Caleb Swanigan, a former standout at Purdue University who played in the NBA for several seasons, died Monday (June 20) night at the age of 25 of natural causes, the Allen County Coroner’s Office confirmed to WANE 15.
Purdue University also confirmed Swanigan’s death in a post shared on the men’s basketball team’s verified Twitter account.
” Devastated,” the account wrote alongside a graphic showing Swanigan. “Our thoughts and prayers to Caleb Swanigan’s family and friends. The world lost a gentle soul last night. Love you Biggie.”
Swanigan, who experienced homelessness as a child before being adopted, went on to have a decorated high school career as a McDonald’s All-American and Indiana Mr Basketball winner.
The Indianapolis native and Homestead (Fort Wayne) standout was the No. 1 player from the state of Indiana, No. 4 center and No. 19 overall prospect in the 2015 national recruiting cycle before signing with Purdue.
Swanigan was a consensus first-team All-American and won numerous national awards during his final season with the Boilermakers, including Big Ten Player of the Year, the Lute Olson Award and Pete Newell Big Man Award, as well as having been selected as a Big Ten All-Freshman during his first season.
Swanigan was selected by the Portland Trail Blazers at No. 26 overall in the 2017 NBA Draft and averaged 2.4 points and 2.9 rebounds per game during five NBA seasons, which also included a stint with the Sacramento Kings (2018-2020).