WATCH: Zach Edey Cuts Down Final Four Net for Legendary Purdue Coach Gene Keady

Legendary Purdue coach Gene Keady was in attendance for Purdue's win over Tennessee in the Elite Eight. After the win, Zach Edey cut down a piece of the net and gave it to the former leader of the Boilermakers.
Mar 5, 2023; West Lafayette, Indiana, USA; Purdue Boilermakers center Zach Edey (15) shakes the hand
Mar 5, 2023; West Lafayette, Indiana, USA; Purdue Boilermakers center Zach Edey (15) shakes the hand / Marc Lebryk-USA TODAY Sports

Despite a Hall of Fame coaching career, Gene Keady never got to experience a Final Four during his time at Purdue. But the Boilermaker legend was on hand for the team's 72-66 win over Tennessee in the Elite Eight on Sunday and got to take home a special souvenir, courtesy of Zach Edey.

After Sunday's win, Edey helped the team cut down the nets in Detroit, signifying the program's first trip to the Final Four since 1980. He was also sure to grab a chunk of the net for Keady, who made the trip to Little Caesars Arena to watch the Boilermakers in action.

Keady seemed overjoyed to be celebrating Purdue's impressive accomplishment. He and Edey also shared a special moment on the court.

Keady was the coach at Purdue from 1980-2005, leading the Boilermakers to six Big Ten regular season championships and 17 NCAA Tournament appearances. But during that stretch, Purdue was unable to make a Final Four run. Twice, the Boilers reached the Elite Eight, falling to Duke in 1994 and Wisconsin in 2000.

For Keady, Sunday had to feel like a dream come true. Even though he's no longer the coach of the Boilermakers, he did see one of his former players — Matt Painter — led the program to the promised land.

Keady also witnessed one of the most dominant NCAA Tournament performances in March Madness history while at the game, as well. Edey scored 40 points and grabbed 16 rebounds in Sunday's win.

Purdue now heads to Phoenix to see if it can make the most of the opportunity. The Boilers will play No. 11 seed North Carolina State with a trip to the national championship hanging in the balance.

You better believe Keady will be in attendance, hoping to get another piece of the NCAA Tournament net.

More stories on Purdue basketball

  • WHAT MATT PAINTER SAID: For the first time as a coach, Matt Painter is heading to the Final Four. Here's everything the longtime leader of the Boilermakers said following Purdue's 72-66 win over Tennessee in the Elite Eight. CLICK HERE
  • WHAT ZACH EDEY SAID: Zach Edey was dominant in Purdue's win over Tennessee, scoring 40 points and collecting 16 rebounds. He's cemented his legacy as one of the all-time greats in college basketball history. Here's everything he had to say following the win over the Vols. CLICK HERE
  • WHAT LANCE JONES SAID: This season, Lance Jones has provided an athletic spark for Purdue. On Sunday, the senior guard hit a huge shot to help lift the Boilermakers to a win over the Volunteers. Here's what Jones had to say following the game. CLICK HERE

Dustin Schutte