WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. — Purdue center Zach Edey donned Sunday’s postgame prizes with pride.
A bloody lip felt like a championship belt, and the homemade T-shirt his mother handed him was a reminder of how far his all-around game has come in three college seasons.
Edey scored a career-high 38 points and grabbed 13 rebounds, leading No. 1 Purdue to a 77-61 victory over Michigan State.
“When they started hacking me, it got me going a little bit. They busted my lip in the second half,” Edey said with a smile. “They always play super physical.”
Perhaps not surprisingly, the two best games of his career both came against Michigan State over the past two weeks. This time, his mother, Julia, rewarded him with a shirt bearing a new nickname, “Big Maple,” on the front and a new moniker, “He’s not just tall, eh?” on the back.
Edey, who had 32 points and 17 rebounds in a 64-63 win at Michigan State on Jan. 16, appreciated the gesture after going 15 of 24 from the field. He also had three assists and a career-best three steals.
Once again, Michigan State had no answers.
“If one guy gets 70 points in two games, you can’t blame that on the players. Blame the coach,” Spartans coach Tom Izzo said. “We just couldn’t cover him.”
At 7-foot-4, 300 pounds, Edey is a load, but he had help Sunday.
David Jenkins Jr. added a season-best 11 points and Fletcher Loyer had nine as the Big Ten-leading Boilermakers (21-1, 10-1) won their eighth straight.
A.J. Hoggard led Michigan State with 20 points and Jaden Akins had 12. The Spartans (14-8, 6-5) haven’t won at Mackey Arena since 2014, and Edey stood in their way again.
After scoring just four points and grabbing only one rebound in the first 12 minutes, he heated up quickly and put the Spartans in deep trouble.
A stretch of eight consecutive points for Edey sent the Boilermakers on a half-closing 23-5 run. Izzo also drew a technical foul at the end of the first half, and Braden Smith converted both free throws for a 42-22 lead before the second half started.
Edey was just warming up.
He scored Purdue’s first three baskets in the second half. When Michigan State went on a 7-0 run to close to 53-43, Edey made two layups and four free throws, extending the lead to 61-45 with 8:58 to play.
Michigan State: While the Spartans may be getting stronger, facing Edey twice in 13 days is enough to challenge any team. The good news: Michigan State won’t see Purdue again until at least March and may have contended with Edey for the last time.
Purdue: The Boilermakers are rolling. Not only have they won eight straight, 23 straight opponents have failed to top the 70-point mark and now they’re finding complementary pieces for Edey, too. It’s a dangerous combination — for Purdue’s opponents.
The Boilermakers solidified their No. 1 ranking this week by sweeping the Big Ten’s two Michigan schools. Purdue is the only Power Five program with fewer than two losses and despite some close calls, Purdue has avoided the pitfalls others have not.
The game featured two of the conference’s most successful coaches.
Izzo and Purdue coach Matt Painter became the third set of coaches with 400 or more wins to square off in a Big Ten game, joining Gene Keady and Bob Knight and Knight and former Illinois coach Lou Henson. Painter and Izzo also tied Keady and Knight for the most combined wins by two coaches on the sideline for a Big Ten game (1,084).
Purdue improved to 21-1 overall and 10-1 in the Big Ten Conference with a 77-61 victory over Michigan State in Mackey Arena. The win was Purdue’s eighth straight victory.
The Boilermakers move to 75-56 in the all-time series against the Spartans, taking 10 of the last 14 meetings against Michigan State. Purdue has won six straight games in Mackey Arena against the Spartans, coming by an average of 13.8 points per game.
The game was also Purdue’s annual T-shirt game. Purdue is 9-1 in T-shirt games, winning nine straight games by an average of 14.7 points per game.
Mackey Arena hit 123.2 decibels in the victory, the loudest recorded decibel reading in Mackey Arena. The contest was the first home game in school history as the nation’s No. 1-ranked team with The Paint Crew in attendance.
With the season sweep of Michigan State, Purdue has swept the season series with the two Michigan schools (min. 3 games) for the first time since the 2010-11 season.
With losses this week, Purdue now owns the fifth-longest winning streak in the country (8).
The 21-1 start is the best start by a Big Ten team since Ohio State started the 2010-11 season with a 24-0 record. It marks just the fourth time since 2000 that a Big Ten team has started 21-1 (2011 Ohio State, 2007 Wisconsin, 2005 Illinois).
Since the start of last season, Purdue owns a 50-9 record, becoming the fourth school to win 50 games since the start of last year (Arizona – 52; Houston – 52; Kansas – 51; Purdue – 50).
Purdue’s 10-1 start in league play is the Boilermakers’ best since the 2017-18 team started 12-0 in league play. Purdue has started 10-1 or better six times (2023, 2018, 2008, 1988, 1984, 1969).
Michigan State scored just 61 points, the 23rd straight opponent held to 70 or fewer points, tied for the longest streak in the country (Saint Mary’s).
Purdue has won 41 straight games when scoring 70 or more points.
Purdue won the turnover and rebound battle against Michigan State for the sixth time this season. The Boilermakers are 144-15 under Coach Painter when doing so. Purdue has won 17 straight games when turning the ball over nine times or less.
Zach Edey scored a career-high 38 points with 13 rebounds, 3 assists, 3 steals and 1 block in the win over Michigan State. He is the first Purdue player (second player in school history) to have at least 38 points, 13 rebounds and 3 assists in a game since Glenn Robinson had 41-13-3 vs. Portland (Nov. 27, 1993).
Edey recorded his 17th double-double of the season, good for seventh on the single-season list. His 29 career double-doubles ranks seventh all-time.
Based on a 35-game season, Edey is on pace for 775 points, 453 rebounds and 77 blocked shots. The only player we can find in the sports-reference database to have at least 750 points, 450 rebounds and 75 blocked shots in a season is Navy’s David Robinson in 1986 (796-455-207).
David Jenkins Jr., scored 11 points with two rebounds, going 3-of-4 from 3-point range. Over the last three games, Jenkins Jr., is 6-of-8 from 3-point range.