A nice event in my River North neighborhood. The Purdue Club of Chicago is in good hands with a good marketing person on the board. Morgan Burke, Dave Shondell, Sharon Versyp, Matt Painter, and Darrell Hazell were all available for questions and autographs. Brian Cardinal was also there and worked the crowd well. A couple women volleyball stars from the past were present and Robbie Hummell made an appearance later. Wish the attendance was greater, as I wish more alums would strut and show Purdue Pride with attendance at events like this. However, highlights did include a reunion with an Alpha Phi friend from 30 yrs past. Other highlights or insights include:
- Morgan mentioned the 3 pronged approach to RA upgrades of technology (WIFI, scoreboards, etc.), South end zone (still open to design ideas), and LIGHTs (oh my).
- Dave has elite eight teams in the past few years, and has 3 top 20 recruits coming in with another top 50 recruit. Could be our next national championship team. I was impressed with him, his presence and his praise for his past players who were in attendance.
- Sharon had a difficult year of adversity, but still a very competitive team. She talked of leadership & team chemistry as the keys to success in any program. In personal conversation, she did say it is difficult to find leadership skills in kids these days.
- CMP said last year was the most frustrating in his 25 years in basketball (playing & coaching). Very positive about the new recruits, and in person talked about the frustration on losing out to the BYU 5th yr transfer. Not sure it was a loss as he committed to Marquette without taking a visit. CMP was high on Dakota as a passer (which we need) and a shooter. Vince was compared as a Paul Pierce type of team player. When asked about the addition of Brantley to the coaching staff, CMP had a long answer which was not clear due to problems with the mic. However, I got the impression that BB was not focused on developing AJH and other bigs. Message received was all coaches share several roles and are involved in all aspects of teaching and recruiting.
- CDH talked of the culture change continuing, improvement in the noze tackle, and David Hedelin will be suspended for only 3 games (after appealing to get his suspension reduced from 5 to 3). He sounds like a big fast stud at OT. We need 2 of that. I liked all he had to say. Charles Torwudzo was also on hand who seems to be solid and good kid. Thin for a TE, but hopefully a good WR.
All for now, Boiler UP!