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Gold and Black Illustrated, Vol 26, Digital 5

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Page 63 of 92

GOLD AND BLACK ILLUSTRATED OLUME 26, ISSUE 5 64 BY BRIAN NEUBERT P urdue continues to recruit this spring in hopes of adding players for next season. But it has to be judicious. The last thing it wants to do is compromise the 2017 recruiting class, because it stands to be a cru- cial one for the future of the Boilermaker program, and every multi-year scholarship used this spring would deduct one from Matt Painter and staff's war chest for 2017. As of late April, Purdue is projected to have four available scholarships for that class, this year's crop of rising high school seniors. That class will coincide with a mass exodus of sorts from Purdue's program, as its important crop of current rising juniors will be approaching their senior years, with NBA attrition very possible, if not likely, next season if it doesn't occur this spring. (Forwards Caleb Swanigan and Vince Edwards each currently have their names in the NBA draft, and must decide by May 25 whether they're staying or going.) Purdue will be looking for a class of 2017 freshmen capable of stepping in and impacting the program immediately the way prior robust classes in 2007, 2012 and 2014 previously did, some more suc- cessfully than others. "I think it's a really important class, be- cause we do have that big junior class," Painter said. "It really helps us because that big class we have here (now), they're going to be seniors when those guys would be freshmen and it would be a per- fect transition for our program." Generally, the legitimate promise of early opportunity can make a recruiting class, so that will be a central theme for Purdue in recruiting its next signing class, even if there is still a one-year overlap after the 2017 class arrives and the 2014 classes, as scheduled. Regardless, it's a crucial class and has to be top of mind as Painter and Co. re- view their options for short-term long- term additions this spring. A CRUCIAL CLASS Purdue's 2017 class may be a big one. It needs it to be. Brian Neubert Big men Jaren Jackson Jr. (left) and Xavier Tillman (right) have each been recruited by Purdue for years now and count the Boilermakers among those they're looking most closely at in recruiting. M E N ' S B A S K E T B A L L R E C R U I T I N G

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