3 things to watch vs Indiana



Three things to watch when UK travels to Indiana on Saturday:1. Withstand the crowd — Indiana has organized a “Red Out” for the game, but it’s not the color scheme UK has to be worried about, it’s the decibel level. The Hoosiers have begun collecting votes in both major polls, meaning they’re on the brink of returning to the Top 25 after a few dismal years. Indiana’s student newspaper ran a column stating that “the Hoosiers’ chances of winning rest on the shoulders of the fans. No matter the score, no matter who has the ball and no matter how much time is left in the half, all fans must be standing, yelling as loud as they can.”

“I’ve already talked to a few of the guys about how crazy it’s gonna be,” senior guard Darius Miller said. “The crowd does a great job of getting them hyped up and getting them pumped up and they’re going to be ready to play, so that’s another tough game.”

Compounding matters, this will be UK’s first true road test. Madison Square Garden had a decent population of Kansas fans, but that experience won’t even approximate what Assembly Hall will be like.

If Indiana strikes early, UK has to be able to withstand it and regroup.

2.  Shooting — If there’s one thing Indiana can do to win, it will be shooting the lights out. Nationally, it ranks 11th in 3-point shooting at 44 percent and 13th in 2-point shooting at 55.2 percent.

UK can handle the Hoosiers on the inside. UK’s opponents on the year have made 33.2 percent of their 2-point shots, and the Cats have the requisite size and strength to limit the Hoosiers.

But it’s 3-point shooting that could be UK’s biggest threat.

In its biggest win against N.C. State, Indiana made 7 of 13 threes. UK is coming off allowing North Carolina to hit 11 of 18. If the Hoosiers can light it up, it could be the great equalizer.

3. Rebounding — If there’s one thing UK can absolutely dominate, it’s rebounding. Yes, Indiana has Cody Zeller, but it hasn’t shown an ability to crash the glass against a motley group of inferior teams.

The Hoosiers allow opponents to grab 34.5 percent of all available offensive rebounds, good for 227th in the country. UK needs to crash the boards hard to provide plenty of second-chance points that could bury Indiana.