Crean decided Ferrell’s awareness, quick hands and intensity were the perfect antidote to Stauskas’ deadly shooting and effective passing.
“You’ve got to make his catches hard and his looks even harder,” Crean said. “You’ve got to be conscious of where he is at all times. I’m proud of our whole team defensively. Yogi was the catalyst.”
With Stauskas limited, the Hoosiers led most of the way in improving to 12-2 at Assembly Hall. Noah Vonleh added 10 points and 12 rebounds for the Hoosiers, who shot 54 percent to the Wolverines’ 40 percent.
Indiana may have reinvigorated its hopes for an at-large berth to the NCAA tournament by securing a second victory over a top 10 opponent.
The Wolverines are a common victim and no stranger to coming up short in this series.
Dating to last season’s run to the national title game, the Wolverines are 27-12 in their last 39 games — with three of the losses to the Hoosiers, who are 24-8 against Michigan over the last 18 seasons.
Michigan was outrebounded 31-22 and shot just 3 of 13 from behind the arc.
As Ferrell drained one 3 after another, fueling the crowd early and late, the Wolverines’ normally prolific offense was off from the start.
Michigan had more turnovers (8) than field goals (7) in the first half and scored just six points on its final 11 possessions to trail 25-22 at halftime.
It took a few breaks to stay that close. Walton was fouled twice in the half shooting behind the arc and converted all six free throws. The Wolverines also pushed the ball effectively for transition opportunities, scoring eight fast-break points.
After Indiana’s defense was slow to get back and allowed Zak Irvin a layup, Crean called a timeout with 10:08 left in the half. Out of the stoppage, the Hoosiers scored on five of their next six trips to grab a 22-18 lead.