Purdue is one of the most intriguing teams in the Big Ten this season since they return most of their roster and add McDonald’s All-American Caleb Swanigan.
The addition of Swanigan is certainly great for Purdue, but it’s also created a bit of a logjam in the frontcourt for Matt Painter’s team. With Swanigan likely starting, Vince Edwards will move to the wing and reserve forward Basil Smotherman’s minutes will likely decrease even more.
According to a report from Nathan Baird of the Journal & Courier, Smotherman is contemplating a redshirt year so that he’ll get more minutes his final two seasons.
“After talking to my family, I felt like that was one of the things I wanted to do,” Smotherman said to Baird. “Me and Painter sat down and talked and, long story short, I think it’s just best for me and the team if that happened.
“I can work on my game through the whole season. If I sat out this year, I would help them win and get ready for next year to help them win again. We both see eye-to-eye. It’s not set in stone yet.”
While Smotherman’s potential redshirt isn’t a tremendous loss for Purdue, he did show some positive flashes late last season, as he put up a couple of good outings during Big Ten play. But with redshirt freshman Jacquil Taylor also returning to action, the need for a backup forward isn’t as big of a need for Purdue this season.
If Smotherman redshirts, he’ll have two years of eligibility left and he’ll get another year to work on his game. The 6-foot-6 forward saw his minutes decrease in his sophomore season as he averaged 2.7 points and 1.8 rebounds per game last season.