Usually, my previews consist of 5 questions for each game, but there's really only one question when the Indiana Hoosiers visit the RAC at 5:15 today.
Will Rutgers show up?
There are still four games left in this 2014-2015 campaign, and Eddie Jordan has threatened to bench any players who have decided to go through the motions. Too often the past few weeks, players have decided to not hustle on defense, let the opponent get to the rim easily, and settle for the first shot they get on offense. This kind of effort is something that needs to change, and Jordan says he's going to use the bench to force that change to happen.
Essentially, Rutgers players have to care--something that seems to be endemic to the entire program.
This is an odd match-up for Rutgers. Indiana has one of the worst defenses in the country, and Rutgers was able to take advantage of that in their match at Assembly Hall. They hung around until the very end of the game. A team that plays poor defense, should give Rutgers enough open shots to compete, if Rutgers has their head screwed on straight.
That said, the Hoosiers also shoot the three pointer at a ridiculously good rate--and Rutgers' defense isn't that great at defending the arc. Trading three points for two one each possession is a recipe for losing.
But it all comes down to effort. This is another lost season on the banks, but you don't want to see a team give up. Not when they can still reward the three seniors who stuck it through some of the worst moments in Rutgers basketball history. These players deserve to go out with another win, but you won't get it if you don't try.
Rutgers fans will know in the first five minutes. The game is sold out to the general public, and if Rutgers brings effort, maybe there'll be some electricity in the RAC as well.
We'd much rather see Myles Mack swishing threes and Kadeem Jack dunking, instead of seeing them on the bench.
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