Game Day Essentials
Indiana (18-10, 9-9) v. Rutgers (16-12, 10-8)
- Tip Time: 7 p.m. Eastern
- Location: Simon Skjodt Assembly Hall, Bloomington, Indiana
- Television: BTN (Brandon Gaudin and Robbie Hummel)
- IU Radio Network: IU Radio Network
- Stream: Fox Sports Live
- Point Spread: Indiana is a 5-point favorite
- KenPom Projected Score: No. 44 Indiana 67 No. 74 Rutgers 62
- Series: Indiana leads 7-6
- Last Meeting: Rutgers 61 Indiana 50 (March 11, 2021)
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- Watch: Mike Woodson previews Rutgers and IU basketball Senior Night
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Rutgers has won the last four games against Indiana and six of the last seven games against the Hoosiers.
Last season Rutgers started its postseason journey on a winning note, taking down No. 10 seed Indiana by a final score of 61-50 in its opening game at the Big Ten Tournament. The victory for the seven-seeded Scarlet Knights was the team’s fourth ever Big Ten Tournament victory, and third win over Indiana for the season.
The last time RU won at Assembly Hall Scarlet Knights were led by 19 points from Geo Baker in the victory over the Hoosiers on Sunday Jan. 24, 2021. Ron Harper Jr. had a double-double with 15 points and a career-high 12 rebounds. Rutgers shot 51 percent from the field, its best mark in Big Ten play.
Rutgers recorded four straight ranked wins from Feb. 5 to Feb. 16 — (No. 13 Michigan State, No. 16 Ohio State, No. 14 Wisconsin, No. 12 Illinois)
RU now has five ranked wins on the season, the most ranked wins in one season in program history. Four straight wins over ranked teams, extended RU’s program-record streak of consecutive wins over ranked teams
Rutgers’ 10th Big Ten win of the year represents the third straight season winning double-digit conference games.
Rutgers is 14-1 this season when holding teams to 65 points or fewer.
Geo Baker won Co-Big Ten Player of the Week after 41 combined points in the wins over Ohio State and Wisconsin. In five seasons at Rutgers (2017-22) he has played in 141 games with 124 starts. In that time, he has averaged 11.3 points, 3.4 assists, 2.7 rebounds and 1.2 steals, shooting 38.6 percent from the field and 32.2 percent from three-point distance.
Caleb McConnell has played four seasons at Rutgers, seeing action in 109 games with 55 starts. At 2.32 steals per game he leads the the Big Ten. He had a season-high 16 points against Clemson and had double-double featuring a career-high 12 rebounds at Seton Hall.
Ron Harper, Jr. leads the team with 15.6 points-per-game. He had career-highs of 31 points and six three pointers made against Maryland. He led the way with 30 points and made a memorable buzzer-beating three-pointer to defeat then No. 1 Purdue.
Paul Mulcahy as spent three seasons at Rutgers, playing in 87 games with 49 starts. He had a career-high 31 points, 7 rebounds and 7 assists in a loss to Northwestern. He was the first Scarlet Knight with over 30 points, 7 rebounds and 7 assists since Corey Sanders in Feb. of 2016. Mulcahy leads the Big Ten in conference play in assists (105 and 5.83 per game). He is averaging career-bests with 9.1 points-per- game, 4.1 rebounds and 5.2 assists-per-game.
Cliff Omoruyi is having a breakout season averaging 11.7 points-per-game and leading the team with 7.9 rebounds. He set career-highs with 22 points in loss to Northwestern and 14 rebounds against Iowa. He has five double-doubles on the season.
Head Coach Steve Pikiell
Steve Pikiell has spent six seasons as head coach of the Scarlet Knights. Under Pikiell’s leadership, the team returned to the NCAA Tournament in 2021, making its first NCAA Tournament appearance since 1991.
With 30 years of coaching experience, the Bristol (Conn.) native is under contract to remain courtside at the RAC through 2025-26. The 19th head coach in the history of Rutgers men’s basketball, Pikiell has been instrumental in turnarounds throughout his playing and coaching career that have resulted in conference championships and NCAA berths.
Pikiell is in his 17th season as a head coach. He had a 192-157 record at Stony Brook before coming to Rutgers in 2016. He is 96-89 in Piscataway.
As a player Pikiell was a four-year letterwinner and two-time team captain at Connecticut from 1987-91 under head coach Jim Calhoun. After placing ninth in the Big East with a 4-12 record his freshman season, UConn won its first Big East title and advanced to the Elite Eight and Sweet 16 during the two years he captained the Huskies.
Rutgers KenPom Highlights
Tempo – No. 291 (Offense – No. 167 / Defense No. 354)
Offensive efficiency – No. 123
- While they are shooting just 33.3 percent from 3-point range on the season, they have improved to 36.4 percent in Big Ten play, good for fourth in the league. Only 26.4 percent of their points come from three however. That’s No. 298 nationally.
- The Scarlet Knights do most of their scoring from 2-point range, but they are making just 49.1 percent of their shots inside the arc, No. 205 nationally.
- Rutgers assists on 59.3 percent of their field goals, good for No. 25 in the country
- RU doesn’t get to the free throw line much. Free throw attempts are just 26.8 percent of their field goal attempts. That’s No. 278 nationally, and they make just 71 percent, good for No. 199.
Defensive efficiency – No. 41
- At 18.8 seconds, Rutgers forces the fifth longest possessions in the country.
- In Big Ten games RU is No. 1 in the league with a 10.7 percent steal rate.
- Teams are shooting just 46.2 percent from 2-point range against the Scarlet Knights. That’s No. 40 nationally. Part of the story is a 11.8 percent block rate, good for No. 54 in the country.
- Rutgers gives up 35.6 percent of its points from behind the arc, 48th most in the country. Teams are shooting 34.5 percent from three, No. 224.
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