Casey Abbett

Sports Intern

Hi, my name is Casey Abbett and I am from LaCrosse Indiana. I am a freshman at Purdue University and planning to major in mass communications. I am a sports intern for WBAA.

Casey Abbett / WBAA

The beginning to a new year is always a time of great excitement and promise. So many things to look forward to and goals to achieve.

The Purdue Boilermakers and Minnesota Golden Gophers delivered on the promise of excitement with a double overtime thriller in Mackey Arena to get the year started Thursday.

Purdue was able to overcome a sometimes sloppy performance (15 turnovers, a season high) to secure its eighth win of the season, as neither team was able to build much of a lead throughout the game.

Maybe it was holiday home cooking. Or perhaps it was just a comfortable arena and an overmatched mid-major opponent.

Either way, the Purdue men's basketball team returned home to Mackey Arena Saturday after a lackluster three-game swing across the Midwest, and produced one of its best offensive perfromances of the season in a 97-62 drubbing of Central Michigan.

Purdue won just one of three games away from West Lafayette, including losses to Nebraska and Butler that both featured poor offensive performances.

Casey Abbett / WBAA

In 49 states it's just basketball, but in Indiana and at the Crossroads Classic it means a little something more. It means bragging rights against in-state rivals and more importantly an opportunity to define a team's early season.

More often than not, this tournament has been a disappointment for Purdue's men's basketball team which came in with a 2-6 record all-time in the event. That trend continued Saturday, as Purdue lost 70-61 to the 17th-ranked Butler Bulldogs at Indianapolis' Banker's Life Fieldhouse. 

Casey Abbett / WBAA

After a statement win against fifth-ranked Virginia earlier this week, the Purdue Men's basketball team opened the Big Ten regular season campaign at home against Northwestern Sunday, in a game that again pointed out this season's up-and-down offense. The 58-44 victory was relatively easy, but showed vulnerability as the conference season gets underway.

Both teams seemed to be allergic to scoring early in the ballgame, logging empty possession after empty possession. Northwestern shot just 27 percent in the first half, hitting only six shots.

Casey Abbett / WBAA

The last time the Purdue men's basketball team met the Virginia Cavaliers is a sore subject for the Boilermaker faithful. It was March in the Elite Eight of the NCAA Tournament in Louisville, with Virginia winning in overtime, following a last-second basket to tie the game and send it into the extra frame.

Virginia would eventually capture its first national championship and the Boilermakers would go home thinking about what could have been.

Casey Abbett / WBAA

The Purdue Men's basketball team feasted in its last home game before Thanksgiving Saturday, cruising to a 74-40 victory.

Purdue used a 20-8 run from the opening tip to take a commanding lead that they never relinquished. The Boilers had a stellar night shooting the basketball, especially in the first half, when they hit nearly 70 percent of their shots. While they did wobble through a scoring drought in the game's closing minutes, they still shot 55 percent on the night.

Casey Abbett / WBAA

Taking on a hot Wisconsin team led by their record-breaking running back would be a tall order for any team in the Big Ten this late in the season, but for the Purdue football team, riddled with injuries and misfortune all season long, was too much.

While they were surprising and held their own in the first half, Wisconsin had their number in the second half and won, 45-24, thus ensuring Purdue cannot reach the six wins needed to qualify for a bowl game berth.

Casey Abbett / WBAA

After a head-scratching loss to Marquette earlier this week, the Purdue men's basketball team returned home to Mackey Arena Saturday afternoon to try to make it back to .500 on the season. And, as happened the last time the two teams played, in 2017, the Boilers easily defeated Chicago State  -- this time 93-49.

Casey Abbett / WBAA

The Purdue men's basketball team had won all of its meetings against the Marquette Golden Eagles prior to Wednesday's game. They were a perfect 9-0, dating back to early last century. That streak, like Purdue's home win streak that was snapped against Texas last weekend, came to an end as Purdue fell 65-55 in Milwaukee.

Casey Abbett / WBAA

Not since February of 2018 had the Purdue men's basketball team lost at home, coming into Saturday night. That changes as the 23rd-ranked Boilermakers were thwarted 70-66 by Texas in a back-and-forth grinder of a game.

Sasha Stefanovic got off to a hot start after missing the team's first game with an ankle injury. He hit his first four three point attempts, but made just one shot the rest of the game.

Still, his 14 points represented a team high as Purdue struggled to score the ball all evening, shooting just 41 percent from the field.

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