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That Is How You Open A Title Defense: Purdue Basketball Is A Big Ten Threat

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Our Little Brothers to the south continue to crow about having a championship program because of aged banners on their wall. They believe that those banners entitle them to wins.I call them Little Brothers because we own the all-time series with them and we have passed them as a relevant basketball program. Yes, this is meant as a tweak to their "program", but I don't care.

Anyway, back to what I was talking about. Indiana talks about having a championship program, yet the last championship they won of any kind came almost nine years ago. They believe that any success is pre-ordained because of the name on the front of their jerseys. Give me Purdue any day, because we are a team that truly earns championships, and we have won at least half a dozen since Indiana was last truly relevant on the college basketball scene.

Sorry, kids. I didn't mean for this to turn into an anti-IU diatribe. It kind of happened because it is so easy. The point I want to make is that you need to defend a championship with hard work and guts. Indiana thinks championships will be served to them because of the name on the front of their jerseys. Purdue knows that you earn championships with hard work, dedication, and putting your nose into the face of your opponent and making them back down by your sheer force of will.

That is where Purdue and Indiana's opening Big Ten games come together. The Hoosiers thought they would beat Penn State simply because they were Indiana, thus the crying from Bloomington today. Once the Nittany Lions came into Assembly Hall, surely they would soil themselves because of the name on the front of IU's jerseys. This is why Indiana fans are treating their loss to Penn State among the worst in Hoosier history.

Purdue, meanwhile, went on the road against an up and coming Big Ten opponent that knows what hard work means to a quick turnaround. The Boilermakers saw this, lobbed an amazing reverse alley-oop dunk to JaJuan Johnson on the game's opening possession, and won with little struggle.

To those who say Indiana is close to Purdue right now, you are deluded. To Purdue fans, this is the last time this season I will compare our team to "Little Brother" down south, who is no longer the threat they think they are in the college basketball world.

Positives from the Michigan game:

Ryne Smith  - Feel free to chime in comment-wise if you think the Love Pump's scholarship needs to be revoked.  The kid knows his role. He is supposed to rotate off screens and hit open shots, usually from beyond the arc. He did that consistently today, which tells the rest of the conference they need to guard him if he is on the floor. That means he can affect games where he doesn't even shoot because he will draw defenders to him.  How is this a bad thing? He is clearly a 3-point specialist, and as long as he continues to knock down open looks he will make teams pay if they leave him open.

E'Twaun Moore -This is why I call him the Assassin. I don't think he had a flashy 21 points, but it seemed like every basket he had was part of a calculated assassination. It is almost like he decided that each point he scored would be a shot into the pain center of the Wolverines. He is the Disgruntled Ninja.

The good GDB - Kelsey Barlow had a lot of moments that showed why we love him today. He also had a lot of moments that showed why we call him GDB.

Lewis Jackson - I would describe LewJack's game as calculating. I don't care if he scores sat all. As long as he is giving us at least five dimes per game he is affecting the outcome. He knows when to pick his spots and drive. People have been crying for a jump shot from him. That would make him even more dangerous, but he is still pretty damn good with his distribution abilities. He can pick his spots for 2-6 points per game on the drive, which is a major shift.

Negatives from the Michigan game:

None

How can you find a negative from a total, systematic deconstruction of a good Big Ten team in their own gym?  The run that Michigan made to take their one single point lead served to only piss us off. Enjoy this, kids. I can't say much more on this. We kicked a good Big Ten team's ass by 23 in their own gym. You're a downer if you find negatives from this.