With the surprising news this morning that Purdue was selected to represent the U.S. in the 2017 World University Games we now have an opportunity to showcase Purdue basketball on a world stage. As the release stated, only Northern Iowa in 2007 and Kansas in 2015 have been selected as an entire collegiate team. With a little over a year to go, however, who can be on the roster?
According to the release, current student athletes and recent graduates born between January 1, 1992 and December 31, 1999 can take part. It will be limited to a 12-man roster as well, so if we have a full compliment 13 scholarship players at least one will be kept home. Incoming freshmen can also play, so if Painter hits it big on the 2017 recruiting class this would be our first chance to see them play with the team.
With those rules in mind here is a very, very early look at a potential roster:
Basil Smotherman - Assuming Basil does not leave early for the NBA (unlikely) or transfer as a graduate transfer he would be entering his 5th-year senior year on the regular roster.
Dakota Mathias - I would love to live in a world where Dakota plays well enough this coming season to declare early for the NBA. In reality, he will be a critical senior leader on the 2017-18 team and a key part of the WUG roster.
P.J. Thompson - P.J. would be entering his final year of eligibility, so you have to think he would be a lock.
Ryan Cline - Cline would be entering his junior season and the international game thrives on shooters. He is a lock.
Jacquil Taylor - I am in the minority, but I think Taylor will be a very nice surprise this coming season as a backup center/power forward.
Carsen Edwards - Purdue's lone incoming freshman would almost certainly be on the roster.
Will They Still Be Here?
Isaac Haas - The first player that qualifies under the "If he doesn't go pro". It all depends on the kind of year Isaac has as a full-time starter.
Vincent Edwards - An even dicier proposition on if he goes pro. If he has a breakout 2016-17 you have to think he will be preparing for the NBA.
Caleb Swanigan - Swanigan barely returned for this coming season. If he makes the leap we expect out of him he will be long gone.
Recent Grads that can Return
Rapheal Davis - Ray D. was born August 30, 1993, so he would easily be within the age limits and could come back. It depends on what his overseas prospects are this coming season.
A.J. Hammons - Hammons would have just finished his first NBA season, but he could potentially return for this, as he has a birth date of August 27, 1992.
Johnny Hill - Born February 22, 1992, Hill can participate.
Travis Carroll - Dust off the Tacos memes! Carroll, born April 15, 1992, can bring his sweet 15 foot jumpshot to Taiwan!
2017 Recruiting Class
Malik Williams? Jaren Jackson? Xavier Tillman? Nojel Eastern? Even Kostas Antetokounmpo can be here.