Rants, ravings, and somewhat sensical opinions following the wild, wacky, and wide-wide world of Purdue sports
This weekend, Purdue did something that has never happened in their history. In fact, it more than likely will not happen again anytime soon. Purdue was one game away from a birth to the Rosebowl, and was playing in the Big Ten Championship game for the first time ever.
Did the Boilermakers take a zig-zag pathway to get to this point? Absolutely. Were they heavy underdogs against their opponent, the #2 Michigan Wolverines? Absolutely. While I wanted Purdue to win, I, as a fan, was just happy to be at this point. After losing two of their first 3 games, getting pantsed by Iowa and Wisconsin, I would have never thought they’d be here.
Gutty performance by the Boilermakers this regular season. There were lots of ups and plenty of downs… but Purdue did what they needed to do to get to this point.
Did the actual championship go the way that Purdue wished it would? Nope. Nevertheless, the Boilermakers are Big Ten West Champions, and had an opportunity to play for the Big Ten Championship.
The Football Game: Purdue 22, #2 Michigan 43
Boilers kept it close for two quarters, but Michigan did what they do best, respond strongly in the second half.
Aidan O’Connell threw for 366 yards, but no touchdowns and 2 interceptions. Charlie Jones had 13 receptions for 162 yards to lead the way on the receiving end. Devin Mockobee had 71 yards rushing and a touchdown. The offense wasn’t enough against the stout Michigan defense, settling for 5 field goals after promising drives stalled out.
Jamari Brown had an interception, which was the sole highlight on defense. Other than that there wasn’t much to write home about. There wasn’t many highlights from that side of the ball.
Break It Down:
Folks, I had flashes of my bright eyed optimism throughout the week, but I never really expected much from this game. I am glad that Purdue made it. I am grateful that Purdue fought hard in the battle. I am thankful for the effort put forth by this team. I am so very proud to be a Boilermaker.
With the regular season over, the bowl game matchups have been released. Purdue will travel south to Florida to take on the LSU Tigers, in the Cheez-It Citrus Bowl, on January 2nd. Geaux Boilers!
Big Ten Championship Photo Gallery by Mark Elsner: https://snapsbyme.smugmug.com/PurdueFootball/2022/B1GChampionship-Michigan/
The suddenly #5 Purdue Boilermakers continued their winning ways this week, taking down two more P5 teams.
- #5 Purdue 79, Florida State 69: Short rest Boilermakers got approximately 1 day of a break from their Portland trip, only to take flight to Tallahassee… on a flight that was delayed. Boilermakers looked sluggish early but a dominant Zach Edey and a blossoming star in Braden Smith took over late. Edey had 25 points and 8 rebounds. Smith had 13 points, 9 rebounds, and 7 assists.
- Minnesota 70, #5 Purdue 89: Zach Edey started slowly, but ended up taking a stranglehold on this game. He scored 31 points and pulled in 22 rebounds. Fletcher Loyer added 20 points and 8 assists. Newman, Furst, and Kauffman-Renn all scored in double digits. A rare stress-free inter conference battle!
Break It Down:
Purdue continues to look tough in the early season. I’ve watched a bunch of basketball in my lifetime, and this team looks very sharp so far. It remains to be seen whether or not this pattern will continue, but the young players, coupled with the older vets are hitting on all cylinders so far!
Big Man on Campus:
Literally and figuratively, Zach Edey is the BMOC this week. In two contests, Edey averaged 28 points and 15 rebounds. There is a reason that the talking heads are saying that he is the front runner for National Player of the Year, this early in the season.
Keep up the good work, big man!
Minnesota Photo Gallery by Mark Elsner: https://snapsbyme.smugmug.com/Purdue-Mens-Basketball/22-23/Minnesota/
A Look Ahead:
#5 Purdue hosts Hofstra on 12/7, and then goes on the road this weekend to Nebraska on 12/10. As of the writing of this article there have been no lines published, but the Boilermakers should be a significant favorites versus the Pride & will be laying points on the road in Lincoln. Look for Boiler Ball to continue their winning ways!
As for football, we’ll talk about them closer to January!
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