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The Journal Gazette

Monday, November 13, 2017 2:20 am

Hoosiers begin to find footing

CHRIS GOFF | The Journal Gazette

BLOOMINGTON — Fans expect Archie Miller to mold Indiana into a hard-nosed, no-frills, gritty program.

The Hoosiers' offense is still struggling to find a consistent rhythm, but Sunday night's 86-77 win over Howard at Assembly Hall looked a lot more like Miller's style of basketball than Friday's season-opening blowout loss to Indiana State.

"Good win," Miller said. "I think it took us a while to massage the game, but I thought we did some good things by getting it down low, and there was a lot of unselfish passing and plays that resembled what we want to be about."

Freshman guard Al Durham said he was pleased with Indiana's communication on defense, how everyone knew where on the floor they were supposed to be and made the right rotations.

"We talked a lot about how we had to come back and have an aggressive mindset on defense," Durham said. "Basically letting defense take care of the game for us. We played great defense tonight."

No one would call this win a masterpiece, not when Howard (0-2) hung around for the entirety of the first half and was actually within nine points with 3:10 remaining.

"But to get a win, get it out of the way, is great," Miller said. "Going on the road against Seton Hall (Wednesday) is going to be a huge test for us, so we just have to focus in in a short amount of time here, find a way to get a little better and also find a way to see if we can stay fresh and maybe get a little bit more healthy, but we'll go with what we've got."

Health is a definite concern. Collin Hartman (groin) is out Wednesday, and Morgan, IU's starting power forward, might be.

"Sprained his ankle and, as far as I know, he's out until further due," Miller said. "I don't know if he'll play on Wednesday. I didn't get any report. We'll probably get something later in the week. He turned his ankle. I think they tried to retape him, and he said he couldn't play. We'll play it by ear."