I don't know if I feel real great about Purdue's initial match-up in the tourney...Hopefully, I'll get a gut feeling in the coming days. But, here's what I know, so far:
Purdue will be playing in DC...a good thing for the Boilers. Why? Well, first off, they're in closer proximity to the venue than is Baylor. But second, DC has a killer Purdue alumni association, one of the biggest in the nation. I know the president of the group...I'm pretty sure he'll get 'em energized and hopefully have the Purdue faithful there in force.
Baylor's Coach, Scott Drew, is a son-of-a-coach...a pretty good one. He grew up around the game, and like his Dad, has fundamentally-sound players. This team is solid...and they have something that causes Purdue fits: Skilled and legitimately big centers. Two seven-footers split time for the Bears. On top of that, they've got five players averaging about 10 points each. One is an ex-McDonald's All-American (Carter, Soph.), another is a former top 25 recruit (Dunn, Soph.) and their leading scorer, who averages 15/gm. is a Junior who has been receiving Big 12 accolades since arriving on campus. They can also shoot from behind the arc, three players shoot over 40% from 19.9. And they do the little things...like hit free throws. Nearly the whole team shoots over 70% from the free throw line...And finally, they can score. They've reached the century mark five times in '07/'08.
All but one of their losses came against NCAA tournament teams...and they have no Wofford-like games on their schedule. In other words, they're a pretty good, consistant team. To tell you the truth, it may seem like Purdue got absolutely screwed playing a team this good in the first round...But, like I've been saying all weekend, Purdue can only blame itself for the position it's in.
What's your take on the 10-seed Bears?
Purdue finishes season 18th