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Caleb Swanigan de-commits from Michigan State, but probably not for Cal

Cal is on the table as a potential landing spot for Caleb Swanigan, but it thankfully looks like he is heading to Purdue.

Swanigan (50) and Rabb (23), together for the McDonald's All-American Game, but probably not together at Cal next season.
Swanigan (50) and Rabb (23), together for the McDonald's All-American Game, but probably not together at Cal next season.
Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports

Caleb Swanigan, one of the top recruits in 2015, de-committed from Michigan State this week. Prior to Swanigan's initial commitment to Michigan State, Cal fans believed hoped that they could land Caleb Swanigan, Ivan Rabb, and Jaylen Brown, three of the top recruits in the class of 2015. This historically great recruiting class would propel Cal to the top of the Pac-12.

Once Swanigan committed to Michigan State, it looked like this might all fall apart. Swanigan would go to Michigan State, Rabb would commit to Arizona, and Jaylen Brown would go anywhere but Cal. Things seemed pretty great from an Arizona perspective.

Of course, none of that happened. Though some speculated Rabb might flip to Arizona, he nevertheless committed to Cal, and Jaylen Brown followed suit.

Fast forward to this week and Swanigan’s de-commitment. Swanigan’s final three schools were reportedly Michigan State, Purdue, and California. Swanigan’s adoptive father, Roosevelt Barnes, is a former football and basketball player at Purdue. Cuonzo Martin, the head coach at Cal, happens to be a former Purdue Boilermaker who "goes way back" with Barnes. There was no such connection with Michigan State, but he chose the school anyway. That he now changed his mind should come as no surprise to Arizona fans who have seen parental influence prevent players from committing to Arizona (Rick Rickert is the best basketball example, though DaVonte' Neal's father also apparently pushed him away from Arizona initially).

Fortunately for Arizona, the Cal superteam is not meant to be. Swanigan on Cal would be scary — he would fit very well as a short-but-stocky center next to the long-and-lean Rabb at power forward — and it could push an already-talented Cal team from a Pac-12 contender to the Pac-12 favorite. Thankfully, though, Swanigan appears to be committing to Purdue, not California. Dan Dakich claimed Swanigan to Purdue was "done" Thursday, and subsequently reported the commitment Friday:

If Swanigan follows through and does, in fact, commit to Purdue — nothing is final until he signs his letter of intent — it’s a minor victory for Arizona.