4 storylines for IU’s game vs. Purdue

1. IU on the line.
Whether shooting 3-pointers or defending them, the Hoosiers haven’t fared well along the perimeter this conference season. That doesn’t bode well for Tuesday. Purdue, which knocked in seven 3s against IU in the Jan. 19 meeting between the teams, ranks third in the Big Ten with a 38.1 percent success rate from beyond the arc in Big Ten play. The Boilermakers are 12th nationally in 3-pointers per game (10.3) and 33rd nationally in 3-point percentage (.378). Ryan Cline continues to spark Purdue from deep, making 49 percent (38-for-77) of his long-range shots since the start of the new year.

2. Romeo’s response.
Purdue held Romeo Langford to a season-low four points in the first matchup. Langford went 2-for-10 from the field in that game — one of only two contests this season in which he’s been limited to a single-digit scoring performance. Langford was also quiet on Saturday at Minnesota, taking a season-low six shots in IU’s blowout defeat. Langford needs to be in attack mode down the stretch, and IU’s coaching staff needs to make sure that’s the case.

3. A healthy Davis’ impact.
The initial matchup with Purdue proved to be the final straw for De’Ron Davis. It was the third consecutive game that the visibly-hobbled junior forward tried to play through after injuring his ankle on Jan. 3 vs. Illinois. Davis logged only three minutes in West Lafayette, then took the next two weeks off to rest and recuperate for IU’s stretch run. Now, Davis is playing his best basketball since November 2017, providing a much-needed post presence while giving the Hoosiers the help they need around the rim. Davis is also faring well at the line, where he’s made 10 of his last 13 free throw attempts.

4. One-sided rivalry
Purdue has controlled this in-state rivalry series in recent years, winning seven of the past eight games played since the 2013-14 season. With a win on Tuesday, the Boilermakers’ would secure their first three-game winning streak in Simon Skjodt Assembly Hall history. A Purdue victory would also mark the program’s fifth straight in the series, matching the longest for the Boilers since a seven-game streak from 1968 to 1972. Purdue also won five consecutive games over IU from 2009 to 2011.