BLOOMINGTON, Indiana (Ticker) -- Indiana wrapped up Mike Davis' first NCAA Tournament victory in the first half.
Tom Coverdale scored 19 points as the fifth-seeded Hoosiers built a 15-point halftime lead and coasted to a 75-56 victory over No. 12 Utah in a South Region first-round game.
Davis took over for coaching legend Bob Knight last season, but Indiana was surprised by Kent State in the opening round. There were no surprises this time as the Hoosiers built a 10-point cushion 11 minutes into the game and never led by less than five points thereafter.
Jeff Newton added 15 points and Jared Jeffries chipped in 12 for Indiana, which faces surprising North Carolina-Wilmington on Saturday. The Hoosiers (21-11) have not gotten past the second round of the NCAA Tournament since 1994.
Phil Cullen drilled 7-of-8 3-pointers and scored a career-high 25 points for Utah (21-9), which closed the season with losses in six of its last 11 games.
While Davis recorded his first NCAA win, Utah's Rick Majerus lost in the first round for the first time in nine tournament appearances with the Utes.
"We were beaten tonight," said Majerus, who returned to the bench this season after missing 2000-01 due to medical reasons. "It's not like we didn't play well. Indiana took it to us and whipped us." Indiana hit 12 of its first 16 shots and used a 17-2 run to build a big early lead. It ended up clicking at 63 percent from the field in the first half and took a 42-27 lead into the locker room.
Coverdale, Jeffries and Jarrad Odle almost singlehandedly outrebounded Utah, which was beaten on the boards, 27-18, committed 17 turnovers and shot under 45 percent (21-of-47).
"The threes really hurt us, but what really hurt us was getting pummeled on the glass," Majerus said. "They were what you see in the Big Ten, a very physical team. ... We've got one physical guy and that's (Trace) Caton." Mountain West Conference Player of the Year Britton Johnson made just 2-of-7 shots and was held to four points, nine below his average.
Utah never led as Coverdale nailed a 3-pointer 41 seconds into the game and Jeffries and Odle made jumpers to give the Hoosiers a 7-0 cushion.
The Utes twice got within a point, the last time at 13-12 on a basket by Cullen with just under 12 minutes left in the first half. But Coverdale answered with a 3-pointer to spark a 9-0 run for Indiana.
A jumper by reserve Jeff Newton gave the Hoosiers their biggest lead of the first half, 39-19, with 3:37 left.
Utah got no closer than 12 points in the second half.