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The History of a Storied Rivalry: Indiana vs. Purdue

There are very few rivalries in college basketball that equal the rivalry between Indiana and Purdue. Without a doubt, it is one of the most intense rivalries. It isn't one of those rivalries where the fans care more than the players.. the players want it just as bad and that is what makes it so intriguing.

The two schools started the series in 1901 and Purdue dominated these early years winning 51 of the first 62 games. Leading up to 1940, Purdue had always been the more dominate team in the state. During the 1940 season, Indiana swept Purdue for the first time ever in the series and went on to win their first NCAA Tournament championship. From that point on, the rivalry has never been the same as both sides have grown to hate each other. After that national championship in 1940, the Hoosiers have retaliated in the series winning 73 to Purdue's 59. Indiana won their second NCAA Tournament championship during the 1953 season once again under Coach Branch McCracken, who left the Hoosiers in 1943 and later returned in 1946.

In the 1970's, Indiana hired Bob Knight, pushing the rivalry to new heights. Bob Knight had already won two NCAA Tournament titles for the Hoosiers when the Boilermakers hired Gene Keady in 1981. Bob Knight would go on to win just one more title, in 1987, bringing the Hoosiers total to five NCAA championships. Any Boilermaker or Hoosier fan would agree, this was the greatest era in the rivalry. The two iconic legends combined for 13 Big Ten Coach of the Year Awards and 16 Big Ten Championships.

The year 2000 marked the beginning of big changes in the rivalry, some may say it marked a decline. 2000 was the year Bob Knight was controversially fired from Indiana. Indiana hired Mike Davis as their next head coach, shortly after. Davis was an assistant for four years under Bob Knight. Davis would coach at Indiana until 2006, when he failed to meet expectations for yet another season and resigned. While all this was happening in Bloomington, Gene Keady was set to retire after the 2004-2005 season after coaching his worst team ever, who finished the season with only seven wins.

After Keady, Purdue hired Matt Painter. Painter played under Keady at Purdue and held his first head coaching job at Southern Illinois for only a year before Purdue snatched him up in the succession plan for Gene Keady. His Southern Illinois team finished 25-5, with a conference championship and a NCAA Tournament berth. He was also named MVC Coach of the Year that year.

After Davis, Indiana hired Kelvin Sampson, who was an experienced head coach, coaching for Oklahoma for 12 years. Sampson had much success at Oklahoma, being named National Coach of the Year in his first year at the helm. He lead them to 10 NCAA Tournament appearances and a Final Four.

For a brief period it felt as if the rivalry would soon be back at full strength. Painter and Sampson both were increasing the talent at their schools and rivalry became more competitive. The rivalry continued to be on the upswing until October of 2007, when Kelvin Sampson came under scrutiny for impermissible phone calls, something he had been investigated and punished for while at Oklahoma. Sampson was not permitted to make outbound recruiting phone calls with recruits. Doing so, would violate the sanctions the NCAA enforced on Sampson. It was found that Sampson made 10 phone calls with recruits, violating his sanctions. It was eventually found that Sampson had committed five major NCAA violations and that he lied to Indiana University and the NCAA about the phone calls. Indiana launched an investigation into the matter and it was eventually announced that Sampson and IU had agreed on a $750,000 settlement that required Sampson to resign, effective immediately. Assistant Coach Dan Dakich was named interim coach for the remainder of the season. Indiana would be slapped with three years of probation by the NCAA.

During the Sampson controversy, Matt Painter at Purdue landed his best recruiting class that included Robbie Hummel, JaJuan Johnson and E`Twaun Moore. Things in West Lafayette seemed to be on the upswing, while Indiana began the recovery process after Sampson essentially left the historic, proud program in ruins.

After 2007-2008 season, Dan Dakich was relieved of his interim duties as head coach and Indiana hired Tom Crean to start the rebuilding process. Tom Crean had been the head coach at Marquette since 1999 before coming to Indiana. At Marquette he averaged 20 wins per season and lead the school to their first Final Four appearance since the 1970's.

