Zach Edey - The Rise of Zach Edey: A Canadian Giant's Journey in College Basketball - 23/Mar/2024

Zach Edey – The Rise of Zach Edey: A Canadian Giant’s Journey in College Basketball – 23/Mar/2024

The Rise of Zach Edey: A Canadian Giant’s Journey in College Basketball

Not every day does the college basketball scene witness the emergence of a towering talent quite so literally as it has in Zach Edey, the 7-foot-4 center from Purdue University. His unprecedented size coupled with his incredible skill set is rewriting scouting reports and impacting games in a way that few others can. In this article, we will explore the journey, performance, and potential future of this Canadian colossal as he continues to grow in the NCAA.

Early Life and Introduction to Basketball

A Late Start but Rapid Progress

Despite his remarkable height, Edey, originally from Toronto, Ontario, didn’t start playing basketball until he was 15 years old. He initially showed interest in baseball and hockey, commonly played sports in Canada. When he did turn to basketball, his physical advantages were undeniable, but it was his work ethic and determined improvement that drew attention on the court.

From Hockey Goalkeeper to Basketball Center

Transitioning from blocking pucks to shooting baskets was a considerable change for Edey. Yet, the similar hand-eye coordination required for being a goalie would later translate well into his basketball defensive strategies and rebound gathering.

Rapid Development and Joining IMG Academy

Over a short period of time, Edey refined his game and exponentially improved his skills, which resulted in him joining IMG Academy in Bradenton, Florida, known for producing high-caliber athletes. At IMG, he continued to craft his mechanics and game intelligence.

College Career Highlights at Purdue University

Making an Immediate Impact as a Freshman

Edey’s recruitment to Purdue’s Boilermakers quickly proved a vital move for the team. From the outset of his freshman year in 2020, he demonstrated that he could be a key player off the bench, showcasing not only his natural rebounding abilities but also a soft touch around the rim uncommon in players of his stature.

Growth and Dominance in the Sophomore Season

In his sophomore year, Edey’s impacts on both ends of the floor grew exponentially. His offensive game witnessed more hooks shoots and dunks while refining an already impressive defensive presence. Despite being limited to coming off the bench due to sharing minutes with fellow center Trevion Williams, Edey capitalized on his opportunities proving his efficiency.

Potential Wooden Award Candidate as a Junior

Entering as a junior, Edey assumed the starting center role full-time and positioned himself among the elite players in college basketball. Continual improvement on his scoring, passing, and defensive skills had pundits listing him as a potential candidate for the John R. Wooden Award, which is given annually to the most outstanding men’s college basketball player.

Zach Edey’s Game Analysis

Advantages of an Uncommon Height

Edey’s height makes him an unsurpassed threat near the basket on both offense and defense. His ability to score over smaller defenders without jumping makes him a nightmare matchup for virtually any team. On defense, he’s an immense obstacle for any opponent trying to score in the paint.

Skills Beyond Size

However, it’s not just size that makes Edey special – his footwork has drawn positive critiques by experts who liken it to that of much shorter players. Together with solid passing abilities for a big man, Edey shows an exceptional overall basketball IQ.

Room for Improvement: Free Throw Shooting and Agility

While dominant inside, one aspect of Edey’s game that requires improvement is free throw shooting—a common hitch for many centers due to their large hand size. Alongside this is agility; as basketball evolves into a faster-paced game accentuated by perimeter shooting, it is incumbent upon giants like Edey to increase their lateral quickness.

Impact on Purdue Boilermakers Strategy

A Pivotal Player for Purdue’s Offense and Defense

Edey hasn’t just transformed Purdue’s play in the paint; he’s affected their entire strategy on the court. His presence alone opens up perimeter shots for teammates since defenses must collapse on him due to his scoring ability near the basket.

Strategic Concerns: Opponent’s Perimeter Game

However, an inevitable strategic concern is how Edey deals with opponents who employ faster lineups aimed toward extensive perimeter play. Defensive adjustments for such game plans often include him in deep discussions alongside head coach Matt Painter to leverage the big man’s strengths while mitigating any mobility issues.


  • Zach Edey stands at 7 feet 4 inches tall making him one of the tallest active players in college basketball
  • He started playing basketball much later than most professionals at age 15
  • Despite initially focusing on hockey and baseball as a child in Canada, Edey honed his skills enough to join IMG Academy
  • As a fresh face on Purdue’s team in 2020, he showed prowess that made an invigorating impact off the bench
  • By his junior year, Edey rose as a full-time starting center with potential predictions circling around winning awards like the Wooden Award
  • One of the primary areas he could improve upon is free throw shooting
  • As part of Purdue’s offensive strategy, Edey significantly alters defensive formations due to his enhanced ability to score inside
  • Image description: The image is a dynamic shot on the basketball court during a Purdue Boilermakers game featuring Zach Edey towering over opponents as he prepares to make a shot. The view captures his concentrated expression and huge wingspan amidst the intensely watching crowd in the background.