What does Purdue basketball do for an encore? Where Boilers land in early rankings.

The Purdue basketball roster has remained more consistent than most for 2024-25, with one notable exception.

The Boilermakers lost two-time National Player of the Year Zach Edey, but they keep three starters and have a heralded incoming freshman class.

Many national experts see a drop-off (it's hard to move up from national runner-up), but the Boilermakers may remain a contender in the Big Ten (now 18). Purdue's average national ranking among this group is 13th.

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Where is Purdue ranked in college basketball?

Gary Parrish, CBS Sports: 12th

This ranking is based on Matt Painter's Boilermakers returning five of the top eight scorers — specifically Braden Smith, Fletcher Loyer, Trey Kaufman-Renn, Myles Colvin and Camden Heide — from a team that won the Big Ten regular-season title and advanced to the championship game of the 2024 NCAA Tournament. The Boilermakers have finished in the top 25 at nine straight years, and there's no reason to think that streak won't continue next season even without two-time National Player of the Year Zach Edey.

Isaac Trotter, 247Sports: 18th

Having an All-Big Ten point guard like Braden Smith makes life so much easier. Even without two-time National Player of the Year Zach Edey, Purdue is expected to be a real contender in 2024-25. Smith will be a Big Ten Player of the Year nominee and Loyer is a trusty secondary option.

But Purdue didn't add a single player in the transfer portal because it didn't have any open scholarships. This offseason is a bet on young, talented wings like Cam Heide and Myles Colvin being absolute dudes. With Matt Painter at the helm and Smith holding the keys, Purdue has the infrastructure to cover up their flaws and maximize their strengths. It's also time for Trey Kaufman-Renn to prove Purdue right. His stage is set.

This defense will undergo a facelift, but maybe freshman big man Daniel Jacobsen is ready to command a bigger piece of the pie. Will Berg and Jacobsen are in tow to make sure Purdue keeps its 7-footer streak alive.

Plus, it's Painter. He's good at this.

John Fanta, Fox Sports: 10th

Has Matt Painter found yet another tower of terror for the Boilermakers? It’s certainly possible with 7-3 four-star incoming freshman Daniel Jacobsen showing major upside in the past year and now suiting up for Team USA in FIBA’s U18 Americup. Jacobsen recently went for nine points, 10 rebounds, and five blocks in 20 minutes in a win over Argentina.

We won’t put unfair expectations on Jacobsen, but it will be interesting to see him in a Purdue uniform given how much success Painter had with Isaac Haas, Matt Haarms, and, of course, Edey, who became the first repeat national player of the year since Ralph Sampson.

Braden Smith and Fletcher Loyer are back for their junior seasons and will be one of the best guard duos in college basketball, while Myles Colvin and sharpshooting Cam Heide are poised for sophomore leaps. Don’t forget about forwards Caleb Furst and Trey Kaufman-Renn, who are both back as well. Obviously, Purdue will play differently in the post-Edey era, but welcoming back that type of nucleus for the national runner-up should only help the Boilermakers make this major adjustment to how they play.

C.J. Moore, The Athletic: 13th

Purdue’s KenPom finishes in the five years that proceeded the Zach Edey era: 9, 19, 5, 9, 24. It’s going to be difficult to replace Edey, but Matt Painter won a lot of basketball games before Edey showed up and he’ll continue to do so. Painter has a really good core returning, led by Smith, who became a killer in pick-and-roll last season as both a scorer and distributor. If you asked college coaches to rank the best point guards in the country, he’d be near the top. Purdue got a head start on what life without Edey would be like last summer when it went on a foreign tour without him and Kaufman-Renn led the team in scoring. Painter also has three centers on the bench who could be next in line as dominant low-post scorers. The 7-foot-2 Berg has been learning behind Edey the last two years, and then Painter signed two centers in Jacobsen and Raleigh Burgess. Jacobsen was a standout last weekend at the tryouts for the U.S. U-18 team. When I asked two coaches there who stood out, both mentioned Jacobsen, with one saying he’ll eventually be a star. He’s 7-3, skilled and playing at Purdue, so odds are in his favor.

Andy Katz, 10th

The national runner-up has the backcourt returning in Braden Smith and Fletcher Loyer, rising stars in Trey Kaufman-Renn, Cam Heide and Myles Colvin and another 7-foot star in the making in Daniel Jacobsen.

Jeff Borzello, ESPN: 15th

The post-Zach Edey era in West Lafayette has officially begun, but don't expect Matt Painter's team to completely fall out of the national discussion. The Boilermakers will still return one of the best backcourts in the country in Braden Smith and Fletcher Loyer, and Trey Kaufman-Renn is ready for a bigger role in the frontcourt. The key will be whether Smith and Loyer can take the jump from complementary to go-to players, and which reserve or freshman breaks out. A good bet would be Camden Heide, while incoming freshman Daniel Jacobsen recently turned heads at the USA Basketball U18 National Team workouts.

This article originally appeared on Indianapolis Star: Where Purdue basketball lands in early top 25 rankings, predictions