Indiana Basketball: Ranking the Hoosiers' 5 Most Impressive Wins This Season
At this point in the season, there is little argument anymore about who is the best team in college basketball. The Indiana Hoosiers have proven that they are the nation's best team thanks to some key wins over the year.
The B1G is by far the most powerful conference in college basketball this year. The Hoosiers have proven that they are the best B1G team by beating almost all of the competition. They are first in the conference with a 12-2 record against B1G teams.
Looking at the games the Hoosiers have had to play so far, you see that they have beaten some of the best teams in the country. With so many big games played, here are the five biggest wins they've had so far.
5. Nov. 27 vs. No. 14 North Carolina
Back in November, the Hoosiers were preparing to play their first ranked team of the season. The fans were excited and the players were ready.
The game wasn't even close as they beat the North Carolina Tar Heels 83-59.
Cody Zeller and Victor Oladipo combined for 39 points in the game. It was one of the earlier games where people began to realize how good Oladipo really was.
Will Sheehey also provided a big spark off of the bench, scoring 19 points. He made three big three-pointers and fired up the crowd after each one.
The Hoosiers simply dominated the Tar Heels, who were ranked No. 14 at the time. Although the Tar Heels are no longer ranked, this game proved that the Hoosiers were the real deal.
4. Jan. 27 vs. No. 13 Michigan State
If the game against the Tar Heels put Oladipo on the map, this game put him in the discussion for player of the year.
The first matchup against the Michigan State Spartans ended up being a closer game than many had predicted at the beginning of the year. The Spartans kept it close, but the Hoosiers pulled it out, winning 75-70.
Oladipo was easily the player of the game, as he had one his best performances of the year. He had 21 points on 8-of-12 shooting from the field. He also had an impressive seven rebounds, six steals and three blocks.
The Hoosiers got back on track after this game, putting together a nice win streak of three games. After a loss to Wisconsin about two weeks earlier, it was nice to get a big statement win.
3. Feb. 10 at No. 10 Ohio State
The loss to the Illinois Fighting Illini was a tough one to watch. Luckily, the Hoosiers were able to bounce back from that, crushing the Ohio State Buckeyes 81-68.
For the first time since 2006, the Hoosiers had three players score over 20 points in a game. Christian Watford finished with 20 and Zeller had 24. Oladipo had a career high, scoring 26 points on 8-of-10 shooting.
The Hoosiers had another great day shooting, and it helped the team coast to a big win. They shot 26-of-49 for the day, or 53.1 percent from the field.
Before this game, the Hoosiers had yet to truly prove themselves in a hostile environment. The blowout against the Buckeyes showed that the Hoosiers could play away from Assembly Hall and still win.
2. Feb. 19 at No. 4 Michigan State
It may have been a frustrating game to watch, but the Hoosiers pulled out one of their biggest wins of the year in East Lansing.
The Hoosiers went into the locker room at half with a six-point lead. That quickly went away in the second half, and the game went back and forth until the very end.
There were four players for the Hoosiers that finished in double figures, giving them a big boost of offense. They needed every point, as they won by a score of 72-68.
The refs were criticized quite a bit during the game. It was so bad that Ted Valentine was trending on Twitter.
Regardless, the game proved that the Hoosiers could keep their poise and come out with a tough win on the road. Even though there were some questionable calls and problems with the game clock, the Hoosiers pulled out the win.
1. Feb. 2 vs. No. 1 Michigan
There is no doubt that this was the best win for the Hoosiers all year.
With College Gameday in Bloomington, the fans and players were ready for the most anticipated game of the year. Assembly Hall was packed and noisy from the beginning until the very end of the game.
The Hoosiers came out firing against the Michigan Wolverines, making their first six shots from the field. They were truly pumped up, making three after three to start the game.
The entire starting lineup finished in double figures, with Zeller leading the way by scoring 19 points. All of the starters looked focused and prepared, as they went on to beat the Wolverines 81-73.
The win put the Hoosiers back at No. 1 in the country, after losing their spot over a month earlier.
It was odd to see the Hoosiers fans not storm the court after the win. They had just beaten the top team in the nation, but it was expected of them.
The win not only was the biggest this year, it gave the town a new mindset about their basketball team. Bloomington now understands that they are back to the glory days of IU basketball.