While Xavier Johnson is still finding his footing on offense early in the season, his defense, especially in Indiana’s win against Bethune-Cookman on Thursday night, has been strong. Johnson picked up the Wildcats’ ball handlers full court and stuck to them like glue. Johnson fought for his man, executed switches together with his teammates, and helped when needed.
We’ll take a look at some of Indiana’s defense led by Johnson, as well as two baseline-out-of-bounds plays from the Hoosiers in the latest edition of Film Session:
Johnson grabs Marcus Garrett on full court and fights over the ball screen to stay with his. Later, he calls Miller Kopp for a switch. Race Thompson assists Garrett with a stunt, which prevents any shot attempts. Johnson then helps on a Kevin Davis drive, cutting off the lane, before recovering back to Damani McEntire — with some help from Jalen Hood-Schifino — on a closeout of a 3-point attempt that comes late in the shot clock. it doesn’t fall.
Johnson did an excellent job with the help of his teammates.
Johnson takes full court against Zion Harmon again. He fights for the first screen, and then he takes a second. Finally, he switches with Tamar Bates to take Joe French on a dribble handoff. Johnson presses French to a turnover with his tough ball pressure.
High-level stuff from Indiana’s point guard here.
Here’s the first of our BLOB plays. Trayce Johnson-Davis sets up a screen for Johnson at the top of the key, and Johnson cuts down to the right side. While that’s happening, Thompson is also setting a pick for Hood-Schifino on the left side, which the freshmen curls around and uses to find space in the mid-range near the corner. He rises, fires up, and hits, becoming fouled in the process. (The replay would later show that he kicked out his leg to draw the foul.
Indiana did a great job getting its best mid-range shooter a glimpse in his sweet spot.
Here’s where things get interesting, though. Indiana has another BLOB ready to go just a few minutes later in the second period. Jackson-Davis sets the pick in the same spot as the play before at top of the key. This time Hood-Schifino uses it to move left. Thompson creates a cross screen for Johnson down low. Thompson then moves to right corner.
This leaves the middle unoccupied. Jackson-Davis follows the lane straight and jams it home at the alley-opp of Kopp.
This subtle variation is a nice one from the previous BLOB to unleash Jackson Davis.
Filed to: Bethune-Cookman Wildcats, Xavier Johnson