Busting Brackets

Purdue Basketball: Incoming 2024 class looks to keep Boilermakers in contention

Purdue v Connecticut
Purdue v Connecticut / Jamie Squire/GettyImages

In early April, Purdue Basketball closed out their best season under head coach Matt Painter with a 15-point loss to UConn. The end of the season meant some critical departures of rotation mainstays for the Boilermakers.

With practices underway for the next season, people are getting their first chance to see recruits in action against college athletes. By most accounts, Purdue's incoming class looks good in their initial practices. Every player has shown the ability to step out and make shots, as well as play with a high level of strength and athleticism that can be lacking for many true freshmen.

With the departures of two-way guard Lance Jones, sharpshooter do-it-all glue guy Mason Gillis, and one of the most dominant centers the game has ever seen in Zach Edey, Purdue has large holes to fill in their upcoming season's roster. In today's era of NIL, most teams would opt for the transfer portal. Painter chose a different approach for his program.

Painter originally signed a six-man class, before Kanon Catchings was released from his NLI. The loss of Catchings left a need for a star in the recruiting class. This opened an opportunity for 7-3 center Daniel Jacobsen, who has recently shot up the recruiting rankings after a stellar showing for Team USA at the FIBA U18 tournament. The big man broke Myles Turner's event record for blocks, as he blocked 19 shots in 4 games. Jacobsen projects to be a rangy-shot blocker on defense, who can step out and shoot it on offense.

Another potential first-year contributor is the son of Purdue legend Glenn Robinson. Gicarri Harris is a four-star combo guard out of Georgia who projects to be an impact player from the jump. Harris, like fellow recruit CJ Cox, has made a name for himself as a two-way guard. Harris does well as a point guard, with the ability to create for himself and others. The shot has also followed for the young guard, and his combination of size and speed allows him to hound opposing ball handlers.

As mentioned prior, incoming guard CJ Cox has also made a name for himself as a two-way guard. Cox was one of the best defenders in New Jersey as a high schooler, and the defense originally stood out to Matt Painter. However, Cox has quickly shown off his shooting ability and flashes of elite playmaking.

The third guard in the class has shown plenty as well. Jack Benter is a six-foot-four-inch three-star recruit from Brownstown, Ind. Benter is an elite shooter and won a state championship while averaging 25.6 points, 7.3 rebounds and 5.2 assists on 44% shooting from three-point range his senior year. Benter was a microwave scorer in high school, tallying a 50-point game and putting himself 11th all-time scoring for Indiana High School (2,550 points).

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The final recruit in the 2024 class is big man Raleigh Burgess out of Cincinnati, Ohio. The Ohio native is an athletic and powerful big, who has shown the ability to handle the ball as well as shoot. As Purdue looks to get bigger and more athletic, Burgess fits the mold. He was ranked in the top 75 recruits on Rivals before a season-ending leg injury and has shown plenty of promise in early practices.