Big Ten/Big 12 Challenge - PURDUE (4-2) at #7/8 TEXAS A&M (6-1)
Tipoff: 7 p.m. CST on Thursday, Dec. 9 Location: College Station, Texas - Reed Arena (12,292) Television: none Live Stats: available via Gametracker at purduesports.com Radio: live on WBPE (95.3 BOB-FM), the Purdue Radio Network and purduesports.com with Tim Newton providing play-by-play and Sara White analysis. The Series: Purdue leads 2-0 The Rankings: Texas A&M is ranked No. 7 in the Associated Press poll and No. 8 in the ESPN/USA Today Coaches' Poll. Purdue is receiving votes in the AP poll.
Texas A&M (6-1) is ranked No. 7 in the Associated Press and No. 8 in the ESPN/USA Today Coaches Poll. The Aggies are coming off their first loss of the season at No. 5 Duke on Monday, 61-58. Texas A&M is led by senior Danielle Adams' 19.3 points, 8.6 rebounds and 1.9 blocks per game. Tyra White chips in 13.7 points and Adoara Elonu contributes 10.4 points and 5.1 rebounds per contest. The Aggies are averaging 76.3 ppg while holding opponents to 53.7 ppg, 37.0 percent from the field, including 26.4 percent from three-point range. Head coach Gary Blair is in his eighth season at Texas A&M and has the Aggies averaging 41.1 rebounds per game, including an impressive 17.1 offensive boards per contest.
Purdue and Texas A&M have met twice, with the Boilermakers winning both contests. In 1994, the eighth-ranked Boilermakers defeated the Aggies 82-56 in the NCAA Tournament Sweet 16 in Palo Alto, Calif. Purdue went on to defeat Stanford 82-65 en route to its first NCAA Final Four appearance. Two seasons later the teams faced each other in the Kona Classic in Hawaii, with No. 7 Purdue prevailing over No. 22 Texas A&M, 74-72 on Dec. 1, 1995.
Big Ten/Big 12 Challenge
The Purdue-Texas A&M matchup is the final contest in the inaugural Big Ten/Big 12 Challenge. The challenge, in the first season of an initial two-year agreement between the conferences, began on Nov. 21. Most of the games occurred on Dec. 5, Wisconsin played two Big 12 opponents and the Big Ten currently leads the challenge 7-4.
The Boilermakers return home to take on Murray State on Sunday, Dec. 12 at 2 p.m. ET in Mackey Arena. Purdue will not have any contests during the week due to finals, but will play host to Auburn at Conseco Fieldhouse in Indianapolis as part of a double-header with the men's basketball team in the Boilermaker BlockBuster on Saturday, Dec. 18 at 1:30 p.m.
Mingo On The Mend Drey Mingo, a redshirt junior and Purdue's second-leading scorer, is out indefinitely while she recovers from bacterial meningitis. The 6-foot-2 forward was taken to the hospital Nov. 23 in critical condition. She was released Nov. 28, but has some damage to her hearing/auditory system, the extent of which is still being investigated, treated and observed.
After averaging 59.7 points per game with a season high of 81 points vs. Iowa last season, the Boilermakers were averaging 78.0 points per game with Drey Mingo in the line up, including a season-high 93 points against Austin Peay. Purdue did not shoot 50.0 or higher in a game last year, but hit 52.5 percent against Austin Peay and 54.7 percent in the win over South Dakota State. In the two games since Mingo's illness, the Boilermakers are averaging just 53.0 points per game in losses to ranked opponents - No. 22 Maryland and at No. 16 Notre Dame.
Defense Wins Games
The Boilermakers are holding opponents to 57.5 ppg (+12.2 scoring margin), below 40.0 percent from the field (.395), including 28.4 percent from the three-point line. Purdue is forcing opponents into 20.8 turnovers per game with a +3.0 turnover margin, while averaging 9.7 steals. Purdue is averaging nine more free throw attempts per game that its opponents (18.7 to 9.7 free throws per game).
Guyton Chips In
Junior forward Alex Guyton has helped filled the void created by Drey Mingo's illness by scoring a career-high 11 points and pulling down a season-high four rebounds against Maryland. She followed that up with 10 points on 5 of 9 from the field at Notre Dame.
Consistency From Rayburn
Junior guard Brittany Rayburn has scored in double-figures in every game this season pushing her streak of double-digit performances to eight, dating back to last season's 20-point performance against Eastern Michigan. The preseason All-Big Ten selection recorded team highs of 16 points and seven rebounds at Notre Dame, including 8 of 9 free throws. Rayburn is tied for 25th nationally for season free throw percentage at 90.5 percent (38 of 42).
Moses Leads The Way
Against Maryland, freshman point guard Courtney Moses led Purdue with 12 points and five assists. She was 3 of 3 from beyond the arc and also contributed two steals. The native of Sweetser, Ind., is currently Purdue's second leading scorer, averaging 11.2 points per game.
The Boilermakers have two active players averaging double-figures: Brittany Rayburn (16.2) and Courtney Moses (11.2). Drey Mingo was averaging 17.3 ppg before her illness. Purdue has had at least three players score in double-figures in all four games this year, including four in double-digits against Maryland.
- Brittany Rayburn has scored 916 points in her career and needs 84 points to become the 26th member of Purdue's 1,000 Point Club.
- Rayburn is currently 13th in career made three-point field goals at Purdue with 102. She made her 100th career three-pointer against South Dakota State.
- Rayburn is 13th in career made free throws with 278 and is third in career free throw percentage, averaging 81.5 percent (278 of 341).
In early September, sophomore Ashley Wilson had a second surgery on her lower right leg which caused her to miss the first four game of the season. She made her season debut against Maryland and she tallied three points, two steals and a rebound in eight minutes. At Notre Dame she tallied four points and five rebounds in 17 minutes. The Wheeling, Ill., native played in all 32 games last season, starting six contests. She pulled down a team-best 57 offensive boards.