10/16/2023 Boilermaker Water Cooler Chat: Buckeye Beatdown Edition

Photo: Mark Elsner

Rants, ravings, and somewhat sensical opinions following the wild, wacky, and wide-wide world of Purdue sports, following the Boilermakers’ 41-7 home loss to the Ohio State Buckeyes.

Lets imagine, if you will, a theoretic Purdue fan. Just your average run of the mill, Purdue guy.

We’ll call him Billy McStrawman, forty something super-fan.

Every Saturday, Billy McStrawman wears the same throwback novelty jersey. He orders the same meat lovers pizza, and drinks the same brand of beer.

Billy never played football, but he is probably an expert. He knows football like the back of his hand. He reminisces about how he should have tried out for 8th grade football as he sits down in his armchair. “I would’ve been quarterback!” he grumbles as he eases into the cushions.

His superior intelligence shines, however. He impresses his wife, every week with his expert knowledge which he exclaims, frequently, throughout the entire game. The wife patronizes his attempts. His dog, listens intently, nervously.

“I could’ve made that catch,” he says, while grabbing his fifth slice of pizza. “What is coach thinking with that play call?” he continues. “Idiots.”

As inebriation sets in, and his wife’s indifference continues, the dog has finally escaped the room, as the yelling begins.

His anger overflows, and his unearned confidence begins to boil over. “I COULD COACH THIS TEAM BETTER! HOW DO THESE IDIOTS HAVE JOBS!? I KNOW BETTER THAN THEM!”

Meanwhile the score becomes more lopsided. For every Ohio State touchdown, 2-3 more beers succumb to emptiness.

Suddenly, it all makes sense. The clouds open up. A choir of angles sing from above Billy McStrawman’s armchair.

“EUREKA!!” Billy says, “I’VE FIGURED IT OUT.”

His wife’s eyes drop from her book to meet his.

“IN ORDER TO FIX PURDUE, WE MUST FIRE ONE OF THE COORDINATORS AFTER 7 GAMES!!! IT IS THE BEST WAY TO FIX THINGS, WITHOUT ANY POSSIBLE REPERCUSSIONS! THERE IS ABSOLUTELY ZERO DOWNSIDE TO THIS GENIUS DECISION!”

“K.” His wife responds.

“HOLD ON, I GOTTA TWEET THIS!!!”

The Game:

Ohio State did exactly what is expected for the #3 team in the nation is supposed to do against a 2-4 team. When the Buckeyes have one of the best defenses in the nation, and an offense filled with 4-5* players on the bench, you know that defeating them will be difficult.

Devin Mockobee ran for 110 yards, on 6.1 YPC average. This was part of 123 yards of rushing offense, which happens to be the most rushing yards against Ohio State since Michigan in 2022. Hudson Card completed 40% of his passes, for only 126 yards and a touchdown.

Defensively, Purdue turned Ohio State over twice, with Yanni Karlaftis and Kydran Jenkins recovering fumbles – Karlaftis and Dillon Thieneman led the team with 9 tackles each. Other than that, Purdue’s defense was overwhelmed by the Buckeyes.

Break It Down:

What did you expect to happen? I am just being honest with you folks. This Purdue team is not as bad as people make it seem, but they’re also not in the same orbit as Ohio State. Not even close.

I have harped on this over and over the past few years. Purdue’s starters are pretty good, their backups are hit and miss, and the further you get down the depth chart, the more troublesome it gets. Purdue simply does not have the horses that a program like Ohio State does.

Purdue lost more starting offensive linemen this week. This is a huge deal, but people want to blame the coaches. Fans think that this is a video game, where you can take “Roster Player” and plug him into the spot. By throwing the ball to X on Play Action Double Slant 1, you aren’t a creative play caller. Without skilled, healthy linemen, you cant be creative. You hold on for dear life, and call a play that gives a low level depth chart player the opportunity to provide -some- time. This not an indictment of the linemen, this is a simple statement of fact, no offense is going to work when multiple of your best offensive linemen are hurt. Full stop. Reread that sentence. Reread it again.

If you read this and do not understand that previous point, then go hang out with Billy McStrawman.

Missing 3 field goals, throwing 21 incompletions on 35 attempts, or generally not being able to stop a superiorly talented team… couple those with the injuries and a rainstorm, and you get Saturday.

What Went Well:

  • Devin Mockobee: Ran with a purpose, ran angry, and ran wild on the Buckeyes. This young man appears to have righted the ship and is back on track.
  • Caleb Krockover: Hit an extra point for the Boilers, the only kick made, following Julio Macias’ 3 misses.
Photo: Mark Elsner

Ohio State Photo Gallery: https://snapsbyme.smugmug.com/PurdueFootball/2023/OhioState/

Opportunities for Improvement:

  • Hudson Card: Is playing through some tough injuries, and has been doing as best as he can given these circumstances. Whether or not he is running from his life or taking big hits, he has shown guts this season. Against Ohio State, he completed merely 40% of his passes for 126 yards. Yes it was rainy, yes it was against one of the best defenses in the nation, but Hudson will tell you himself, this isn’t enough to be competitive against teams like OSU.
  • I understand…: But I don’t have to like it. I’m sure he doesn’t like it much, but missing 3 field goals is completely unacceptable. It appears that Ben Freehill may be returning soon, which should be a boost.
  • When the ball is at the 1: You need to score. A stuffed run. An incomplete pass. A holding call. A sack. A missed field goal. What plays kill you there? The holding call and the sack absolutely kill you, and the missed kick… well that’s kicking you while you’re down.

A Look Ahead:

Purdue has a bye week. Thank goodness for rest, this team needs it, and needs to mend up. The Purdue vs the Bye Week line has opened as Purdue as a 2 point favorite…

Next time you’ll see the Beloved Burly Boilermakers will be at Nebraska on 10/28.

For more content like this follow @ISC_Purdue on Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook. For a deeper look into the mad mind of Ben Kolodzinski, follow him at @BRKolo on Twitter. WARNING: Viewer’s discretion is advised…

About Benjamin Kolodzinski 105 Articles
Blending the passion of a sports fan with years of media experience, Ben Kolodzinski is a unique personality for ISC Purdue. Since the 2017-18 NCAA seasons, Ben has written weekly columns for ISC, with a style that can only be described as snarky, irreverent, and often times irrelevant. A 2008 graduate from Purdue West Lafayette, Kolodzinski has worked for several local and regional media outlets. Best known for his television and radio work at Lakeshore Public Media (Lakeshore Public Television, and 89.1 The Lakeshore), Kolodzinski helped grow Northwest Indiana's only nightly news show Lakeshore News Tonight, along with The Region's only local sports shows Prep Sports Report, and Prep Football Report. As of 2022, Kolodzinski hosts Lakeshore Gamenight, a prep football radio show and cohosts Lakeshore PBS Scoreboard, a prep football TV highlight show. Kolodzinski is known, locally, for having a fun loving and gregarious personality, and for attempting to inject humor into his reporting... sometimes successfully.

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