By John Gonzalez, NBC Sports ContributorAssociated Press – APRIL 02, 2018By the time Indiana and Purdue were scheduled to face off in a marquee matchup, it was already clear that this year’s tournament was going to be a different story.
Indiana was the No. 1 seed in the Big Ten and had won eight straight games heading into this game.
Purdue, meanwhile, was coming off back-to-back Big Ten Tournament Championship Games.
So what does a two-team conference look like?
The answer is: a bit different.
The Big Ten is the first Division I conference to have a full-time commissioner, and the league has been trying to bring in the best players for years.
Purdue is now headed by Jim Boeheim, the coach who coached the Buckeyes to two Big Ten Championships.
The Big East has gone through a similar transition with its new commissioner, Dayton.
And the Big 12 has hired Scott Stricklin as its commissioner, a move that was a shock to many in the conference.
And in the case of the Big East, the conference has gone in a different direction, appointing its own commissioner, league president, and president of basketball operations.
While each of those jobs have been filled by people with a wealth of experience, there’s one that stands out: Purdue basketball.
Boeheim and Stricklins had worked together in their days at the University of Michigan, where they were both instrumental in developing a program that went on to win the NCAA tournament in 2005.
Purdue went into the tournament as a No. 2 seed in 2009 and won its first four games.
It took the Terps a couple years to recover from the injury to their star guard, J.R. Smith, who was injured in the first quarter of the 2010 Big Ten tournament.
After the game, Boeheim told the media that Smith was out for “several months.”
The Terps’ top scorer, Aaron Harrison, missed the first three games of the season because of a broken leg.
Purdue lost Smith, Harrison and a key defender in Avery Johnson.
Biehl and Strickerins, along with head coach Matt Painter, had a tough time building the Purdue program after the 2009 NCAA tournament, and that’s something they’ll have to deal with going forward.
“I think it’s going to take a little bit of time, but I’m very optimistic,” Boeheim said.
“We’re going to get through it, and I’m confident we’ll be able to do that.
Boehler has already taken some heat for the hiring of Strickins, but it’s hard to say that Purdue basketball is anything less than a top-five program.
Buchanan is a first-year commissioner, so he will have to adjust to the new format as well.
Purdue’s new league president is Paul Johnson, a longtime assistant coach at Ohio State.
Purdue will also have to get accustomed to the NCAA’s new conference format and a new conference championship game.
The conference also has to make adjustments to the schedules and the schedule rotation.
In addition to Indiana and Ohio State, the Big 10 will play three games this season, all against teams that have been in the tournament every year since 2001.
Purdue also will have two road games against teams in the same league.
Purdue has played three conference tournaments in four years, which has included three national championship games.
The ACC and Pac-12 have never had two full-fledged conferences.
A conference with a full commissioner will have a better shot at reaching its full potential, but Boeheim says the league is still trying to figure out what the league’s best players are.”
We are looking at the best athletes in the country,” Boehler said.
Players are going to have to have the most experience, and we have to be able as coaches and as players to go to them and have them know what the best is.”
The NCAA will give its full blessing to the league to expand the league, but the league will need to prove that it can compete in a bigger league, especially as it tries to get to the semifinals in this year ‘s tournament.
Bryant is in the middle of a four-game road trip, but he still is optimistic about getting to the championship game this year.
“I’m looking forward to getting to Chicago for the game,” Bryant said.
“It’s an unbelievable atmosphere, it’s a great city, it has so much to offer.
There’s nothing better than coming back to Chicago.
It’s a beautiful city.”
Bryants game against Michigan State on Saturday night will be the last of the four games he plays against the Spartans.
He says that he’ll be looking to show that he is the better player this time.
“My game, if you know me, I’m going to make it as big as I can for my team,” Bryant says.
“I think that’s the way it’s always been