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NCAA BASKETBALL: MAR 15 Big Ten Championship Tournament - Ohio State v Purdue

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When the final buzzer sounded in the Purdue Boilermakers Elite Eight victory over Tennessee, it wasn’t just the players and fans who were elated. 

Former players and coaches alike all openly expressed their joy that the Boilermakers had finally punched their ticket to the Final Four for the first time since 1980. One of the most noticeable examples of this was former Boilermaker Robbie Hummel, who was on the radio call for Westwood One when his former team moved on to Phoenix and did not hide his emotions in the moment. 

During Tuesday’s edition of The Ride With JMV, Robbie hopped on the show and spoke to John about those emotions and having them when the cameras were pointed in his direction. 

“I didn’t expect to react in the way that I did. It’s a little embarrassing, I looked up at one point, and I’m like ‘Oh boy, there’s like 30 cameras around here.’ I care about Purdue so much, I care about Coach Painter and his staff so much…I’ve wanted this for him for such a long time. I wanted it for him when I played, and unfortunately some things happened that didn’t even give us a chance to get there with my knee and all that that went down…You look at the last couple years, and the way that they’ve come up a bit short, but you can tell that it drove this group of players. They’ve got a really special group. That’s how I felt about the team that I played on back in the late 2000’s, where it’s like everyone is so much on the same page. You want to win obviously for yourself, but for your teammates, for your head coach, for your school, for all the fans who have wanted this for so long, and I think that that’s exactly how this group feels. They’re so connected, they went through what they went through last year, but now to see them be so successful and use that as motivation, and for Coach Paint, for the players, I’m just so happy for them, I’m so happy for the program, and certainly for the fans too, because they’ve had a lot of heartbreak since 1980 that they’ve had to experience.” 

Robbie also spoke about the idea that Purdue is becoming a villain in the NCAA Tournament due to their success and their ability to get to the foul line.  

“You look at how much Purdue has won outside of the some of the NCAA Tournament games that we’ve lost over the last couple seasons; it’s been an incredible run for Matt Painter. He really has done an unbelievable job of just stacking teams that win and win at a high level. That makes a little bit of sense, and you do see it in sports whether it’s the Warriors, or Patriots, or “X” team that wins a lot, that can happen. It’s just funny because to me at least, Purdue has had these really tough losses, and now that they finally don’t everyone’s against them.” 

Listen to JMV’s full conversation with Robbie Hummel down below, and tune into The Ride With JMV weekdays from 3-6pm on 93.5/107.5 The Fan! 

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