Purdue TGIF/Boilers’ Opening NCAA Tourney Game vs. St. Mary’s

There is a full preview of the St. Mary’s Gaels and how the Boilermakers match-up with them here (LINK), but here is a recap of Purdue relevant news during this most glorious week of college basketball.

  • Matt Painter has made the decision to have Terone Johnson guard St. Mary’s point guard Matt Dellavedova. Johnson is better suited to guarding the 6-4 Dellavedova because he is bigger and more physical than Lewis Jackson. This will be a tough task for Terone, but he has shown an ability to be very aggressive and physical on the defensive end. Expect Anthony Johnson and Lewis Jackson to rotate on Dellavedova throughout the game.
  • Purdue had their open practice on Thursday and gave fans in Omaha a glimpse of what it means to play hard. In Jenny Levin’s Purdue Exponent article, she describes a drill in which the players dove over chairs for rebounds and loose balls.
  • The transcript for the media’s interviews with the players (Robbie Hummel, Lewis Jackson, and Ryne Smith) and Matt Painter can be found here (LINK).
  • Another interesting note (mentioned in the press conference transcript) about St. Mary’s is that two of their players played against Robbie Hummel and Purdue back in 2008 when they played for the Australia Institute for Sport (LINK). Robbie Hummel doesn’t recall playing against Matthew Dellavedova and Clint Steindl, so don’t expect for there to be a grand reunion of sorts.
  • On the recruiting front, a new name has emerged. Trency Jackson, a 6-2 combo guard originally from Jackson, Mississippi, plays in the junior college ranks for Northwest Florida State Junior College. He is being recruited by Pitt, Purdue, Cincinnati, Virginia Tech, Marquette, and others. The athletic guard averaged 11 points per game and 5 rebounds per game. If he schedules a visit to Purdue, Matt Painter is likely to extend a scholarship offer.
  • Also, how does your bracket look so far (LINK to updated bracket results)? I went 13-3 on Thursday’s games, but I don’t expect to fare so well in day two and beyond.

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