Indiana Falls to the Golden Gophers

Indiana Falls to the Golden Gophers

#1 Indiana Falls to Minnesota

The Hoosiers were outplayed and out-hustled by the Minnesota Golden Gophers Tuesday evening.  Once again a number one team falls to a team unranked in the top 25.  The final score 77-73.

Minnesota got to every loose ball, every offensive rebound and was simply tougher than Indiana on Tuesday night.

Indiana coach Tom Crean said his team suffered a physical letdown.

“It wasn’t so much the toughness though that was a part of it,” Crean said. “We weren’t physical enough. We didn’t create the first hit. There were too many times when that shot went up and they were there before we were because we weren’t into their bodies.”

Trevor Mbakwe dominated Indiana center Cody Zeller as no one has in his two years as a Hoosier.  He was 2-of-9 from the field. He hit a 6-foot turnaround on the low block and scored on a transition lay-up that could have easily been called a charge.

He had three of his shots blocked. But that doesn’t really do it justice either. The blocks were of the straight down, all-hand-on-ball variety.

He had four turnovers and just didn’t look comfortable. The last one came when he had tried to drive to the basket and dribbled the ball off his legs. Zeller also had a defensive rebound earlier in the game where he tried to slam the ball in his hands as it came off the rib and the ball caromed out of bounds.

Indiana must win 2 of its last 3 games to share the Big Ten Championship, and Zeller is the key.  Last night Mbakwe was the aggressor and took his game to Zeller who was unable to respond.

In other action number 8 Florida lost to Tennessee, and number 19, Memphis lost to Xavier.

The game of musical chairs in the top 25 with just 2 and ½ weeks until selection Sunday.

James Turnage

Columnist-The Guardian Express