Purdue Faces Irish in Crossroads Classic
Dec. 15, 2016

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No. 15 Purdue (8-2) vs. No. 21 Notre Dame (9-1)
Saturday, Dec. 17, 2016 / 2 p.m. ET / ESPN2 (Dave Flemming, Dick Vitale)
Crossroads Classic / Indianapolis, Indiana / Bankers Life Fieldhouse (18,165)

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. -- The No. 15-ranked Purdue men's basketball team begins a busy stretch on Saturday to conclude its non-conference portion of the schedule, starting with a battle against No. 21-ranked Notre Dame in the sixth annual Crossroads Classic.

The state's four major programs descend on Indianapolis for Saturday for the state's premier college basketball event. The four teams included in the field (Purdue, Notre Dame, Butler, Indiana) are all ranked in the nation's top 21 and own a combined 34-5 record. It marks the first time in the six-year history of the event that all four teams enter as nationally-ranked squads.

Purdue and Notre Dame tip at 2 p.m. ET, while Butler and Indiana follow at 5 p.m.

Purdue is looking for its first victory in the event, posting an 0-3 record against Butler and an 0-2 mark against Notre Dame.

The Boilermakers will face a tough Notre Dame offensive attack. The Irish lead the country in assist/turnover ratio (2.28), fewest turnovers per game (8.2) and free throw percentage (.864) while ranking eighth in scoring margin (+21.9) and 3-pointers per game (10.5). Four players average in double figures, led by Bonzie Colson, who is 1-of-11 players nationally to average at least 15.0 points, 10.0 rebounds and 2.0 assists per game.

When talking about Purdue, typically fans start with the big guys. However, Purdue's guards have been sensational this year and five Boilermakers average in double figures. Purdue ranks third nationally in assists per game, fourth in 3-point percentage, sixth in 3-pointers made per game and 16th in scoring margin.

The two teams rank sixth (Notre Dame) and 14th (Purdue) in Ken Pomeroy's offensive efficiency ratings, respectively.

Purdue will close out the non-conference schedule with a pair of games next week. Monday, Purdue hosts Western Illinois at 6 p.m., in Mackey Arena and Wednesday, Purdue will host Norfolk State at 7 p.m. The Boilermakers will then open Big Ten play Dec. 28, against Iowa at 8:30 p.m., in Mackey Arena.



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