We can't all be negative around here. We have a bunch of new Boilermakers in the family today and hopefully they will be part of the group that turns around the entire program whether Darrell Hazell is here or not. Given Purdue's track record in recent NFL drafts there is at least one player here that will be playing on Sunday in 4-6 years. Which one will it be?
Here is one really good thing to say about each commitment:
Jackson Anthrop - ATH - You know you're getting a Purdue kid from a Purdue family that works hard. Older brother Dru joined the basketball team as a walk-on and finished on scholarship while playing decent minutes. Older brother Danny was one of the Big Ten's better receivers in his final two years. Jackson had similar number in high school to Danny, so we know he can do some things.
Alex Criddle - OL/DL - He's already a big dude and can play either offensive or defensive line. Purdue can definitely use his versatility on the interior of either side of the line, but I can see him playing defense first.
J.D. Dellinger - K - He can successfully make a field goal beyond 25 yards. Seriously. He had a 57-yarder in high school and given Griggs' struggles he is likely an improvement.
Semisi Fakasiieiki - LB - One of the last pickups in the class, Semisi adds depth at linebacker and good size at 6'2" 225 pounds.
Benaiah Franklin - WR - Franklin has been loyal, as his commitment has held since July. He is a quick inside receiver that might be able to play on the outside as well. As with most receivers, speed is his ally.
Kamal Hardy - DB - Hardy has the experience to come in and start right away in the secondary, where Purdue definitely need some help. He is a bigger corner at 6'1" and is expected to fight for a starting job immediately.
Tanner Hawthorne - OL - Purdue had a lot of offensive line commitments in this class, then lost a lot. with Hawthorne they get a player with a 6'6" frame that could be a good tackle or guard prospect.
Josh Hayes - DB - Hayes played extremely well against Five-star quarterback Hunter Johnson of Brownsburg. He had two pass breakups, two interceptions, and took one back for a touchdown.
Grant Hermanns - OL - You can't teach size and Hermanns has that at 6'7". He will likely need to bulk up in a redshirt year, but a good offensive line coach can get a lot out of him as a tackle.
Terrance Landers - WR - I am genuinely excited about Landers as he can be the big, strong receiver Purdue has lacked for a while. He also has a lot of potential having played only basketball until his junior season, then immediately becoming a 3-star recruit.
Brian Lankford-Johnson - RB - Lankford-Johnson was a late addition, but had an excellent season in South Florida and has really good speed for a running back. He could be a big surprise.
Austin Larkin - DE - Larkin is a DE that already has major experience when he played a season as a walk-on linebacker at Notre Dame. He has also already signed and is enrolled this semester, so he gets spring practice to get up to speed.
Navon Mosley - DB - A true centerfielder of a safety, he might be the best pure athlete in Purdue's class. He got a lot of interest from other schools late but held on to Purdue.
Jalen Neal - OL - Purdue desperately needs help on the offensive line and Neal is expected to come in and be the left tackle from day 1. At 6'7" 310 pounds he has the size to do it as well.
Lorenzo Neal - DT - Neal has great bloodlines since his dad was one of the best lead blockers in NFL history. If Purdue wants more beef in the middle of the defensive line he can provide it.
Christopher Parker - DB - Park is a big, strong safety that is a JuCo transfer and can help patrol he middle of the field. God knows we need help over the middle, and he has the size at 6'2" 205 to deliver some pain.
Brandon Shuman - DB - Shuman was named the No. 44 player in Miami-Dade county this past season, one of the most fertile recruiting grounds in the country. He is a great athlete that can do a lot of things.
Rob Simmons - DE - Simmons is lean for a DE, but he is quick off the end and had a good year at his junior college this year.
Simeon Smiley - DB - Purdue is getting a lot of athletic DBs in this class to go with a lot that already redshirted last season. He comes in as one of Purdue's highest rated recruits.
Jared Sparks - QB - Sparks adds a much different element at QB than Blough or Sindelar. If Purdue ever wants to spread the field and put a ton of speed out there he could be the answer.
Anthony Watts - DT - You can never have too many very large human beings plugging the middle on the defensive line.
Jack Wegher - ATH - Wegher comes from the prestigious IMG Academy and reminds many of Vinny Sutherland. He could fill B.J. Knauf's role from when Purdue's offense was working its best under Hazell.