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Mini-game day Boilermakings

Only nine more hours to wait. Before we get into today's game with UConn, here are some quick news hits.

  • Baseball starts Big Ten play - The baseball team evened its record at 9-9 Tuesday with a 5-2 win over IPFW. It was Purdue's home opener in that game, Junior Dan Black continued his hot streak at the plate with a game-winning 3-run double in the bottom of the 8th. Jeff Straub got the win on the mound. The Boilers head to Northwestern this weekend to open Big Ten play in a three game series. The conference has returned to the more tradition three game weekend series after having four game series with Saturday double-headers for years. This should help in terms of post-season play. Purdue was expected to be a player in the Big Ten race before the season started after finishing second last season, but a slow start and better play around the league has tempered expectations a bit. Minnesota (13-6) is ranked in a couple of polls at the moment. Illinois (13-5) recently won a series at #1 ranked LSU. Ohio State (18-3) has been very impressive. They lost a game to a non D-1 team on Monday, then turned around and beat #2 Miami 7-1 in Coral Gables Tuesday. They haven't even played a home game yet. Michigan (14-6) and Penn State (13-8) also look to be tough while pre-season favorite Indiana (7-14) has struggled badly, but is still dangerous. Northwestern (4-16) has the worst record in the league, so a solid series this weekend is important if the Boilers want a top 6 league finish to get a Big Ten Tourney invite. The Wildcats did take two of three from Illinois-Chicago, which recently split a two game set with Purdue. Saturday is also Northwestern's home opener.


  • Several athletes named All-Americans - Purdue recently had five athletes in three sprots achieve All-American status at their respective national meets. Wrestler Jake Patacsil was mentioned earlier this week for his 5th place finish at the NCAA meet in St. Louis. Josh Hembrough finished 8th in the 60M hurdles for indoor track to be named an All-American. Ashley Karnes, Casey Matthews, and Emily Wetzel also received All-American Diving honors at the women's NCAA swimming and diving championships.
  • First day of Spring Football goes well - New coach Danny Hope's first official practice went well yesterday. the biggest issue was with incoming player Al-Terek McBurse. It looks like McBurse hasn't totally finished going through the NCAA Eligibility Center yet (Note to GBI, the Clearinghouse no longer exists). This isn't a surprise, as I know they are giving priority to spring sports athletes at the moment and he is a mid-year enrollee. It sounds like this is something that can be quickly cleared up. I would not be surprised if he simply hasn't been reviewed yet. I especially like the news about Ken Plue's offseason workouts and Nickaro Golding's impressive new physique. Those two guys could become critical players for us.
  • General jackassery and mayhem for a good cause - All I can ask is where was this when I was at Purdue? It is nice to see the tradition of the nude Olympics is still somewhat alive, and it has been incorporated for a very good cause.
  • Finally, the women's team will be playing in the Sweet 16 on Sunday at 7pm against Rutgers in Oklahoma City. Purdue is the higher seed in this 6/7 matchup, so we might be slightly favored to reach the Elite 8. For those with a sense of history, we beat both North Carolina and Rutgers on our way to the National Title 10 years ago. A game against #1 seed Oklahoma in their own back yard would loom in the Elite 8 this year. This is the fourth time both the men's and women's teams reached at least the Sweet 16 in the same season. Both did so in 1994, 1998, and 1999.
  • And now, to get fired up:

    You guys know I love Slipknot. They provide excellent workout music that really gets the blood flowing. I especially love the speech Corey Taylor gives at the beginning of hte Song Pulse of the Maggots. It should be used as a stadium entrance to replace When Worlds Collide because I know it makes me want to run through a brick wall. I am going to do a fire up message today for the open thread, but here's a taste:

    This is the year where hope fails you
    The test subjects run the experiments
    And the bastards you know, is the hero you hate
    But cohesing is posssible if we strive
    Theres no reason, theres no lesson
    No time like the present, telling you right now
    What have you got to lose, what have you got to lose
    Except your soul...WHO'S WITH US!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Are you with us?