There’s an outside chance that Indiana could still reach the NCAA Tournament. Yes, a team with a 17-15 record, a losing conference record and that fell in the first round of the B1G Tournament is still in consideration.
Why? The Hoosiers have registered six Quad 1 wins this season, defeating the likes of Michigan State (twice), Wisconsin, Marquette and Louisville, among others. Despite a stretch in which the Hoosiers lost 12 of 13 games, there’s still a possibility they get one of those at-large bids.
It seems unlikely after a 79-75 loss to Ohio State in the second round of the B1G Tournament, but the conversation will continue until Selection Sunday.
After IU’s loss to the Buckeyes on Thursday, head coach Archie Miller was asked about Indiana’s NCAA Tournament hopes. The Hoosiers’ leader is pretty confident that his team could get a victory, should they steal one of those at-large spots.
“I know if we are in the tournament, I believe our guys are capable of winning a game,” Miller told the media. “For me to speculate, it’s hard. I know this, our league is the toughest in the country this season and to play the schedule that we’ve played and sorta come up with our head above water these last three weeks is a good sign.
“We’ll take whatever they give us. You obviously earn what you get and for us, right now, we just got to wait and see.”
Thursday’s loss to Ohio State aside, the Hoosiers did finish strong, winning their final four games of the regular season. They posted wins over Wisconsin, Michigan State, Illinois and Rutgers to get some momentum heading into the B1G Tournament.
But Indiana fell short in an important game. Even worse, the Buckeyes were also a bubble team and likely solidified their spot in the NCAA Tournament.
Miller is right. It’s now wait-and-see mode for the Hoosiers. Selection Sunday could be a stressful day in Bloomington.