As you know, I love delivering a proper public shaming to "professional" writers that get paid a whole lot more than I do, yet they don't bother to back up their opinions with these silly little things called facts. I enjoy looking into statistics and trying to find an explanation for much of what we see. People like Gottlieb, however, prefer to make blind generalizations based on the flavor of the moment. Yesterday, he was in rare form, as pointed out by Jackson Brunner in a fanpost:
-Painter regrets staying at Purdue and would have been better off at Missouri. He says Painter's friends believe that him staying is a mistake.
-Robbie Hummel would go to IU if he came out of high school now because Purdue is 4th in the pecking order of players coming out high school in Indiana.
-Purdue's 2012 class sucks and Hammons is the only slightly decent player in it.
@BoilerNick MU has great facilities,great AD-STL/KC to recruit from--Purdue AD doesnt have a rep like Alden
Great facilities. Hmmm, yes, Missouri has a brand new arena, but Purdue just spent nine figures to upgrade Mackey Arena and create one of the finest practice facilities in the country. Painter also know that virtually every home game will have 5,000 maniacal students going crazy in Mackey Arena. Just because Missouri is off to an excellent start this year does not mean he regrets taking the job. We receive a lot of flak for not making a Final Four in 32 years, but Missouri has never made a Final Four. They are even more of a little brother to their main rival, Kansas, than we are to Indiana. They haven't won a non-vacated conference title since 1990 and their new arena and facilities cannot be that much better the ones we just added.
This argument is simply Gottlieb going with the flavor of the moment. Miami fans will tell you: Frank Haith is someone who excels at hot starts, then fades over time. It was his M.O. with the Hurricanes. Missouri is 13-0 beating California, the same Illinois team we just trounced (and they only won by 4), and...7-7 Villanova? Let's see Missouri actually play somebody before anointing them the greatest ever, okay? Of course, they beat an OMG TOTALLY AWESOME BIG EAST team, so they are clearly a destination program that has coaches resigning across the country to coach there for free.
Also, I'll take Indiana's top talent over St. Louis/Kansas City any day of the week.
Next is point No. 2, that Robbie Hummel would go to IU right now if he were coming out of high school. Since many players of Hummel's caliber are recruited and commit as juniors before signing their letter of intent early in their senior years, we have to go back to the 2005-06 season to compare records:
Purdue in 2005-06 - 9-19, 3-13 Big Ten
Indiana in 2005-06 - 19-12, 9-7 Big Ten, Lost in NCAA second round
Head-to-head meetings: Indiana won 62-49 in Bloomington and 70-59 in West Lafayette
So, as you can see, Indiana was an NCAA Tournament team, though they had been better in the seasons leading up to 2005-06 and had been to a Final Four within the previous five years (2002). The jury is still out on Indiana this year, but they are definitely an NCAA Tournament team right now and look like a lock to win 22-24 games to get a decent seed. They're playing as well as anyone at home, but on the road there are still questions. Trips to Ohio State, Michigan, Wisconsin and Purdue will be tough. They also won't have every opposing team make completely boneheaded decisions in the final two minutes at Assembly Hall like Ohio State and Kentucky did, so I am thinking 13-5 in the Big Ten for them and a solid seed.
Purdue, as you can see, was in a much, much worse place at the time Robbie committed. We had a 7-21 season in Keady's final year right before that. That's 16 victories in two years before Hummel signed, as opposed to 12 (and counting) in this season so far. This is a weaker Purdue team than in recent seasons, but it is still a likely NCAA Tournament team as long as it reaches 10 wins in Big Ten play. Hummel would also have some solid other talent coming in with his incoming class if he were a 2012 or 2013 commit. That talent is equal or better to what he had in 2007, and it enters with the program light years better than back then. Sorry Doug, but not only is your argument invalid, it is completely absurd. If Rob had wanted to go to IU back then, he would have, even though he is just a role player that is finally contributing in his later years according to the great Terry Hutchens.
Finally, there is point three, which is so absurd it shouldn't even merit discussion, but sadly, it does:
Nah, Mizzou is the school in State,Purdue is at best 2nd-more likely 4th to IU,UK,tOSU in Indiana kid pecking order
Clearly, Gottlieb has absolutely no idea how recruiting in this state. I can give him Ohio State, seeing as how some of the state's best talent in recent years like Greg Oden, Mike Conley, Mark Titus, and Deshaun Thomas ended up there. Indiana is a close battle, but it always is in this state. They have the edge right now, but we had it before. It fluctuates, but that is what happens when you have two solid programs. Neither one has an edict from God to always be the top choice of every big-name recruit in the state. Just ask Glenn Robinson, E'Twaun Moore, Hummel, etc. There is plenty of talent to go around in this state too in most years, so it often gets split, anyway. Talent alone does not equal Final Fours, either, as both teams have one Final Four combined since 1992.
Saying Kentucky is a choice for the top players in Indiana is completely absurd. One player, Marquis Teague, chose Kentucky, and he is an incredibly overrated player that doesn't even have a jump shot. His game is perfect for Kentucky, because he can get to the rim. At Purdue and Indiana he would be asked to score from the perimeter, distribute, and play defense. He wasn't even one of the best players in the state and his teams never won with any consistency here. As shown in the IU game this year and pretty much throughout his high school career, he was outclassed by anyone who knows the basic fundamentals of basketball. Indiana and Purdue's programs thrive on those. Kentucky's does not.
Before Teague, who was the last recruit Kentucky poached from the state of Indiana. Rivals only lists back to 2002, and there were none back to then. Lawrence North center John Stewart was a project player that committed to Kentucky in the class of 1999, but he tragically died of a heart ailment in his final high school game before joining Tubby Smith's team. The only notable player I can think of that left the state of Indiana for Kentucky is Kyle Macy back in 1976, and he even went to Purdue first!
The truth of the matter is that many kids in Indiana are conditioned to stay in-state and avoid Kentucky. Shoot, we have even had the Indiana-Kentucky High School All-Star series for decades. As someone that grew up playing basketball in this state I can tell you, NO ONE in Indiana even considers Kentucky as a kid. Teague only went because it suits his flawed NBA game and it would get him the league faster. Doug, if you're going to make a statement about where kids from Indiana would go instead of Purdue, at least pick a school that has gotten regular recruits from this state.
In terms of our current recruits, I guess two four-star players, a shooting guard that is lighting it up, and A.J. Hammons (our best player according to him) as one of our lowest rated players is a truly awful class that will have us competing for MEAC title before long. I really hope they don't result in us getting relegated from the Big Ten.