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Wednesday, Dec. 6
The Indiana Daily Student


IU in NCAA Tournament field, will play Wichita State

Freshman guard James Blackmon Jr. and junior guard Yogi Ferrell celebrate during IU's game against Northwestern on Thursday at the United Center in Chicago, Ill. Blackmon Jr. and Ferrell combined for 42 of the Hoosiers' 71 points scored against Northwestern.

A late-season collapse wasn’t enough to keep IU out of the NCAA Tournament, after all. The Hoosiers were announced as a No. 10 seed and will play Wichita State on Friday in Omaha, Neb.

IU (20-13) is accompanied by four other Indiana schools – Butler, Notre Dame, Purdue and Valparaiso – in the Midwest region.

The Hoosiers seemed firmly in the 68-team field after a 15-4 start to the regular season, but a poor finish put their status in doubt. IU lost eight of its last 12 regular season games and lost in the third round of this weekend’s Big Ten Tournament.

It's the third time in four seasons IU has made the NCAA Tournament after failing to make the field in each of IU Coach Tom Crean's first three seasons. It's also IU's 38th all-time appearance in the Tournament. 

Wichita State (28-4) won the Missouri Valley Conference regular season, going 17-1 in conference play. The Shockers advanced to the 2013 Final Four and have won 174 games over the past five seasons. By comparison, IU has won 105 games over that stretch. 

"We have a ton of respect for Wichita State," IU Coach Tom Crean said on the Big Ten Network. "They are a great program ... We know what they're capable of. We know how good they are, we know what they've done." 

IU and Wichita State have met only once, with the Hoosiers taking a 75-54 win Dec. 27, 1989, in Indianapolis. 

The winner of Friday's game will take on the winner of Kansas and New Mexico State on Sunday. Kentucky — the Tournament's No. 1 overall seed — is the No. 1 seed in IU's region. 

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