Jeff Brohm’s search for immediate impact guys netted more fruit tonight as Ray Ellis, a JuCo Defensive Tackle from City College of San Francisco, commited to the Boilermaker program:
Junior college defensive tackle Ray Ellis has committed to #Purdue and will sign likely tomorrow— GoldandBlack.com (@GoldandBlackcom) April 13, 2017
Ellis is a 2-star defensive tackle listed at 6’2”, 260 pounds. He comes from the same school that gave us David Hedelin, a 4-star offensive tackle that was a two-year starter under Hazell. His team was 7-4 last season. He played in nine of those games and he had 14 tackles with two sacks. In his first season he had 1.5 sacks in limited action.
These aren’t great numbers, but Purdue desperately needs bodies at the position. Purdue was woefully short at the position last year, and there are currently just eight DTs on the roster. Eddy Wilson, Lorenzo Neal, and Alex Criddle return with some experience. Anthony Watts is coming off of his redshirt year. Fred Brown and Keiwan Jones have very limited experience as older players. Jalen Jackson is a true freshman and Will Colmery has little experience and missed all of last season with a brain tumor.
Ellis was brought in to at least provide immiedate depth. He has two years of eligibility remaining and three years to use them, so he could technically redshirt if needed. He joins the following JuCo or Graduate transfers being brought in to provide immediate help:
Isaac Zico - WR - 2 years of eligibility
T.J. McCollum - LB - 1 year of eligibility
Josh Okonye - DB - 1 year of eligibility
Corey Holmes - WR - 2 years of eligibility
TJ Jallow - S - 2 years of eligibility
Ethan Smart - OL - 2 years of eligibility
Terry Wright - WR - 2 years of eligibility
Kai Higgins - DE - 3 years of eligibility
Ray Ellis - DT - 2 years of eligibility
It is entirely possible that all nine of these newcomers will be starters at some point, mostly because Darrell Hazell was so awful at recruiting that the players he brought in with similar experience and eligibility left are simply worse players. At the very least, all nine of these guys are going to provide depth.