Purdue to Play in Puerto Rico, Signs Frontcourt Duo



“Once you go Rican, you never go seekin.” At least that’s what they say. All I know is I wouldn’t likely seek Jennifer Lopez. But the Purdue Boilermakers, expected to be a major player this year in the Big Ten, and possibly in national college basketball as well, is one of seven teams that has committed to participating in the 2011 Honda Puerto Rico Tip-Off. The fifth-annual event is slated for Nov. 17, 18 and 20 at the Coliseo de Puerto Rico in the cosmopolitan Hato Rey district of San Juan.

In addition to the Boilermakers, the 2011 field includes Alabama, Colorado, Iona, Maryland, Temple and Wichita State. A final team to complete the eight-team tournament will be announced at a later date.

Four of the seven confirmed teams earned postseason berths in 2010, with Maryland and Temple joining Purdue in the NCAA Tournament and Wichita State qualifying for the NIT.

In other Purdue news, the Boilers announced the that they received signed National Letters of Intent from Donnie Hale and Jacob Lawson. The duo of long, athletic forwards will begin competing for the Boilermakers in the 2011-12 season.

“With this recruiting class, we’ve been able to help our athleticism and speed, as well as our ability to rebound and block shots on the front line,” Painter said. “Donnie Hale and Jacob Lawson are both high-energy players who can help us in a lot of areas.

Purdue’s 2010 Signing Class

Name                                 Pos.        Ht.          Wt.         Hometown (High School/Previous School)

Donnie Hale                     F              6-8          210         New Albany, Ind. (New Albany/Bridgton Prep)

Jacob Lawson                  F              6-8          220         Reidsville, N.C. (Oak Ridge Military Academy)

Donnie Hale

Hale averaged 18.0 points, 7.8 rebounds and 3.3 blocks per contest as a senior to lead New Albany to its fourth-straight Hoosier Hills Conference championship and a No. 2 ranking in the final Class 4A poll.

  • Graded a 91 and ranked as the No. 37 power forward in his class by ESPN
  • Given a three-star rating, ranked as the No. 144 overall recruit and the No. 25 power forward in his class by Rivals.com
  • Given a three-star rating and ranked as the No. 33 power forward by Scout.com
  • A 2010 McDonald’s All-America nominee
  • A first-team AP all-state selection in 2010 after earning third-team honors in 2009
  • A 2010 Indiana All-Star
  • Named an IBCA Junior All-Star in 2009
  • Named to the IBCA All-State Underclassmen Team in 2009
  • Tabbed first-team all-area by the Louisville Courier-Journal following his junior and senior seasons
  • Collected New Albany Tribune Player of Year honors in 2009
  • Propelled New Albany to sectional and regional titles as a sophomore, and a sectional championship as a freshman
  • Coached by Jim Shannon at New Albany High School, Cory Downs on the Spiece Downs AAU team and Whit Lesure at Bridgton Prep

Jacob Lawson

Lawson averaged 14.5 points, 12.5 rebounds and 5.5 blocks per game as a junior at Oak Ridge Military Academy.

  • Graded a 91, ranked as the No. 159 overall prospect and ranked as the No. 28 power forward in his class by ESPN
  • Given a three-star rating by Rivals.com
  • Given a three-star rating and ranked as the No. 29 power forward by Scout.com
  • Blocked more than 500 shots in the first three years of his prep career
  • An All-Triad Conference selection in 2009
  • Led Northern Guilford High School to the North Carolina 3A state title in 2009
  • Also considered Georgetown, Mississippi, Seton Hall, Virginia Tech and Wake Forest
  • Coached by Stan Kowalewski at Oak Ridge Military Academy and Tony Edwards on the AAU circuit
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  1. uh-oh… does Brian know that Wichita State is in the 2011 Puerto Rico Tip-Off????

  2. That was the first thing I thought when i saw that.

    i was tempted to put Wichita State in title.. because I know that would lead to plenty of Brian comments

  3. Come on Paul! Haha! Yeah, a little bit of my eye saw Wichita State and I was like, ” WSU vs Purdue w/ Hummel back, oh crap, why not this year without Hummel or in 2012? “

  4. I have known that WSU was in the Puerto Rico Tip-off for 2011 for a week, just not vs Purdue.

  5. I wanted WSU vs Purdue without Hummel and the 2 McDonalds all-americans if WSU and Purdue would play in the next 3 years.

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