NO. 4 LOUISVILLE CARDINALS (7-0) vs. INDIANA HOOSIERS (7-1)
Game Time: 9 p.m. (approximately)
Location: Madison Square Garden: New York, N.Y.
Announcers: Dan Shulman (play-by-play), Dick Vitale (analyst), Andy Katz (reporter).
Officials: Mike Eades, Terry Wymer and Tim Clougherty
Favorite: Louisville by 12
All-Time Series: Indiana leads 10-6
Last Meeting: Louisville won 95-76 on Feb. 1, 2003 in Freedom Hall
Probable Starting Lineups:
The 7-1 Hoosiers are perhaps the most talented offensive team that Louisville has faced to date. They enter tonight's game ranked amonf the national leaders in scoring (fourth in the nation, 88.4 ppg), field goal percentage (ninth in the nation, 52.4 percent) and 3-point field goal percentage (eighth in the nation, 43.9 percent). Indiana is led by its backcourt duo of junior guard Yogi Ferrell, averaging 17.3 points and 5.8 assists; and freshman guard James Blackmon, Jr., who averages 19.5 points, 5.1 rebounds and has hit 26-of-48 three point goals (.542).
While Indiana has had no trouble scoring the ball this season, keeping opponents from doing the same has been a different story. The Hoosiers rank dead last in the Big Ten in scoring defense allowing an average of 69.3 points per game, and 13th in opponents' field-goal percentage at 43.7.
IU owns a win over then-No. 22 SMU, and has reeled off three straight victories since being stunned at home by Eastern Washington on Nov. 24.
--Tonight's game marks Louisville's second appearance in the Jimmy V. Classic.The Cardinals lost 72-65 to Arizona in the event back in 2006, a night best-remembered for being the long-awaited collegiate debut of U of L freshman Derrick Caracter.
--The game will tip-off approximately 30 minutes following the first game of the event between Illinois and Villanova, which is scheduled to begin at 7 p.m.
--Louisville has won eight straight games at Madison Square Garden and 10 of their last 11. U of L owns an all-time record of 30-26 inside the world's most famous arena.
--Louisville has not trailed past the 9:03 mark of the first half through its first seven games.
--Louisville has a 27-5 record in December over the last four years, including a 15-1 mark the last two seasons.
--All seven of Louisville's opponents so far this season have been held to less than 40 percent shooting from the floor.
--Louisville is favored in tonight's game for a program-record 56th straight time. The Cards have not been an underdog since playing at Syracuse on March 2, 2013. All told, U of L has been the favorite in 80 of their last 81 games.
--Montrezl Harrell has scored in double figures in 19 consecutive games, the longest such streak of any ACC player.
--Louisville's 103 victories over the last four years are the most wins in the nation in that stretch. Louisville is the only school in the nation with three straight 30 win seasons, including a school-record 35 victories amassed by Louisville's 2012-13 NCAA Championship team (30 in 2011- 12, 31 in 2013-14).
--U of L is 153-9 over the last 14 seasons under Coach Rick Pitino when scoring 80 or more points (20-1 last season, 11-1 in 2012-13).--U of L has produced double-digit steals in five of its six games.
--The Cardinals are third in the nation in scoring defense, allowing 49.3 points per game.
--Louisville's average of 46.3 rebounds per game is the second-highest in the country.
--Louisville's 87-26 win over Savannah State was Rick Pitino's 22nd victory at U of L that came by 40 points or more, the most of any coach in Cardinal history.
--Louisville is 24-0 all-time in games in which sophomore guard David Levitch sees the court.
--Montrezl Harrell is just 142 points short of becoming the 66th career 1,000-point scorer at Louisville. Harrell also needs just six dunks to become Louisville's all-time leader in that category.
Ken Pomeroy Prediction: Louisville 79, Indiana 68