The 2021-22 season got off to a great start last night with a 29 point home win. Today we get to peak ahead just a little bit for 2022-23 and beyond. It is National Early Signing Day, and that means Purdue’s three 2022 commitments are now, officially, Boilermakers.
Smith is the lowest rated recruit of the three as a three-star, but he is your typical Purdue role player at the point as a 6’ 165 point guard. His analog from recent years is probably the Thompson brothers. I have seen him play in person at Westfield, but it has been a while, and I will not be back on in person basketball coverage until mid-December. I do plan to do a scouting report. I might even head over to New Castle on December 30 when he could play against Fletcher Loyer and Homestead in the Hall of Fame Classic.
Welcome to the family.— Purdue Mens Basketball (@BoilerBall) November 10, 2021
: Fort Wayne, Indiana
: 24.4 PPG, 4.5 APG, 4.9 RPG, 44.9 3P %, 90.3 FT % as junior at Homestead HS.
: 2nd-team All-Peach Jam (AAU).#NationalSigningDay pic.twitter.com/kf0U8Q5vFN
Loyer is a four-star recruit and borderline top 100 guy from Caleb Swanigan’s old high school. He had them undefeated and ranked No. 1 going into last year’s tournament, and he will likely take the role as Purdue’s next great shooter. He has had a 50 point game and brings good size at 6’5”, 165. I plan on getting to see him in person as well, again, probably at the Hall of Fame Classic.
Heide looks more like a versatile small forward, and that is an interesting spot. Purdue doesn’t have a true 3 right now, as it tends to play three guards most of the time. Heide is a four-star and Painter liked him well enough to go get him out of Minnesota. The roster will be vastly different by the time he arrives. He’ll play on the wing and likely rotate with Brian Waddell comes off of redshirt.
Here is your new scholarship grid.
Purdue Basketball Scholarship Grid
|Sasha Stefanovic||RS Senior||FREE COVID YEAR|
|Trevion Williams||Senior||FREE COVID YEAR|
|Eric Hunter||Senior||FREE COVID YEAR|
|Isaiah Thompson||Junior||Senior||FREE COVID YEAR|
|Mason Gillis||RS Soph.||RS Junior||RS Senior||FREE COVID YEAR|
|Brandon Newman||RS Soph.||RS Junior||RS Senior||FREE COVID YEAR|
|Jaden Ivey||Sophomore||Junior||Senior||FREE COVID YEAR|
|Ethan Morton||Sophomore||Junior||Senior||FREE COVID YEAR|
|Zach Edey||Sophomore||Junior||Senior||FREE COVID YEAR|
|Trey Kaufman||Redshirt||RS Freshman||RS Soph.||RS Junior||RS Senior|
|Brian Waddell||Redshirt||RS Freshman||RS Soph.||RS Junior||RS Senior|
As always, the scholarship grid is very, very fluid. Every player that was around last year has the option of returning for an extra season at the end, but the caveat is that they must take up a scholarship spot. Tre, Sasha, and Hunter have expressed previously they are not interested in coming back, but they have the option should they change their minds.
Then you have early NBA defections. Jaden Ivey is the most likely candidate. Zach Edey, with a monster season, could also be gone. After a year with little roster turnover the 2022-23 season could look very different with as five significant contributors gone and five players who have not played any college basketball to that point. There is also at least one scholarship still available (assuming none of the three seniors change their minds), and possibly three depending on Ivey and Edey’s situations.
That makes this year very unique. We will have talented guys returning in 2022-23, but it is suddenly going to be a young, inexperienced team, so it means we take our best shot this year.