When Tom Crean arrived at Indiana he inherited a program that was in ruins, with three players kicked off the team, Eric Gordon leaving early for the NBA and others graduating, he was left with a team that was thoroughly depleted. In Crean's first season the Hoosiers finished with their worst record in school history at 6-25. Crean's second and third seasons weren't much brighter as the team finished with a 10-21 record in his second year and a 12-20 record in his third year. Meanwhile, back in West Lafayette, Matt Painter had a program, lead by his best recruiting class, flourishing. Purdue won the Big Ten Tournament in 2009 and another Big Ten title in 2010 and accomplished multiple NCAA berths. This left some fans of Indiana impatient, as it would bother most anyone if your rival was winning and you weren't. Crean's first three years are some of the darkest years in the Indiana University basketball history. During these years, Crean did bring in some talent but it failed to flourish. In 2011, Purdue stars Moore and Johnson graduated, leaving only Robbie Hummel, who redshirted due to injury. This seemed like a perfect opportunity to capitalize for Indiana. They had stellar power forward, Cody Zeller, coming in the next recruiting class and it opened up a huge window for the rivalry to be competitive once again.

This season, it has proved to be true. Sanity was restored to Bloomington as Indiana beat the number one and number two teams in the country, marking the first time an Indiana team accomplished such a feat. Indiana also became ranked this season for the first time since 2008. This season so far, Indiana is 17-5 and Purdue is 15-7. There is that feeling once again that this rivalry is about to take off to new heights. Looking down the road, Painter and Crean have established themselves on the recruiting trail and have some great talent coming in. Purdue has won five straight in the series but without a doubt.... THE RIVALRY IS ON ITS WAY BACK!

THE RIVALRY CONTINUES....... Saturday, February 4th in West Lafayette at 7e/6c on BTN

Most Memorable Games:

Purdue 51 - Indiana 49, Bloomington, February 28, 1948

With five seconds remaining, Purdue's Howie Williams dove under the basket to rebound a loose ball and shot the game winner while sitting on the floor.

Indiana 53 - #15 Purdue 52, 1979 NIT Championship Game, New York, March 21, 1979

After splitting the regular season series at one win apiece, Indiana squeaked by Purdue 53–52 in the first-ever post-season meeting between the Hoosiers and the Boilers in the final game of the 1979 NIT.

#20 Purdue 76 - #7 Indiana 69, 1980 NCAA Sweet 16, Lexington, March 13, 1980

Purdue defeated Indiana in the only NCAA Tournament game the two sides have ever met in. Keith Edmonson and Drake Morris each scored 20 points for Purdue to push them into the Elite Eight. Indiana only led once the entire game despite 30 points from freshman Isiah Thomas. Purdue reached the Final Four before losing to UCLA.

Purdue 72 - Indiana 63, Bloomington, February 23, 1985

This game provided the defining moment in the Indiana-Purdue basketball rivalry. Just five minutes into the game, a scramble for a loose ball resulted in a foul call on Indiana's Daryl Thomas. Knight irately insisted the call should have been for a jump ball until he received a technical foul. Purdue's Steve Reid stepped to the free throw line to shoot the resulting free throws, but before he could Knight grabbed a red plastic chair from Indiana's bench and threw it across the floor toward the basket in front of Reid.

Knight was ejected, but he received a standing ovation as he left the floor from the home crowd at Assembly Hall, and the crowd quickly became hostile and dangerous. Fans went so far as to throw coins at the Purdue bench after Knight's ejection. Purdue players at the game recalled being scared to play because of how hostile the crowd was. Despite the crowd, Purdue went on to defeat Indiana 72–63 on their way to a 20–9 season, while Indiana finished the year 16–13 and missed the NCAA Tournament.

Knight apologized for his actions the next day and was given a one-game suspension from the Big Ten. Since the incident, Knight has occasionally joked about throwing the chair. A common version told by Knight is that he saw an old lady standing on the opposite sideline and threw her the chair so she could sit down.

The picture of Knight throwing the red plastic chair across the floor in front of Reid has since become the symbol of the Indiana-Purdue rivlary. Replays of the toss have been shown during nearly every match-up at Mackey Arena since 1985.

#4 Indiana 88 - #4 Purdue 77, Bloomington, January 31, 1987

In 1987 Indiana and Purdue met for the first time with both teams ranked in the Top 10, ironically they were tied in the AP Poll at #4. Indiana won 88–77, but the two would meet again that year.

#6 Purdue 75 - #3 Indiana 64, West Lafayette, February 26, 1987

In the 1987 rematch at West Lafayette, both teams came into the game still ranked in the Top 10. This time around, Purdue handled Indiana for a 75–64 win. Purdue was led by 18 points from Troy Lewis. Indiana All-American Steve Alford was held to only 1 point in the first half as Purdue led by 9 points at the break. Despite the loss, Indiana would go on to win their 5th National Championship that season.

