Look Ahead: Basketball Recruiting

The incoming class for Purdue basketball looks like it will help fulfill some needs. That said, many are skeptical of a couple of aspects of this class. First, all three are guards...and Painter's squad, especially with the subtraction of Martin, isn't rich underneath the basket. That said, nagging injuries of Grant and Kramer seemed to be more and more of a concern as the season came to a close last year. Furthermore, shooting and speed are two things that last year's squad could have used more of.

I'm not concerned about next year's Purdue big men...I liked what I saw from Johnson and even Calasan as the season progressed. But, with Calasan graduating after '09, it could get tougher following his departure. Depth underneath will be needed...This is where the classes of '09 and '10 come in.

Contrast these guys with the class of '08...

'08 is comprised of an unsung, unheralded, athletic guard, a late-rising star from Illinois (who is very undersized) and another guard who is a good shooter, but not the athlete that the other two seem to be. All three are 6'3" and under and all seem to be done growing.

'09, as it is right now, has four verbal commitments. All but one will play forward at Purdue...and this group seems to be much more like the class of '07 in that they are highly-touted and might have more upside than the class of '08, as it seems on the surface.

Before judging next year's class, look at how Painter likes to coach- uptempo. The incoming class will help the pace next year, if nothing else. Plus, in an attacking style of defense that Purdue showed last year, quick guard play is imperative. While I would agree with those who think the incoming class isn't a great class, it's one that I think will prove to be important to the program as they will give some rest to the veterans of next year's nationally-respected Boiler squad.

It seems Painter doesn't force recruiting- if a guy doesn't want to come to Purdue, Painter decides to put a bunch of energy into someone else who seems like a good fit...but let's remember...these kids are still 16, 17 & 18...a lot can change between their Sophomore years in high school and their Senior years in college.

Not all hyped recruits turn out to be great Boilers...and other quiet recruits have note-worthy careers in West Lafayette. Let's take our recruiting news with a grain of salt...especially until the kids are signed and cleared by the NCAA clearinghouse.

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