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March 19, 2014

GASKINS: IU, Purdue — a sad state of affairs

Basketball teams reeling from recent shortcomings.

(Continued)

Glass seems to want to have it both ways, to point to Indiana’s rich history at times, and to its modern-day reality at other times.

The reality is Indiana is far removed from the dominant Bob Knight era. IU has failed to make the NCAA tournament in four of coach Tom Crean’s six years. Obviously, Crean faced a massive rebuilding project, but that is no longer an excuse. The Hoosiers had a pair of McDonald’s All-Americans on the squad this season and still failed to make the Big Dance, or even the NIT.

Glass followed up his “We’re Indiana” comment with a zinger on Monday.

“We are Indiana, we do have five [NCAA title] banners, we are a former NIT champion, and no elite teams, or what I’d consider elite teams, have played in the CBI and I really wasn’t interested in being the first one,” the Hoosier AD said on the “Ride with JMV” radio show out of Indianapolis.

Purdue fans had to love that one considering the Boilers played in the CBI just last year.

Of course, Purdue is a mess right now after finishing in the Big Ten’s basement. The Boilers came into the season with four returning starters and a nice group of newcomers — but never jelled and were simply not fun to watch.

Robbie Hummel, E’Twaun Moore and Chris Kramer built a program for coach Matt Painter and he cashed in with a fat contract two years ago — and Painter has failed to sustain the program.

Painter at least stepped up and took some of the blame for Purdue’s predicament.

“First of all, it’s my fault. It’s my job to get guys to play together, it’s my job to get guys to play hard, it’s my job to get guys to play smart, and we don’t do any of those. And so that is my fault. So when you start off, people will always give you a break. But when you’re somewhere for nine years, they shouldn’t. They absolutely shouldn’t, because it is my fault we are in this position,” Painter said after the Boilers lost to Northwestern to finish last in the conference.

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