Purdue 83 - #8 Indiana 76 OT, West Lafayette, January 18, 1994

Purdue had been swept by Indiana the previous year and came into the game looking to knock off the highly- ranked Hoosiers. The game was back and forth with the teams trading leads several times down the stretch and at the end of regulation they stayed tied. But in overtime, Purdue pulled away from Indiana to win 83–76.

Purdue 89 - Indiana 87 OT, Bloomington, February 18, 1997

Purdue's Chad Austin hit the game winner with 0.6 seconds remaining in overtime to give Purdue their 4th win in a row against the Hoosiers. Austin scored 18 and Purdue freshman Brian Cardinal scored 25 points in the game. Indiana's own freshman A.J Guyton scored 31 points including a three-pointer to tie the game at 87 just moments before Austin won it. The victory was the 400th of Gene Keady's career.

Indiana 66 - Purdue 63, Indianapolis, December 14, 2002

The Big Ten had featured an imbalanced conference schedule since increasing to 11 members in 1993, and it finally reached the Indiana–Purdue rivalry as the two were only scheduled for one meeting in each of the 2001–02 and 2002-03 seasons. However, the two schools planned a non-conference game for December 14, 2002, at the RCA Dome in Indianapolis. The game was nicknamed the "Duel in the Dome" and a total of 32,055 Hoosier and Boiler fans filled into the Dome to see the game.

The #6 ranked Hoosiers held off Purdue 66–63 in the game. Indiana jumped out early and led by as many as six points at 17–11 before Purdue used a 12–1 run to go ahead by six points themselves at 27–21. But Indiana closed the gap and at halftime Purdue led 29–27. After only one lead change in the first half, the second half featured 5 ties and 9 lead changes as the teams battled back and forth. Indiana took the lead for good at 50–49 with 5:36 remaining, but Purdue never trailed by more than five points and the game wasn't over until Jeff Newton stole Purdue's inbound pass with one second remaining. Newton scored 16 points to lead the Hoosiers, including 9 crucial points in the final three minutes.

Indiana 75 - Purdue 73 2OT, West Lafayette, January 15, 2005

Indiana escaped Mackey Arena with a two-point win after two overtimes in Keady's final home game of the rivalry. Purdue had led the entire game until Indiana used a 14–0 run to take a four point lead with twelve minutes remaining in the second half. The teams battled back and forth until David Teague gave Purdue a 55–52 lead with only 25 seconds remaining. However, Indiana's Marshall Strickland tied the game on a three-point play and they went to overtime.

In the first overtime, the Hoosiers and Boilers were tied 61–61 when a questionable foul was called on Purdue's Andrew Ford with 0.9 seconds remaining. Strickland hit two free throws to give Indiana the lead. But Purdue heaved a pass to the opposite end of the court where Carl Landry made a layup and was fouled as he shot. After reviewing the call on video replay, the referees ruled that although Landry had released the shot after the buzzer, he had been fouled before time expired and incorrectly gave him continuation to count the basket. Even with the officiating error, Landry ended up missing the ensuing free-throw with no time on the clock, and the teams went to double-overtime tied at 63.

In the second overtime, Indiana had a 74–70 lead before Teague hit a three-pointer with 5.7 seconds remaining to pull Purdue within one. Bracey Wright then made one free throw for Indiana, and Purdue's Brandon McKnight missed a last-second heave to make the final score 75–73 in favor of the Hoosiers. This was the first, and thus far only, double-overtime game in the history of the Indiana-Purdue basketball series.

#15 Indiana 77 - #14 Purdue 68, February 19, 2008

In Bloomington, Eric Gordon scored 22 points to lead No. 15 Indiana to a 77–68 victory over No. 14 Purdue in the Hoosiers' last game before the completion of the school's investigation into accusations that Kelvin Sampson committed major rules violations. This would ultimately be Sampson's final game as Indiana's head coach as he would resign two days later. This win snapped Purdue’s 11-game winning streak and brought Indiana within one-half game of the Boilermakers at the top of the Big Ten conference standings.

Source: Wikipedia

The Stats:



Series Wins: 84 112
National Championships: 5 1
NCAA Tournament Championships: 5 0
NCAA Tournament Appearances: 35 24
Big Ten Championships: 20 22
Big Ten Tournament Championships: 0 1
All-American Selections: 42 46
Consensus First-Team All-American Selections: 15 25
Naismith Player of the Year: 2 1
Big Ten Player of the Year: 6 3
Big Ten Coach of the Year: 6 10