#19 Purdue basketball has certainly cruised through its first four games of the season, winning big in impressive, fun-to-watch fashion. While #2 Michigan State gets all the hype, and #20 Northwestern is the media’s darling, the Boilermakers have been flying under the radar, despite the eye-popping box scores we see at the end of the night.
The Boilers, averaging 102 points per game, began the season with their first back to back 100+ points efforts since 1974. You could say they are premier members in college basketball’s “century club” in the early going. While the level of competition is about to step up considerably, they haven’t just beaten up on cupcakes this month.
Fairfield is a very good low major, and this team set a Purdue basketball second with 19 3-pointers in a 106-64 thumping. We don’t really know yet what Marquette is or what they are not in 2017-18, but any time you go in there and win by 15, it’s a good thing.
Double digit November road wins versus high major-ish kind of programs are always something to boast about.
More reason for boasting came in 111-42 shellacking of Chicago State. The 69-point margin of victory over Chicago St. was the second largest in school history (106 points vs. Indiana State on Jan. 10, 1911) and largest margin in the modern era, and the largest margin of victory in Mackey Arena history.
The Cougars’ 21.5 percent shooting from the field was the second-lowest percentage by an opponent in school history. CSU‘s 9.4 second-half field goal percentage (3-of-32) was the second-lowest percentage in a half by an opponent in school history.
Poor Chicago State!
They deserve better than this, because head coach Tracy Dildy is an affable, likable sort. At this point, with what is going on at that university, they are simply lucky to even have a program, and every time they take the court, it’s a victory in itself.
Getting back to the Boilers, the main six scorers have been the same exact six Purdue basketball players that we spotlighted as those to keep an eye on in our Purdue basketball season preview: Vince Edwards, Isaac Haas, Carsen Edwards, Dakota Mathias, P.J. Thompson and Grady Eifert.
Not sure if many expected Matt Haarms to be this good this early though, and how many among us really expected their backcourt to be as dominant as they have been thus far?
Also, keep an eye on prized recruit Nojel Eastern as this season rolls on. He’ll continue to get a bigger role, and progress along within that role. Now comes a step up in competition. Tennessee are not world beaters by any means, but again the more wins you get over power five conference teams the better.
Then comes a “circle the date” affair, we’re just eight days away now, when the #18 Louisville Cardinals come to Mackey Arena in the B1G/ACC Challenge.
Yes, UL has more drama in their program right now than an entire DVD boxed set of Friday Night Lights, but talent is still talent. And the Cardinals are the most talented roster that this Purdue basketball team will face in the non-conference. Right now the Boilers are ahead of many teams in the country, in terms of cohesiveness and chemistry.
The reason for that is obvious- playing together in the World University Games. The Boilermakers are much more comfortable in their systems right now and it shows.
Paul M. Banks runs The Sports Bank.net and TheBank.News, which is partnered with News Now. Banks, a former writer for the Washington Times, NBC Chicago.com and Chicago Tribune.com, currently contributes regularly to WGN CLTV and the Tribune company’s blogging community Chicago Now.
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