Boston Scientific Close The Gap Crossroads Classic

Christmas Wish List: Indiana needs defensive boards, touches for Zeller

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Over the course of the next two weeks, College Basketball Talk will be detailing what some of the country’s best, most intriguing, and thoroughly enigmatic teams need. It’s the spirit of the holidays. We’re in a giving mood.

What do other teams have on their Christmas Wish Lists? Click here to find out.

Gotta have it list-topper: Rebounding

Based on the data that Kenpom compiles, Indiana doesn’t appear to have an issue on the defensive glass. They are 34th in the country in defensive rebounding percentage, as they grab 72.4% of all available defensive rebounds. The problem with that number? Look at who they’ve played. Georgetown is in the bottom-quarter of all teams when it comes to offensive rebounding. North Carolina is a good offensive rebounding team, but they were absolutely drubbed by the Hoosiers in all facets.

Every other team that Indiana has played this season is, well, not very good. Except Butler. Butler is 21st in the country in offensive rebounding percentage. They grabbed 19 offensive rebounds against the Hoosiers. The biggest scapegoat may have been Will Sheehey, who was matched up with Erik Fromm, a bench player that grabbed five offensive boards in 20 minutes. Indiana’s defense has been immensely better this year, but they are susceptible on the offensive glass.

Stocking stuffer:  Entry passes to Cody Zeller

I said it early on in the season: the nation’s Preseason Player of the Year would not put up the kind of numbers that many were expecting simply because the Hoosiers have too many weapons up and down their roster. And it’s not necessarily a bad thing that Zeller isn’t the first, second and third option offensively. It is a bad thing, however, that Indiana has such issues getting the ball to Zeller on the block. I took this picture during the Butler game. Zeller is wide-open. He didn’t get the ball on this possession. This was a common occurrence. That’s a problem.

Planning on re-gifting: Christian Watford consistency

Watford’s numbers on the season: 12.4 ppg, 6.9 rpg, 45.7% 3PT, 125.9 ORTG.

Watford’s numbers against Georgetown, UNC and Butler: 7.0 ppg, 6.0 rpg, 37.5% 3PT (5-24 FG), 94.3 ORTG.That’s not exactly ideal.

Wichita State’s Anton Grady improving after being hospitalized

James Woodard, Anton Grady, Ron Baker
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Wichita State senior forward Anton Grady received some positive news on Saturday as a neurosurgeon reviewed MRI results, which are negative for spinal cord trauma.

According to a release from Wichita State, doctors believed Grady suffered a spinal cord concussion during a collision on Friday after he was taken off the floor in a stretcher and taken to a hospital in an ambulance. CT and MRI scans on Friday both turned up negative, but the news of Saturday’s results are an even more encouraging sign for Grady.

The injury for Grady occurred during a Friday loss to Alabama during the AdvoCare Invitational as the senior’s condition has improved since the collision. Grady will receive physical therapy over the next few days and doctors will check his progress before he is released from the hospital.

Grady has been alert and responsive to questions and had feeling in his extremities on Friday, but the use of his arms and legs was limited. By Saturday morning, Grady had improved the use of his extremities.

The 6-foot-8 Grady has averaged 9 points and 6 rebounds per game this season in his first season with the Shockers. The Cleveland State transfer is shooting 39 percent from the field.

Colorado’s Tory Miller reprimanded by Pac-12 after biting opponent

Dusan Ristic, Tory Miller
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Colorado sophomore forward Tory Miller has been reprimanded by the Pac-12 and he also apologized for biting Air Force’s Hayden Graham earlier this week.

During Colorado’s win over Air Force on Wednesday, Miller was assessed a Flagrant 2 Dead Ball Technical Foul and ejected with 12:25 left in the second half after biting Graham during a loose ball.

In a release from the Pac-12, they announced reprimanding Miller, but he will not be suspended.

“All of our student-athletes must adhere to the Pac-12’s Standards of Conduct and Sportsman-ship,” Pac-12 Commissioner Larry Scott said in the release. “Regardless of Mr. Miller’s frustration and emotion, such behavior is unacceptable and he is being appropriately reprimanded.”

Miller also released his apology in the same release.

“I would like to apologize for my actions during the Air Force game. I would like to apologize to Hayden Graham, Air Force, my teammates and fans. It was a heat of the moment thing. I’m an emotional player, but I let my emotions get the best of me. I will use this as a learning experience and focus on helping my teammates and respecting my opponents for the rest of the season and beyond,” Miller said.

For Miller to not be suspended for this is good news for him and Colorado since he won’t miss any additional action, but did the Pac-12 make the right decision on this?