Will Sheehey taking a shot against Indiana Wesleyan
A win or a loss from an exhibition game doesn't go in the record books, but lessons are still learned from how the team and each player played in the game.
On Thursday night, the No. 1 ranked Indiana Hoosiers defeated Indiana Wesleyan 86-57 in their first exhibition game. It's hard to believe, but the Wildcats led the game for the first 11 minutes.
The Hoosiers then tied the game up at 22 apiece with 8:33 left in the first half off a Maurice Creek layup. Even with the shaky start, IU would take over the game and go into halftime with a 41-30 lead. The Hoosiers would then control the entire second half and outscored their opponent 45-27.
In a week from today, the Hoosiers will face Bryant in the season opener at Assembly Hall. These are my three lessons learned from the exhibition game.
Redshirt junior guard Maurice Creek has gone through career-changing injuries, yet he finally made his appearance back where he belongs Thursday night.
Creek missed all of last season due to a torn torn Achilles tendon and hasn't played on Branch McCracken Court since January of 2011.
Don't forget as a freshman in 2009, Creek scored 31 points against a Kentucky team that featured current NBA-players John Wall, Eric Bledsoe and DeMarcus Cousins.
As Creek checked into the game with 10:57 left in the first half, the Bloomington, Ind. crowd of 17,186 gave him a standing ovation.
"A standing ovation is big time. I appreciate everyone that stood up for me," Creek said. Creek's performance was inspirational not just for the team, but all the fans in attendance.
He finished the game with a team-high 12 points and most importantly cemented to the crowd that he would be a crucial bench player for the team.
PG Kevin "Yogi" Ferrell was everything expected and more in his first game as a Hoosier.
He is very fast, makes some amazing passes and can even knock down an occasional jumper or two if he pleases. The thing that impresses me the most is that he was making the right decision at the right time and being that true point guard that the Hoosiers need.
"Yogi is a great passer and he is going to find guys on the go, which you expect from a point guard," Creek said. "As he develops more, he's going to be an awesome point guard."
Ferrell recorded eight points, four assists and four rebounds in the game. People said it would be a major transition to make from zone in high school to now man-to-man, but it didn't show at all.
Don't be surprised to see a little more of Yogi than the other point guard Jordan Hulls leading the team in these first few games.
People knew that center Peter Jurkin still needs time to develop his game and won't have a impact on the team in his first year, especially with Cody Zeller getting a chunk of the time on the court.
When freshman PF Hanner Mosquera-Perea and senior PF Derek Elston come back from injury, expect to see Jurkin's minutes get depleted.
In the exhibition game, you saw some positives from what Jurkin was able to do, but also a lot of negatives. Fundamentals and hand-eye-coordination need to be worked on daily in practice if he wants to earn more minutes.
Two major mistakes he made: He let another big man get around him very easily for a bucket and got the ball stolen away by a Wildcat defender, after a simple rebound.
He is just a freshman and still learning how to play his best on the college level. Give him some time, but I think he can be better than Tom Pritchard, Bawa Muniru and Tijan Jobe in a few years.