The good thing about writing for an SB Nation site is that we don’t have to pretend like we’re objective journalists. We’re fans writing about the game we love. I try to be unbiased, which is reasonably easy to do when breaking down the numbers, but I went to Purdue and I’m sure that bleeds through in my writing.
So when my team beats its rival in convincing fashion, I can’t pass up the opportunity to drop all pretense of objectivity and have some fun. Here’s a statistical breakdown of the Indiana-Purdue rivalry.
Wins over the past five years: Purdue 7, Indiana 1
Wins in Bloomington over the past five years: Purdue 3, Indiana 1.
Number of NCAA appearances since Matt Painter was hired (including an estimate for this season): Purdue 11, Indiana 7.5
Sweet Sixteen appearances since Matt Painter was hired: Purdue 4, Indiana 3
Big Ten titles since Matt Painter was hired: Purdue 2, Indiana 2
Big Ten Tournament titles, all-time: Purdue 1, Indiana 0
Big Ten Tournament championship game appearances: Purdue 4, Indiana 1
Big Ten Tournament winning percentage: Purdue .412, Indiana .364
National Championships in my lifetime: Purdue 0, Indiana 0
Number of major NCAA violations leading to scholarship reductions since 2000: Indiana 5, Purdue 0
Number of coaches fired (or forced to resign) since 1980: Indiana 5, Purdue 0
Days since the last four-game losing streak: Purdue 1,773, Indiana 1
Current KenPom Rank: Purdue No. 10, Indiana No. 36
Romeo Langford 3-point percentage: 22.7%. Matt Haarms 3-point percentage: 28.6%.
Romeo Langford number of recruiting stars: 5. Romeo Langford number of points scored against Purdue: 4.
Final Score Saturday: Purdue 70, Indiana 55
Purdue knows who they are at this point—a blue-collar program without a lot of flash but with a whole lot of noise inside Mackey Arena. We know we have a chance of winning at home game against anybody in the country, and we know that we’re going to get an NCAA Tournament berth and a double-bye in the Big Ten Tournament more often than not. We’re hoping one of these seasons that Matt Painter can finally break through in March like Bo Ryan and Jay Wright eventually did. This year’s freshman class is the most athletic group he’s ever had.
Meanwhile IU is in an identity crisis. They define themselves by their past, but their past is completely incongruous with their present. They’re like a midwest factory town. Those jobs aren’t coming back, and neither are the glory days of Bob Knight. Your great-grandpa moved here because he was willing to take risks to better his life. You tell stories about how much you admire him, but aren’t willing to do what he did. Bob Knight built the IU program with high-character, talented kids who could shoot and defend and take care of the ball and go to class. Oh, and they wore candy-stripe pants. Every single one of those things except the pants have been allowed to fall by the wayside at some point or another. By all means, keep clinging to those pants, IU fans. So long as you’re focused on meaningless totems rather than coming to terms with your identity crisis, Purdue is going to continue to kick your ass in basketball.