Zach Edey’s return to Purdue a boon for college basketball

Breathe a sigh of reduction and rejoice, West Lafayette. 

Reigning nationwide participant of the yr Zach Edey introduced Wednesday that he is withdrawing from the NBA Draft and operating it again for his senior season at Purdue

The 7-foot-4 middle was probably the most dominant power in college basketball this previous season, averaging 22.3 factors and 12.9 rebounds per recreation on 61% capturing from the ground. He went for 30-plus factors eight occasions.

That is nice information for faculty basketball and a headache for the remainder of the Big Ten.

For Edey, a projected late second-rounder, the very fact is that he can profit extra from his model and in NIL by staying one other yr at Purdue than he would have by going the NBA route and probably being misplaced within the G League ranks.

He would be the face of faculty basketball and the Huge Ten, and can play on broadcast TV a variety of occasions, making severe money whereas doing so — offered that he can work by some visa points as a Canadian.

There is a larger image to his resolution to come back again on the ground, although. What is going to coach Matt Painter and the Boilermakers do with this jackpot information? 

To say Purdue has to redeem itself subsequent March can be an understatement.

After being solely the second 1-seed in faculty basketball historical past to lose to a 16-seed (FDU) this previous March, the Boilers cannot merely be the identical group heading into subsequent season. 

I am not suggesting drastic adjustments. This group was one among eight within the nation to be within the top-25 in KenPom offensive and defensive effectivity this previous season.

The continued development of sophomore guards Braden Smith and Fletcher Loyer might be essential. Creating some extra tempo could possibly be a approach to discover some wrinkles as properly, because the Boilers ranked 324th out of 363 groups this previous season in that class.

The defensive finish is not essentially an space of want, as a result of Purdue confirmed an amazing means on that finish of the ground.

What the 2023-24 season might be about shouldn’t be over-relying on Edey. Painter alluded to this in February following a loss at Maryland

“We have now to have a steadiness of driving, making 3s and posting Zach (Edey),” Painter instructed FOX Sports activities. “When we do not have that steadiness, the protection goes to shrink the court docket on us.”

For now, it is a day of celebration for Purdue, as this information doubtless locations them within the prime 5 in preseason polls, and units them as much as do what Virginia did from 2018 to 2019 — go from dropping to a 16-seed to profitable a nationwide title. The evolution of the Boilermakers’ shot-making on the perimeter is what’s going to decide if they will get there, however you want a rock on the inside for all of it to work out, and Edey is the perfect one within the nation — and there is not any stopping him.

John Fanta is a nationwide faculty basketball broadcaster and author for FOX Sports activities. He covers the game in a wide range of capacities, from calling video games on FS1 to serving as lead host on the BIG EAST Digital Community to offering commentary on The Subject of 68 Media Community. Observe him on Twitter @John_Fanta.

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