The Indiana Hoosiers are fighting for more than a chance to reach the Elite Eight on Friday.
They are fighting to give Bob Knight some credibility, who notoriously has been calling Kentucky that "team from the SEC."
But seriously, folks, Indiana has a tough task on its hands on Friday, matched up with arguably the best team in the nation (is there really that much of an argument?). The Hoosiers are the less talented and less athletic team, and Kentucky is playing well together, so a lot has to go right for Indiana to come out on top.
Here's what the Hoosiers have to do to upset the vaunted Wildcats.
Shoot the Lights Out
No matter how well Indiana plays on defense on Friday, Kentucky is going to get its points. The Wildcats are averaging 77.08 points this season and scored 81 points and 87 points against Western Kentucky and Iowa State respectively.
Fortunately for the Hoosiers, they have six legitimate sharp-shooters in Tom Crean's eight-man rotation, including star power forward Christian Watford, whose outside shooting ability opens things up for Cody Zeller down low.
They shot 59 percent against New Mexico State and 52 percent against VCU.
Rebound the Basketball
Kentucky, averaging 41.94 rebounds this season, has a distinct rebounding advantage over Indiana. Anthony Davis, in particular, is a beast.
But the Hoosiers do have Zeller, who's not a bad player himself, and it should make for a terrific matchup.
It's going to take a collective effort for the Hoosiers to beat the Wildcats on the glass, but their ability to lure big men out of the paint with their outside shooting ability bodes well.
Get Anthony Davis in Foul Trouble
Obviously, this is easier said than done. A lot of teams have tried to do this, only to see Davis move to the side and then block their shots into the stands.
But getting Davis out of the game changes everything. He single-handedly changes games with his scoring, rebounding and shot-blocking ability, and without him on the floor the Wildcats are a different team.
Zeller is a top-15 prospect if he declares for the NBA draft this year. He's one of few big men who could get Davis in foul trouble. Of course, Davis could get him in foul trouble just as fast.
Zeller has to play huge for the Hoosiers to have a shot against Kentucky.
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