The Boilers and Hoosiers both came out of the weekend with victories against Michigan and Minnesota. They’re tied in the Big Ten rankings, but only the Hoosiers are included in the Top 25 at #18. Purdue and IU close out the season against each other at Assembly Hall on Saturday night at 6PM, but not before they each play one last home Big Ten game.
IU faces Michigan State tomorrow night and will be looking to bounce back from the pounding they took back in December when Michigan State dealt the Hoosiers their first loss (80-65). State is ranked #5 in the nation and embarrassed Nebraska over the weekend by almost 30 points. The Hoosiers are one of the best shooting teams in the nation, but they’re getting killed on the boards (ranked 152nd in the nation in rebounds per game). Indiana will have to shoot lights out or manage to step up their rebounding game to get the best of the 19th best rebounding team in the nation.
The Boilermakers play Penn State on Leap Day. The Nittany Lions have had a pretty rough season, but anyone that has watched a couple of Purdue games this season know that you never know which team is going to show up. Will it be the team that handled Michigan last week or the team that was completely outmatched by Michigan State a couple of weeks ago? All signs point to Purdue beating Penn State and a decent chance for Saturday’s game at Assembly Hall ending up a classic.
The NBA All-Star game occurred this weekend and that’s about all that needs to be said of it (the West won and Paul George had some cool dunks but didn’t win the dunk contest). The All-Star break is normally at around the 2/3 point during the season, but the shortened season has allowed it to be the actual half-way point. Miami and Chicago are running away with the Eastern Conference and the Pacers 5.5 games off the top in 3rd. Avoiding losing streaks like they did during the first half of the season should put them in the playoffs for the 2nd year in a row.