We’ll have our traditional What to Expect preview later in the week, but here are three things to watch out for as North Carolina heads to Bloomington on Wednesday:
Are the Tar Heels tired after losing in four overtime on Sunday?
North Carolina was the nation’s No. 1 team last week. After two losses in three games in Portland, the Tar Heels face a big drop when the Associated Press poll is released today.
North Carolina’s challenging foray to the West Coast began with an 89-81 win over Portland. The Tar Heels then lost back-to-back to Iowa State on Friday and Alabama on Sunday.
The loss to the Crimson Tide was particularly draining for North Carolina. The Tar Heels struggled with four overtimes before losing 103-101. Now North Carolina has to go back three time zones and play in Bloomington less than 72 hours later. Hubert Davis will certainly have his team ready for action. However, Indiana will have the advantage of being at home and being the more rested team.
The health of Trayce Jackson-Davis and Armando Bacot
After missing Wednesday’s win over Little Rock with back pain, Jackson-Davis returned to the Indiana lineup for Friday’s win over Jackson State.
The Preseason All-American played well but wasn’t as explosive as usual.
Mike Woodson said after the game Jackson-Davis would need the next few days to prepare for Wednesday.
“He didn’t play many minutes today,” Woodson explained. “We’ll go back and see where he is. You know, he has these next few days to prepare for Wednesday’s game.
“So like I told him as I finished the huddle you guys who are a little beat up you need to come in and get your treatment and get ready for Wednesday because that’s our next game.”
Bacot’s status is far more up in the air than Jackson-Davis’. Bacot felt “stinging pains” in his ankle during Sunday’s loss to Alabama.
#UNC Senior Armando Bacot said he felt “sharp pain” in his right ankle. He hobbled out to do post-game interviews. He said he will do his best to play Indiana on Wednesday.
— Ross Martin (@RossMartin_IC) November 28, 2022
Great atmosphere in the auditorium
A special atmosphere was to be created in the Assembly Hall on Wednesday evening.
This is a game that Indiana fans have circled on their calendars since it was announced in June.
It’s a late night tip and the anticipation of the game builds throughout the day. The Crimson Guard, the student section of IU, will be posted throughout the day. Indiana has also announced that Wednesday’s game will be a “white-out.”
It could also be Indiana’s first home game as a top-10 team since the 2016-17 season. For a fan base longing for a return to relevance in college basketball, all eyes will be on Bloomington on Wednesday and it should be a night to remember in terms of atmosphere.
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