Last season Purdue missed out on a record 24th Big Ten men’s basketball title by the smallest of margins. If any ONE of the following had not happened, Purdue has another title:
- Keita Bates-Diop’s tip-in in the final seconds (so a missed box out).
- Purdue playing like absolute crap at Wisconsin in a game it should have won by 15 points minimum.
- Northwestern completely and utterly collapsing at home with a huge lead over Michigan State.
- Rutgers running a horrible final possession of regulation at Michigan State.
Purdue joined 2007-08 Purdue as the only teams to go 15-3 in league play and not win at least a share of the league title. After losing four seniors a step back is expected, but with Carsen Edwards as a National Player of the Year candidate and a mix of newcomers who knows what can happen. Perhaps title No. 24 was merely delayed (though one bloody rebound would have takent he sting out of last year’s disappointment).
This afternoon the Big Ten released the 20-game league schedule. it is the first year for a 20-game league slate, and it also means early December games again. Here is the full 20-game Big Ten schedule for us. I will also put hte non-conference games up, too:
November 6 vs. Fairfield
November 10 vs. Ball State
November 15 vs. Appalachian State (Gildan Charleston Classic)
November 16 vs. Wichita State or Davidson (Gildan Charleston Classic)
November 18 vs. Alabama, Ball State, Virginia Tech, or Northeastern (Gildan Charleston Classic)
November 23 vs. Robert Morris
November 28 at Florida State (ACC/Big Ten Challenge)
December 1 at Michigan - Purdue begins by traveling to last year’s national runner-up. We did take 2 of 3 from the Wolverines last season, but both teams will have a different look this year.
December 6 vs. Maryland - Purdue also played the Terrapins in December last year, but in College Park.
December 9 at Texas
December 15 vs. Notre Dame (Crossroads Classic at Bankers Life Fieldhouse)
December 20 vs. Ohio
December 29 vs. Bellmont
January 3 vs. Iowa
January 8 at Michigan State - one of three losses in league play last season for Purdue was at MSU.
January 11 at Wisconsin - Purdue’s absolute worst game of the season was in madison last season, and it cost us a Big Ten title.
January 15 vs. Rutgers
January 19 vs. Indiana - The Hoosiers and Romeo Langford come to Mackey for the first time in two years. It is a Saurday too, so COLLEGE GAMEDAY COME ON DOWN!
January 23 at Ohio State - We need vengeance.
January 27 vs. Michigan State
January 31 at Penn State
February 3 vs. Minnesota
February 9 vs. Nebraska
February 12 at Maryland - Jumboheroes gets a game in his back yard.
February 16 vs. Penn State
February 19 at Indiana - Finally, the Big Tne was smart enough to protect this rivalry so it is played twice.
February 23 at Nebraska
February 27 vs. Illinois
March 2 vs. Ohio State
March 5 at Minnesota
March 9 at Northwestern
The Big Ten Tournament is back where it belongs this spring in Chicago. Overall this is a schedule with some chest hair. the November 18 through December 15 stretch is absolutely brutal with three true road games against good Power 5 teams, two neutral court games agaisnt good Power 5 teams (if we play Alabama or Virignia Tech in Charleston), and a home game agaisnt a good Maryland team.
I dare say this schedule is tougher than last season, and if Purdue wins another Big Ten title it will be hard earned. With a player like Edwards and solid (if unproven) talent around him though, that is the goal, as it should be every year.