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BTPowerhouse 25 - No. 4 - Trayce Jackson-Davis

BTPowerhouse’s staff counts down the best players in the Big Ten heading into the 2020-’21 season.

NCAA Basketball: Penn State at Indiana Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports

In the months leading up to the 2020-’21 college basketball season, BTPowerhouse will be releasing a new series called the ‘BTPowerhouse 25,’ which features the Top 25 players in the Big Ten as voted by members of the staff. All players set to be on Big Ten rosters for next season were eligible during the staff vote with their top selection receiving 25 points and their 25th and final selection receiving 1 point.

Today’s edition of the BTPowerhouse 25 will take a look at Indiana sophomore forward Trayce Jackson-Davis. The Hoosiers haven’t made it to the NCAA Tournament since 2016, their longest NCAA drought since the early 70s when they went from 1968-72 without making it to the postseason. If Indiana wants to get back to the big dance for the first time with Archie Miller as head coach, they’ll need a big year from Jackson-Davis.

BTPowerhouse 25 - No. 4 Trayce Jackson-Davis

  • Eligibility: Sophomore
  • Career Totals: 32 games, 939 minutes, 433 points, 270 rebounds, 37 assists, 22 steals
  • 2019-20 Averages: 29.3 min, 13.5 pts, 8.4 rebs, 1.2 asts, 1.8 blks, 0.7 stls
  • Positional Role: Forward

Trayce Jackson-Davis was a four star forward and the third best prospect in the state of Indiana when he committed to the Hoosiers. The hope was for the Hoosiers to finally make it to the NCAA Tournament in Archie Miller’s third season after a disappointing first two years for Miller. Ultimately the season ended prematurely and Miller will look to get the Hoosiers back to the postseason for the first time during his tenure in Bloomington.

Player Strengths

Jackson-Davis led the Hoosiers in scoring, rebounds and blocks per game, anchoring a Hoosiers team that posted 20 wins last year. He proved to be a dominant force inside, averaging 56.6% from the field on 8.8 field goal attempts per game. His ability to clean up inside proved critical for Indiana at times this past season and if they want to build from last year they’ll need Jackson-Davis to continue to do so.

The 6’9” forward also proved to be a stout defender inside, causing problems for opposing bigs. He was clearly the best player on the Hoosiers last season and with the addition of some highly touted recruits, could have less pressure on him to produce this season.

Areas for Improvement

Last year Jackson-Davis was held to single digits in 10 of 32 games. In those 10 games the Hoosiers went 3-7. In the remaining 22 games that he reached double figures in Indiana went 17-5. This makes sense as Jackson-Davis was the best player for Indiana last season, but he’ll need to be a bit more consistent as the Hoosiers struggled immensely when opponents were able to slow him down.

Another spot Jackson-Davis would benefit to improve on is at the free throw line. He wasn’t a horrible shooter, making 68.5% of his attempts, but he got to the line more than anyone else for Indiana and needs to convert more from the charity stripe.

Player Projection

Jackson-Davis will once again anchor the Hoosiers frontcourt and should probably be the best player on the roster for a second year in a row. Indiana does add five-star guard Khristian Lander and will look for more consistency from guard Rob Phinisee. If Lander and Phinisee can produce in the backcourt, it would reduce the pressure on Jackson-Davis. It would also keep defenses from focusing almost exclusively on Jackson-Davis, giving him more chances to score inside.

Indiana should probably be better this season, looking to make a run for the NCAA Tournament. If Trayce Jackson-Davis can build from his freshman season Indiana could have a good winter and make it back to the postseason.

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