Purdue players, coaches and fans aren’t the only ones bummed about Robbie Hummel’s season-ending injury.
Big Ten coaches feel the same way.
“When I heard it this morning, it brought tears to my eyes,” Minnesota coach Tubby Smith told ESPN’s Andy Katz. “He tore up his knee here last year. He’s such a sweet kid, a special young man. He’s got so much going for him. I just feel bad for him and his teammates. Purdue was as good a team as any in the country.”
Wisconsin coach Bo Ryan, who coached Hummel during the USA World Games in 2009, echoed those sentiments.
“He has done all the right things and it just goes to show how unfair things are at times,” Ryan told ESPN’s Andy Katz. “If anybody though can handle the adversity it is him. He’s such a tough-minded young man. He loves the game so much. He’s been good to the game.”
Even Indiana coach Tom Crean tweeted his condolences, going on at length about Hummel’s hard work and character:
I know Purdue is our rival but after a great practice this morning I was Instantly down and sick to my stomach when J.D. Campbell told me About Robbie Hummel and his injury. I think he epitomizes how one should play, work and carry himself as a young man. He appears to me to Be a very mentally and physically tough person so no one should doubt he will be back when he is healthy and be as good as ever.
The sad news went beyond the Big Ten coaches, too. Syracuse coach Jim Boeheim knows the feeling. His Orange lost a key player, Arinze Onuaku, last season before the 2010 NCAA tournament.
“It’s such a horrific thing because that kid has worked so hard to get back,” Boeheim told Katz. “Obviously I feel bad for Purdue, but it’s devastating for the kid. He is a tremendous player, an all-American that could be a first-team all-American. Purdue is a preseason top four or five team. He played for his country and for this to happen to him two years in a row is just an awful thing. It’s hard to describe.”
Various writers chimed in as well. FOXSports.com’s Jeff Goodman says that objectivity goes out the window when talking about Hummel, simply because he doesn’t deserve it. I’ll second those remarks.
Good luck in your rehab, Robbie. We’ll be rooting for you to come back next season.