TV Schedule: Thursday, Jan. 21, 9:00 p.m. ET, ESPN
Arena: Mackey Arena, West Lafayette, Ind.
Line: Purdue (-11)
After a great start to the 2015-16 season that saw them go 11-0, the Purdue Boilermakers have come back down to earth as of late, losing three of their last eight games.
Already a solid lock for a 2016 NCAA tournament spot, the Boilermakers will be most concerned by two of these losses coming in conference play, giving Purdue a 3-2 record in the Big 10 and placing them in the middle of the conference standings. If things don’t start coming together for the Boilermakers soon, the Big 10 regular season title might already be out of reach.
Ohio State’s 12-7 record is nowhere near where many predicted them to be coming into 2015-16. An at-large bid in the NCAA tournament is already too far gone for this team, but a trip to the NIT would not be out of the question if they can start winning against the better teams in-conference.
The Boilermakers should win this one fairly easily at home, especially with the struggles of Ohio State’s offense being ranked No. 208 in terms of points per game and Purdue’s defense being ranked No. 9 in points allowed per game. Although Ohio State might catch some of the other top teams in the Big 10, Purdue’s size will cause nightmares for a team that just does not match up well against the Boilermakers.
Prediction: Purdue 72, Ohio State 60