#2 – Carsen Edwards, Purdue
Good thing this is a website that caters mainly to Wisconsin fans because otherwise, I’m sure there would be hell to pay from a large number of readers for keeping Purdue’s Carsen Edwards out of the No. 1 spot here. After all, he was just named the Preseason Big Ten Player of the Year earlier today.
I disagree with that decision, but that doesn’t mean I think Edwards is anything less than one of the Big Ten’s brightest stars. The diminutive junior guard is of the most lethal scorers you will find across the country.
Edwards emerged as the primary scoring option last season on a loaded Purdue squad that included stars such as Dakota Mathias, Isaac Haas, and Vincent Edwards, averaging 18.5 points (third-most in the Big Ten) to go along with 3.8 rebounds, 2.8 assists, and 1.1 steals per game. He was a First Team All-Big Ten selection by the media and the coaches, the recipient of the Jerry West Award, given to the nation’s best shooting guard, and a Third Team AP All-American.
As a Badger fan, it sure would have been nice if Edwards would have joined Mathias, Haas, and V. Edwards in leaving West Lafayette at the end of the season, but, to the dismay of myself and the rest of the conference, he opted to remove his name from the NBA Draft pool and return to Purdue.
As with every other player on this list, Edwards’ individual performance will determine the ceiling of his team this season. This is especially true of Purdue, as he is the Boilermakers’ only returning starter and will be expected to shoulder even more of the team’s scoring load this year.