Purdue appears to be interested in a 5-star McDonald's All-American that wants to transfer. So is half of America according to the list of schools that have contacted Malik Newman. Why wouldn't we be? He is a player that was nationally in the top 10 in his recruiting. Even if we had to wait a year for him because of transfer years, it would be worth it.
But do we have a shot?
For an insider look I was able to talk to one of the very, very few "sources" that we actually have at Hammer & Rails. Robby Donoho is the sports director at WCBI-TV in Columbus, Mississippi. He has seen Newman play since his high school days in Jackson, MS. Donoho is also a diehard Purdue alum originally from Noblesville, so he knows of this state's obsession with basketball and is able to bring his unique perspective to the Deep South. Here is what he had to say about Newman:
A lot of people close to him have told me he wants to go to Kansas. I think Purdue has a shot since they're in dire need of a point guard and that was the issue at Mississippi State was Ben Howland didn't want to hand off the PG duties to him. Neither side trusted the other.
The big issue and drawback with Malik is his father, Horatio Webster, is heavily involved in his life/recruiting/game/etc. He played at MSU in the 90's and he thinks he knows what's best for Malik. So of course, he's going to be involved and Painter may not like that too much but Biggie's dad is somewhat of the same thing only he's not talking to the coach on an hourly basis like Horatio.
His game translates more to him being a 2 and not a 1 and that's the other issue. He's a great spot-up shooter. Excellent in fact. He still needs to get bigger physically and his ability to finish inside against taller and bigger opponents is still an issue. But he's a super talent. There's no denying that. He just is an above average college player right now and needs to improve every area of his game.
Thank you very much, Robby. It sounds like the chances are slim, but you never know.
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