Hopefully tonight’s game will be a little more competitive. I took in Ohio State’s rout over Purdue last night and am now headed to Provo – by way of Minneapolis.
I’ve heard some terrific things about BYU’s homecourt advantage from the likes of former Cougars star Danny Ainge – and I’m looking to watching The Jimmer go up against one of the two remaining unbeatens: My No. 2 team in the land, San Diego State.
COLUMBUS, OHIO – The last year hasn’t been easy for Robbie Hummel.
One year ago at this time, the Purdue Boilermakers were rolling. They looked every bit the part of a Final Four – maybe even national championship team – until that moment that Hummel went down with a torn ACL in late-February.
Luckily, he and his boys – fellow seniors E’Twaun Moore and JaJuan Johnson – had one more chance.
Then Hummel did it again, in his first official practice on Oct. 16. He tore the same knee and his season was over.
So, too, were Purdue’s chances of winning a national title.
``If we don’t go to the Final Four this year, I’ll forever feel like I cost Purdue two Final Fours,” Hummel said prior to watching his teammates get crushed last night by No. 1 Ohio State.
Hummel’s rehab is going well. He says there hasn’t been on any pain at all, but the doctors are being overly cautious this time around – and taking things slow.
``It’s been kind of boring,” Hummel said.
Hummel said, prior to the loss, that his team was just about where he figured – maybe even further along than he expected on the offensive end.
For the Boilermakers to make a postseason run, Hummel said that guys like Lewis Jackson and Ryne Smith will need to perform at a high level. Big men Travis Carroll and Sandi Marcius will also have to continue to develop.
``We can definitely be a Final Four team,” Hummel said.
I commend Hummel for his optimism, but that’s a stretch right now since Purdue is so reliant on two players in Johnson and Moore.
Hummel has been doing a lot of cardio work and lifting weights.
``I should be shooting soon and be able to run in a straight line,” he said.
Hummel said there’s a chance he’ll go to Chicago and continue to rehab at Tim Grover’s facility in the summer – and he’s confident that he’ll return to 100 percent well before the start of practice next October.
The good news is Purdue only loses two guys.
The bad is it’s Johnson and Moore.