Let's be honest...not many of us thought Purdue had a chance of going to a bowl. But any chance was crushed today in East Lansing by the Spartans. Purdue's offense followed a 500-plus yard, 48-point game with a 191 yard, 7-point game. Justin Siller didn't look human, he looked bad. Am I angry at the kid? No, not really. Do I think he should start the rest of the season? Yes.
My thesis the entire season has been, "It's the coaching, stupid." (to steal a political phrase and mix it up a bit). This offense looked crappy with Painter, Elliott and now Siller under, or a few yards behind center. Tiller blamed the offensive line today, which definitely deserves some of the blame...as does Siller. But, this offense is simply not prepared game-in, game-out. And when they face moderate-to-good defenses, they look bad...and have all season. The play-calling is lousy, the execution is too (by the way, that comes back to coaching, once again). No matter, the season is coming to a close...and Tiller's time as Purdue's coach will end with a whimper in the month of November.
There are guys who deserve better on this team. Greg Orton, who had two yards receiving is a good receiver and is getting very few opportunities to showcase his skeelz. Desmond Tardy who spent three years behind Mr. Softee now simply doesn't get a ton of chances to touch the ball. Kory Sheets had nearly 100 yards again today, but you don't get to run the ball much when you're perpetually down by 14 or more points. Anthony Heygood had 14 tackles and looked like he killed an MSU player on a particular hard hit in the first half. Magee, Baker and Neal have all played well as the season has progressed...and along with Williams and Heygood, these Seniors have held some good offenses to not many points. It's sad to see guys who literally bleed for a program have their careers end without much recognition...but it happens a lot in college football. Hopefully a few of them make some money playing football...more importantly, I hope they're all prepared for life after college.
Regardless of the effort given by the players, we're getting what we've paid for. Years of playing just-well-enough-to-get-by has caught up with a coach who refused to rebuild a program that has been deteriorating for a while now...and passion-less coaching has led to lackluster preparation and unimaginative gameplans. While the season is not quite over, it's time to look to the future.
-Minnesota and NU fans- I told you long ago your teams were pretenders...You refused to listen. The proof is in front of you.
-Nice job Illini! You've helped IU and UM players feel not-so-bad about their losses to MAC schools this season.
-Texas Tech is really fun to watch. The remind me of what it was like to have an offense.
-Notre Dame is getting beaten right now by an OK BC team...and while the game is a 17-point deficit, it's really not that close. Another intersting note about the game, this will be UND's sixth-straight win agains the VooDoo Catholics. UND is not good...nor is Clausen. 5 losses, with this type of schedule is eerily-similar to a Joe Tiller-coached team in the mid '00s.
This is how lousy Notre Dame's football program is- they're going to lose at least 5 this season and their fanbase is going to be completely fine with Weis returning next season. Great job Irish fans and administration! Keep up the mediocrity!
-Lastly, and surely least, great job, PSU! You've helped yourselves avoid assured embarassment in the first month of next year at the BCS Championship. Perhaps your fans shouldn't have been bitching last week about the polls.