Rams look to repeat history

Dec 092004
Authors: Paul Baker

The Rams take their 5-2 record on the road to West Lafayette, Ind., to take on the Purdue Boilermakers in a rematch of last year's Miracle in Moby.

Last year's game pitted the then-No. 21 Boilermakers against a stingy Rams team. The Rams led by as many as 13 points in the first half before falling behind in the second half, only to set the stage for what was to ensue. Trailing by four points with seven seconds remaining in the game, guard Micheal Morris hit a 3-pointer to bring the Rams within one point. On the ensuing inbounds play, forward Matt Williams deflected the pass to the top of the arc, where Morris caught the ball in midair and threw a shot at the buzzer for an improbable 71-69 win.

"We were in the game the whole time," head coach Dale Layer said of last year's game. "We played really good. It was a great confidence booster to win that game."

Purdue is coming into this game with a 1-5 record after losing 66-48 in a nationally televised game against Oklahoma Wednesday night. Senior guard Brandon McKnight led the Boilermakers with a game-high 15 points in the loss.

This year McKnight and junior Carl Landry lead the Boilermakers. McKnight is averaging 15.3 points per game, while Landry is averaging 15.2 points and 8.8 rebounds per game. Purdue is a different team than last year, as the team lost its leading scorer from last season, Kenneth Lowe, who averaged 13.3 points per game.

"They are definitely a different team," said junior Dwight Boatner. "We still need to watch out for McKnight and David Teague."

Both teams are a bit different from last year, Layer said.

"They are not quite as deep inside in the post position this year as they were last year," Layer said. "It's really early to tell how we are, but we definitely have more confidence, and are deeper as a team this year."

Head coach Gene Keady, who is in his 25th and final year at the helm, leads the Purdue Boilermakers. At Purdue, he has an overall record of 505-259, 1-1 against CSU.

CSU head coach Dale Layer is 2-1 versus Big Ten opponents in his tenure at CSU, with wins against Michigan and Purdue and a loss to Purdue two years ago.

"It will be a big challenge for us going into Purdue and getting a victory," Layer said. "It will be very similar to a conference road game."

CSU has seemed to have perfected its zone defense in the past couple games, giving teams fits under the basket and forcing them to shoot from the outside.

"We need to play our matchup zone the way we know how," Morris said. "We need to stay in our own areas for the zone to work."

The game is set for 10 a.m. and will be will be televised on the Altitude channel.

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