The Boilers took yet another step tonight, demonstrating how focused and prepared they are able to be following the biggest win of the season. Purdue allowed no semblance of a letdown tonight, taking care of business at the lovely Ass Hall and winning by 11, 72-61.
This is the kind of game that would trip up many teams, including many Purdue teams over the years. For as much as we mock it, playing in Bloomington is not easy for Purdue and the record shows it. However, tonight the Boilers won even more easily than last year in B-town. I'm sure it's all part of Crean's master plan, though.
Nobody had an amazing night, but that's been part of the beauty of this team. It's not necessary for that to happen. Everybody pitches in and they get the job done, play strong defense and you look up and it's 72-58 before a meaningless three makes it look slightly closer. And if the Boilers hit more than 58% of their free throws, it would have been over even sooner. As it was it was a ten point halftime lead which, let's be honest, IU isn't overcoming against the Boilers.
JJ had a solid 20 and 9 tonight, despite getting into foul trouble for one of the few times this year. (And also being guarded some of the night by the always formidable Tom Pritchard.) Smooge followed up his career night against OSU with just 17 points, but he did have five assists and six rebounds. So a much more solid game than you might think at first glance.
Terone Johnson his three big threes in the first half that stymied IU rallies and DJ Byrd came to play as well, hitting three of seven from trey land and finishing with 11 points. Lew had his now-typically solid game also, scoring 8 points, dishing six assists, grabbing four boards and getting two steals. The guy puts up top notch efforts almost every night now and he's still got his senior season ahead of him. Almost makes you giddy about next year already, right?
Kelsey Barlow did not look afraid of the disjointed, possibly drunk, potentially stoned IU student section, which mustered a couple of unimaginative chants and then quickly grew tired of the work involved. They did manage to put together some profane chants and apparently even chanted "overrated" at E'Twaun Moore. Really?
|5-1 in their careers vs IU.|
Smooge and JJ seemed to get a little mad a few times, as the Hoosiers appeared to get the directive to make them pay for going to the basket. JJ was even fouled from behind on a wide-open dunk -- a stupid foul, to be sure. Smooge went in for a dunk at one point and was shoved to the floor where he landed fairly hard... but then bounced up looking pissed. We like these two when they're mad. So get mad and stay mad, fellas.
As we mentioned on the Handsome Hour tonight, we continue to be amazed at the amount of vitriol and smack talk coming from Hoosier fans via Twitter and other mediums. We keep hearing the wait till next year crap, the banner crap and the you're just jealous of us crap. And that last one might be the silliest of all. Let me clear something up....
You're a doormat, IU! A conference bottom-feeder! You're a joke! Other schools and fans actually laugh at IU. They look forward to playing IU because it's a sure win for good teams and a good potential for a win for marginal teams.... and bad teams! You lost at home to Northwestern....and Iowa! You have absolutely nothing to chirp at Purdue fans/alums about. Nothing. Your program is heading in the wrong direction.
|Aw, cheer up Jeremiah. At least your 5-7 football team has the Bucket!|
We will now resume ignoring IU basketball -- like the rest of the country -- and focus on the next test, yet another significant one. Winning at Breslin is never easy and for those who get pissy because of the whistle that blows at Purdue football games, well, give a listen to the Mack truck horn they blast at the Breslin Center. It makes me want to punch kittens.