Indiana-Purdue postgame analysis
|The Purdue Boilermakers took their 11-game win streak across the state last night when they faced off against Indiana. The Hoosiers certainly ended any speculation about whether or not the NCAA violations that are hanging over their coach’s head would be any major distraction to the players with a 77-68 victory over the Big Ten leading Boilers. The win moved Indiana into a virtual tie with Purdue atop the conference standings.|
The Hoosiers did succeed at playing the game at their pace, a game in which Indiana had 73 possessions compared to 74 for Purdue (the most in a single game for the Boilers since their win over Ohio State on Jan 12th that started their 11-game win streak). Indiana’s offense was much more efficient than Purdue’s despite an alarmingly high number of turnovers. The Hoosiers scored 1.05 points per possession and held Purdue to only 0.92 points per possession on the evening. This is especially remarkable when you take into account the fact that Indiana had a total of 23 turnovers for the game. Which means the Hoosiers turned it over on 31.5% of their possessions yet still managed to average over a point per possession, thanks in large part to their massive advantage at the free throw stripe. Indiana shot 30 of 34 on their free throws while Purdue was a feeble 11 for 21 (52%).
Hoosier freshman Eric Gordon benefited most from the charity stripe as he alone made more free throws than Purdue’s entire team. Gordon finished 13-15 from the line and with 22 points overall on only 4 of 12 shooting from the floor. Indiana was led once again by the inside force that is D.J. White. White finished with yet another double-double, scoring 19 points on 6 of 11 shooting and pulling down a game-high 15 rebounds. D.J., playing with his left knee wrapped, has almost certainly locked up Big Ten Player of the Year honors, and as Steve Lavin pointed out last night, should start to be seriously considered for the nation’s Player of the Year award.
In the loss, Purdue was led in scoring again by freshman Robbie Hummel, who finished the game with 17 points on 7 of 12 shooting (3-6 from three-point land). As a team the Boilermakers shot just 24% (7-29) from three compared to Indiana’s 64% (7-11) from beyond the arc. IU’s Armon Bassett had his best shooting night of the season, missing just one shot on the night and hitting on all four of his three-pointers taken. Bassett finished the game with 16 points, 8 rebounds and 4 assists but did turn the ball over 5 times.
Purdue now has over a week off to prepare for their next game against Minnesota next Wednesday. Despite the loss, the Boiler’s remaining schedule puts them in pretty good shape with back-to-back home games against Minnesota and Northwestern, before finishing the season on the road at Ohio State and Michigan.
Indiana’s next game is at Northwestern on Saturday, a day after the University’s 7-day investigation period comes to an end and a recommendation on Kelvin Sampson’s future is expected to be made on Friday. All eyes and ears will be tuned into Bloomington to hear the decision which will decide Sampson’s fate before the Hoosier’s next game.