAY Sports /

No. 10 Indiana basketball showed up to Assembly Hall and sent No. 18 North Carolina packing with a 77-65 win, the first top-25 win of the season for IU.

The defensive energy injected into the Hoosiers by Mike Woodson and the coaching staff revealed itself early and often throughout the entire game, especially with every Hoosier defender buying into the game plan and forcing every Tar Heel offensive player to catch the ball 30+ feet from the hoop. That’s how you take a great offensive team out of their comfort zone.

A major part of the defensive energy for the Hoosiers was the play of Trey Galloway, who returned from a two-game absence and made his presence known against two of the best guards in Division I (Caleb Love and R.J. Davis).

Many people are downplaying this victory for Indiana basketball, just because of the “overrated” comments about the Tar Heels after their title run that fell short in the 2022 NCAA Tournament. UNC was an 8-seed in the 2022 NCAA Tournament, lost three games before January 2022, and looked lost at times on both sides of the floor prior to March. Don’t fret Hoosier Nation, this team will be in the mix for a Final Four run in 2023, which makes this win a lot sweeter.

It’s the third straight loss for the Tar Heels, two of which came against top-25 ranked opponents (No. 18 Alabama and No. 10 Indiana). North Carolina now heads to Virginia Tech to battle the Hokies, hoping to potentially save their top 25 ranking with a road win against an ACC foe.

Indiana basketball has begun the season 7-0 for the first time since 2019-20 when they defeated No. 17 Florida State in the ACC/Big Ten Challenge but then faltered on the road against Wisconsin in their first conference game of the season. That cannot happen in 2022-23. The Hoosiers travel to Piscataway to take on Rutgers, who’s coming off their 68-61 loss to Miami (FL) in the ACC/Big Ten Challenge on Wednesday.

Could the Hoosiers approach their neutral-site game against No. 4 Arizona undefeated at 9-0? Need big conference wins over Rutgers and Nebraska to make that happen.

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