Tracking the Boilermakers
July 14, 2017

By Tom Schott

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. - Junior quarterback David Blough has been chosen to speak on behalf of the 42 student-athletes representing the 14 conference schools at the 46th-annual Big Ten Kickoff Luncheon on July 25 in Chicago.

Blough, who went on a mission trip to South Africa in March and served as a counselor at the Manning Passing Academy in June, is the first Boilermaker chosen to address the crowd since Keith Smith in 2010.

The luncheon will be hosted by Joel Klatt of FOX Sports, who will sit down with the Big Ten head coaches in small groups to discuss the upcoming season. The luncheon also will feature comments from Big Ten commissioner Jim Delany and Tournament of Roses president Lance Tibbet, along with highlight videos and door prizes, including a free trip to the Big Ten Football Championship Game and to the Big Ten's top bowl game destination.

Individual tickets or full tables to the luncheon, which begins at 11:30 a.m., are on sale here. Tickets are priced at $110 each, with a table seating 10 for $1,100.

The Big Ten Kickoff Luncheon annually attracts some of the most talented names in college sports. The event has drawn approximately 1,000 of the conference's finest players, and 80 head coaches have celebrated the start of a new college football season with nearly 54,000 supporters.

Also representing the Boilermakers will be senior linebackers Ja'Whaun Bentley and Danny Ezechukwu, along with first-year head coach Jeff Brohm.

Edwards Wins Bronze with Team USA

Sophomore guard Carsen Edwards helped Team USA win the bronze medal in the FIBA U19 World Cup on July 9 in Egypt.

Edwards averaged 10.4 points, a team-leading 3.3 assists, 1.7 rebounds and 0.9 steals per game in 20 minutes per game. He shot 46.3 percent from the field (25-for-54), including 41.4 percent from three-point range (12-for-29). One of Team USA's two primary point guards, Edwards recorded a 23-to-9 (2.56) assist-to-turnover ratio.

The Stars & Stripes posted a 6-1 record in the tournament with a 6-1 record, losing only to eventual champion Canada in the semifinals 99-87.

Meitz to Swim at World University Games

Senior Kaersten Meitz earned a berth in the World University Games based on her performance at the Phillips 66 National Championships in June, a feat confirmed when USA Swimming officially announced its roster for the international showcase July 10.

Meitz posted a trio of top-12 finishes at Nationals, headlined by placing fourth in the 400-meter and sixth in the 800-meter freestyle. She also took 12th (fourth in the B final) of the 200 free. She officially qualified for the World University Games in the 400, but will also have the opportunity to compete in the 800.

Meitz joins junior diver Joe Cifelli as Boilermakers slated to compete at the World University Games. The 29th Summer Universiade will take place Aug. 19 to 30 in Chinese Taipei, Taiwan, with the swimming events slated for Aug. 20 to 27.

4 Purdue Divers at FINA World Championships

Purdue will be represented by four divers at the 2017 FINA World Championships, which begin today in Budapest, Hungary.

Redshirt junior Steele Johnson and sophomore Brandon Loschiavo will be joined by alums Steven LoBue (2004-07) and Kyle Mitrione (2007-10). Johnson qualified individually on both 1-meter and 3-meter and will compete with Loschiavo in synchronized 10-meter. LoBue and Mitrione are slated to compete in 27-meter high diving, with fellow alum David Colturi (2008-10) serving as their coach.

The FINA World Championships run through July 30.

Distinguished Scholars

Fifty-four Purdue student-athletes have been acknowledged as Distinguished Scholar Award recipients by the Big Ten Conference.

Big Ten faculty representatives established the Distinguished Scholar Award in 2008 to supplement the Academic All-Big Ten program. Similar to the Academic All-Big Ten honor, Distinguished Scholar Award recipients must be letterwinners in at least their second academic year at their institution. However, the Distinguished Scholar Award encompasses only student-athletes with a minimum grade-point average of 3.7 or higher for the previous academic year, excluding summer school.

Eight Boilermakers boasted a perfect 4.0 GPA.

You can read more about the Distinguished Scholar Award and see the list of Purdue honorees here.


John Oliver has been hired as distance assistant track & field and cross country coach. He comes the Boilermakers after spending five years at Stanford as the men's distance assistant coach. The Cardinal had three consecutive top-3 finishes at the NCAA Cross Country Championships from 2014 to 2016 ... The 2016-17 men's basketball squad earned the Team Academic Excellence Award by the National Association of Basketball Coaches for having a cumulative grade-point average of 3.0 or better ... Head softball coach Boo De Oliveira announced the addition of three transfers to the program in late June: utility players Jenny Behan and Halle Hixenbaugh and pitcher/outfielder Molly Meenan. Hixenbaugh comes to the Boilermakers from Boston College, while Behan and Meenan are both arriving from James Madison University. For more information of the trio, click here ... Sophomore outfielder Skyler Hunter was named a Southern California Collegiate League All-Star ... Recently graduated golfer August Kim (2014-17) was named an All-American Scholar by the Women's Golf Coaches Association, becoming the first four-time honoree in school history. She joins Maria Hernandez (2006-09) as the lone Boilermakers to earn All-America honors and All-American Scholar honors from the WGCA in the same season ... Kim is one of three Boilermakers playing in this week's U.S. Women's Open. She will be joined at Trump National Golf Club in Bedminster, New Jersey, by Laura Gonzalez Escallon (2010-13) and Paula Reto (2010-13). All three are making their first career appearance at the major event ... Former volleyball player Annie Drews (2012-15) helped Team USA claim the Pan Am Cup championship by defeating the Dominican Republic 25-16, 19-25, 25-20, 25-23 on June 25 in Canete, Peru ... Former men's golfer Shiv Kapur (2001-04) qualified to play in his third Open Championship, advancing out of qualifying held at the Woburn Golf Club in England. This year's Open Championship is July 20 to 23 at Royal Birkdale Golf Club in Southport, England ... Recent administrative staff hires in the athletics department include Bailey Schlotfeld (assistant director of marketing and fan experience) and Amanda Shike (video producer). Also, Erin Hancock has moved from the John Purdue Club to the ticket office.


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