Friday, December 13, 2013

Basketball Preview: Purdue vs. Butler - Crossroads Classic (Saturday, 6:00 pm, BTN)

The Crossroads Classic is tomorrow and both games feature teams who look to be competing for tourney spots in March.  As a public service announcement, the Purdue game is the second game of the doubleheader, meaning if you're DVR'ing the game, make sure to add 2 hours onto the recording (instead of the normal 1) in case the IU/Notre Dame game happens to go to overtime.  If it happens, you'll thank me later!


Billy Butler is the new mascot now that Blue II is sadly no longer with us


Quick, give me the quick details on why Purdue will beat these guys:
While Butler already has a couple of decent wins on the year (Princeton, Vanderbilt, Washington State), they've been anything but dominant (maybe best shown in their one-point win over Ball State).  Arguably their best showing was in their two-point loss to Oklahoma State, which happened to be the opponent of one of Purdue's best showings as well.  This is a very even matchup and I'm excited to see how the Boilermakers deal with the Bulldogs.

The key to beating Butler is to handle the three-headed monster of Kameron Woods (10.3 ppg/8.9 rpg), Khyle Marshall (17.0/6.6), and Kellen Dunham (18.7/4.1).  All three are 6'6" or above, so expect guys like Kendall Stephens to have their arms full on defense.  If Stephens can stay out of foul trouble and the Boilers can play solid D, expect a low-scoring brawl that comes down to free throws.  Butler's 67% is slightly better than Purdue's 64.8%, but the key here will be whether the Boilers can foul someone other than Dunham, who is an 80% FT shooter. 

Speaking of free throw shooting, if you have a Gold and Black Illustrated subscription, check out this article.  Apparently Purdue is shooting 39.3% on free throws in "And-One" situations.  UNDER 40% from the line!  Missing those are huge momentum killers - hopefully the Boilers turn it around starting tomorrow.

Our picks:
Line: Butler -3.5

Erik: Butler 72 - Purdue 64

Kirk: Kirk's pick will be coming soon...

Hope I'm wrong - Boiler Up!

Basketball Recap - Purdue 69 - Eastern Michigan 64



Kendall Stephens Basil SmothermanThe Boilers snuck by their nemesis Eastern Michigan on Saturday and they're awfully glad to be past this one.  Purdue held the lead for nearly the entire game, but couldn't put the Eagles away due to poor free throw shooting.  23 for 38 from the charity stripe is not the worst shooting ever, but when that includes Bryson Scott going 8 for 9 in the last 3 minutes, you realize how awful it really was.  Give major credit to Scott for icing the game...and for the rest of the team for scoring 69 points against a tough zone defense.

While not better than the win over BC, this is by far the second best win of the season and a game that could have definitely gone the other way.  However, a decent outing from the free throw line from everyone not named Scott, and this would have been a comfortable win. 

Purdue has only one "cupcake" game left (not that they've made a habit of destroying the cupcakes), so enjoy these wins while you can.  The schedule ramps up soon.  Very soon...

Saturday, December 7, 2013

Basketball Preview: Purdue vs. Eastern Michigan (Saturday, 2:00 pm, ESPN3)

After seeing the Boilers finally put two solid halves together against Boston College, play with consistent energy and heart, and win yet another ACC -Big Ten Challenge, they'll take on another formidable opponent on Saturday when the Eastern Michigan Eagles.


I couldn't run the Jimmy Clausen photo again, so enjoy this eagle trying to eat some emus

What, you don't think EMU will be a tough win?  Then clearly you forget about last year's loss in Ypsilanti.  That game was a shocking display of Purdue turnovers and abysmal shooting.  Hopefully playing in Mackey will be a little more favorable for the good guys.

Just like last year's game, this one will be on ESPN3, so get excited to stare at your laptop screen and crappy feed and announcing.

Quick, give me the quick details on why Purdue will beat these guys:
I famous sage once said, "Fool me once, shame on — shame on you. Fool me — you can't get fooled again."  Painter will have this team ready on Saturday, and if they click anything like Wednesday night, beating the Eagles shouldn't be a problem.  Eastern Michigan is 5-2 with their only losses coming to ranked Kentucky and UMass teams, but their wins haven't been anything special, coming against pretty horrible teams (insert jab about Purdue's wins here).

