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Purdue Basketball: Indiana Preview

Purdue heads into this one a prohibitive favorite but the Hoosiers have shown signs of life recently.

NCAA Basketball: Indiana at Purdue Marc Lebryk-USA TODAY Sports

Indiana University Bloomington


Big 10: 6-6

Overall: 14-9

KenPom: 96

Basic Information

Location: Bloomington, Indiana

Type of School: Public University

Mascot: A middle aged guy with a beer belly wearing an ugly red sweater.

Head Coach - Mike Woodson

Seasons at Indiana (including current season): 3

Other Head Coaching Jobs:

Atlanta Hawks: 2004-2010

New York Knicks: 2012-2014

Career College Record: 58-35

Regular Season Conference Championships: 0

Conference Tournament Championships: 0

NCAA Appearances: 2 (2-2)

Final 4 Appearances: 0

Kenpom Style of Play

() = National Ranking per Kenpom


Adj. Efficiency: 110.1 (99)

Avg. Poss. Length: 17 (130)


Adj. Efficiency: 102.1 (91)

Avg. Poss. Length: 17.8 (262)


Adj. Tempo: 68.3 (138)

Kenpom 4 Factors

() = National Ranking per Kenpom


Effective FG%: 52.2 (109)

Turnover %: 17.2 (164)

Off. Reb. %: 28.1 (212)

FTA/FGA: 41.2 (19)


Effective FG%: 48.9 (104)

Turnover %: 15.5 (292)

Off. Reb. %: 30.1 (223)

FTA/FGA: 32.1 (168)


Indiana Starters

Position Number Player Class Height Weight Previous Team(s) Minutes Points Rebounds Assists Steal Block
Position Number Player Class Height Weight Previous Team(s) Minutes Points Rebounds Assists Steal Block
Point Guard 2 Gabe Cupps Fr. 6'2" 175 N/A 22 2.7 2 1.4 0.7 0
Shooting Guard 32 Trey Galloway Sr. 6'5" 205 N/A 33.4 11.1 2.6 3.9 1.2 2
Small Forward 21 Mackenzi Mgbako Fr. 6'8" 217 N/A 24.7 10.9 4.2 1.4 0.4 0.2
Power Forward 5 Malik Reneau So. 6'9" 233 N/A 29.3 16.4 6.2 2.7 0.4 0.7
Center 1 Kel'el Ware So. 7'0" 242 Oregon 31.2 14.8 9.1 1.7 0.7 1.6

Indiana Bench

Position Number Player Class Height Weight Previous Team(s) Minutes Points Rebounds Assists Steal Block
Position Number Player Class Height Weight Previous Team(s) Minutes Points Rebounds Assists Steal Block
Guard/Wing 3 Anthony Leal Sr. 6'5" 200 N/A 12.2 3 1.9 0.8 0.2 0.5
Center 24 Payton Sparks Jr. 6'10" 258 Ball State 8.5 2.6 2.2 0.3 0.3 0.5
Power Forward 4 Anthony Walker Sr. 6'8" 215 Miami 15.2 5.8 2.9 0.9 0.2 0.5
Guard/Wing 11 CJ Gunn So. 6'6" 198 N/A 12.4 3.2 1 0.4 1 0.1

Indiana on Offense

When the Hoosiers are playing well on offense, Malik Reneau or Trey Galloway usually have something to do with it. In Indiana’s 18-point comeback over Ohio State, Reneau put up 28 and Galloway added 25. They took over the Indiana offense in the second half and did whatever they wanted against Ohio State.

Reneau is a handful when he’s engaged and attacking the basket off the dribble. The 6’9”, 230-pound forward is a handful when he’s able to get to the rack. I look for I.U. to try and isolate him on either TKR or Gillis on a wing and clear out. When I look at the matchups, this is the one that’s most problematic. In the first matchup, Purdue held him to 8 points on 4-10 shooting. I can’t envision a scenario where Indiana wins this game without Reneau going off for 20+.

