Game two of the Chicago Invitational Challenge should be another cakewalk for our Boilers. the Austin Peay Governors are usually one of the better teams in the Ohio Valley Conference. That is the home of Murray State, who made a short run in last year's tournament. So far, they don't look like they will threaten the Racers.
They started off the season with two straight wins over St. Louis and Tennessee-Chattanooga. They followed those victories with losses to Lipscomb (in overtime) and Southern Illinois. The loss to the Salukis was their opening game in this Chicago Invitational Challenge, which is a tournament that doesn't make sense on any level.
2010-11 Record (2-2)
2009-10 Record (17-15, 11-7)
Postseason Result: None
Series With Purdue: Purdue leads 1-0 (won 81-64 on 12/9/1994 at Mackey Arena)
First, the good news: We have won the Big Ten Championship every season when we have played Austin Peay. Naturally, that only means we're going to win it this year too. The only meeting with the Governors was in the post-Big Dog era during the 1994-95 season. Unfortunately, we ended that year with an upset second round NCAA loss to Memphis, so I could do without that.
Austin Peay's scoring has been buoyed by putting up 101 points in an overtime loss to Lipscomb. Tyshwan Edmondson had a season high 21 in that game. He is a big guard at 6'4" that could present some defensive problems for us. Josh Terry and Anthony Campbell are also big guards at 6'5" and 6'6", respectively, so they could come at us with a much bigger backcourt than we can counter with. Edmondson and Terry are both shooting above 50% from the field, while Campbell is better than 84% from the line.
Melvin Baker and John Fraley, on the other hand, are undersized as their two main post players. No one is taller than 6'7" among their regular rotation players, and only freshman Matt Hasse (who has not played at all) is 6'9" as their tallest player. That means JaJuan Johnson should be able to punish them with impunity. I also expect Travis Carroll and Sandi Marcius to play big minutes inside because they should have a major matchup advantage.
The Governors rely mostly on creating their own shots. They have more turnovers than assists, and defensively they have only 33 steals on the year. We should be able to do plenty offensively, especially if Lipscomb cracked the century mark against them. This is also not a strong rebounding team. they rank 287th in Division I, giving us even more of an advantage with Patrick Bade, JJ, Marcius, and Carroll.
I am concerned by the size of their guards, but this is still an opponent we should be able to pound down low. Be worried if rebounding is an issue. It shouldn't be. Edmondson and Campbell are the only 3-point threats. Kelsey Barlow will probably get more minutes just because of the size matchup he gives us against their guards. It will be a good game to see how well he can play lock down defense.
Keys to the Game
- Stay Healthy
- Own the glass
- Pound the ball down low to the bigs
- Harass their shooters
- Take away the drive