A few days ago, Zach Edey had 18 points and 13 rebounds in Purdue’s win at Wisconsin.

Afterward, a television analyst called it an “average” day for the 7-4 big man. And, frankly, that might have been a stretch of the truth, considering Edey’s averages are 23.1 points and 11.7 rebounds per game, but it’s telling, too; any player who would average 18 and 13 for a season would be all-conference, an All-American and potentially a national player-of-the-year candidate.

And Edey is better than that.

The Toronto, Ontario native is a generational talent, and one that nobody saw coming. He’s gone from his own basketball infancy in high school to ranked No. 440 in his recruiting class to part-time player as an underclassman at Purdue to a likely 2-time player-of-the-year, the first in the NCAA since Virginia’s Ralph Sampson won it 3 times consecutively in the early 1980s.

But where does that put Edey in Purdue history?

The Boilermakers — despite having not advanced to a Final Four since 1980 — have a rich basketball history, dating more than a century, from John Wooden to Joe Barry Carroll to Rick Mount to Glenn Robinson and a bunch of other greats. Right now, with another 8 regular-season games this season, plus the Big Ten and NCAA tournaments, Edey has pulled even with Robinson, the national player-of-the-year in 1994 who went on to be the No. 1 overall NBA Draft pick by the Milwaukee Bucks, as Purdue’s greatest of all time.

The Big Dog was an incredible player, scoring more than 1,700 points in his 2 seasons in West Lafayette — he didn’t play as a freshman, then left for the NBA after his junior year — including a Big Ten record 1,030 in ’94. That season, the 6-7 wing, who had as silky smooth a jumper as one might ever see, averaged 30.3 points and 11.2 rebounds per game, but his quest to get the Boilermakers to the Final Four came up a game short. Battling a bulky back, Robinson was allegedly injured during horseplay with teammates in the hotel the night before the game, No. 1 seed Purdue lost to Grant Hill-led Duke in the Elite Eight. It was likely Gene Keady’s best chance at a trip to the Final Four, although another regional final loss would come in 2000.

Edey still has a chance to get the Boilermakers to the program’s long-elusive goal, and if he does, then he’ll be Purdue’s GOAT all alone. Already, his statistical numbers are crazy good. He’s only the 3rd player in NCAA history with more than 2,000 career points, 1,000 career rebounds, 200 blocks (which he surpassed with his 3 blocks vs. the Badgers on Sunday) and a 60% clip from the field, joining Navy’s David Robinson and Georgetown’s Patrick Ewing on that exclusive list.

Edey has scored in double-figures for 73 consecutive games, has a school record 55 double-doubles and Monday earned his 10th Big Ten Player-of-the-Week honor, tying former Ohio State star Evan Turner for the league’s career record.

The notion that Edey’s accomplished such feats only because “he’s tall,” as many social media haters like to claim, is nonsensical, and tells more about the ignorance of the poster than the quality of the player.

Yes, Edey uses his size — 7-4, more than 300 pounds — to his advantage. But there have been tall players before, but few with the athleticism that Edey routinely displays. He has great hands, good touch, solid footwork and agility, mental toughness (which is necessary, because he’s hung on to, jabbed, kneed and whatever else by defenders more than any other college player) and incredible stamina.

He played 42 minutes, and had 30 points, 15 rebounds, 3 assists and only 2 turnovers, while drawing 14 fouls, in Purdue’s overtime victory against Northwestern on Wednesday. Edey is the single-most influential player in the NCAA since the days when traditional centers dominated the landscape, players like Ewing, Robinson and Sampson, but those players came along 40 years ago.

At Purdue, some might argue that Mount is the best to wear a Boilermaker uniform, and that has merit. Mount played only 3 seasons from 1968-70, in an era before freshman eligibility and before the 3-point line, and scored a school-record 2,323 points. But Edey is on pace to surpass the mark, if he plays in 12 more games (8 in the regular-season, then at least 4 in tournaments) and will break Carroll’s rebounds record (1,148 from 1977-80) within the next 3 games. He’s 5th on Purdue’s blocks list, with 201.

But Edey can put an end to any arguments about who is the best-ever at Purdue, if he gets the Boilermakers to the Final Four and certainly so if he wins a national championship.