Mike Woodson’s Weekly Radio Show Notes (March 7)

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After two narrow losses to close out the regular season, Indiana desperately needs a Big Ten tournament to jump-start its NCAA Tournament revival. Head coach Mike Woodson joins host Don Fischer to discuss it on his weekly “Inside IU Basketball” radio show.

This week’s special guest is IU Men’s Basketball Sports Information Director JD Campbell.

As usual, all footnotes and quotes are by Woodson unless otherwise noted.

ON INDIANA’S LOSS TO RUTGERS:

  • TJD/Race scoring 22 pts in the 1st half; doesn’t produce in 2nd half – “It’s nothing new, we’ve seen it (zone defence) all season long.” … “Now it’s a question of who can shoot the perimeter.”
  • Woodson notes that Rutgers in 2nd half really tried to force IU to shoot instead of hammering the paint

ON INDIANA’S LOSS TO PURDUE:

  • Re: 3 open missing – “You’re down one and you draw a play, and he (Parker Stewart) doesn’t knock it down”
  • Re: Gross disparity — “The bad situation is what it is, I can’t control it. It was unbalanced, that’s all I can say about it.”
  • “I thought Parker’s shot was as wide open as you can ask for, and there’s 17 (seconds) on the clock and if you do that you’re ahead”
  • Re: IU limiting rotations — “We had this conversation a long time ago where we were turning the ball over and I was complaining about running. But we were so much better at that category.” …”I think we got that part figured out.”
  • “I thought we were solid all the way. Even when they raced early and went up 10-12 points, my mindset was that I had to stay in the chase.”
  • “The Mackey Arena is a tough place to play, it really is.”
  • Re: IU come back from a 13 point deficit in the 1st half — “We have shown this year that we are not that type of team anymore”
  • “In the second half we were just solid.”
  • Woodson says he thinks one of the biggest plays of the game was Stewart after Sasha Stefanovic on a 3-pointer
  • Re: Miller Kopp’s 14-point performance – ‘He had a great look and a big frame like that, I was really happy to see him step in and make some shots’
  • “I thought Trayce had a great second half after struggling in the first”
  • Re: TJD’s performance — “As a young player — I know he’s a junior, but to me he’s still young — he’s still becoming a senior”… “It’s is a big piece of the puzzle, and he’s put us in a great position this year”…”He just has to keep working and growing as a player”

ON XAVIER JOHNSON’S CONTINUOUS HIGH LEVEL PLAY:

  • “I think he’s grown up. He’s starting to understand the system on both sides of the floor.”
  • “I never asked him on the defensive side.”
  • “The most important thing was that he leads our ball club”
  • “It was a big plus to see him improve for us, right in front of us”
  • Fischer asks if it’s fair to say Xavier is what’s driving IU at this point – Woodson replies, “X has done a lot of good things for us, and I think there were some growing pains. But he has improved a lot.”

ON BENCH SHORTENING:

  • “I did. And it’s nothing against guys who don’t play on the bench.”
  • “It’s been a bit of a roller coaster.”
  • “When you come into these close matches, these have no margin for error”
  • “Everyone has to be stable when the guys come off the bench. You have to give us something. Either keep the game tight or add something.”
  • “It’s kind of a balance in terms of what I think with our bench. I like to play against nine or ten guys, but as the season went on we shortened it.”
  • Woodson notes that Michigan mostly plays an 8-man rotation and Rutgers a 6-7 man rotation”

ON INDIANA’S MINDSET HEADING TO THE B1G TOURNAMENT:

  • “We play pretty hard, and it’s frustrating not to be rewarded with wins.”
  • “I can’t fault the effort of our players”
  • “We now have to prepare for Michigan, that’s all I can think of. We can’t go back and get the Rutgers or Purdue game.”
  • “I hate to even say this, but we’re always trying to find ways to win. That’s the frustrating part.”
  • “I can’t feel sorry because I want to win and our players want to win in the worst possible way”
  • “Indiana is a team you expect to win, and I get it. I don’t know if the pressure is there or not.”
  • “We can’t look past Michigan because Michigan played their ass in our own gym and won.”
  • “It’s a very tight-knit group. I thought the Bahamas set the tone for where we are today, and we never wavered.”
  • “I think this team is still hungry, it was obvious in the game against Purdue. We’re going to keep fighting, and that’s how it should be.”
  • Woodson says players didn’t feel sorry for themselves despite loss and keep working

ON THE B1G TOURNAMENT + THE CONFERENCE AS A WHOLE:

  • “There’s no way to look at the bracket and say this team is going to win”
  • “I saw it firsthand, everyone can coach in this conference”
  • “It’s wide open…anything can happen in college basketball, I always thought that”
  • Re: Past game against Michigan – ‘They’re probably the only game we’ve played this season where they’ve done both ends of the court’…Woodson says he’s not using Purdue’s win days earlier as an excuse…Woodson says the difference was Michigan was making 11 of 17 three-pointers…Credits Hunter Dickinson for being such a burden for IU to handle
  • Re: Michigan opener – “They’ve had their ups and downs. Their record is about the same as ours.” … “I think they are very talented and well trained. Juwan (Howard) has always been a great coach.”
  • Woodson says he’s not at all surprised Michigan continued to win despite Juwan Howard’s suspension

ON INDIANA’S NCAA TOURNAMENT LUCKS:

  • Woodson says he’s not even thinking about playing in the NIT right now, if IU misses the tournament; only focused on the Big Ten tournament
  • “NIT is what it is right now, but we’re trying to get into the big dance (NCAA Tournament)
  • “If we keep competing like we did against Purdue, we’re going to put ourselves in a good position on Thursday”

ON TREY GALLOWAY’S INJURY:

  • Fischer asks if Galloway could be back for the B1G tournament – “I don’t know. He does little things on the floor, but at the end of the day he has to be able to move”
  • Woodson calls Trey Galloway’s continued injury a ‘huge loss’… He says he’s a bit frustrated that he hasn’t been able to see IU at full strength for much of the season

IU MEDIA RELATIONS DIRECTOR JD CAMPBELL JOINS THE SHOW:

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