There's only one snag, and a snag that can really get ugly: EMU plays a zone defense.  While Painter may not be the worst coach in the world against a zone, he's not great, as the team rarely practices against it with their man-to-man defensive focus.  So this game could be closer than it looks on paper, but the Boilers still have significantly more talent than the EMUs and as long as the don't have a horrible shooting day (including the FTs) and don't get sloppy, they can notch a win.  Hopefully Stephens is ready to shoot the lights out.

Our picks:
Line: Purdue -10.5

Erik: Purdue 70 - Eastern Michigan 68

Kirk: Purdue 68 - Eastern Michigan 60

Boiler Up!

Friday, December 6, 2013

Football Recap: Indiana 56 - Purdue 36 - Barf in the Bucket

I suppose this is the GoBoilers.net 2013 season postmortem.  Consider me happy not to have to think about Purdue football this Saturday, or for many more Saturdays to come.

So what can I say about the Bucket game and entirety of a worthless season?



That sums it up pretty well.  The season is over, let's forget it ever happened.

To the entire coaching staff: we're not on speaking terms until you beat two directional Michigan teams in 2014 to start 2-0.  Anything less, and you should resign.  You have nine months to get this train back on track.

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Basketball Preview: Purdue vs. Boston College (Wednesday, 9:00 pm, ESPN2)

It's Purdue's 2nd game in a week on the Duece and a vital one for the Boilers to pull out.  After a dramatic 16-point come from behind victory against Siena (!), in which Purdue finally took the lead with under 30 seconds left, room for error is particularly small.  While losses to Oklahoma State and Washington State won't keep the Boilers out of the tourney, a lack of good wins will.  Boston College is in the same boat as Washington State - a mediocre power conference team that would be a decent win but nothing to write home about.  The problem for Purdue is that they have ZERO decent wins.  In fact, every win is against a team outside of Ken Pomeroy's top 200.  The Boilers have to start picking off some teams that will actually help them a bit in the RPI.  It starts tonight.



Any team that shares the same city as the Red Sox is not ok in my book.
Quick, give me the quick details on why Purdue will beat these guys:
Boston College has losses to Providence, UMASS, and Toledo, none of whom are world beaters (although UMASS is pretty decent this year).  However, a close loss to UCONN surrounded by 3 wins (including one against Washington) give the Eagles some confidence heading into this one.  In order to pull it out, Purdue must shut down guard Olivier Hanlan and forward Ryan Anderson who have combined for over 40 points per game, while keeping Joe Rahon quiet from 3-point range.  BC has quite an offensive arsenal for being a basement team in their conference, so expect Purdue to score and score often.  I fully expect the Boilers to run, attempting to get a number of transition buckets.  If the running game isn't working, the Boilers may not have enough firepower to pull it out.

Mackey should be looking pretty cool tonight according to this picture.  The gold and black shirts on national tv are always awesome - hope it gets the crowd into it.  Another thing to keep an eye on is the current ACC/Big Ten standings (heading into tonight, ACC is up 4-2).  This is among the last games in the event and could be the game that decides the winner.


Our picks:
Line: Purdue -4

Erik: Purdue 86 - Boston College 81

Kirk: Purdue 81 - Boston College 80

Boiler Up!

Saturday, November 30, 2013

Preview/Recap mega post - A bad sports week is about to get worse



Alright, you caught us...work, family, and the holidays have caught up with us and we haven't been able to give you the same coverage we normally do (which admittedly isn't much).  So, here's a quick update of all the things we missed and all the things we're looking forward to (sort of) this weekend.

Football Recap: Illinois 20 - Purdue 16 

Ugh - this was one of the ugliest games I've ever seen.  Sure the Boilers had a chance to win, but in front of an official crowd of 37,459 (more like 12,459), it would have been an embarrassing win and was more than an embarrassing loss.  Oh, and what was up with the Illini's last play?  I'm well aware of the "take the safety to end the game" strategy, but why did Illinois snap it to the up man and then throw it back to the "punter"?  Doesn't that introduce a bunch of things that could go wrong?  A dropped pass/fumble recovered by Purdue would have been a perfect ending to one of the worst Division I games of the year.  Don't even get me started about that horrible fake field goal...

Basketball Recap: Purdue 81 - Siena 73

Dropped the ball on this one.  Luckily...

