November 12, 2007

Rookies create matchup problems; basketball notes

For a coach eager to see his team take on a more up-tempo personality offensively, Matt Painter's certainly been thrilled to add freshman forwards Robbie Hummel and Scott Martin.

The two 6-foot-8 rookies have given the Boilermakers a valuable luxury in that they're both capable of taking a rebound and igniting the transition game themselves, as was seen on numerous occasions during the exhibition season.

Both players are able enough ball-handlers to dribble up the floor themselves without having to outlet the ball to a guard. They're also skilled enough to pass and score in transition.

Martin led Purdue with a 17.5 per-game scoring average over two exhibitions. Hummel's outstanding game in the opener against Indianapolis included 16 points and seven assists.

"Any time you have versatile guys who can play a lot of different positions, it's going to cause match-up problems," Painter said prior to Monday afternoon's practice. "We have guys that play that big guard spot or that small forward spot, even though Rob or Scott sometimes are guarding a 4, they're not playing that traditional 4 spot in our offense when we run motion. The fact they can ignite the break really helps. It puts the defense in a bind, because now you don't have a guard picking up the basketball if you want to stay with the same match-up."

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