After another terrible day in Ross-Ade Stadium the Boilermaker faithful had something to look forward to as the basketball teamhad it’s second exhibition game following the Penn State debacle in football.
The team played well overall especially after starting slow. We know now that the team responds well to motivational speeches, as they were able to come out in the second halfand blow the game away. The Boilers scored 44 in the first half only 11 more than Newberry, but came out in the second half with a fire and vengeance. They were able to put up 65 in the second half to outscore Newberry 109-68 for the game.
Newberry is not a big team and played with a lot of quickness. They were some what like the Purdue team last season without a true big and a lack of size, but that is what you are going to find with these little schools.
Matt Painter started the line-up of Terone Johnson, Ronnie Johnson, Sandi Marcius, DJ Byrd, and Donnie Hale in this one. You would have to assume this is going to bethe starting five for Friday as the team opens up their first game of the season.
Terone impressed me, he didn’t make too many bone head decisions and was 8-10 from the field and made his only free throw attempt. He did have three turnovers but when it comes to Terone you generally expect a few with his flashy style of play.
The Byrd man had a better performance than he did the other night, but still wasn’t the Byrd of the past going only 2-5 from the field for 11 points, but did make all of his 6 free-throw attempts. The Boilers are going to need Byrd to become more consistent if they want to have a chance this season.
Ronnie Johnson, the other half of the brothers of destruction, was 6-9 for the game for 16 points. Ronnie did have five turnovers, which will happen when you are freshman, but he is likely going to become more consistent the season progresses when it comes to turning over the rock.
Raphael Davis was the surprise of the night for everyone. The highly touted freshman who had a disappointing first night in a Purdue jersey showed why this team isgoing to be so much fun to watch grow. He was running up and down the court grabbing rebounds and transitioning those into points. Davis was 6-12 from the field grabbed four boards made all four of his free throws and finished with 16 points.
Simpson had eight points as well in only 13 minutes of play. He was able to grab four rebounds as well in the effort.
Donnie Hale continued to build off what he started in the opener and had a solid game as well even though the stat-line doesn’t say it.
Hammons had a decent night also going three for five from the field for eight points and six rebounds plus two blocks. In only 14 minutes of play these are somepretty decent stats.
I’m still most intrigued by the big men right now. You have three guys in Simpson, Hale, and Lawson that will competing for minutes and have three guys that are going to be competing for the bigger forward spot in Hammons, Carroll and Marcius.
According to GBI, Simpson will not be redshirted this season, which makes you wonder if Lawson is going to be redshirted, as Hale as established himself as a starter already in my mind. It’s a good problem to have too many big men, something Boilers haven’t had to think about for a while and it should been entertaining to watch.
One thing I loved about this game was the consistency infree throws with the Boilers going 76 percent for the game as well as the three-point percentage with that being 46 percent.
One thing I hated was the lack of ball control. Part of this is being a young team but it is just not Boilermaker like to turn the ball over 19 times.
Overall I thought this game was a good tester for facing small squads, but when it comes down to big time teams it’s hard to really tell how the Boilers are going to look. I think we will know a lot more after Friday night’s match-up about this squad.