I'm Looking At You, Jaycen Taylor

Yes, you. You're the reason for the Purdue season becoming rather disappointing.

Oh, sure, I know. The Boilers' offense didn't show up in a home loss to OSU and most of the team apparently missed the bus to Ann Arbor in a shellacking to Michigan, but I could have overlooked those. In the second quarter of this past Saturday's game at Nappy Valley, the Boilermaker offense was clicking. You guys were driving, leading 10-3. Summers has been making his kicks and continued doing so in a venue I never thought he'd be solid in. Bryant had managed to hold onto the ball all game and had even returned the opening kickoff 95 yards to the house. Things were actually going Purdue's way.

Then, on about the two yard line, your number was called to punch it in and give the Boilermakers a 17-3. And I have to tell you, Jaycen, a two touchdown lead against an Anthony Morelli-led offense would have felt pretty damn good, especially considering that the defense was playing some decent ball and the offense was playing steady. In other words, exactly what you need in a tough road game.

So you get the ball and decide to carry it like a fricking loaf of damn bread! What the F were you thinking? Seriously, dude. You stuck the ball out in front of you and it was dislodged because you knocked into Sean Lee, a linebacker who the ESPN guys and PSU radio guys kept insisting made "a great play." No, he didn't. He happened to be there and Taylor banged the ball against him and, surprise surprise, it popped loose.

So instead of being up 17-3, it allows PSU to regian momentum and march down to tie the game 10-10. I knew it was over there. Seriously. I think on some level, we all did. And this is what it's like to be a Purdue fan.

With a chance to go up 17-3, at that precise moment, the idea of a 10-2 season actually seems possible -- almost likely. And then just like that, with a brain fart, it's gone.

If it's not Jaycen Taylor (and what the hell is with that name, Jaycen?), then it's Kyle Orton fumbling with Purdue leading another ranked team and being #5 in the nation with GameDay being there and trying to move to 6-0....

It sucks that this kind of stuff keeps happening. Sure, sure, I realize Purdue wasn't ranked when Taylor fumbled away 2007, but he had the opportunity in his hands to change what we've all begun to expect of Purdue football. Winning at State College would have been huge -- on senior day, no less. It would have gotten us attention, it would have moved us to 8-2, it would have meant a lot even with PSU unranked, too.

And that opportunity disappeared, yet again.


Go Puck Yourself

Boiled Sports Weekly Real Genius: Paul Johnson