Commentary

Purdue should pound the paint

Purdue falls when its 3s don't and its big man gets overlooked

Updated: February 9, 2010, 4:49 PM ET
By Matt Meyers | ESPN The Magazine
GrantAP Photo/Michael ConroyIf you see Keaton Grant doing this a lot on Tuesday, it's a bad sign for the Boilers.

The Inside the Bracket series takes you deeper inside what specific games mean to likely NCAA tournament teams. Today's example: the Big Ten clash between the Purdue Boilermakers and the Michigan State Spartans.

Sometimes, there is a major disconnect between perception and reality. However, when it comes to Big Ten hoops, that's not the case.

The league has garnered a reputation for methodical, efficient, slow-paced basketball, and rightfully so. According to kenpom.com's adjusted tempo, the Big Ten team that plays the "fastest" pace is Minnesota, which averages 70.2 possessions per 40 minutes. That ranks 70th in D-I.

With the possible exception of Wisconsin, no team typifies the league's style more than Purdue and its classic motion offense. However, despite the fact that the Boilermakers have the eighth-best turnover rate in the nation, they sure waste a lot of possessions.