Bloomington, Indiana – Indiana coach Mike Woodson finally seized a chance to beat former teammate and longtime friend Reggie Theus on Thursday night.
Together they celebrated a moment bigger than any other game – the return of the Garrett family to Bloomington.
Trace Jackson-Davis scored 21 points to lead the 13th-seeded Indiana Hoosiers to a 101-49 defeat to Bethune Cockman, shortly after assistant coach Billy Jarrett Jr. celebrated his grandfather, Bill Jarrett, breaking the Big Ten color barrier in December 1948.
“What about that?” Now in his third season as a Wildcats coach, Theus said. “We all went out and stood in front of the statue and took pictures, and I knew as soon as I saw his big head, I knew it was Billy’s head. History is an amazing thing.”
The game was not.
Jackson-Davis only played 21 minutes and the Hoosiers made 10 three-pointers to top the 100 points. The two-time unbeaten Hoosiers won a total of 87 points and is now 10-0 all-time against a Southwestern Athletic Conference opponent.
Joe French led Python Cockman (0-2) with 11 points, while 6-foot-2 front-runner Marcus Jarrett scored 10.
Certainly, Billy Jarrett Jr. would have preferred a better result. The 1947 Indiana Basketball Mr. Garrett was an American college graduate who went on to play for the Harlem Globetrotters and a high school coach who won the Indiana State High School title at Indianapolis Crispus Attucks, the same school Oscar Robertson attended.
Only the Wildcats led the game, 10-9, on a flooded Dylan Robertson alley five minutes into the game.
Miller Cobb responded with his first three doubles to give Indiana the lead while spurring 20-2. Indiana finished the half by 15-4 to make it 49-23 and sealed the score 15-2 early in the second half.
“This team is competitive, just telling you,” Woodson said.
The Big Picture
Bethune-Cookman: The Wildcats opened against two Big Ten schools, and it wasn’t pretty. The schedule is getting easier, but achieving more than nine wins last season will require major improvements.
Indiana: The Hoosiers’ most obvious problem in recent seasons is the three-point struggle. If they replicate that performance against better opposition, Indiana could stand up to — or surpass — the pre-season hype.
The repercussions of the opinion poll
There were a few surprises in the first week, including Indiana. While unbalanced margins won’t hurt their ranking, they probably won’t help much either.
Theos and Woodson have known each other since the mid-1980s when both first-round picks became the Kansas City/Sacramento Kings teammates and played 195 games together.
They choose different training paths.
Theus started his career at the college level, went to the NBA for three seasons and then returned to the college ranks. Woodson spent 25 years training at a professional level before taking on his first college job.
While the Wildcats were playing, people on their campus in Daytona Beach, Florida, were dealing with another hurricane that hit the Florida coast. Theus said the school scheduled a double header for men and women on Monday as a result of the storm.
“The coast was really hit, but it didn’t go very far inland,” said Theus. “But it’s the second in a month and our university infrastructure is not very big, so it can be very disruptive.”
Bethune-Cookman: The Florida National faces off in Daytona Beach, Florida, on Monday.
Indiana: Get a week’s break before visiting Xavier next Friday.
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