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Purdue 74, Indiana 67: Sir, this is an Arby’s drive thru

Indiana held with the Big Ten’s best for 38 minutes, when inevitability seemed to hit.

NCAA Basketball: Purdue at Indiana Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports

Please place your order whenever you’re ready.

That’s over, that’s happened, and the mentions need 24 hours to sterilize then let’s go on with what’s left of this season. You can be mad about it if you want. Purdue was probably always going to beat Indiana. Whatever.

Sir, sir, I don’t believe we-

Even when the tide’s high, you can see the inevitability. The hill to climb so steep, as if you’re walking directly up a wall. It felt that way coming in Assembly Hall The matchups where the strengths are so well-suited to the other’s weakness, the matchups so tilted, that no matter the score on the screen — no lead seems safe, and there’s little escaping the game’s ultimate resolution. The depth, the talent, the areas for exploitation eventually show through. It’s just a matter of time before the levee breaks, and the degree of heartbreak that’s going to follow. Indiana football allows me to no longer feel pain.

Can you please speak up if you’re trying to place an order. I’m picking up side conversation.

Oh sorry, yeah, yeah, on with the game wrap. If you felt such a sinking feeling on Sunday in Assembly Hall, you’d be forgiven, and certainly not alone. Third-ranked Purdue wore down Indiana’s undersized-but-high-energy effort on Sunday afternoon in Assembly Hall, in what was one of the better college basketball games of the 2017-18 season today, probably. The Hoosiers had tied Matt Painter’s with 4:44 to go in the second half when Juwan Morgan picked up his fourth foul of the ball game and exited the floor, but three ensuing scoreless minutes of gameplay sealed Archie’s fate in his first contest against the in-state rival.

Sir, this is an Arby’s drive-thru. Please place your order or I’m going to ask you to pull away.

Morgan and Robert Johnson combined for 55, but received little help from other scorers. Isaac Haas led all players with 26 points.

I’m going to call the police.

I’ll have a Beef & Cheddar and one large potato cake. Lemonade, too. And throw in a chicken slider for good measure. Here’s three quick things from a wild Sunday afternoon in Bloomington.

$8.10. Please pull around.

Indiana’s available parts inside probably dictated the result in this one before it began.

Purdue’s one of the toughest matchups in the country for any fully-healthy program. It’s a whole ‘nother type of test for an Indiana team with injuries & issues that have created roster flaws that mirror perfectly to Purdue’s strengths.

Indiana’s lack of frontcourt depth was never more apparent than Sunday afternoon. Morgan & Freddie McSwain did well to harass Isaac Haas in the post, but the big Alabaman still netted 26 points for the Boilers. That, in and of itself, wouldn’t be a huge problem. But foul trouble for Morgan & Justin Smith kept Indiana’s only two frontcourt scoring options off the floor at crucial junctures late in the game. That might have been an inevitability.

Collin Hartman was needed. De’Ron Davis was needed. Grinding out a win over a top-five team, with the nation’s best three-point shooting lineup, with two guys over 7-foot-2? Meh, that was probably never in the cards, those items considered.

Indiana really, really needs a point guard.

Indiana’s clear, glaring, obvious weakness exists in the frontcourt. Almost as big of a problem?

In the crucial junctures late in the game, Josh Newkirk cost Indiana with two critical mistakes. After an otherwise great defensive posession inside a minute left and Indiana down three, a critical late lapse from Newkirk left him out of position and having to foul Vince Edwards to prevent an easy bucket. He made amends for hte

Rob Phinisee, hello. See you soon.

Want a positive takeaway? The tide might be turning soon.

I’m focusing on some of the negatives above, because those are the quickest and easiest things to distill into takeways while you’re also trying to write a gamer for a Farmers Insurance Open playoff that’s going to drag on until midnight at the current rate. But there’s a ton here to be positive about if you’re an Indiana fan, even if you do have to extrapolate it from a loss to Purdue.

Indiana’s perimeter defense against the nation’s best three point shooting team was terrific. Pick & roll actions had Isaac Haas tripping all over his feet for the first 30-some minutes of the game. Juwan Morgan’s probably an All-American. Robert Johnson’s finally looking like the Robert Johnson of old, which might be just enough to let Indiana get really weird over the course of the rest of the season.

But, oh, yeah — the road’s about to get rougher. Indiana heads to Columbus to take on the Big Ten’s second-best team on 48 hours notice on Tuesday. They’ll then get Michigan State at home on Saturday.