Purdue Football 2020: Week 5 Matchup Preview – Minnesota


Kick Off

7:30 PM ET

Location

TCF Bank Stadium in Minneapolis, Minnesota (Cap. 50,805)

Weather

Forecast: 34°F, 0% chance of rain, Winds 8mph NW

2020 Record

Purdue (2-1) 

Minnesota (1-3)

S&P+ Rankings

Purdue- 43

Minnesota- 48

All-Time Series Wins

Purdue- 33

Minnesota – 39

Ties – 3

Last Win In Series

October 7th, 2017 at TCF Bank Stadium in Minneapolis, Minnesota (31-17)

September 28th, 2019 at Ross-Ade Stadium in West Lafayette, Indiana (38-31)

Projected Starting Lineups

Purdue

QB: Jack Plummer

RB: Zander Horvath

LT: Grant Hermanns

LG: Spencer Holstege

C: Sam Garvin

RG: DJ Washington

RT: Will Bramel

WR: David Bell

WR: Rondale Moore

WR: Milton Wright

NT: Lorenzo Neal

DE: George Karlaftis

DE: Branson Deen

OLB: DaMarcus Mitchell

ILB: Derrick Barnes

ILB: Jaylan Alexander

OLB: Jalen Graham

CB: Cory Trice

FS: Cam Allen

SS: Brennan Thieneman

CB: Dedrick Mackey

K: JD Dellinger

P: Brooks Cormier

LS: Nick Zecchino

KR: Rondale Moore

PR: Zander Horvath

Minnesota

2020 Stat Comparison

446PurdueMinnesota
Offensive Points per game25.029
Offensive Rushing Yards Per Game63.7215.3
Offensive Passing Yards Per Game305.3192.3
Total Offensive Yards Per Game369407.5
Defensive Points per game23.735.8
Defensive Rushing Yards Per Game150.7237.5
Defensive Passing Yards Per Game257.3209
Total Defensive Yards Per Game408446

What to Watch For

Well here we are folks. it’s time to really see what this Boilermaker squad is all about. After last week’s underwhelming performance against Northwestern, Purdue will need to get back off the canvas, stand up and starting punching. There is no driver’s seat left to occupy, just a line of opponents that Purdue needs to knock out. The first opponent in that line is a sort of new found rival in Minnesota. Let’s be clear, there is bad blood between Minnesota and pretty much every team in the Big Ten at this point. I guess you can say that’s what happens when you turn into a loud mouth program over night. But the bad blood runs deeper with Purdue than maybe any other school. There has been rumors of failed attempts to report Purdue for recruiting violations from the Minnesota side. Now I can’t confirm whether or not that is true, only Minnesota could confirm that, but alot of signs lead that way. Combine that with what many people believe was a dirty play on Rondale Moore last year that ended his season and potentially his career at Purdue and you have the recipe for an all out war. A war Purdue needs to be ready for.

There has been talk of Purdue getting some key players back and one person that is out, Aidan O’Connell. Purdue will have to turn to redshirt sophomore Jack Plummer at QB. After last week’s performance, many people thought this should be the case, so some folks are getting their wish. At this point in the year, I think Purdue’s ceiling will rest squarely on the QB and the play calling on offense. Purdue will have to perform much better on offense than they did last week against Northwestern, because the Minnesota defense this year is a complete shell of it’s former self. Purdue will need to really put the pedal to the metal against a vulnerable Gopher defense this week. I think we have a good shot of seeing the balanced look running and passing that Purdue was missing against Northwestern this week. Balance on offense will be a key, otherwise Minnesota defenders will be all over Purdue wide receivers, just like Northwestern was last week.

On the defensive side of the ball, Purdue has for the most part done it’s job. Get the ball to the offense with a chance to win the game, that is the Purdue philosophy. Up until this point the defense has done a great job of that. Unfortunately, Purdue is playing Minnesota, a team that the Boilers were woefully underprepared for defensively last season. While Tanner Morgan, isn’t quite living up to expectations this season, pairing him with Rashod Bateman means big play threats will loom large. Can Purdue stop the RPO this year, when they couldn’t last year? A 3-4 is a much better defense suited to defending RPO heavy offenses, so we shall see if Bob Diaco and Company are up to the task. At this point in time we do believe George Karlaftis will play tonight, how much he plays remains to be seen. Karlaftis will provide a significant boost to a defensive line that barely mustered any pocket pressure last week. If Morgan has all the time in the world to throw to guys like Bateman or Autman-Bell it could be a long night for the Boilers. Getting to Morgan will be paramount. The front seven will have an equally tough task defending the run against Mohamed Ibrahim, who has an astounding 715 yards rushing on 130 carries. That’s good for 5.5 yards per carry on a VERY high volume. Look for big games out of Barnes and Alexander if Purdue is going to be successful tonight.

It’s time for Purdue to show the Big Ten that they are a serious threat in the Big Ten West. The time is now, the place is in the great white north of Minnesota.

Radio/TV

Radio: Purdue Radio Network

TV: Big Ten Network

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