Two of the top 10 winningest programs in NCAA basketball history collide for a Gavitt Games matchup Wednesday as Indiana welcomes St. John’s. Both teams are looking to start 3-0 following comfortable victories in each of their most recent contests.
Indiana looks to carry over an improved defensive effort from its latest outing in hopes of stopping the St. John’s attack. The Red Storm features its own all-conference threat in Julian Champagnie. The Hoosiers will have multiple bodies to throw at Champagnie, who led the Big East in scoring last year at 19.8 points per game.
St. John’s received several votes in the AP poll and are seen by many as a tournament team which would come as no surprise to its decorated head coach Mike Anderson.
Part of Anderson’s recruiting class last year is its talented guard Posh Alexander. Alexander won the honor of Big East Freshman of the Year joining names such as Patrick Ewing and Allen Iverson. Not bad company, right?
Indiana’s dynamic duo of Xavier Johnson and Big Ten player of the week Trayce Jackson-Davis have started strong. Now it’s time to show out on the nationally televised stage of FS1. Not only that, but some of the fresh faces will have to make their mark in order for Indiana to emerge victorious.
Parker Stewart and Miller Kopp have been relatively quiet in the starting five. They could see more opportunities off of Jackson-Davis double teams leading to more open 3s. Open shots have to begin falling for Indiana, and getting these two those looks is imperative.
It marks the eighth all-time meeting between IU and St. John’s, with their last meeting coming in 2015. The Hoosiers won 83-73 in Bloomington.
Wednesday night will show us a lot about how IU is coming together early in the season. The Hoosiers are currently 6.5-point favorites at home.