Thursday, November 15th, 2012

College Basketball Countdown: Indiana Hoosiers- #1

Published on November 8, 2012 by Scott Shirley   ·   No Comments

College basketball is right around the corner. Games will be starting before you know it, and practices are just right around the corner.

Here at Roundballchat I will release my top 100 teams for the 2012-13 college basketball season. I will start at 100 and count my way down. I will rank all the 75 programs in the six major conferences, as well as 25 mid majors in my top 100 countdown.

Along with my top 100 countdown I will also feature a ton of previews. Like the top players at each position, All Conference teams, top players by class, top games, previewing the early season tournaments and much more.

Who will put at number 1? Louisville or Indiana or maybe a surprise stay tuned to Roundballchat for the next month to find out.

# 1 Indiana Hoosiers

Coach: Tom Crean (4 seasons at Indiana 82-84) Overall 272-180, 13 years

2011-12: Record 27-9 overall, 11-7 in Big Ten (5th)

Starters Returning (5) Jordan Halls, Christian Watford, Cody Zeller, Victor Oladipo, Will Sheehey

Preseason Tournament: Legends Classic

Top Non-Conference Games: vs. North Carolina, vs. Butler

Sat Out: Maurice Creek (injury)

Yes, Indiana Basketball is back. Tom Crean rebuilt Indiana the right way and the Hoosiers should be near the top for years to come. Indiana is the preseason top 10 for the first time since 2007. Indiana made it to the Sweet 16 last year after losing to Kentucky. The Hoosiers return one of the best players in the country and all five of their starters from last season plus they bring in a top five recruiting class. They Hoosiers return a key player from injury. They do lose 3 reverses but they were such a deep team last year that it won’t matter.

The Hoosiers will have one of the top frontcourts in the country. Leading the way for the Hoosiers will be forward super sophomore Cody Zeller (15. 6 ppg). He is the favorite in everyone’s previews to win National Player of the Year. Besides averaging the points Zeller also averaged 6.6 rebounds, 1.4 steals, 1.3 assists and 1.2 blocks. Zeller can score in the post but he also has a great mid-range game. His biggest strength might be his ability to run the floor and outrun his opponents. Joining him in the frontcourt is Christian Watford (12.6 ppg). He is a very versatile scorer that can score inside and out. He was 2nd on the team in three point shooting making 52 threes while making 44 % of them. He is also a tough physical rebounder. Watford hit a number of clutch shots including the game winner against Kentucky. The top option off the bench will be Will Sheehey (8.6 ppg), who has starting experience from last season. Sheehey is another versatile scorer. The depth will take a hit for a while. Derek Elston (4.2 ppg) will miss a couple months with an injury. While freshman Peter Jurkin and Hanner Mosquera-Perea will miss the first 9 games because of NCAA rules. Freshman Jeremy Hollowell and Austin Etherington (1.3 ppg) also provide depth.

Tom Crean will hand the offense over to highly though of freshman Yogi Ferrell. He is exactly what the Hoosiers have been lacking the last couple of seasons. Ferrell is a pass first point guard that has excellent court vision. Ferrell played AAU ball with Zeller. Ferrell is also an excellent defender because of his speed and quickness. Joining him in the backcourt is sharp shooter Jordan Hulls (11. 7ppg). Hulls returns to his more natural shooting guard position. Hulls is a deadly shooter who made 72 three pointers while making 49 % of them. If Ferrell struggles at the point Hulls can go over there. He also finished last season with 3.3 assists. At the 3 spot will be Victor Oladipo (10.8 ppg). Oladipo biggest asset is his defense ability; he is a top defender. He led the team in steals last season and was second in rebounds. On offensive he is not a shooter but he is a pretty good slasher because of his athletic ability. The top option off the bench will be Marurice Creek, who returns from injury. When he was healthy his freshman season he averaged 16.4 points per game but injuries have limited him throughout his career. Remy Abell (3 ppg) is another solid option off the bench.

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