INDIANAPOLIS – Defensively Purdue is one of the best teams in the country, ranking fifth in Adjusted Defensive Efficiency and sixth in scoring defense. On the offensiive end it's Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde.
That dichotomy equated to defeat in the Crossroads Class matchup with No. 17 Butler, 70-61, Saturday.
So far this season the one thing that fans can expect from Purdue (7-5) to do is play defense. Offensively it's been two different teams. Sometimes the Boilers are the team that knocked off Virginia showcasing talented shooters and the ability to finish around the basket. Sometimes they're the team that showed up today against Butler.
Purdue simply couldn't effectively put the ball in the basket Saturday in Bakers Life Fieldhouse. The Boilers shot horrendously (18 of 56) from the field and were forced to rely on defense to keep them in the game. They were without their leading scorer junior center Matt Haarms and struggled to defend the paint without him.
Purdue allowed 26 points in the paint and lost the battle off of the boards, 35-30. However, what hurt it most was their inability to finish around the rim. The Boilers got looks around the basket and simply couldn't convert.
The Boilers made a run late in the game and nearly overcame their offensive woes but it was to little too late.