Basketball Recap: Washington State 69 - Purdue 54

Ugh again.  After such a promising 2nd half against Oklahoma State and jumping out to a 10 point lead at halftime, the Boilers gave up 52 points in the second half to embarrassingly lose to the Cougars by 15.  Washington State's not horrible, but they're also not going to sniff the Tourney this year. The Boilermakers scored over 30 points below their average and shot 33% from the field.  One wishes they could've put those two good halves together against Oklahoma State and lay an egg against Butler instead.  Now, the Boilers are in the position of a must win game - otherwise, the preseason tourney could start a tailspin similar to the one seen last year after the 2K Sports Classic. Remember the killer game against Villanova followed by the embarrassing loss to Oregon State?  The similarities are striking.

Basketball Preview: Purdue vs. Siena - ESPN3 - Sunday, 5:00 pm

That's lucky - we already did this one!  Although this one's even more important than that one.  A loss to Siena would create a hole nearly impossible to dig out of.  Meanwhile, the Boilers will play Siena more times this year than Indiana. Makes sense.

Football Preview: Purdue @ Indiana - BTN - Saturday, 3:30 pm
http://graphics.fansonly.com/schools/pur/trads/images/bucket.jpg 
Other than the thought that football season will be mercifully over after the game, I can't think of one Boilermaker fan looking forward to this one.  Purdue hasn't scored more than 24 points in any game this year (even against some of the worst defenses in the country) while Indiana has scored less than 28 exactly twice (those two games were against teams that Purdue scored a total of 0 points against - Wisconsin and Ohio State).  The Boilermaker defense hasn't stopped anyone outside of Michigan State all year, so this is shaping up to be a blowout of epic Bucket proportions.  That brings up the only reason Purdue has a chance - The Old Oaken Bucket.

The Boilers have dominated the series and have already stepped up against their other "rival", Notre Dame.  Can the Boilers somehow avoid the embarrassment of a 1-11 season and a blowout against their rivals?  Not likely...

What player are we warning you about?  All of them.  The possibility of Indiana blowing out Purdue is enough to make your television explode.

It's Indiana +21.  We'll bet 330 points in honor of the starting time of this game which allows us to watch Michigan-Ohio State without feeling like we're missing anything.

Kirk's Pick: Indiana 33 - Purdue 14
Erik's Pick: Indiana 59 - Purdue 21

Boiler Up!


Friday, November 29, 2013

Mini Basketball Recap (Oklahoma State 97 - Purdue 87) and Preview (Washington State - Friday, 11:00 AM - ESPNU)

Hope everyone had a great Thanksgiving!  Today's game deserves an epic recap, but with family commitments and a game tomorrow morning, here's a really quick recap of the game...

  • A horrible start made me absolutely sick by halftime.  It was embarrassing and I was really glad most people were watching football or the dog show.  Jay Simpson got ejected for a stupid shove to the face (although I think Flagrant 2 might have been a bit excessive), the refs were making the game unwatchable, and Marcus Smart was showing how he should have been the #1 pick last year - he's pretty amazing.
  • Then something happened.  Matt Painter must have had one heck of a halftime speech, as the Boilers cut a 23 point halftime lead to 4 with 3 minutes to go (on a 28-foot bomb by Kendall Stephens).  Unfortunately, Markel Brown stepped up and showed how good this Cowboy team is and gave Oklahoma State the win.  Sure, it helped that Smart got into foul trouble due to a questionable foul call followed by an unquestionable technical (immediately going from 2 to 4 fouls early in the second half), but the fight the Boilers showed against the #5 team in the nation - a team that played VERY well - can give us hope that this season can definitely be something special.
  • I mentioned the refs, but my gosh was the first half brutal to watch.  The game lasted over 2 1/2 hours as the refs just took over. You've already heard my rants on the refs - I'm worried they're ruining the game.  Luckily, the Boilers' run in the second half reminded me how fun this game can really be.
The next game is against Washington State (11:00 AM, Friday, ESPNU) who lost to Butler 76-69.  The Cougars have wins over Cal Bakersfield and Lamar, but have losses to Gonzaga and TCU.  Purdue should be favored to take care of business in this one, and while a win wouldn't be a huge help, it would be a win over a power conference team and set up a game most likely against a decent St. Joes team which would help the RPI.  A loss not only hurts, but probably sets up a rematch against a bad Siena team.  If the Boilers can win out, they can build on some major momentum and potentially start looking ahead to sweeping the rest of the nonconference schedule.

Boiler Up!