After a rip-roaring 3-0 out of conference start, the Hoosier faithful were once again excited about their Hoosiers. Ben Chappell's offense was humming as they averaged 40+ per game and Lynch's squad was feasting on tasty cupcakes that would've made Joe T. blush. But, the BT schedule has not been kind...so, a lousy IU team heads to Ross-Ade to play a banged up Boiler squad.
If you're not in Indiana or an alum of Purdue or IU, you probably don't care...but the players will.
What will happen tomorrow at high-noon?
If you're a pessimist or think the team is cooked, then I can't fault you for worrying about this game. A loss here would be a really terrible way to finish the season. Not just because it's IU, but because this is an 0-7 in conference IU team. They're really bad. So is Purdue, sure, but I think Purdue's still got better athletes. That plus being at home plus Danny Hope's ability to get them up for certain games... like this one... and I think it's enough.
Purdue's defense was able to severely slow down Michigan's vaunted offense as well as Wisconsin's, so I reason that they'll be able to handle IU's offense. On the other side of the ball, that's where it could be hideous. Purdue's offense is just terrible right now and IU's defense is... perhaps even more terrible. Ah, but what about last week? For three quarters, Purdue's offense actually moved the ball effectively....and against a team that in any other year would be in the national title discussion right now. IU can make no such claim.
If THAT offense (from the MSU game) shows up tomorrow, then this will be another Purdue blowout and likely, one would think, the end of Bill Lynch's time at IU. If the typical Purdue offense shows up, then it'll be a closer game, but one that I would still expect the Boilers to win. When was the last time they played this game at home and didn't come out fired up?
Purdue hasn't lost a home Bucket Game since the Wabash was clean, Boilerdowd was young and Tim had hair.
Sorry, that's just me being silly.... the Wabash wasn't clean.
If you like statistical rankings, this intro will be as delicious as Thanksgiving leftovers:
Weakness v. Weakness:
The worst scoring offense in the BT (Purdue) plays the worst scoring defense in the BT (IU).
The worst pass offense in the BT (Purdue) plays the second-worst pass defense in the league (IU).
I could go on as IU's defense is the worst or in the bottom three in nearly every category. At the same time, we have reason to believe that Purdue's offense has figured out its identity, finally, as the rash of injuries has settled down and Rob Henry's finger seems to be healing each week.
Offensively for the Hoosiers, Chappell is a very good quarterback with some very good receivers. Purdue has a few pretty good DBs, a great DB and the best pass rusher in the league...possibly the best we've seen in a Purdue uniform in the last 20 years (that says a lot). Kerrigan should make that official on Saturday by passing Colvin's all-time sack mark (he needs 1.5 to tie).
As we've seen time and time again, Bill Lynch teams get worse as the season progresses and Purdue has been able to benefit from this a couple times. They will again. Without a rushing attack, look for Kerrigan to get three sacks...and at the same time for Henry to give us a lil' something to look forward to in '11.