Galloway was Indiana’s best player in the first matchup, leading the Hoosiers in scoring (17) and assists (5). This is the other spot Indiana has a decent matchup. Purdue doesn’t have a traditional wing with size other than Morton, and his minutes are limited because of his offense. Indiana’s senior forward is coming off the best game of his career in a 25-point, 4-assist, 6-rebound explosion at Ohio State. He went 3-4 from deep and terrorized the Buckeyes with strong drives to the basket. He did some of that in the first game against Purdue. If I’m Indiana, I pull Ware out of the lane and run pick and roll and pick and pop with Galloway all day. If it’s not there, get the ball to Reneau on the wing and clear out.

If you’re wondering about Indiana’s leading scorer, Kel’el Ware, even if his status wasn’t up in the air after his buckled on an attempted layup at the end of the Ohio State game, I don’t think this is his game. Zach’s too big in the paint for the athletic, but slender (compared to Zach, the man is 242 pounds) in the post. His utility against Purdue should be standing outside the 3-point line to draw Zach out of the lane and offensive rebounding. Indiana’s not going to “out Purdue, Purdue” in the post.

Finally, there’s the Anthony Leal factor.

That looks weird on the screen because for most of the past two seasons, the only factor Leal has been is “non.” That’s changed recently. The former Indiana Mr. Basketball is in the midst of a late career revival. He played 22 minutes off the bench for the Hoosiers against Iowa on January 30th and put up 13 points, including going 3-4 from 3. He added in 7 rebounds, an assist, and a block for by far his best game of the season. He only received 14 minutes in Indiana’s home loss to Penn State, that mainly served as a cardio session. Then he took off again against Ohio State, putting up 6 points, 6 rebounds, 2 assists, 2 blocks, and 2 steals in 25 minutes. Three of his 6 points came off a clutch 3 that secured the game for the Hoosiers.

If Indiana has any shot in this game, it’s because someone like Anthony Leal loses his absolute mind and has a game that his grandkids will get tired of hearing about. I’m not predicting that; the chances of it happening are slim-to-none, but then again, so are Indiana’s chances of knocking off Purdue. They need a miracle (especially if Ware is out or hampered), and Leal seems like he’s got some juice at the moment.

Indiana on Defense

The Hoosiers have enough talent on offense to compete. Even if everything falls together perfectly for the Hoosiers on offense, I don’t think it will matter because they can’t stop Purdue from scoring.

That was the story of the first game. Indiana played in fits and starts in the first half while Purdue scored like a metronome. Indiana would make a good play, and you’d look at the scoreboard and wonder how they were farther away from the lead now than they were 3 minutes ago.

Ware is one of the better center matchups against Edey, and in the first game, he got to a couple of Zach’s shots. Now he’s potentially injured and still giving away 40 points and 4 inches, which is absolutely insane to type about a guy who stands 7’0”, 250 pounds. If he can’t go or is limited, I assume Sparks will come in and beat on Zach for a few minutes until he runs out of fouls.

Even if they throw everything at Zach and the refs adopt the early 2000s Hardcore Championship WWE rules, Purdue has a backcourt ready to torch the nets. Indiana has a choice between a fast death and a slow death in this one. The slow death is flashing an extra defender at Zach but mostly letting him score 2 points at a time. The quick death is going all-in on stopping Edey and letting Purdue’s guards end the game in 10 minutes with a 3-point barrage.

I think you’ll see Mike Woodson try and play Zach as straight up as possible as long as he has fouls to burn at center. After that, he’ll try and swarm the big man and create turnovers. I don’t expect either strategy to be particularly successful.

The Hoosiers’ best hope is a cold shooting night from the Boilermakers. If they go 3-11 like they did against Wisconsin (an unlikely scenario), Indiana might have a shot. Then again, Wisconsin is better than Indiana, and was at home, and still couldn’t beat Purdue, even with the Boilermakers struggling from deep.



Purdue - 85

Indiana - 66

Confidence: 96%


Purdue - 97

Indiana - 73

I don’t see a way forward for Indiana in this one. With Ware, at minimum, having limited mobility, the Hoosiers don’t have the horses to compete in this game. Purdue losing twice to Indiana last season isn’t doing this season’s Indiana team any favors. I doubt you catch the Boilermakers napping in this one after last season, especially after dropping a game to the Hoosiers in Mackey (sacrilege!).

Purdue gets up early, Indiana gets desperate and things spiral from there.