INDIANAPOLIS – Indiana received an at-large NCAA Tournament bid on Sunday. The Hoosiers are the 4th seed in the Midwest Region and will face Kent State in the first round in Albany, New York on Friday.
“The turnaround is the biggest thing,” senior forward Trayce Jackson-Davis said. “We have to be locked in to be ready for the game and afterwards we have to be extremely prepared for the next team.”
Indiana is heading to the tournament for the second straight year after snapping a five-year drought last season. The berth is the 41st in program history.
“These guys who were with us last year, they tasted it,” head coach Mike Woodson said. “The seniors that we have, they’re really going to have to step up, and really help guide and push this team through. Because that’s what it’s going to take.”
Indiana has not lost to a double-digit seed since 2001. The Hoosiers’ opponent in that year’s first round was Kent State.
“Nobody wants to go home in March Madness. I get it. That’s why you have to be ready to play every minute of every second of every game,” Woodson said. “We don’t play until Friday, so we’ll have four days, really, to get ready. That’s enough time.”
After struggling in the beginning of January, the Hoosiers turned their season around, winning 11 of their last 15 regular season games and beating Maryland in the Big Ten quarterfinals.