Yesterday there were three more exhibition games, with the Big Ten coming out victorious in all three affairs. While Purdue and Illinois blew out their opponents, an inexperienced Ohio State program struggled getting past Walsh University in a somewhat alarming 10 point victory. It's only an exhibition, though, and at least it's not as bad as losing an exhibition game like Iowa did this past weekend.
Purdue 92 Northwestern Ohio 43
Purdue has never lost an exhibition game under Matt Painter and that didn't change on Sunday when the Boilermakers demolished Northwestern Ohio by 49 points, the largest exhibition victory under Matt Painter. Leading the way for the Boilers were Vince Edwards and Isaac Haas, both scoring 18 points. Freshman Caleb Swanigan impressed once again with 12 points and 11 rebounds, while Kendall Stephens was the fourth Purdue player to reach double figures. It was unclear heading in if A.J. Hammons would play in the exhibition, with the senior center ultimately sitting out yesterday's action. Also inactive was Basil Smotherman, who will reportedly redshirt for sure this season, while Grant Weatherford is also set to redshirt. The freshman did see a few minutes of playing time, adding an assist in his five minutes.
While Purdue was able to score plenty of points and recorded assists on an impressive 93.9% of their field goals (31 of 33), the team couldn't get rolling from the perimeter. Kendall Stephens, considered to be Purdue's best shooter (Dakota Mathias is also in contention for the title), had an itchy trigger finger like he did most of last year, but only hit three of his 10 threes. Ryan Cline, another potential key shooter for the Boilers, missed all six three pointers and the team was only able to convert 31% of their 29 shots from deep. Purdue will need outside shooting this season, especially since most Big Ten teams won't be as small as Northwestern Ohio. In better news, Purdue's defense absolutely shut down their opponent in the second half, holding them to 3 of 30 shooting in the second half and only 10 points after the break.
Ohio State 92 Walsh 82
The Buckeyes are a young team and there's a lot of questions as to how they'll fare this season, so yesterday wasn't a great sign. It wasn't as bad as Iowa's surprising loss, but it doesn't change the fact that Ohio State only was able to edge Walsh University by 10 points. While missing Jae'Sean Tate today, Ohio State did play pretty well offensively as they managed to shoot 52.5% from the field and 40% from beyond the arc. Leading the way was forward Keita Bates-Diop, who hit 10 of his 13 shots on the way to a team-high 26 points. Marc Loving also had a big day, with 24 points and 10 rebounds, while JaQuan Lyle also reached double figures with 19 points. The problem was no one else hit double digits for Ohio State, with the remaining six players combining for only 23 points.
Ohio State Buckeyes (@OhioStAthletics) November 8, 2015
Illinois 104 Illinois-Springfield 69
One of the Illini's biggest issues last season was their inability to score consistently, so racking up 104 points yesterday is always a positive (even if it's an exhibition versus inferior talent). Either way, Illinois blew past Illinois-Springfield by 35 points with five different plays reaching double digits. Leading the way was freshman Jalen Coleman-Lands, who is looking healthy after an injury riddled offseason. The freshman hit on 5 of his 9 three pointers and scored 20 points in 24 minutes. The team shot 55.6% from the field and 44% from three, but struggled from the line, only converting 60.5% of their 38 free throws. Grad transfer Mike Thorne Jr. had a big day as well, recording 16 points, nine rebounds and four blocks, while Khalid Lewis surprised from outside, hitting all three of his three pointers. There's plenty of potential here for Illinois, but they'll need to stay healthy as the team's depth has taken a serious hit the last few months.