HOUSTON – Miles and Mason Plumlee grew up watching Purdue games inside Mackey Arena and at Ross-Ade Stadium.
They attended Gene Keadys basketball camps and always made sure to get pictures with the legendary coach afterward.
They lived in West Lafayette for several years before moving to Warsaw.
Their grandfather Millard was a professor in Purdues agriculture department for more than 30 years.
Their mom, Leslie Schultz, played 110 games for Purdue in the early 1980s. She met their father, Perky, at a Purdue camp in which they were both counselors.
But none of the cheering will be for the Boilermakers today.
Mason and Miles Plumlee are reserve forwards at Duke, which plays Purdue in the Sweet 16 in Reliant Stadium.
I do feel like I understand how strong the tradition is they have there and just how the atmosphere is at home for them because I used to go to games in Mackey, so its special for me to play against them, said Miles, a 6-foot-10 sophomore forward. It brings back a lot of good memories.
Miles played two minutes in Dukes 76-60 victory over Purdue at Mackey Arena last season. He had one turnover and two fouls in the game.
Hell likely have a bigger role this time.
Miles and Mason often are the first two players off the bench for the Blue Devils, replacing starting center Brian Zoubek and forward Lance Thomas.
Miles averages 5.4 points and 4.9 rebounds, and Mason, a 6-10 freshman, averages 4.0 points and 3.3 rebounds. Mason is tied for second on the team with 29 blocks. Miles has a team-high 31 dunks.
Miles and Mason Plumlee are both athletic with size, and they can crash the glass, Purdues Matt Painter said.
Mason Plumlee said Painter recruited him a little bit, but he was already sold on Duke. Miles didnt get an offer until he had decommitted to Stanford, but by then he was already set on playing with Mason at Duke.
That was after the Plumlees left Warsaw for Christ School in North Carolina.
Miles played his freshman, sophomore and juniors seasons at Warsaw, he said, and Mason had one season there. They left amid some controversy – a dispute with high school coach Doug Ogle and dad Perky over playing time – but they insist it wasnt a big deal.
In Indiana, its not normal for people to just leave and go off to boarding school, Mason said. It was just a family decision, and it gave Miles an opportunity to repeat a year. I just stayed the course and I went freshman to sophomore. I just wanted to play with him.
There was a lot of controversy in our town. But it was a good decision, we felt.
For Miles, the move was critical. He was only 5-10 as a freshman, boosted to 6-5 as a sophomore and grew two inches both years after that. Repeating his junior year was pivotal to his development, he said.
Regardless of the situation and how thing were in Warsaw, it was a personal decision, Miles said. I needed a whole nother year to mature. Without that extra year, I wouldnt be sitting here talking to you in a Duke uniform.