Indiana Basketball: 2013-14 Progress Report for Hoosiers Starters
The Big Ten basketball season is a little more than halfway complete, so it seems appropriate to hand out some grades for the Indiana Hoosiers. It's been a rough go for Indiana as a team, but how are the players doing individually?
This article will focus on the starting five and evaluate their performances so far this season. The traditional A-F scale will be used for the grades.
Note: All stats courtesy of Sports-Reference.com, unless otherwise noted.
Kevin "Yogi" Ferrell has been nearly impeccable in his sophomore season. He leads the team in scoring (17.5 PPG) and assists (4.0 APG) and consistently puts the offense on his back. Ferrell also plays more minutes than any other player on the roster.
You can't ask Ferrell to do more than he has this season.
If there was one critique, it would be turnovers. Ferrell leads the team in giveaways, but that is a little bit skewed. As point guard, he has the ball in his hands the most and is expected to make plays. When you control the ball as much as he does, turnovers are going to happen.
So, overall Ferrell has been a bright spot for the Hoosiers.
Since Big Ten play began, freshman guard Stanford Robinson has been a revelation for the Hoosiers. He's given Indiana an edge and aggressiveness it lacked.
Robinson loves to attack the rim. He rarely settles for jump shots, which is great for Indiana. He understands his strength and uses it to his advantage.
The one problem facing Robinson is free throws. He's been atrocious from the charity stripe, hitting just 50 percent of his attempts. If Shaquille O' Neal can make 52 percent of his free throws, Robinson certainly can do better.
Obviously, Robinson has a lot of room to grow, but right now, Indiana faithful have to be happy with the way he's played.
It's been a rough senior season for 6'7" forward Will Sheehey. While he's scoring more than he ever has in his career (10.1 PPG), he's become much less efficient. His shooting percentage (44.4) and three-point percentage (27.4) are way down from a season ago. He doesn't resemble the same energetic player that captivated our attention in the past.
Despite this, his leadership qualities can't be denied. He constantly is teaching the younger Hoosiers, but at some point he has to play better.
In the end, outside of a few games, it's been a pretty mediocre season for the senior. Because of that, he receives a mediocre mark.
Troy Williams has shown flashes of brilliance, but the key word is "flashes."
Is he athletic? Yes.
Can he fly through the air like former Hoosier Victor Oladipo? Yes.
However, this will only get him so far. Williams' game needs much improvement.
His jump shot has been off the mark the entire season, and he must devote the offseason to becoming a better shooter.
If there was a silver lining, it would be Williams' rebounding. The 6'7" freshman forward is second on the team, averaging 4.5 per game.
Still, he hasn't been nearly consistent enough to earn anything above an average grade.
Much like Ferrell, there is very little to complain about when it comes to Noah Vonleh. The freshman forward is playing at an insanely high level, and Indiana already should start hoping he decides to return next season.
We haven't seen many scoring outbursts out of Vonleh as of late because teams constantly are double-teaming him. The opposition has decided that under no circumstances is it going to let Vonleh get single coverage on the block. Still, the big man is averaging a respectable 11.5 points per game.
The 6'10" Vonleh really is making his mark on the glass. He leads the conference in rebounding with 9.6 boards per game.
You can't ask for much more of Vonleh, and for that he deserves high praise.