#1 NO HOME COURT ADVANTAGE FOR INDIANA
The December 10th game was by several accounts one of the most raucous crowds for a college basketball game. And they helped to propel the Hoosiers to the win over Kentucky. Indiana was a very solid team at home (19-1) and upset three top five teams (Kentucky, Ohio State, and Michigan State) at Assembly Hall. On the road, the Hoosiers had a losing record (5-6) and four of their road losses were by double digits. Indiana beat three rated Big Ten teams at home and lost to them on the road (Ohio State, Michigan State, and Michigan). The Hoosiers and Buckeyes traded 15 point wins, but the Buckeyes and Michigan beat Indiana by more points on their home court than they lost at Assembly Hall by. Indiana beat Ohio State 74-70 and lost to them 80-63 on the road. They beat Michigan by 2 at home and lost by 12 on the road. This trend even continue with 18-17 Iowa to a degree. Indiana beat the Hawkeyes by 14 at home and then lost by 12 at Iowa. Indiana’s other road loss was to 12-18 Nebraska. Needless to say, Indiana will not have a homecourt advantage in Atlanta. Expect the crowd to be at least 60/40 Wildcat fans to even 75/25.
#2 KENTUCKY MUST STAY OUT OF FOUL TROUBLE
Indiana did a great job in game one of taking the ball to Kentucky and getting Anthony Davis in foul trouble. Davis played just 24 minutes and had just six points. When Davis was in, he played very well against Cody Zeller, getting nine rebounds, three steals, and swatting three shots. Since that game, Kentucky has had Davis play with the second team part of every practice to simulate him being in foul trouble and Kentucky is much better prepared for this situation. Davis also does a great job of not fouling as well. In Kentucky’s other loss to Vanderbilt, Michael Kidd-Gilchrist lost about half the game to foul trouble. Obviously it is going to be in Tom Crean’s gameplan to get Kentucky in foul trouble, but if it does not happen, Kentucky should win.
#3 TERRENCE JONES MUST NOT CHECK OUT
Not to bring up bad memories, but Kentucky would have won at Assembly if only Terrence Jones had been Terrence Jones. For whatever reason, Jones was dazed, confused, and horrible. He scored just 4 points, and had just 1 rebound while turning over the ball 6 times. What happened? Only John Calipari and Terrence Jones know, I assume. But I don’t care. Jones has been a different player the last month or so and is hungry for a chance at redemption. Jones shut down manbeast Royce White the second half on Saturday and Cody Zeller is not nearly as physical. Jones returned to Kentucky to win a ring and he can smell it at this point and is playing like it. Look for a double double out of Jones as he should play like a man possessed.