Purdue basketball’s dream 2024 March Madness bracket scenarios

Purdue has a great shot to make the Final Four. But its draw looms large.

The Purdue Boilermakers are the regular season Big Ten Champions and Coach Matt Painter’s team now has its sights set on bigger prizes. The Boilermakers haven’t made a Final Four since 1980 and haven’t won the national championship since 1932.

The 2023-2024 Purdue squad is seen by many as the university’s best hope to win a national title in quite some time, perhaps since the days of Glenn ‘Big Dog’ Robinson. Purdue has high hopes, but much of its future could depend on the type of draw they get in the NCAA Tournament. The Boilermakers are an old school Big Ten team with a bruising center in Zach Edey and a bevy of talented, selfless players who know how to move the ball on offense and play hard-nosed defense.

Recently, the Purdue basketball nightmare scenarios for the 2024 Tournament were revealed. A surprise jersey retirement for a Boilermakers legend went down at Mackey Complex.

Now that the Boilermakers are preparing for the Big Ten Tournament, it’s time to start thinking about their ideal draw in the 2024 NCAA Tournament as well.

Scenario #1: A Number One Seed

Purdue basketball tends to play well as an underdog, but there’s no sugarcoating things this season: Matt Painter’s team is a bona fide number one seed in most circles. Famous ESPN pundit Joe Lunardi has the Boilers as the top overall seed in the tournament in a recent predictions article. Garnering such a seed would only make the target on Edey and Painter’s team even bigger.

It doesn’t matter. If Purdue is to make its first Final Four in nearly a half-century, the Boilers must embrace their role as the favorites and prepare for each team’s best shot, each night (or day) of the tournament.

Scenario #2: The Midwest Region 

Securing the number one seed could help Purdue in one other surprising way: a trip to the Midwest region of the 2024 NCAA Tournament Bracket. This would allow Coach Painter’s team to play their opening set of games in Indianapolis, Indiana in front of hometown fans. Purdue basketball is 28-3 on the season and 16-0 at home, showcasing just how advantageous it has been for the Boilers to play in front of their hometown fans.

This year’s team is popular and successful enough to draw a crowd wherever they go, but the homecourt advantage obtained through the Hoosier state would be enough to put Purdue over the top. Purdue basketball could also end up playing in front of hometown fans in Detroit, Michigan where the Midwest Regional will begin its conclusion in late March.

Lunardi currently has Purdue basketball on the opposite side of the Marquette Golden Eagles, giving them a ‘golden’ opportunity to punch their ticket to the Final Four this postseason.

Scenario #3: Smaller Teams 

Many fans are wondering how Edey will hold up in the NCAA Tournament. The hulking 7-foot-4, 300 pound senior center from Toronto, Ontario has put up numbers reminiscent of Shaquille O’Neal during his heyday in the NBA with nearly 25 points and 11.7 rebounds per game on better than 60 percent shooting.

Edey will be flanked by Caleb Furst, Fletcher Loyer and a bevy of savvy Purdue players who know how to get him the ball in his favorite spots on the court. Braden Smith and Mason Gillis have the talent to put Purdue over the top, but they must play their best.

Purdue fans should hope for more small-ball teams in the tournament this season, because Edey will eat them alive in the post and the Boilermakers’ perimeter players are better this season than in past years. Gillis in particular has taken his all-around game to new heights, sparking hopes for a Purdue Final Four run.


Nick Meyer_headshot

About the Author

Nick Meyer is a sports writer for ClutchPoints based in the Metro Detroit area. He has covered everything from Major League Baseball to the NFL, UFC, and College Football.

Be the first to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.