A lot of time and attention was spent this past offseason on the number of quality bigs returning to college basketball — guys like Kentucky's Oscar Tshiebwe, Gonzaga's Drew Timme, North Carolina's Armando Bacot, Indiana's Trayce Jackson-Davis and Michigan's Hunter Dickinson. So far, though, Purdue's Zach Edey has been the best of the bunch. One month into a five-month season, he's inarguably the leading candidate for national player of the year.
"I don't think there's a team in the country that has an answer [for Edey]," said Minnesota coach Ben Johnson.
Sure looks that way.
Edey finished with a career-high 31 points and a career-high 22 rebounds Sunday in Purdue's 89-70 win over Minnesota. The 7-foot-4 center is now averaging 23.3 points and 12.8 rebounds, which ranks first in scoring and second in rebounding among all power-conference players. He's the biggest reason, both figuratively and literally, why the Boilermakers are off to an 8-0 start and ranked third in Monday morning's updated CBS Sports Top 25 And 1 daily college basketball rankings.
Incredibly, Edey grabbed more rebounds (22) in Sunday's victory than Minnesota's entire team (21). Fourteen of those were defensive boards, which is why the Golden Gophers were limited to just three offensive rebounds in the game, five fewer than Edey grabbed in 30 minutes on the court.
"The most impressive thing to me was his ability to go get rebounds in and around people," said Purdue coach Matt Painter. "A lot of time you get bottled up — and when you have that size, it's hard to have the balance and still explode and get the basketball."
Up next for Purdue is Wednesday's game with Hofstra that should present few issues considering the Pride have already lost to Middle Tennessee, George Mason and Saint Mary's (by 28 points). After that, it's back to the Big Ten schedule for a trip to Pinnacle Bank Arena, where the Boilermakers will play Nebraska on Saturday.
Top 25 And 1 rankings
|Marcus Carr finished with 19 points and five assists in Thursday's 72-67 win over Creighton. The Longhorns' next game is Tuesday against Illinois.||--||19-5|
|J'Wan Roberts finished with 15 points and eight rebounds in Saturday's 53-48 win over Saint Mary's. The Cougars' next game is Tuesday against North Florida.||--||23-2|
|Zach Edey finished with 31 points and 22 rebounds in Sunday's 89-70 win over Minnesota. The Boilermakers' next game is Wednesday against Hofstra.||--||22-2|
|Kihei Clark finished with 18 points and three assists in Saturday's 62-57 win over Florida State. The Cavaliers' next game is Tuesday against James Madison.||--||18-4|
|Jordan Hawkins finished with 26 points and two rebounds in Thursday's 74-64 win over Oklahoma State. The Huskies' next game is Wednesday at Florida.||--||19-6|
|Trevon Brazile finished with 23 points and five rebounds in Saturday's 99-58 win over San Jose State. The Razorbacks' next game is Tuesday against UNC Greensboro.||1||17-7|
|Noah Clowney finished with 22 points and nine rebounds in Saturday's 78-65 win over South Dakota State. The Crimson Tide's next game is Saturday at Houston.||1||21-3|
|Jahmir Young finished with 24 points and four rebounds in Friday's 71-66 win over Illinois. The Terrapins' next game is Tuesday at Wisconsin.||1||16-8|
|Tolu Smith finished with 24 points and six rebounds in Saturday's 82-52 win over Mississippi Valley State. The Bulldogs' next game is Sunday at Minnesota.||1||16-8|
|Indiana missed 19 of the 25 3-pointers it attempted in Saturday's 63-48 loss at Rutgers. The Hoosiers' next game is Wednesday against Nebraska.||1||17-7|
|Keyonte George finished with 18 points and six rebounds in Friday's 64-63 win over Gonzaga. The Bears' next game is Tuesday against Tarleton State.||1||18-6|
|Nolan Hickman missed all eight shots he took in Friday's 64-63 loss to Baylor. The Zags' next game is Monday against Kent State.||1||19-5|
|Cason Wallace finished with 14 points and eight rebounds in Sunday's 73-69 win over Michigan. The Wildcats' next game is Saturday against Yale.||1||16-8|
|Terrence Shannon missed all five 3-pointers he attempted in Friday's 71-66 loss at Maryland. The Illini's next game is Tuesday against Texas.||1||16-7|
|Azuolas Tubelis finished with 25 points and 12 rebounds in Sunday's 81-68 win over California. The Wildcats' next game is Saturday against Indiana.||1||21-3|
|Olivier Nkamhoua finished with 20 points and six assists in Sunday's 94-40 win over Alcorn State. The Vols' next game is Wednesday against Eastern Kentucky.||1||19-5|
|Kevin McCullar finished with 17 points and 10 rebounds in Thursday's 91-65 win over Seton Hall. The Jayhawks' next game is Saturday at Missouri.||1||19-5|
|Mark Mitchell finished with 15 points and four rebounds in Saturday's 75-59 win over Boston College. The Blue Devils' next game is Tuesday against Iowa.||1||17-7|
|Jaren Holmes finished with 14 points and three rebounds in Sunday's 71-60 win over St. John's. The Cyclones' next game is Thursday at Iowa.||1||16-7|
|Amari Bailey finished with 14 points and five rebounds in Sunday's 65-56 win over Oregon. The Bruins' next game is Saturday against Denver.||1||19-4|
|Johni Broome finished with 13 points and nine rebounds in Friday's 93-66 win over Colgate. The Tigers' next game is Saturday against Memphis.||1||17-7|
San Diego St
|Adam Seiko finished with 20 points and one assist in Friday's 95-57 win over Occidental. The Aztecs' next game is Monday against Troy.||1||19-5|
|Arthur Kaluma and Ryan Nembhard combined to go 0-of-12 from 3-point range in Sunday's 63-53 loss to Nebraska. The Bluejays' next game is Saturday against BYU.||17||16-8|
|Marquette allowed Wisconsin to shoot 50.8% from the field in Saturday's 80-77 loss to Wisconsin. The Golden Eagles' next game is Tuesday against North Carolina Central.||--||19-6|
|Brice Sensabaugh finished with 15 points and two assists in Saturday's 96-59 win over St. Franis. The Buckeyes' next game is Thursday against Rutgers.||1||11-12|
|Jaylon Tyson finished with 18 points and nine rebounds in Wednesday's 79-65 win over Georgetown. The Red Raiders' next game is Wednesday against Nicholls State.||NR||12-12|