« Men’s Basketball 2011-12

Robbie Hummel



A management major, Hummel owns a 3.16 cumulative grade point average. His efforts in the classroom have also resulted in Academic All-Big Ten honors in both 2009 and 2010. His career interests outside of basketball lie in coaching or working in the business world.


If the adage that a person’s true colors shine through in the face of adversity holds true, then Hummel has consistently proven himself to have character of the highest standard. Hummel’s sophomore season was marred by a fractured vertebra that left him in constant pain and forced him to wear a cumbersome brace during practice and games. Despite the mental grind of not knowing whether he would be able to play on any given day, Hummel managed to lead Purdue to its first-ever Big Ten Tournament title – winning tournament MVP honors along the way – and its first Sweet 16 appearance in nearly a decade. Though there was a time when he was feared lost for the season, Hummel’s drive and determination led him to miss only five games during the campaign. Adversity once again confronted Hummel in the form of an injury during the 2009-10 season. With the Boilermakers on top of the Big Ten standings and making a late-season push for a No. 1 seed in the NCAA Tournament, Hummel suffered a torn anterior cruciate ligament that ended his season in the last week of February. Instead of withdrawing himself or letting his disappointment permeate the team’s psyche, Hummel became a de facto coach on the bench. As Purdue won two of its last three regular-season games to earn a share of its first Big Ten title in 14 years and advanced to its second-consecutive Sweet 16, Hummel delivered encouragement and offered instruction from the bench. He was one of the most enthusiastic celebrators when the Boilermakers locked up a share of the league crown after a hard-fought game at Penn State, and a pillar of strength after a gut-wrenching loss to eventual national champion Duke in the Sweet 16. Faced with an arduous road back to the court, Hummel remained in West Lafayette for the entirety of the summer of 2010 to rehabilitate his knee on a daily basis. He was also a constant presence both on the court and in the weight room, continuing to progress in both forums. On the first official day of practice prior to the 2010-11 season, Hummel once again tore his right ACL, forcing him to miss the entire season. Rather than withdraw from the team, Hummel dedicated himself to becoming an additional resource for his teammates, watching film to help with scouting reports and offering in-game suggestions based on his view from the bench. Hummel once again dedicated himself in the weight room during his lost season, completing a grueling conditioning program – in addition to the rehab of his knee – that left him in the best physical shape of his career. For his efforts on and off the court, Hummel’s teammates elected him a captain every year since his sophomore season, making him the first four-time team captain in Purdue history.


Despite a full basketball schedule and the rigors of being a student-athlete at one of the nation’s elite academic institutions, Hummel and his Purdue teammates make giving back to the community a priority. Hummel frequently takes part in trips to local elementary schools and preschools to read to students in an effort to promote literacy at an early age. He has also joined his teammates to volunteer at a public lunch program for disadvantaged youth in Lafayette and conduct skills clinics for Special Olympics in Indianapolis. In each of his four years at Purdue, Hummel has also taken part in The Challenge 5K Run/Walk Against Cancer in West Lafayette.


Since bursting onto the national scene as a freshman, Hummel has been the driving force behind Purdue’s rise from the “Baby Boilers” to the ranks of the nation’s elite. Over his three seasons on the court, he has led the Boilermakers to an 81-25 (.764) record, its league-leading 22nd Big Ten title, its first-ever Big Ten Tournament crown, three-straight NCAA Tournaments and two Sweet 16s. In 2010, Hummel was named a second-team All-American by the National Association of Basketball Coaches (NABC) and received honorable mention accolades from the Associated Press, teaming with classmate E’Twaun Moore to become Purdue’s first All-Americans since 1994. Hummel is also a two-time finalist for both the John R. Wooden Award and the Oscar Robertson Award, and a three-time All-District V selection by the United States Basketball Writers’ Association (USBWA). Hummel has also piled up honors on the conference level during his tenure in West Lafayette. He is a three-time All-Big Ten selection, including first-team nods in 2008 and 2010, and was also named to the Big Ten All-Freshman Team in 2008. He was the Preseason Big Ten Player of the Year prior to his sophomore season, and capped that campaign with Most Valuable Player honors at the 2009 Big Ten Tournament. The summer of 2009 also saw Hummel lead Team USA to a bronze medal at the World University Games in Belgrade, Serbia.