May 21, 2024

BLOOMINGTON, IN - November 10, 2022 - forward Malik Reneau #5 of the Indiana Hoosiers during the game between the Bethune-Cookman Wildcats and the Indiana Hoosiers at Simon Skjodt Assembly Hall in Bloomington, IN. Photo By Andrew Mascharka/Indiana Athletics

Bloomington, IND — Just as was the case in their first game, Indiana’s “2nd unit” provided the spark that blew the game wide open Thursday night against Bethune-Cookman. Now this is not to say that the first unit didn’t play well at all, but there was a point in the first half that the Hoosiers began to fall into that all too familiar lull. The past well decade or so, IU has been plagued by scoring droughts and defensive letdowns for lengths of time throughout the game. Now this was due to a lot of things including scheme, coaching, and discipline just to name a few. The main thing those teams were missing were players coming off the bench and being able to produce the same, or even better than the starters.

That is not the case this year. Indiana legitimately has 8 or 9 players on their squad that could potentially start at the D1 level. Players the likes of Jordan Geronimo, Trey Galloway, Malik Reneau, and Tamar Bates are able to come into a game and simply dominate. Granted this is a small sample size, and the competition hasn’t been the greatest. No disrespect to Morehead State or Bethune-Cookman of course.

Just take a look at this stat from Thursday night’s contest. Indiana comprised a line-up of Hood-Schifino, Reneau, Geronimo, Galloway, and Bates. This lineup was on the floor for a total of 4:26, second to only the starting 5 and scored a total of 1.86 points per possession. That’s nearly a bucket every possession that they were on the floor. Not to mention in that span of time that this combo was on the floor they outscored BCU 13-0. In comparison, the starting 5 were on the floor for 6:31 and scored .97 points per possession and only outscored BCU 12-10.

Now this is not to say that there should be any lineup changes at this point. These guys that are starting are doing so for a reason. This is simply to bring to light the fact that for the first time in recent memory, Indiana is a complete basketball team!

Mike Woodson would seem to agree.

Well, this team is competitive, man. I’m just telling you. If you’d been able to sit in practice and watch the journey from when we started 4 1/2 months ago, they just, they’re competitive. They go at each other in practice, which is kind of nice, man.

In return, it’s a nice carryover into the ball game. They want to all play. There’s only so many minutes in the game, so they’re making the most of the minutes when they’re out there. The second unit, back-to-back games, man, they’ve been phenomenal in terms of how they’ve come and performed and have really built our lead for us. It’s kind of nice.

Mike Woodson/IU Athletics

All photos and statistics provide by IU Athletics

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