Odds are that a majority of Purdue fans have never seen Jodi Howell play basketball. Yet the sophomore from Alexandria, Ind. has made enough visits to Purdue's campus that those same fans can pick her out of the crowd.
Usually flanked by her parents, Howell made another visit on Sunday for Purdue's victory over Ohio State. A visit that has Purdue fans smiling, since the 5'11 do-everything scorer rates as the best player in the Indiana class of 2005.
Howell currently ranks as the state's No. 2 scorer behind Purdue-bound Katie Gearlds. Including Saturday night's 31 points against Mississinewa, Howell is averaging 27.8 points per game. At this rate, she will break her own school record for points in a season (646) in five more games. Howell also holds school records for points in a game (41), and free throw percentage (.865).
On Saturday, Alexandria (18-0) took the Central Indiana Conference title with a 86-48 win over Mississinewa (12-6). Howell, who sat out most of the fourth quarter, had a double-double in three quarters with 31 points and 14 rebounds.
Alexandria moves on to the Madison County Tournament, beginning with a Monday game against the Anderson Indians. The IHSAA will draw state tournament assignments the same day.
NOTE: Alexandria senior guard Jackie Closser, who has signed with Butler University, needs 47 points to break the Alexandria career scoring record. Closser is currently averaging close to 22 points per game.