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“It really was no pressure”: Romeo Langford shows his dominance for Indiana

Romeo Langford Indiana Basketball

Freshman guard Romeo Langford caught a pass in transition, cut inside and drove into the lane, putting up a teardrop layup that slowly dripped into the basket.

He finished over six-foot seven-inch forward Cameron Bowles, who saw it coming. The only thing Bowles could do was brace for impact and try to get a charge call to go his way.

It didn’t.

Langford backed up the layup with a tip-in over a defender just a minute later in the first half. He was playing like a point forward in a guard’s body.

Langford would go on to rack up 10 more points in the half en route to a 53-32 Hoosier lead and finished with 17 points at the end of the period. It was his play down the stretch that gave Indiana the boost it needed to pull away, and he made it look so easy. A seven-point lead turned into 24 once Langford was done scoring in the first half.

“It really was no pressure,” Langford said. “Emotions were high. Couldn’t wait, all of our freshmen, just to get out here get our first game under our belt. Felt real good.”

There were multiple times where Langford looked like a high school bully driving to the basket. It didn’t matter what size the defender was — he was going to score when he wanted to. That’s the scary part about the way Langford plays.

He didn’t have the greatest start to the game, either. He missed his first shot attempt, which was a three-pointer, and he went 1-2 on his first trip to the free throw line. One short-corner jumper later, and he was rolling.

“To see the ball go through the net, that’s all I really need,” Langford said. “I just need to see that first shot go down and it’s all good for me from there.”

Even when he wasn’t scoring the ball in volumes, Langford was doing pretty much everything else to make an impact. He had three assists on the night, and he had multiple passes that strung the offense together in half-court possessions.

“If you look at the first four minutes, he probably had three to five passes, unselfish plays, on knockouts, drives to pass, looking for the bigs,” IU Head Coach Archie Miller said. “I thought he got off to a really good start passing the ball, which helped out team.”

He was also relentless on the defensive end. In IU’s exhibition game against Southern Indiana, Langford had five steals in a game where he didn’t get going on offense. Tuesday night was different but similar. His prowess on defense was still there, but his offense finally managed to catch up.

“My job is to attack,” Langford said. “And I was just attacking. And people were getting on me and left my teammates open. And I was just making the right basketball play and let the game come to me.”

IU is going to need Langford to score at will this season. Whenever the Hoosiers need a big bucket to turn the tide of momentum, they’re going to look for Langford to deliver. Tuesday night’s performance was just a glimpse into what he can become by the season’s end.

Whether it’s a three-pointer or a drive to the bucket, Langford will be there. He proved it tonight. The only thing he has left to prove is scoring at that level against the likes of Marquette, Duke and Michigan State.

“Heading to the basket, you saw a guy really was efficient,” Miller said. “Makes a few more free throws, probably looks almost like a flawless game for him, offensively.”

Michael Ramirez

I am a junior from Dallas, Texas, and am currently studying Media in the Media School and minoring in Entrepreneurship and Small Business Management in the Kelley School of Business at Indiana University. I worked for the Indiana Daily Student for the past two years where I covered men’s basketball, men’s soccer, water polo and cross country. I also served as the Sports Editor in the Spring of 2018. I am a member/radio host for WIUX, and I host a weekly podcast to talk anything and everything sports. Past internships include Digital Content for FC Dallas and sports reporting for Star Local Media. You can reach me at michrami@iu.edu or on Twitter @michrami_ for all your Dallas and Tottenham sports takes.

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