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Former Purdue Boilermaker & NBA 1st-Round Pick, Caleb Swanigan, Dies at 25


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Former Purdue basketball star and NBA player Caleb Swanigan has passed away at 25.

The Purdue men’s basketball program said Swanigan died Monday night, but it did not provide further details.

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The 6’9″ Purdue standout was selected 26th overall in the first round of the 2017 NBA draft by the Portland Trail Blazers.

Swanigan played three years in the NBA with the Trail Blazers and Sacramento Kings.

ESPN noted:

Indiana’s Mr. Basketball in 2015, Swanigan was a highly sought-after recruit who elected to stay home and play for the Boilermakers after originally committing to Michigan State.

Swanigan had a standout sophomore campaign at Purdue and was named the Big Ten Player of the Year and was a consensus first-team All American. He was also a finalist for the Naismith Award. Following the season, he entered the NBA draft and was selected No. 26 overall.

IndyStar added:

People are crying for Caleb “Biggie” Swanigan in West Lafayette today. People are crying at Purdue. People are crying on the south side of Indianapolis, which is where I live. A man is crying in the living room here. I’m alone.

We are emotional because Biggie was wonderful and because this isn’t the natural order of life. We don’t bury our children. No, Biggie wasn’t my child, or yours. But he was ours, you know? And he was so young. Too young, just 25, when news of his death was announced Tuesday morning.

We are crying here, and we are crying there. Just spoke with Chris Forman, Purdue’s associate athletic director for communications and the Boilermakers’ basketball spokesman. He’s a stats guy, Forman, always coming up with nuggets of information about Purdue basketball, but he’s like you and me right now. He’s devastated.

Swanigan’s tragic death adds to the enormous number of athletes under 35-years-old who have suddenly died since March 2021.

Mainstream media and public health agencies continue to ignore this horrific tragedy impacting athletics amongst young age demographics.

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