Normally I don't pay too much attention to these exhibitions, but since tonight is our first public look at the Men's Basketball team before they begin the most anticipated season in Purdue history, there is ample excitement for what should be a rather mundane warm up. There isn't a lot to preview when it comes to the Greyhounds. They were 12-18 in Division II a year ago and, I'm sorry Syracuse, no Division I team should ever lose to a Division II team under any circumstances, especially if you're in a major conference. It doesn't matter if you're playing a 2-3 zone, man, a box and one, a 1-3-1, or the less conventional "swarm the guy with the ball" defense.
Therefore, consider this your Open Thread for the evening. The game is only available via LiveStream from the Big Ten Network. it also marks the debut of some more writers. Jordan of the Boilermaker Heroes will also have a student reaction post up after the game, as he, John Wadas, and Keith Rhoades are handling things from a student perspective this basketball season. As much as I know you all love listening to me I think you'll enjoy these voices in addition to the other recently added authors. it certainly makes my life easier.
Also, it's a good time to buy a Project Houston shirt.
In the mean time, here is a short list of what I want to see tonight:
- No injuries - And I mean it. Only bad can really come out of games like this. We don't need E'Twaun coming down with cholera or JJ contracting smallpox or something. Once when playing NHL '98 on my old Playstation I lost a guy to a ruptured testicle. In addition to sounding like the most painful injury imaginable, I also though it was extremely rare and wondered why the makers of the game put it in there. Now, Nothing would surprise me. Even that.
How will the new starts fare - Rumor has it that the starting five will be E'Twaun Moore, JaJuan Johnson, Lewis Jackson, Ryne Smith, and Patrick Bade. I can get on board with that lineup if it works, but it only works if Smith is knocking down open shots and Bade can become a Hummel-lite.
- What about the freshmen - Anthony Johnson, Terone Johnson, Travis Carroll, and Sandi Marcius will be getting their first action tonight. Marcius in particular was mentioned as a five that can move JJ tot he four when he's in there, so I want to see that dynamic. Carroll is raw and will probably be a bit like Bade last season, but with Bade and Marcius around he has a better learning curve. AJ and TJ should be interesting.
- How will Kelsey Barlow, D.J. Byrd, and John Hart fit in - I doubt we're going to have an 11 man rotation, especially with the number of guards we have, so someone is spending some time on the bench. I think everyone plays tonight and I can see Painter going with the hot hand between Hart and Smith while moving Byrd and Barlow between 2-3 positions.