2017-18 PURDUE BOILERMAKERS BASKETBALL PREVIEW

HEAD COACH: Matt Painter, (265-142, 12th season at Purdue)

2017-17 RECORD: 27-8, BIG 10: 14-4

LAST NCAA TOURNEY MISS: 2014

KEY PLAYER LOSSES: Caleb Swanigan (18.5ppg, 12.5rpg), Basil Smotherman (3.9ppg, 1.7rpg), Spike Albrecht (1.6ppg)

 

2016 – 17 RANKINGS

SCORING: 79.7 (3rd Big Ten)

SCORING DEFENSE: 68.4 (6th)

REBOUNDING MARGIN: +6.6 (2nd)

TURNOVER MARGIN: -1.3 (12th)

ASSISTS: 18.3 (1st)

SHOOTING PERCENTAGE: 47.9 (2nd)

3 – POINT PERCENTAGE: 40.3 (1st)

THREE THROW PERCENTAGE: 75.7 (2nd)

53/26: Purdue’s overall wins and 26 Big Ten victories are the most by any team in the conference in the last two seasons.

 

BIG 10 FIVE – YEAR WINNING TREND

2013: 8 – 10

2014: 5 – 13

2015: 12 – 6

2016: 12 – 6

2017: 14 – 4

 

2017 – 18 ROSTER

#14 Ryan Cline, 6’6”, Carmel, Indiana

#3 Carsen Edwards, 6’0”, Atacocita, Texas

#12 Vince Edwards, 6’8”, Middletown, Ohio

#24 Grady Eifert, 6’6”, Fort Wayne, Indiana

#44 Isaac Haas, 7’2”, Hokes Bluff, Alabama

#15 Tommy Luce, 5’10”, Jeffersonville, Indiana

#31 Dakota Mathias, 6’4”, Elida, Ohio

#23 Jacquil Taylor, 6’10”, Cambridge, Massachusetts

#11 P.J. Thompson, 5’10”, Indianapolis, Indiana

#20 Nojel Eastern, 6’6”, Evanston, Illinois

#5 Eden Ewing, 6’9”, Richmond, Texas

#32 Matt Haarms, 7’3”, Amsterdam, Netherlands

#55 Sasha Stefanovic, 6’5”, Crown Point, Indiana

#1 Aaron Wheeler, 6’8”, Stamford, Connecticut

 

TOP NEWCOMER

Nojel Eastern. Eastern can help in all three perimeter spots. He is a 6’6” 220 pound guard with a forwards body. He has a point guards’ mentality and vision.

 

2017 – 18 PURDUE BASKETBALL SCHEDULE

November 1       Carroll Montana (exhibition)

November 10     Southern Illinois Edwardsville (exhibition)

November 12     Chicago State

November 14     at Marquette

November 18     Fairfield

November 22     Tennessee at the Bahamas

November 23     Villanova/Western Kentucky at the Bahamas

November 24     Atlantis finals at the Bahamas

November 28     Louisville

December 1        at Maryland

December 3        Northwestern

December 7        Valparaiso

December 10     IUPUI

December 16     Butler at Indianapolis

December 21     Tennessee State

December 30     Lipscomb

January 3            Rutgers

January 6            Nebraska

January 9            at Michigan

January 13          at Minnesota

January 16          Wisconsin

January 20          at Iowa

January 25          Michigan

January 28          at Indiana

January 31          Maryland

February 3          at Rutgers

February 7          Ohio State

February 10        at Michigan State

February 15        at Wisconsin

February 18        Penn State

February 22nd     at Illinois

February 25        Minnesota

February 28        Big Ten tournament, New York City

 

FRONTCOURT

Isaac Haas and Vince Edwards have all the makings to be All-Big 10 players this season. Haas is averaging nearly 25 points per game for every 40 minutes played in his career and is one of only four active players in the country with at least 1,000 career points in less than 1,700 minutes played. Edwards enters his senior season as the only player in college basketball with 1,000 points, 500 rebounds, 300 assists and 100 made 3 – pointers. Edwards has declared for the NBA draft for the past two years only to return to Purdue. He can score from everywhere on the floor and uses his length and quickness to defend multiple types of players. There is virtually no way to stop Haas once he gets position around the basket. His shooting percentage is at 58.7.

The rest of the frontcourt is essentially brand-new, although 6’9” Junior Jacquil Taylor saw action two seasons ago before sitting out last year with a foot injury. Coach Painter will bring in another 7-footer in Matt Haarms, a native of the Netherlands to played just one year of high school basketball in Kansas. 6’8” freshman Aaron Wheeler and 6’9” Eden Ewing, a junior college transfer, will have two years of eligibility, will both be expected to make contributions this season. Everyone will have a part in making up for the loss of All-American Caleb Swanigan.

 

BACKCOURT

Purdue will have the Big Ten’s most experienced collection of guards led by Carsen Edwards, Dakota Mathias, PJ Thompson and Ryan Cline. Edwards was the only freshman in the conference with at least 45 made 3 – pointers and 35 steals. This past summer, he was a member of the USA basketball U-19 World Cup team that competed in Egypt. Mathias enters his final season needing only 89 3 – pointers to break the school record. Mathias may be considered the most underrated player in the conference. Thompson averages just 1.1 turnover per 40 minutes played and Cline has made 87 3 – pointers in his last two seasons. The Boilermakers added more guarded depth with the additions of freshman Nojel Eastern and Sasha Stefanovic.

 

OVERVIEW

Purdue has every reason to be excited about the upcoming college basketball season despite losing the Big Ten’s player of the year and NBA draft pick Caleb Swanigan. Returning an excellent supporting cast along with the addition of five talented newcomers will make coach Painters 13th season in West Lafayette much easier than some expect. He welcomes back 72.5% of scoring from a team that went 27 – 8 last season. Purdue gained valuable experience this summer traveling to Taiwan and competing in the World University games. Kansas did the same thing two years ago and the Jayhawks use that experience to win a conference championship and advance to the South regional final. This is a team with enough talent to win the Big Ten and make a strong run in the NCAA tournament.