Your weekly Purdue Men’s Basketball snark, and other snidbits from around the Boilermaker Universe.
Happy 2021 folks! Every time the earth makes a lap around the sun, it is the start of new story to tell. I wish everyone the prosperous, safe, and healthy 2021 that life can afford them.
Often times, to celebrate the first day of the new year, people will make resolutions. Some, like myself, plan on losing a portion of the spare tire. Others plan to take up a hobby. Some will learn to play a musical instrument. Some will take up basket weaving, bull riding, or writing for a USA Today Sports Blog.
If nothing else, I hope for growth. An extra level of maturity and intelligence to help round myself into being the sharpest human being that I can be.
I hope the same in 2021 for our Boilermakers. I don’t wish for them to lose weight, or take up a hobby, I hope that they can grow into the team that I know they can be.
2021 is 365 days, and I realize that the BoilerBall resolution of 2021 can come to fruition in the 21-22 season… but I know that it can happen sooner.
What Purdue needs to do is tighten up their discipline. To learn to win at the expense of losing. To persevere and get over the hump.
The biggest resolution that our Boilers could make is to learn from their mistakes.
On 12/25 Purdue traveled to Rutgers. The Scarlet Knights took a double digit lead early on an offensive surge. The Boilers fought back to take the lead in the 2nd half, but another late offensive surge claimed victory for the Scarlet Knights.
On 1/2 Purdue traveled to Illinois. The Illini took a double digit lead early on an offensive surge. The Boilers fought back to take the lead in the 2nd half, but another late offensive surge claimed the victory for Illinois.
These two games looking at each other…
What Went Well:
- Tre-Day: Trevion Williams is starting to hit his groove. Going for 21 and 12 against Rutgers, 14 and 8 against Illinois, the Junor Big Man is starting to fill up the stat sheets.
- Heating up on the road…: There is an ol’ saying that Sasha Stefanovic can’t shoot on the road. It is completely wrong. This week Sasha went 5/10 from 3 point range in two road games. That is 50% for those who are worse at math than I am. Will take 50% any day of the week.
- Never say die: Despite being down by double digits in the first halves of each game, Purdue rallied back to take the lead.
Opportunities for Improvement:
- Two weeks removed…: From being the ISC Big Man on Campus, Eric Hunter Jr. has slipped into the limits of Struggle City. Scoring 0 points against Illinois is something that cannot become common pace. Against Rutgers, Hunter scored an inefficient 9 points on 20% shooting. This team needs his leadership. The good thing is that EHJ knows this, and I am sure he will right the ship.
- Can’t stand prosperity: As is the trend for this team, Purdue can’t string 40 minutes of good basketball together. They can look like world beaters, and they can look like total jobbers. Need to find that middle ground in order not to ride the highs and lows.
- Can’t get over the hump: This team is so close that they can taste it. They’re close… but no cigar. Eventually this team needs to learn how to close the game out. That comes with maturity, which this team is learning now.
Big Man On Campus:
Due to popular demand, there will not be a BMOC award given out this week. Coffee is for closers.
A Look Ahead:
Although the Boilermakers have been humbled by the hardest portion of their schedule, it doesn’t mean that there aren’t challenges ahead.
On 1/5 Purdue hosts Nebraska, in a game that the Boilers should be solid favorites.
On 1/8 the Boilers go on the road to #17 Michigan State. Despite their slow start, there is plenty of talent on this Spartain squad. Look for Purdue to be an underdog in this game.
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