Surprise, Surprise: Purdue on List of Teams That Have Contacted Indiana Transfer Justin Smith

Justin Smith played nearly 100 games at Indiana, but he has entered the NCAA transfer portal and Purdue was one of the first teams to contact him.

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. — It's no surprise at all that several college teams would be interested in Indiana graduate transfer Justin Smith, but it was a bit surprising that Purdue, of all people, was on the list.

An Indiana player transferring to Purdue? Seems hard to fathom, maybe not so much for the coaches and players, but for the fan bases for sure, on both sides of the rivalry.

Nearly two dozen teams already have reached out just a day after he announced his intentions to enter the NCAA's transfer portal. Smith, who graduated in three years, has one year of eligibility remaining and, as a grad transer, can play right away.

Purdue certainly has room for him after Matt Haarms and Nojel Eastern transferred in the past month. 

According to Jeff Borzello of ESPN, he said Smith told him that several schools had reached out. Borzello tweeted out the entire list, which included four Big Ten schools. They are:

  • Purdue
  • Illinois
  • Northwestern
  • Maryland

Smith is a 6-foot-7, 230-pound forward who never missed a game during his three-year career at Indiana. He was their second-leading scorer (10.4 points per game) and rebounder (5.2) this past season. He started all 32 games — Indiana went 20-12 and had probably done enough to secure an NCAA tournament bid before the season was cancelled.

Here are the rest of the names on Smith's list, according to Borzello.

  • Georgetown
  • Iowa State
  • Mississippi State
  • Arkansas
  • DePaul
  • Notre Dame
  • Oregon
  • Xavier
  • Boston College
  • Arizona State
  • Wake Forest
  • Tulsa
  • New Mexico
  • Nevada
  • N.C. State
  • Virginia Tech

One notable omission — at least for now — from that list is Georgia. Smith came to Indiana after being recruited by Tom Crean. He was fired before Smith ever arrived on campus, and Smith, who is from Buffalo Grove, Ill., decided to stay at Indiana and play for Archie Miller. Crean and Smith have long admired each other.

Smith has played five games in the Indiana-Purdue rivalry, and has lost all five. The list is sure to continue to grow in the coming days.

Related stories to Justin Smith

  • SMITH LEAVING INDIANA: Justin Smith announced Friday that he was entering the NCAA transfer portal and leaving the Hoosiers. As a grad transfer, he will be eligible to play right away. CLICK HERE
  • TOM BREW COLUMN: Justin Smith has every right to leave Indiana after graduating in three years, but he's still quitting on his teammates just like Matt Haarms and Nojel Eastern did. CLICK HERE
  • FINAL GRADES: The grades are in on each Indiana basketball player, and what's your guess on how we graded forward Justin Smith? CLICK HERE
  • SOCIAL MEDIA: Follow Tom Brew on Twitter @tombrewsports and on Facebook at