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Coach Painter Spits Fire Regarding Recent Transfers

Coach is definitely upset and fired off some interesting words.

NCAA Basketball: Rutgers at Purdue Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports

Most of us dislike Dan Dakich, but he does run an extremely popular (for whatever unknown reason) sports talk radio show here in Indiana. Coach Painter is a regular on the show and he appeared on it today and wasted very little time in expressing his displeasure over the departure of Nojel Eastern:


Coach Painter definitely did not hold back here. Whenever a player leaves, for whatever reason, it is a tough decision on both sides. This is not the first time we have lost a guy going into his final year of eligibility. Basil Smotherman, Kelsey Barlow, Kendall Stephens, Sandi Marcius, and John Hart are all guys that left for whatever reason before their final year of eligibility. Several others left with two years left. Painter never said anything similar.

Even worse, Painter has not been shy about accepting guys the other way. Sterling Carter, Errick Peck, Jon Octeus, Jahaad Proctor, Evan Boudreaux, and Spike Albrecht were all graduate transfers that did the exact same thing Nojel and Haarms have done: leave a program early to seek greener pastures elsewhere.

Coach was not done, either:

To me, this is going unnecessarily hard at a guy that loved his experience at Purdue and was nothing but gracious to everyone. He loved Purdue so much he worked at a freaking dog shelter in the offseason. Trevion Williams may have beat him out, but you don’t trash a guy that would, at minimum, be a quality backup.

There is little doubt this one is aimed at Nojel, and there is some truth there. I don’t know about Nojel’s work ethic in practice, but I think most people will agree that he was not going to make to the League. Regardless of what some of his leading cheerleaders would say, when he lacked any resemblance of a jump shot through three seasons of college he was not going to make it in the modern NBA.

I understand that Painter knows about work ethic. He was there for coach Keady and he has established a program where the expectations are very clear from day one: you work your ass off or you don’t play. For a lot of guys, that works. Look at Chris Kramer, P.J. Thompson, Lewis Jackson, Ryne Smith, etc. These are guys who were not high level recruits, but busted ass and become solid players in time.

Then here is this:

Still, I don’t think it looks great to go scorched earth on guys like this as they leave. As I said above, Painter has had zero qualms about being the beneficiary of these one year transfers. To trash guys who do the same going out the door is bad form. I also don’t like it because both Haarms and Nojel, at least publicly via their own social media profiles, were nothing but complimentary on their way out.

Of course, I have been wrong before and I will likely be wrong again. I do want guys who are going to buy in to the program fully, and with zero seniors now for the coming season that is what we have.

Here is how you can listen to the full interview: