No. 4 Purdue to challenge Indiana's 11-0 home record
No. 4 Purdue has enjoyed recent success against rival Indiana, winning nine straight in the series.
The Boilermakers (15-2, 4-2 Big Ten) will look to continue that dominance when visit the Hoosiers (13-4, 4-3) on Thursday night in Bloomington, Ind.
A raucous crowd awaits, but Purdue proved it could handle a hostile arena in Monday's 96-88 double-overtime win at No. 17 Illinois. The Boilermakers came up with big shots and big stops in the second overtime session after being unable to hold a 13-point first-half lead.
"This win gives you confidence that you can go into a hornet's nest and be up against it a couple of times and be able to find a way to make a play or get a stop or get a rebound," Purdue coach Matt Painter said.
Purdue again stuck with its formula of establishing 7-foot-4 center Zach Edey and 6-foot-10 forward Trevion Williams inside, as Edey finished with 20 points against the Illini and Williams had 14 points, seven rebounds and five assists.
Williams and Edey are rarely on the court together, but the post rotation has been effective. Edey is averaging 15.6 points and 7.5 rebounds, while Williams is averaging 13.4 points and 8.5 rebounds.
"We timeshare and now it's just trying to keep those guys fresh," Painter said.
Offensively, Purdue also puts teams in a bind on the perimeter with guards Jaden Ivey (16.4 points per game, 43.0 percent from 3-point range) and Sasha Stefanovic (11.8 ppg, 41.7 percent from deep).
Purdue has matched its best start through 17 games under Painter, who has coached the Boilermakers since 2005. Purdue also started 15-2 during the 2010-11 and 2017-18 seasons.
"We're still just an average defensive team, but we've got to get better in those areas," Painter.
Indiana is coming off its first road win of the season, winning at Nebraska 78-71 on Monday night.
The Hoosiers are 11-0 at home this season but are seeking their first win against Purdue since Feb. 20, 2016, when they won 77-73.
"We can't lose at home," Indiana coach Mike Woodson said. "That's my message. I can't say it loud enough. I mean, they are a great team, I watched them (Monday) against Illinois win in overtime. They are huge, they've got talent out front, but hey, we're going to have to match it and see what happens."
Trayce Jackson-Davis posted his fourth straight double-double and eighth of the season against Nebraska with 23 points and 12 rebounds before sitting out the final seven minutes of the game after landing hard on his tailbone on a foul. Woodson said the forward would be re-evaluated when he returned to campus, but Jackson-Davis posted on Twitter that he will be fine and expects to play on Thursday.
Indiana will look to establish Jackson-Davis (19.5 points, 9.1 rebounds) and Race Thompson (10.9 points, 7.5 rebounds) early and try to get Purdue's frontline players in foul trouble.
The Hoosiers will also need their backcourt players to step up to snap a six-year losing streak against their upstate rivals. Xavier Johnson has been IU's most productive guard, averaging 9.5 points, 3.5 rebounds and 4.2 assists.
--Field Level Media
Updated January 18, 2022