Nothing more really needs to be said at this point.
The Wildcats cannot score the basketball. They cannot get backdoor cuts. They cannot get open for 3-pointers. They cannot rebound. They cannot get stops.
Since Jared Swopshire’s injury, the Wildcats have been unable to find a rhythm and have been embarrassingly bad on offense. You can insert your favorite “enough bricks to build a house” joke here. Unfortunately none that I can think of seem suitable to describe the futility that occurred in NU’s 74-43 loss to Purdue at Mackey Arena on Sunday night.
Above are statistics known as the Four Factors and are regarded as indicative contributors to wins and losses. Please see the end of this post for an explanation.
Northwestern shot a woeful 28.6 percent from the floor and hit on 4 of its 18 3-point attempts. The game was not even close from the beginning. Purdue was playing with an edge and an aggression to go take this game. The Boilermakers stepped on the Wildcats’ throat and did not let go. The lead was in double digits fairly quickly and there was no confidence that Northwestern would be able to make up the difference.
Maybe a late run in the first half that cut a 23-point lead down to 15 provided some hope. That was quickly shut off however.
It was simply Purdue’s night in a lot of ways. And Northwestern is simply not the same team it was the last time these two teams met. Saying the script was flipped would be cliche, honestly. Purdue just did whatever it wanted.
The Boilermakers shot 52.9 percent from the floor and hit 7 of 15 3-pointers. They grabbed nine offensive rebounds and dominated defensively (obviously). They did not back off the dribble handoffs as they had in Evanston and aggressively defended all the screens. Northwestern just does not have the offensive options to attack any more.
Teron Johnson scored 22 points to lead the balanced Purdue attack. Tre Demps was Northwestern’s high man with nine points on 4-for-10 shooting.
It really is not worth spending any more time discussing this game. Northwestern was just plain bad.
Alex Olah struggled with two points and two rebounds and looked overwhelmed by A.J. Hammons inside. Mike Turner had one of his better games, but also struggled with Hammons physicality inside. Hammons got deep position and dominated the paint, forcing Northwestern’s defense to help and leaving the perimeter open. Not that the Wildcats had much resistance out there.
Pulling out any positive is obviously very difficult. The team should be frustrated by all this and somehow they have to find a way to play these last three regular season games with some bit of pride.
It can’t get worse right?
Offensive Rating measures points scored per 100 possessions.
Effective field goal percentage measures field goal percentage taking into account the added value of a 3-point shot.
Offensive rebound percentage measures the percentage of offensive rebounds over total rebounds.
Turnover percentage estimates what percentage of a team’s possessions end in a turnover.
Free throw rate measures the rate of free throw attempts over field goal attempts.