Minnesota visits Purdue in Big Ten action
West Lafayette, MS (Sports Network) - The fourth-ranked Purdue Boilermakers will attempt to remain undefeated on the season as they host the Minnesota Golden Gophers in Big Ten Conference action.
Minnesota is certainly no pushover, as the team has won its last seven games to move to 11-3 overall and 2-0 in conference. On Saturday, the Golden Gophers knocked off Iowa in an 86-74 final. They have only played two true road games this season, posting a 1-1 mark.
En route to its 13-0 record, Purdue has treated the home crowd to victories seven times. The Boilermakers have 11 double-digit wins to their credit, including a 77-62 decision over fellow powerhouse West Virginia on New Year's Day. The only conference game played the Purdue thus far came against Iowa on December 28th, and that game resulted in a 67-56 triumph.
Purdue owns a 93-78 series advantage over Minnesota, which includes three straight wins over the Golden Gophers.
Through 14 games, Minnesota is racking up 80.7 ppg on 48.9 percent shooting from the floor. Defensively, the club is allowing 60.9 ppg to opponents on 37.1 percent field goal efficiency. The Golden Gophers have three double-digit scorers in their lineup, and Lawrence Westbrook is tops with 13.8 ppg. Blake Hoffarber is second with 11.9 ppg, and Damian Johnson checks in with 10.6 ppg. In the victory over Iowa last time out, Minnesota connected on 50 percent of its field goal attempts. Perhaps the most obvious key to the win was 25 forced turnovers. Hoffarber exploded for 24 points on 8-of-11 shooting from the field, including 5-of-7 from three-point range. Johnson pitched in 13 points, and Devoe Joseph added 12 points off the bench.
Like Minnesota, Purdue boasts a trio of double-digit scorers. E'Twaun Moore is tops with 16.3 ppg, and Robbie Hummel checks in with 15.1 ppg. JaJuan Johnson rounds out the impressive group with 14.6 ppg and 6.8 rpg, while no other players on the roster are netting more than 6.9 ppg. The Boilermakers have played quite well at the defensive end of the floor, limiting opponents to 59.8 ppg on 40 percent field goal efficiency. Johnson posted 25 points and 10 rebounds in the victory over West Virginia, and Hummel added 18 points. Moore contributed 15 points for the Boilermakers, as the trio accounted for 48 of the team's 77 points. Purdue only turned the ball over seven times and connected on 50 percent of its field goal attempts. A 17-9 edge in points from the foul line helped the cause.
01/05 10:34:42 ET