Maybe Isaac Haas college career isn’t over after all.
The Purdue 7-foot-2 center broke his elbow in the Boilermakers’ opening-round win over Cal State Fullerton, but isn’t ruling out continuing to play despite the injury.
Haas practice Saturday with Purdue with the aid of a brace and is hopeful that he could still be cleared.
Purdue coach Matt Painter downplayed the possibility that Haas would play, saying that “his future is too important.”
Certainly, Haas’ availability would be enormous for the Boilermakers not only because he’s averaging 14.7 points and 5.7 rebounds, but because he totally changes the game with his presence inside on both ends of the floor. Purdue has a capable reserve in Matt Haarms, but without Haas, Purdue’s Final Four chances seem dire.
Even if Haas is able to play, it remains to be seen how effective he can be with a busted elbow. It also sounds as though the brace he’s been outfitted with may need special clearance from the NCAA due to its composition.
For an NCAA tournament full of amazing storylines, Haas’ (potential) ability to play through a broke elbow might be among the most intriguing.