Before getting into the baseball update I have one final piece on the Robert Marve news. Alert Reader Justin sent me Tim Cary's Bleacher Report article on the Robert Marve transfer yesterday. Tim has a sunnier vision of Marve, prefering to look at the second chance opportunity that Purdue is giving him. Ultimately, that is what this situation is. We're either going to see how good Marve can be with his head on straight or we will see how much of a disciplinarian Coach Hope is when he gets in trouble again.
Tim's point about Purdue being featured on College Football Live is a very good one as well. This could be the first step towards something larger, though I refuse to believe that 2009 is just a throwaway year and we're going to finish last in the Big Ten. There is not one all-powerful world beating team (even Jimmy Montana and Notre Dame) on our schedule that makes me quiver in fear. I am still on record as saying we will shock people by winning in Autzen Stadium the second week of the season. Who care about the receivers if we have four good running backs and do something Purdue hasn't done in over a decade by committing to the run.
I guess I am one of very few trying to drum up optimism for 2009, while everyone else is running ahead for 2010.
Baseball stays alive
The good news is that Purdue's baseball team will not leave Columbus empty-handed now. The Boilers eliminated Michigan State 12-9 yesterday behind Brandon Haveman's four hit, three RBI performance. Dan Black added a monstrous two run home run in the third as Purdue scored at least one run in every inning except the seventh. Drew Wurdack got the win in four and a third innings of relief, which unfortunately taxed a bullpen that will need to throw a lot of innings over the next few days if Purdue is to win the tournament.
Purdue returns to the diamond today at noon to face Minnesota, who swept the Boilers in three close games in Minneapolis earlier this year. The Gophers will be playing just their second game of the tournament after getting pounded by Indiana last night, and probably need a win to keep their fleeting dreams of hosting an NCAA regional alive.
Should Purdue win and eliminate the Gophers the Boilers must turn right around and face Illinois, who lost to Ohio State last night. Indiana and Ohio State will meet int he winner's bracket final for tonight's third game. If Purdue wins both potential games today it would face the loser of tonight's Indiana-Ohio State contest tomorrow in another elimination game.
It is highly unlikely that Purdue is going to get that far, but after watching yesterday's game they certainly can hit the ball well enough to keep moving on. They are not likely going to be facing anyone's ace the rest of the way now, so if they can keep the bats hot you just never know what can happen. Should they somehow survive to Sunday's winner-take-all contest (Needing to beat the four best teams in the conference individually in two days) their worst case scenario would be facing Indiana's rested Eric Arnett again.
On a final note, I hope everyone has a safe and enjoyable Memorial Day weekend. Remember those who served this weekend just as I do every year. I thank all three of my grandfathers (yes, I have three thanks to divorce and remarriage in my family) for serving in World War II, Korea, and Vietnam to keep this country safe. It's because of people like them that I have the freedom to do stuff like this wonderful site.