November 26, 2012
Post-game report card: Purdue-Indiana
Purdue-Indiana Post-Game Report Card
Passing Offense: Purdue had only one blemish in the passing game, and it might have turned into the highlight of the whole afternoon.
When Robert Marve threw a pick late in the first half - the ball hit three players before Greg Heban hauled it in - the Purdue quarterback raced 70 yards to cut him down short of the goal line. Impressive obviously, and more so knowing that Marve has a torn ACL in his left knee.
It was a highlight in a lowlight. But Marve and the passing game largely were excellent. The sixth-year senior had a career-high 348 yards - Purdue's first 300-plus yards passing game since Joey Elliott in 2009 - with four touchdowns and the pick. He missed on only nine passes, with at least a few of those being drops. Akeem Hunt had three himself.
The back-to-back fourth-quarter touchdowns - on the throwback and the wheel route - were perfectly executed, and staples of the Purdue offense.
Rob Henry, for good measure, hit one pass completion, a perfectly called and executed 25-yard jailbreak screen for a touchdown.
Nine different Boilermakers caught passes.
The offensive line had its best game in pass protection, as Purdue's QB weren't sacked, and Marve was hit only a couple times.
Rushing Offense: Purdue had 185 yards with three touchdowns and averaged 4.9 yards per carry.
But a couple times, the Boilermakers didn't not convert on third-and-short rushing plays, contributing to a 1-of-8 first-half conversion rate.
And IU is awful in defending the rush, allowing 220 yards per game, so factor that in.
But Akeem Shavers showed that he can be a workhorse back - he probably should have gotten more carries during the season - with 126 yards on 27 carries. He just runs hard, sheds tackles and seems to get better as the defense wears down. And with Ralph Bolden out, Brandon Cottom got some carries as a featured back, and averaged about 10 yards on his four carries.
Offense Overall: Purdue had 556 yards against the Hoosiers, despite basically skipping the second quarter. It's the second straight week the Boilermakers have done that in a win, having missed most of the first vs. Illinois a seven days before.
In the second, Purdue had three straight drives of three-and-out, three-and-out, then interception.
But otherwise, the Boilermakers made few other mistakes.
Purdue mixed up the play-calling to keep Indiana off-balance and Marve executed very well.
Rushing Defense: Stephen Houston had 123 yards rushing in the first half, with three touchdowns.
That included a 51-yard scamper on the left sideline on IU's first possession, when the Boilermakers couldn't fight off blocks to make a tackle.
Houston averaged 5.6 yards per carry.
Passing Defense: Cameron Coffman matched Marve with 348 yards passing, but it took him an extra 24 pass attempts to get there. Indiana largely went with a highly efficient short-yardage passing game.
But when the Hoosiers tried to go deep, they paid for it. Frankie Williams had a pick on a horribly thrown deep ball into double coverage; Max Charlot had good position to grab a deflection; and Antoine Lewis jumped a route on a fourth-down slant, nearly taking the pick back for a touchdown.
Purdue scored off of each of the interceptions - and got another off IU's fumble midway through the third quarter - which turned the tide in the second.
The Boilermakers were willing to give up the yardage in exchange for the turnovers.
Defense Overall: Indiana had more than 500 yards and scored 35 points, so that's not good. But Purdue's defense generated four turnovers, and held the Hoosiers to only 14 in the second half.
Purdue didn't have any sacks, and didn't pressure Coffman much.
Special Teams: Purdue never had to attempt a field goal, because it kept scoring touchdowns.
And Cody Webster made it a good kicking day, with a 45.6 average on his six kicks. And he boomed a 64-yarder that was downed at the 3, and had another drop into the 20. He did have one touchback.
Raheem Mostert returned as a kick returner after an injury to Hunt, and had three returns for 82 yards, including a 59-yarder in which it briefly appeared he might take it to the house. But Mostert also fumbled a ball out of the end zone that he had to recover at the 1. Of course, it set up a 99-yard scoring drive.
Indiana didn't do anything notable in returns, having only a 19 yard average on six kickoff attempts and with only one punt return for eight yards. Thomas Meadows did boot his last kickoff out-of-bounds for a penalty.
Overall: After being down seven at the break, Purdue largely dominated the second, outscoring IU 42-14 to rally for the win.
The Boilermakers won the turnover battle, giving it away only once, which set up IU's go-ahead TD at the end of the first half. But they were plus-4 in the second, scoring a touchdown after each of the turnovers.
The game wasn't flawless: IU scored a bunch and had a ton of yards, but that was bound to happen against a good Hoosier offense.
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