BS Predicto: OMHR Edition
It's a storied grudge match that goes back decades. Even before anyone cared about it, even. Some might argue that there's still almost nobody that cares about this game. Jim Delaney, in his everlasting wisdom, saw the value of this Red Sox-Yankees, Bears-Packers, USA-USSR (all rolled into one) rivalry for the value it has and decreed that Purdue and Iowa would be a "protected" rivlary, a "crossover" guaranteed to be played until the end of time... or at least until new teams joined the conference and realignment occurred.
Since the children of the corn were assigned as OMHR (Our Most Hated Rival, for those uninitiated), it's been a torrid rivalry, split 50-50 right down the middle. Each team has won on the other's home field. And way back in 2008, the Hawkeyes had the distinction of handing Joe Tiller his final defeat as Purdue's head coach.
Kirk Ferentz is currently doing what Kirk Ferentz do: earning his astronomical paycheck by guiding a middling team to a middling record in what's perceived as a middling conference. What a magic trick! PAY THAT MAN! Hell, it's expensive to live in Iowa.
But enough about this storied rivalry. What do these schlubs think about the game? Are they even still watching Purdue football? Let's find out.
Predicto Records: Who cares? It's like predicting the sunrise.
The pain of it all. The joy of making a prediction is completely gone when you say Purdue will probably lose by 55, actually predict them to lose by 57 and they do lose by 56. Now I'm left to make prop bets in Vegas like "Will Purdue have more turnovers than points scored?" Could go either way. Iowa needs this win to become bowl eligible. They will be bowl eligible sometime around 12:04 PM, depending on who gets the ball. Do I sound completely defeated? Absolutely. At least when Alstott was destroying teams singlehandedly and a 4-1-1 start was something so awesome I couldn't believe it (that is to say the teams were not typically very good) there were no expectations for success.
This time the beat downs keep coming week after week but the summer was filled with excitement, and that makes it all the worse. I don't know what to say really. It sucks as a fan. Can you imagine what the players feel like? They've got to grind day to day and week to week or the team will not improve. How do they get motivated to do that? I guess that's why they get paid the big bucks. Oh wait, this isn't the $EC. Sorry boys, keep grinding. It truly can only get better.
Let’s start with some straight stats. On average Purdue is averaging 70 rushing yards per game, 188.3 passing, giving up 37.1 points per game and only scoring 11.5 points per outing. The last time the Boilermaker scored was Oct. 14, the government was still shutdown and Beiber had not yet been caught paying for “escorts” at least publicly. If this isn’t the worst team in college football it’s close. This is the worst team I can remember watching as a Purdue fan and I know a lot of people feel the same way.
I missed attending the Indiana State game due to work, so the countdown will climb to 350 days on Saturday since I’ve seen a Purdue football victory in person, that stings (stings? No. It feels like a damn Mack Truck).
Iowa is a team that is better than what they look like on paper. People were writing them off with the NIU loss earlier this season at home, but NIU is actually decent, we should all remember from the smack they handed the Boilers. The Hawkeyes need this win to clinch a bowl berth and they should get it against Purdue. Iowa is only favored by 14.5, which is a joke. Iowa will win this game by at least 30. This season has been rough, but brighter times are ahead. We all need to be patient and give Hazell some time, myself included.
Purdue 7 Iowa 45
Est. Attendance 20,000
In this season, each of the remaining opponents has shown more than enough life to beat a struggling Boiler squad. Iowa lost to Northern Illinois by 3 points - yes, 55-24 NIU - and posted reasonable losses to MSU, OSU and Wisconsin, all pretty good teams. They also have a 16-point win at Minnesota, which looks pretty good now that the Gophers are 7-2. Having passed off its offensive-injury curse to Northwestern, the Hawkeyes will become bowl-eligible with a win Saturday, and they will get that win. Iowa's offense isn't particularly impressive, so with luck, they'll have some long, unproductive drives that will take time off the clock.
I read recently that the Boilers haven't run a play in their opponents' red zone since September [You read that here! Thanks for stopping by! :-) -Ed.]. On one hand, that's only four games ago. On the other hand, that play happened when it was 55-17 NIU. Purdue's last meaningful red zone series was in the second quarter against Wisconsin, after Ricardo Allen's interception, and it went gain of 5, loss of 2, incomplete pass, field goal.
Can we play Notre Dame again?
I'm sure there are Purdue fans out there thinking that at least the worst of this brutal schedule is behind us. And they'd be right. But they're not correct if they think that means the season cannot get worse. Oh, it can and probably will get worse (or at least feel worse) the rest of the way. Why? Because Purdue is now going to play some of the also-rans of the conference -- some of which are legitimately terrible (I'm looking at you, Illini) -- and may still get curb-stomped. It's one thing to be destroyed in painful fashion by BCS-bowl caliber teams. It's quite another to get pasted by a run-down PSU team, a mediocre Iowa team or, god forbid, an Ilinois team that hasn't won a Big Ten game since Carter was President. (Am I exaggerating? I'll have to check the records.)
It's hard to imagine Purdue suddenly being able to score. That's the most disheartening part. Losing is acceptable if it's building to something... but hey, lose 56-21 or something. Losing without putting up any fight is sad. Let's forget about getting into the red zone -- let's get inside the opponent's 40, boys!
Mercy killing by Iowa.
OMHR 21, Purdue 7