Purdue 76, Miami 65 (Big Ten leads 3-1)
Without Reggie Johnson Miami is going to struggle, and they did tonight allowing 1.21 points per possession to Purdue. Robbie Hummel led the Boilermakers with 17 points and 5 rebounds. Purdue came into the game #2 in the nation at taking care of the ball, and only turned it over 10 times in 63 possessions (16%). Purdue’s defense is still a work in progress, as they allowed at least a point per possession for the 6th time this season. Miami had been the beneficiary of a bit of luck in the early going as their opponents only converted 57.5% of their FTs, but tonight Purdue began to send them back toward the mean by making 20-29 (69%). Shane Larkin led the way for Miami with 16 points off 4-4 3pt shooting.
Clemson 71, Iowa 55 (Big Ten leads 3-2)
Iowa has done a good job forcing turnovers and tonight was no different. The Tigers turned the ball over on 28% of their trips, but Iowa couldn’t make them pay. Iowa shot a miserable 28.8% on 2s and 27.3% on 3s. Clemson – when they did take care of the ball – made 11-21 3s (52%) and 52% of their 2s. Due to their turnovers and inability to get to the line Clemson has struggled in the early going, and tonight – in addition to the turnover – they only attempted seven FTs. Defensively, they’ve been elite, and have a solid chance of finishing in the top-20. Allowing 0.81 per possession is very solid, regardless of the opponent.
Ohio State 85, Duke 63 (Big Ten leads 4-2)
Ohio State began the game on an 11-0 run, and after a brief spurt by Duke never really looked back. The Buckeyes led by 19 at half and stetched that to as many as 25 during the 2nd half in a game that was never close. For Duke to compete with elite teams they need to be able to find open 3-pt shots, and tonight they never could. Seth Curry, who entered the game shooting 57%, shot 1-6, and the Duke team only made 20%. Four Buckeyes scored at least 17 points, and they all did so efficiently. Jared Sullinger, Deshaun Thomas, William Buford and Aaron Craft combined to shoot 60% on 2s, 58% on 3s, and score 76 points. The 1.31 points per possession which Duke allowed is their 2nd worst since the 2008-09 season.