We are now just eleven days away from the first Purdue men’s basketball game of the season, so today we celebrate local boy Brian Waddell.
The son of Purdue letterman Matt Waddell (a teammate of head coach Matt Painter), Brian enters his third season on campus. His father helped the Boilermakers win two conference titles while racking up 1170 points and 460 assists in his time at Purdue.
The redshirt sophomore forward from Carmel who sports the #11 jersey appeared in 17 games last year. Waddell, who led Carmel to a state title before enrolling at Purdue, suffered a knee injury in his first year in West Lafayette, allowing him a medical redshirt.
In his 17 appearances last season, he appeared in limited minutes as he began his college career coming off his season-ending injury. He played as many as 20 minutes against Milwaukee and as few as 1 against Michigan State.
Waddell finished his first on-court collegiate season with nine points and 11 rebounds in those limited minutes, and while he didn’t shoot very well in his adjustment period, he’s got the skill set to be a very versatile player who can step in when outgoing seniors leave us concluding the 2024 tournaments.
He’s still very slender, listed at 6’8” and 190 pounds, but I can see Waddell becoming a solid threat as both small forward and power forward (in a pinch) down the road if he can put on some healthy weight. As is, he still has great potential as a dual score-assist swingman.