Tracking the Boilermakers
Dec. 22, 2017

Dec. 27 / 8:30 p.m. / Arizona (Foster Farms Bowl) / FOX Sports Go

By Tom Schott

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. - Football departs for the Foster Farms Bowl on Saturday morning.

The Boilermakers - players, coaches, support staff and administrators - will travel to the Bay Area via two chartered airplanes and make their headquarters in downtown San Francisco.

In addition to game preparation, including meetings and practices, the team will visit Alcatraz and Fisherman’s Wharf, tour the city via cable cars, and help prepare and serve food at St. Anthony’s Dining Room on Christmas.

Purdue (6-6) will square off against Arizona (7-5) at Levi’s Stadium in Santa Clara, California, on Dec. 27. Kickoff is set for 8:30 p.m. ET, and the game will be televised by FOX.

For complete Foster Farms Bowl information, including tickets, which still are available for purchase, click here.

Streaking Men’s Basketball

No. 16 men’s basketball (12-2) is on an eight-game winning streak heading into the holidays. The Boilermakers upended Tennessee State 97-48 on Thursday - their 15th straight homecourt victory - and are back in action for their non-conference final Dec. 30 against Lipscomb (8-4) at Mackey Arena. Then, Purdue resumes Big Ten Conference play Jan. 3 against Rutgers at home.

On Dec. 17, Purdue beat Butler 82-67 in the Crossroads Classic for its second straight win in the annual event in Indianapolis and sixth in a row against teams from the state of Indiana.

Senior guard Dakota Mathias has made a three-point field goal in 20 consecutive games.

Harris MVP of Basketball Traveler’s Inc. Invitational

Sophomore forward Ae’Rianna Harris earned Most Valuable Player honors of the Basketball Traveler’s Inc. Invitational after leading the women’s basketball team to three wins in four days from Dec. 17 to 20.

Harris averaged 15.3 points and 9.7 rebounds with 11 blocked shots, eight assists and two steals as the Boilermakers defeated Eastern Washington (65-40), UT Martin (60-58) and Saint Mary’s (70-60). She shot 54.8 percent from the field (17 of 31) and 85.7 percent from the free throw line (12 of 14).

Sophomore guard Dominique Oden was named to the all-tournament team.

The Boilermakers (9-5) return to the court Dec. 28, opening Big Ten Conference play at Rutgers (12-2). Their conference home opener is Dec. 31 against Wisconsin (7-6).

Cifelli Wins Synchro Silver at Nationals

Junior diver Joe Cifelli won the silver medal in synchronized 3-meter at the USA Diving Winter National Championships on Dec. 18. Cifelli teamed with the Briadam Herrera of the University of Miami to post a combined total score of 753.9.

Individually on 3-meter, Cifelli finished eighth among a field of 23 divers. He improved on his list score in each of the three competitions, culminating with a personal season-best mark of 379.55 in the final.

National Letter of Intent signee Ben Bramley was a finalist in both of his events, placing fifth on 10-meter and 13th on 3-meter.

Football Inks 22 in Early Signing Period

Head football coach Jeff Brohm announced the addition of 22 student-athletes in the inaugural early-signing period Dec. 20. The class consists of 12 defensive players and 10 on offense, hailing from nine different states.

For all the facts and figures, stats and stories, click here.

Holiday Helping

Purdue Athletics is held in high esteem for its visibility in West Lafayette, Lafayette and Tippecanoe County.

Each year, 100 percent of Boilermaker student-athletes participate in a community service activity, amassing more than 5,000 hours annually.

Such involvement takes on special meaning during the holiday season.

To wit:

Members of the football team went to the Salvation Army Lafayette on Dec. 4 to assist with its Angel Tree program, which puts new clothes and toys under the tree for children who usually have to go without Christmas gifts. On Dec. 18, football visited the Joyful Journey adult day center.

For the seventh straight year, men’s basketball teamed up with Meijer and Willowstone Family Services to provide a holiday shopping spree for disadvantaged families in the area. Each team member donated a portion of his holiday break per diem and was paired with a family for the outing, which occurred Dec. 19.

Women’s basketball adopted a single-parent family from a local high school and purchased Christmas gifts.

Track & field student-athletes raised nearly $2,000, including donating almost $1,500 of their own money, to sponsor three families during the holiday season. The Boilermakers bought and wrapped gifts for the families and their children, who range from 4 to 12 years old.

Continuing a holiday tradition, members of the wrestling team rang the bells for the Salvation Army on Dec. 6. It was the annual “Purdue vs. Indiana Day,” and the Boilermakers - with help from the academic services staff - raised more money than the Hoosiers.

Women’s tennis invited 6-year-old Addyson Wooldridge, who they “adopted” last summer, to its team holiday party, and each student-athlete gave her a gift. Wooldridge was diagnosed with Spina Bifida at birth along with several other medical conditions. She is a regular at Purdue home matches.

The Purdue Athletics staff conducted a food drive to help support the local Food Finders Food Bank from Dec. 4 to 15.

Boilermaker fans got in on the spirit of the season, as well, donating more than 5,000 cans of food at men’s and women’s basketball games Dec. 10.

Registration Open For Mollenkopf/Keyes Classic

The 42nd-annual Mollenkopf/Keyes Classic is set for Friday, Feb. 16, 2018.

Once again, the popular event will be held at the Quail West Golf and Country Club in beautiful Naples, Florida.

The cost for golf and brunch is $300 per person, while the brunch-only price is $65. Brunch begins at 10 a.m. ET, featuring comments and updates from athletics director Mike Bobinski, head football coach Jeff Brohm, Boilermaker legend Leroy Keyes and former Purdue standout Ricardo Allen, now with the Atlanta Falcons. The 18-hole “Best Ball Scramble” gets underway at 12:30 p.m.

Both events are open to all Boilermaker fans, with priority given to current John Purdue Club members.

For more information and to register, click here.

Phone registration is available by calling the John Purdue Club at 765.494.3248.

Please register by Feb. 5.

The Mollenkopf/Keyes Classic honors former Purdue head football coach Jack Mollenkopf and Keyes, paying homage to a pair of Purdue and College Football Hall of Famers, while raising money for student-athlete scholarships.


Senior left-handed pitcher Ross Learnard was named a preseason third-team All-American by Collegiate Baseball. He posted a school-record 0.58 ERA last season and had a streak of 35 2/3 consecutive scoreless innings from March 11 to May 14 … Volleyball was ranked No. 18 in the final national poll … Volleyball senior setter Ashley Evans penned a heartfelt letter to Boilermaker Nation … Recent Purdue Athletics hires include Luke Ebling as ticket office associate and Jill Bayley as John Purdue Club secretary … Congratulations to Boilermakers Drew Brees (1997-2000) and Ryan Kerrigan (2007-10) on being selected to the NFL Pro Bowl … Guests on this week’s Purdue Athletics Podcast are football junior Joe Schopper and volleyball senior Ashley Evans … Tracking the Boilermakers will return Jan. 5 … Happy Holidays!


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