Today is the official start of practice for the 2018-19 Purdue Men’s Basketball season and while it is a season of transition, there are still high expectations. Purdue is expected to start the year as a fringe top 25 team, not much lower than last year’s starting spot (#20 in the preseason AP Poll). How high and how far Purdue goies won’t rely on four seniors like last year, but primarily on one player with a cast of new faces.
That player is Carsen edwards, and this morning he was named as the preseason National Player of the Year by Blue Ribbon Yearbook. From the Purdue release:
Blue Ribbon College Basketball Yearbook, the go-to guide for college basketball preview magazines, has named Purdue junior guard Carsen Edwards its preseason national Player of the Year.
Edwards, who adorns the cover of the magazine, was joined on the first team by Wisconsin senior Ethan Happ, North Carolina senior Luke Maye, Gonzaga junior Rai Hachimura and Duke freshman R.J. Barrett. Barrett was named the national Newcomer of the Year.
Edwards, Maye and Virginia's Kyle Guy are the only players returning nationally that were 2018 All-Americans.
Edwards' 1,046 career points are the 12th most for an active player nationally through his sophomore season. His 686 points last year were the ninth most nationally for a freshman or sophomore and he was one of six underclassmen a year ago to have 650 points, 100 rebounds and 100 assists. He is the only player in Purdue history to have reached those marks in the same season.
Edwards was a Third Team All-American last season and is expected to earn First Team honors this coming season. If he can lead Purdue to its 24th Big Ten championship and, more importantly, success in March, he’ll only further cement his legacy as a Legend in West Lafayette.