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Gold and Black Illustrated, Vol 28 Digital 3

Gold and Black is a multi-platform media company that covers Purdue athletics like no one else.

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GOLD AND BLACK ILLUSTRATED VOLUME 28, ISSUE 3 8 5 Mike Bobinski: The sec- ond-year athletic director oversaw a solid 2017 athletic year, with the basketball team winning its 23rd Big Ten basketball title in the spring and the football team getting a bowl victory in the fall. And his major hire looks like a good one. 4 Caleb Swanigan: It seems long ago now, but Swanigan put to- gether one of the greatest individual seasons by a Boilermaker. He had 28 dou- ble-doubles, the most in Big Ten history and only three short of the NCAA record. And he helped delivera Big Ten title. 3 Elijah Sindelar: The quar- terback's end-of-season effort epitomized the football team's grit. Not only did the QB play the last three- plus games with a torn ACL, but he did so exceedingly well. Purdue won three straight under his guidance, including upsets of Iowa in Iowa City and Arizo- na in the Foster Farms Bowl. 2 Jeff Brohm: The first-year coach pushed many of the right buttons for the Boilermakers, max- imizing Purdue's existing personnel while adding talent as quickly as pos- sible. And he helped the Boilermakers believe they could win again. The late-season run was as magical as 20 years ago. 1 Fan(s): In many ways, Purdue came back alive in 2017, and the fanbase was a major reason why. The foot- ball program experienced the biggest single-season increase in attendance in the FBS by more than 13,000 fans, mak- ing Ross-Ade Stadium electric again. And Mackey Arena, in its 50th year, has never been better. — Alan Karpick Bigger home victory against Indiana: Basketball or football? Brian Neubert Come on now. I know football is top of mind right now, and the Boilermakers' season was something close to miraculous in the context of the program's scorched earth of the prior two coaching eras, but basketball's senior night, title-clinching coronation against IU was probably a top-five night all-time in Mackey Arena. Let's not even pretend there's an argument to be made between the passion associated with the rivalry in basketball — played for generations in packed arenas often with championship implications — and football, too often played in half-full stadiums with only "pride" on the line. Football's win was huge, no question, but it wasn't even its greatest bowl-clinching win over the Hoosiers ever. That was 2000, obviously. Two huge moments for Purdue, obviously, but no comparison between the two. Stacy Clardie It's always neat to see guys rewarded with a trophy — whether it be a Big Ten championship one or a Bucket. But I'm going with the Bucket — and football — here, largely because of what it encapsulated for a program in desperate need of success. (Which does not describe men's basketball.) And "success" was reached not just in the regaining of the Bucket — it'd been since 2012, people — but the bowl berth the same victory also secured. The shock-and- awe — and I mean that in a positive sense — of the 2017 football season was remarkable. The way the team rallied, the way players consistently rose to occasions when they had to (are you serious, Anthony Mahoungou?), the way the staff motivated and prepared, all of it led to an electric environment in Ross-Ade in late- November. Photos by Kurt Lahrman (Bobinski); Tom Campbell (Swanigan, Sindelar, Brohm); Charles Jischke (fans) Difference Makers In 2017 T O P

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