No. 12 Indiana and Xavier fought tooth-and-nail on Friday night in Cincinnati, with the Hoosiers pulling out a narrow 81-79 road win. Trayce Jackson-Davis scored 30 and Xavier Johnson had his best game of the early season. You can catch our full recap of the game here.
Which player combinations made the biggest impact for Indiana? How did Mike Woodson manage his rotations differently in IU’s first key test of the season?
- First and foremost, Mike Woodson played more lineup combinations at Xavier than he did in either of IU’s first two games. Woodson deployed short shifts, with substitutions coming every 1:40, on average, until he decided on a closing lineup late in the game.
- Speaking of the closing lineup, the one Woodson used was IU’s best by raw +/- at +6. With 8:05 left, Woodson swapped in Trey Galloway for Jalen Hood-Schifino. Galloway joined Xavier Johnson, Miller Kopp, Malik Reneau, and Trayce Jackson-Davis. Woodson realized Hood-Schifino had a tough shooting game, while Race Thompson wasn’t at his most effective.
- The group of Johnson, Galloway, Kopp, Reneau, and Jackson-Davis played from the 8:05 mark all the way down to 2:10 to go in regulation. It was 60-60 with 8:05 left. When Woodson made his next move with 2:10 to go, IU held a 78-72 lead.
- That closing lineup had not played together all season.
- Don’t dismiss Hood-Schifino and Tamar Bates just yet. IU’s most efficient unit included Hood-Schifino, Bates, Galloway, Reneau, and Jackson-Davis. They only played 1:48 together, but they turned a 46-44 IU lead into a 54-47 advantage in that short duration.
- IU’s starting lineup of Johnson, JHS, Kopp, Thompson, and Jackson-Davis played more than any other lineup. They went -4 in their first shift of the game, but flipped the script with a +4 in the second half to end up +0 for the game.
- Indiana played just eight players in the second half. Jordan Geronimo, who went -5 in 5:14 in the first half, did not see the floor after halftime. Geronimo had IU’s lowest +/- per minute played.
- IU’s best player by raw +/- was Xavier Johnson (+9). He also led IU in +/- per minute played. Hood-Schifino was the lowest +/- at -7.
- IU’s offense was most effective with Malik Reneau on the court. Indiana scored 38 points in his 15:48, a scoring rate of 2.40 points per minute (PPM). IU scored 43 points in the other 24:12, a rate of 1.78 PPM.
- Indiana’s defense was at its finest vs. Xavier with Race Thompson on the floor. The Hoosiers gave up 39 points in his 22:12 of playing time, a rate of 1.76 PPM. For the 17:48 Thompson was off the court, IU gave up 40 points, or 2.25 PPM. Thompson did not play for the final 8:59.
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