Previewing Purdue

NC State's next opponent, Purdue, is off the a hot start this season. Here is a quick preview of the Boilermakers.


    G- 21 Kendall Stephens (12.3 ppg, 2.8 rpg)
    G- 01 Raphael Davis (10.7 ppg, 1.9 apg)
    G- 00 Jon Octeus (7.5 ppg, 3.5 rpg)
    F- 12 Vince Edwards (12.7 ppg, 6.7 rpg)
    C- 20 A.J. Hammons (7.8 ppg, 4.3 rpg)

    Vince Edwards -- A true freshman forward, Edwards is leading the Boilermakers in scoring (12.7) and rebounding (6.7) while shooting over 60 percent from the field and almost 90 percent from the free throw line.

    Purdue Notables

    Riding a new wave of momentum and confidence, the Purdue men’s basketball team looks to keep its winning streak going on Tuesday night when North Carolina State comes to visit Mackey Arena for the 16th annual ACC/Big Ten Challenge.

    Tipoff is slated for 9 PM (ET) for the ESPNU-televised contest.

    • In its last outing, Purdue had a resume-building victory in an 87-85 overtime win over BYU. The victory capped off a 2-1 appearance in the EASports Maui Invitational. The Boilermakers fell to Kansas State, 88-79, in the opening round before blasting Missouri, 82-61, last Tuesday.

    • The Boilermakers received balanced scoring during the tournament, as six players averaged between 9.3 and 13.3 points per game and all six of those players reached double-figures at least once during the event.

    • Sophomore Kendall Stephens follows at 12.3 points per game, while shooting almost 50 percent from three-point range.

    Junior Rapheal Davis, who has made 24 free throws in the last two games, is the third Boilermaker in double figures at 10.7 points per game.

    • As a team, Purdue is averaging 81.2 points per game, while allowing 60.2 points per game. Purdue is shooting 50.2 percent from the field, while limiting foes to 37.3 percent. The Boilermakers have struggled with turnovers, averaging 15.0 miscues per game, 13th most in the Big Ten Conference.

    Purdue has been one of the most-dominant teams in the ACC/Big Ten Challenge and will be looking to add to its impressive streak on Tuesday night.

    • Purdue’s seven wins in the event are tied for the most among all Big Ten teams, with the exception of Maryland (which had 10 wins while in the ACC). Illinois, Ohio State, Wisconsin and Minnesota also have seven wins.

    • Purdue’s five home wins equal the most in the Big Ten (Maryland, Minnesota, Ohio State, Michigan State).

    • Purdue’s 53.8 winning percentage (7-6) equals the best in the league with a minimum of 10 games with Ohio State. Nebraska is 2-1 (.667), while newcomer Maryland is 10-5, all coming as a member of the ACC.

    • Purdue’s five-game winning streak in the event is easily the longest current winning streak. In fact, only four teams have two-game winning streaks in the event (Minnesota - 3; Nebraska - 2; Duke - 2).

    • During its streak, Purdue has won four of its five games by at least 11 points. Last year’s 21-point win over Boston College equaled the largest margin of victory during last year’s event (tied with North Carolina State over Northwestern, 69-48).

    While at Purdue, Matt Painter rented an apartment (sub-lease) for one summer with current N.C. State Senior Associate Athletic Director Sherard Clinkscales. Clinkscales graduated from Purdue and played four games as a walk-on in the 1989-90 season, Painter’s freshman year.

    They were roommates on the road.

    For Purdue to be successful, it needs to get back to its defensive ways that were a staple a few years back. If the first six games are any indication, it is on its way.

    • Purdue’s 30 points allowed vs. Grambling was the fifth fewest allowed nationally against a Division I opponent this year. The five other teams that held foes to 31 points or fewer this year are ranked 1st, 2nd, 5th, 7th and 13th.

    • Purdue has pieced together several impressive numbers to start the 2014-15 season. Numbers are courtesy of and

    Early in the season, the Boilermakers have shown a drastic improvement in the assists and passing department.

    • Through Sunday’s games, Purdue ranks 14th nationally, and second in the Big Ten behind Iowa, in assist percentage (assists per field goals made) at 65.4 percent (104 assists, 159 FGM). Last year, Purdue assisted on just 51.0 percent of its made field goals to rank 184th nationally in that category.

    • Purdue has six players with at least 10 assists, averaging at least 1.7 assists per game and three more that average at least 1.0 assists per game. Last year, Purdue had just five players to average 1.0 APG.

    • As a team, Purdue’s 24 assists against Grambling were the most for the Boilermakers since having 26 against IPFW on Dec. 21, 2010, and Purdue has had at least 21 assists twice already this year. Last year, Purdue had just two games all season with 21 or more assists. The 24 assists are tied for the 14th-most nationally against a D-I foe this year.

    Purdue’s powerful inside tandem of junior A.J. Hammons and freshman Isaac Haas are dominating the paint and are off to a strong start to the 2014-15 season. Coach Painter will have the constant luxury of always having a 7-footer on the floor.

    • The pair is averaging 21.3 points per game, 9.5 rebounds and 3.8 blocks per game while shooting 42-of-69 (.609) from the field in 37.8 minutes per game.

    • Where they have dominated is defensively. The pair has 23 blocks in 227 minutes, including 17 by Hammons. They have helped allow just 126-of-362 points to be scored in the paint (34.8 percent), and foes have scored just 61 second-chance points so far this year.

    Purdue recorded the second-most blocks in a season in school history a year ago with 168 and early indications are that it might be able to top that this year. The school record is 176 (2008-09 season).

    • Purdue has recorded 41 blocked shots to rank 14th nationally in blocked shots per game (6.8). It’s early, but at the current rate (32- game season), Purdue would block 219 blocked shots this year.

    • Through Sunday, the 41 blocks are tied for the ninth most nationally. Kentucky leads the way at 60.

    Purdue has dominated the opposition at home during the month of November, going 33-1 (.971) under head coach Matt Painter. The lone loss was on Nov. 9, 2012, to Bucknell (70-65). The average margin of victory in those games is 24.0 points (815 points).

    • Going back further, Purdue is 68-7 (.907) all-time at Mackey Arena during the month of November. Legendary head coach Gene Keady went 35-6 (.854) in November games at Mackey Arena. Home-Streaking

    • Purdue has won 11 straight games at Mackey Arena against non-conference foes, by an average of 21.9 points per game (241 points).

    The freshmen class has been outstanding early on and Coach Painter hopes the trend can continue.

    • So far, the group has scored 209 points (34.8 points per game) and contributed 101 rebounds (16.8 rpg) and 38 assists (6.3 apg) while shooting 71-of-121 (.587) from the field. The group only has 28 turnovers in 520 minutes (86.7 mpg) of action.

    • The group is shooting 51-of-70 (.729) from inside the three-point line and 20-of-51 (.392) from beyond the three-point line.

    • Four of the top-six scoring freshman classes have come during the Painter era, including in each of the last two years (2013 - 2nd; 2014- 6th). The top-scoring freshman class is the group of “Baby Boilers” at 37.3 points per game.

    Purdue athletics contributed to this report.

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