Purdue Loss at Ohio State is a Costly One.
With a pivotal opportunity to reestablish themselves as a solid entry in the NCAA tournament, Purdue failed on all accounts at Ohio State, falling to the Buckeyes 68-52. Purdue never had a lead in this one. No sort of offensive rhythm ever seemed to develop versus the Buckeyes as Purdue shot only 35% for the game. Purdue big men, Matt Haarms and Travion Williams combined for only 10 points and the outside game wasn’t much better. Purdue continually tried to shoot their way back into the game but went 4-20 from 3-point range. As Matt Painter mentioned in the post-game press conference, 52 points were never going to cut it on the road, even against a Buckeye team who didn’t play their best either.
Going into the game, Purdue was still looking to be around an 8 to 10 seed by most experts. We at Delphi Bracketology had the Boilers right at the 8-9 seed border. Playing a 23-Net Ohio State team on the road gave Purdue an opportunity for a great Quad 1 road victory and a chance to solidify its tournament resume. However with the loss, Purdue now is staring down a scary overall record of 14-12. Despite all the impressive wins this season, a record of two games above .500 is almost always a recipe for an N.I.T. bid, not the big dance, regardless of the competition. Purdue has another challenge on Tuesday at Wisconsin. Much work is needed to get the Boilers back into tournament consideration. The opportunities will certainly be there for that, but Purdue’s margin of error is slipping.
On the flip side, Ohio State added another valuable Quad 1 win to its NCAA Tournament resume while improving to 7-7 in the Big Ten. They remain in solid position for a tournament bid as we have them holding steady at a projected 6-seed. The Buckeyes have a challenging week ahead of them playing at Iowa on Thursday followed by a home match-up against conference-leading Maryland on Sunday.