Bold Prediction: Alex Hemenway and Baba Miller Round Out IUBB's Roster

Mike Woodson, Indiana Men's Basketball
Mike Woodson, Indiana Men's Basketball / Michael Hickey/GettyImages
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Luke Goode
Luke Goode, Indiana Men's Basketball / Michael Hickey/GettyImages

Constructing the Foundation of a Championship Contender

When you think of ideal role players in the modern era of basketball, what are some traits and skills that come to mind? In most/all cases, your stars are going to shoulder a bulk of the scoring and playmaking loads. Regardless, it is essential to have secondary sources of these dynamics. It is even further critical to a championship level formula that your role players can do AT LEAST one of the following skills efficiently and effectively: MAKE PLAYS | SINK SHOTS | GET STOPS | REBOUND.

At the end of the day, those are realistically the four core components of how the game is played. The offense brings the ball up the floor and tries their hand at either attacking and MAKING A PLAY for themselves/their teammates OR SINKING A SHOT from beyond the arc. The defenses primary objective is to STOP these attempts as best they can in hopes of either *best case* forcing a turnover or *next best thing* forcing a missed shot and securing a REBOUND.

When you think about it in those terms and take a glance through the rest of Mike Woodson's present roster for next season, the epiphany of this team's legitimacy should be just a hair shy of crystal clear. If they can fill the final 2 scholarships with the right role players, then that previously noted epiphany will cement it's traction inside of your cranium.

In terms of playmaking, there will be a large number of guys in cream and crimson uniforms next year who are perfectly capable of making something happen and/or injecting some energy into the crowd.

Trey Galloway
Trey Galloway, Indiana Men's Basketball / Rich Schultz/GettyImages

Trey Galloway is not mistaking anyone for a superstar, but he has always played the part of an energizer bunny and showcased a fortified feel as a table setter this year (9th in the Big Ten with 4.6 APG). His fellow backcourt returnees Gabe Cupps (who saw action in all 33 games and started 22 of them as a true freshman), Anthony Leal (who displayed a lot of potential as a connector this year), and Jakai Newton (who showed plenty of playmaking prowess during a 2022-2023 high school senior season which resulted in his recognition as a consensus top-100 recruit in last year's coalition of freshman) will combine to offer plenty of depth in the ancillary playmaking department.

While this presently constructed group is plush with playmakers, shooting would certainly be the most glaring potential Achilles heel which could hinder the Hoosiers from completing their ultimate mission. It goes without saying that the addition of (Nick Zeisloft clone) Luke Goode will help strengthen this area of weakness, but adding in another bonafide marksman to the bench would be wise (if not mandatory).

Adding another big should also be a foregone conclusion as well, but the pool of available players in both the 2024 freshman class and current transfer portal is deeply dwindling on the daily. Thankfully for the Indiana Hoosiers and there loyal fanbase, there are a few under the radar "trash" options that they could scoop up and realistically develop into legitimate "treasure".