I was looking forward to the Clemson game as one in which we'd learn a lot about the Baby Boilers- I think we did.
-We learned that Nemanja Calasan will be a vocal leader and will look for his shot. His hook shot might become quite a weapon as the season progresses. He is going to need to stay out of trouble as he is the most-veteran Purdue forward.
-Scott Martin can create his own shot and looks to shoot nearly every time he touches the ball...that doesn't mean he gives into that urge, but he's a shooter.
-Rob Hummel is a Cardinal-type player...except maybe a bit more fluid and a better athlete. I do think Cardinal was probably a better shooter. But, Hummel seems to always come up with loose balls when Purdue needs it. I think he's a lot like the goofy-looking players from Minnesota and Wisconsin in past seasons. You look at him and say, "I'm not going to let that guy beat me"...and then he beats you it burns you to the middle.
-Kramer has to slow down a bit. He seems to play with reckless abandon, which I usually think there isn't enough of. In Chris' case, I actually think he might want to scale it back a bit. I think if he doesn't, concussions and other injuries will eventually cut his career short. All that said, I love the style of his play.
-Moore is pretty good, but isn't the take-charge type of player I thought he'd naturally be. I think he can develop into what he was in high school, but it might take a season or two.
-Keaton Grant played pretty poorly and seemed to be a liability, especially offensively during stretches of the game. I knew he hasn't played in all of the games, but I expect more since he has a year under his belt.
Overall, Purdue has a defense-first philosophy which I think will win them a lot of games...Plus, when you're not shooting well, defense can bring you through those slumps. I was really pleased with the way the team handled the hostile environment and even when the crowd seemed ready to erupt, the young Boilers didn't fold. Lastly, it sure looked like Purdue had three extra opponents on the court during stretches of the second half (ref. free throw count)...but they still almost pulled out the upset.
Regarding the telecast- great job, ESPN. Jon Sciambi is an over-talking moron. I take that back, I take that back. He was great, please don't send Vitale to any Purdue games!
I really don't give a damn about the BT-ACC rivalry or "conference pride". I want Purdue to win and would really like to see IU lose every game as long as Sampson is their coach. Outside of that, I'm not too worried about the rest of the conference. I won't be going out of my way to root for a Big Ten team merely because they play in my Boilers' conference. That said, Wisconsin embarrassed themselves pretty badly tonight despite their top-25 ranking.