Alright, Purdue... Big offseason here...
Obviously we're graduating 4 big-minute seniors. With Carsen Edwards declaring for the draft, although I think he'll drop out of the draft and come back, being a potential 5th major contributor gone. So I'll look at what's missing, with the number for the seniors to the left and the number including the loss of Carsen in parentheses to the right.
What we're losing:
Minutes per game: 114.3 / 57% - (143.8 / 72%)
Points per game: 48.8 / 61% - (67.3 / 84%)
Rebounds per game: 19 / 54% - (22.8 / 65%)
Assists per game: 9.3 / 58% - (12.1 / 76%)
Clearly without the 4 seniors, we're losing well over half the production of the team. If Carsen goes pro--again I think he'll return for his Jr year--we're losing 75%+ of the production.
So let's assume Carsen is staying. He played 29.5 MPG, was our leading scorer by 4 PPG, and was the only person on the team that was really able to be the "spark" and create a shot for himself. He wasn't voted an All-American for nothing. That means the 2018-19 Boilermakers are undoubtedly "his team".
Coming back around him we have the following:
Matt Haarms - RS So 7'3" 250# Center - Haarms is no Isaac Haas, but Haas was also no Matt Haarms. Haarms came in as a project, and proved as a freshman that he was far more polished than anyone expected. He played 17.1 MPG (largely due to Haas, being so big, needing more rest than the other seniors), contributed 2.1 BPG, but otherwise didn't entirely fill the stat sheet. 4.8 PPG in 17 minutes showed that he wasn't a key cog in the offense, but he was serviceable. Haarms is much more athletic than Haas and could potentially be a "stretch 5" or even a "stretch 4" if Purdue finds a serviceable big man to clog up the lane. But Haarms is going to need to make a big jump in the offseason if he's going to be "the guy" at Center. He seems to be more of a PnR guy than a back-to-the-basket big, so Purdue is going to have to adjust their offensive gameplan compared to what they did in the Hammons/Biggie/Haas era of the last 6 years.
Ryan Cline - Sr 6'6" 195# SG - Cline has largely lived in Dakota Mathias' shadow much of his career, as Mathias was just too valuable to the team to pull off the floor. Cline is a sharpshooter, with 101 3PA last year and only 28 2PA. And he doesn't get to the line. He had 6 FTA last season. It's so few that in the Cal State Fullerton NCAA game, after Haas' injury the CSUF coach picked Cline to shoot FT, because even though Nojel Eastern was shooting <50% from the stripe, he must have assumed Cline didn't know hot to shoot a free throw or something! That said, Cline has been working on his strength, his defense, and his game in general. He'll be the most seasoned guy on the team other than Carsen, and is expected to get some serious minutes.
Nojel Eastern - So 6'6" 220# PG - Eastern rounds out the 2017-18 main rotation players. Beyond him, Grady Eifert (preferred walk-on) got some run as Vince Edwards back-up, but Eifert played out of necessity while Eastern was truly being developed for next year. He got about 12.6 MPG, and his biggest contribution was defense. Being long, strong, and pretty athletic, he did a good job defending some of the players that PJ Thompson (5'10" 185#) simply wasn't able to handle. Overall, he actually showed quite a lot for a freshman, but he's going to have to make a major step up next season if the Boilers are going to do anything.
Grady Eifert - 6'6" 220# Sr F - Grady is the brother of Tyler Eifert, TE from Notre Dame now with the Bengals. Eifert is a preferred walk-on, but has actually played some minutes out of necessity. He's tough, one of those guys who seems to do what he does purely out of will and BBIQ. He put in 8.3 MPG behind Vince Edwards as there was no serviceable 4 behind Vince, and generally was not a liability to the team when he was out there. I expect he'll continue to get some minutes next year, because everyone else that could play the 4 is going to be incredibly raw.
Jacquil Taylor - RS Sr 6'10" 240# Center - Taylor has for years been the guy who we all said "wait until he gets healthy and breaks out!" Injuries, mostly lower extremity injuries, have hampered him his entire career, though. He's also got some athleticism, does a pretty good job of crashing the boards, but his offensive game is a big unknown. He simply hasn't played enough to know what we have with him, and he has to be able to survive a season without injury to find out. I listed him as a RS Sr, but it's possible that he could get granted a 6th year by the NCAA after this year and he might have 2 seasons left.
Sasha Stefanovic - 6'4" 195# RS Fr SG - There are a lot of people high on Sasha for next year. He clearly wasn't going to get a lot of court time this year behind Mathias and Cline, not to mention Carsen, so he ended up redshirting. Generally everyone I've talked to says he's more athletic than Mathias/Cline, and can fill up the basket from anywhere on the court. Beyond that, he's pretty much unknown. Not sure how well he plays defense, or frankly anything else, because he didn't get any minutes. I do expect he's going to get some run, though, as Painter likes to have shooters on the floor and Sasha is undoubtedly that.
Aaron Wheeler - 6'9" 200# RS Fr F/Wing - Wheeler is an athletic freak. He's been described as the guy who "can jump out of the gym". He's got the height for the 4 and the athleticism to play the 3/Wing, so he might be a very versatile player for Purdue. Why did he redshirt, then, on a team that could have used an athlete to back up Vince when all they had was Eifert? Well, because he just wasn't ready for prime time. Let's hope he does something.
Evan Boudreaux - 6'8" 220# Jr* F - Coming as a grad transfer with [I think] 2 years eligibility remaining, Boudreaux fills a position of serious need with Vince Edwards graduating. Boudreaux put in 17.5 PPG and 9.5 RPG last season at Dartmouth, and although he'll be going up a level of competition in the B1G, he's expected to be an instant impact guy. He can shoot the ball, too, so he may be able to stretch the floor in a way very similar to Vince, but with much better rebounding impact (which was a point of worry for the Boilers this year).
Trevion Williams - 6'8" 250# Fr F/C - Williams wants to be like Biggie. Seriously, that's who he wants to play like style-wise, intensity-wise, and [thankfully] rebounding-wise. As a Jr in HS, he was averaging 22 PPG and 25 (!) RPG. How ready is he for the college game? Well, we don't really know.
Eric Hunter - 6'3" 170# Fr Combo Guard - Hunter was just named an Indiana All-Star and is a finalist for Indiana Mr Basketball (but likely will lose that honor to shoo-in Romeo Langford), and led his team to a state championship as a Jr. I think the obvious comparison here is Carsen Edwards, as a player who can score from anywhere, including creating his own shot. I think he's likely to be a strong enough player to see minutes next year, and probably be seen as a contributor on the court even if it's mostly spelling Carsen when he's resting.
Emmanuel Duwouna - 6'11" 220# Fr Center - Not sure if he'll see the court. He first played basketball ~4 years ago as he grew too large for soccer, and he may be a bit of a project. If he sees the court, it had better mean he's really shown amazing development under big-man coach Brandon Brantley, or it's going to mean that everything else we have at Center is falling apart.