'It ended poorly' for Purdue basketball, but future looks bright
COLUMBUS, Ohio − Next year?
Nobody wanted to talk about next year.
Not in the moments after an embarrassing loss Friday night, anyway.
Purdue's basketball team wanted to sulk, to let that pain and anguish of becoming the second No. 1 seed to play just one NCAA tournament get set in.
The reality is, there is next season, and now that's all Purdue has.
"Hopefully it will set the table for what we can do next year and beyond," said guard Ethan Morton, a captain this season as a junior. "As a program, we have to be better. It starts with us as players."
Here's what we know.
David Jenkins Jr. is gone. He's exhausted his college eligibility. Matt Frost is gone, a former walk-on given a scholarship in his final season in which he didn't play due to injury.
Zach Edey? Undecided, he said after Friday's stunning loss to FDU.
More:Purdue basketball's Zach Edey on his future plans
The rest of a roster from a team that went 29-6 and won the Big Ten regular season and conference tournament will be back, barring transfers.
The Boilermakers add essentially what it was missing against FDU, someone who can penetrate and finish at the rim with incoming freshman guard Myles Colvin. Purdue redshirted 7-foot-2 Will Berg and a highlight waiting to happen in Camden Heide.
Both will have a year of college experience, but not games played. They be essential going forward.
Friday night was the low point. It will be a talking point entering next season. Maybe even until Purdue goes back to the NCAA tournament and rights a wrong.
Next season, because now that's all Purdue has to look forward to.
Nobody wanted to talk about next year, but the future does look promising.
Finally, Purdue's freshman point guard did utter the phrase Friday night in the locker room.
"We’ve become close on and off the court, the stuff you guys don’t really see all the time," Braden Smith said. "We’ve come a real long way. It ended poorly. We’re going to keep our heads up, work really hard and be ready for next year."
Sam King covers sports for the Journal & Courier. Email him at firstname.lastname@example.org and follow him on Twitter and Instagram @samueltking.
This article originally appeared on Lafayette Journal & Courier: 'It ended poorly' for Purdue basketball, but future looks bright