This week we're a pessimistic bunch at H&R. We're mostly expecting bad news tomorrow night at Lucas Oil Stadium. Time to prove us wrong, fellas:
Can I just provide a video of my dad shaking his head and taking another drink of scotch?
Purdue has Notre Dame right were they want them. Last weeks loss was all part of Hazell's master plan. What you saw last week was sandbagging at its finest. Notre Dame thinks Purdue can't block, tackle, or throw and that's all by design. Now we spring the trap. Purdue comes out and looks stunningly competent. The offensive line blocks, the linebackers make crunching tackles, and the quarterback drills the out route all game long. Golson is off of his game after staying up all night attempting to write a five paragraph essay on how he spent his year long vacation. Purdue wins, and in convincing fashion. Purdue 28, Notre Dame 17
Rachel Van Gessel
Purdue gets torn apart by a more talented Notre Dame team. Gets a token TD in the last five minutes of the game. Purdue 10 Notre Dame 45
I just want to see improvement. Somewhere. Anywhere. I thought the D line looked better at some points last week, but the tackling in the 2nd half was atrocious. I really don't care who starts or finishes at quarterback as long as he's making good decisions and completing passes at a higher percentage. Accuracy has been a huge problem and Purdue isn't going to win any games if they can't maintain a consistent passing threat.
If the Boilers can limit the turnovers and shameless penalties, get the ball in the hands of their playmakers, force the Irish to cough it up a few times, and get some big plays on special teams, then they can be competitive and make it interesting. Obviously, for all of that to happen would be a complete mirror image of last week and things don't usually go that way. It takes time, and this squad isn't anywhere close to where it needs to be. Notre Dame 41, Purdue 17
There might be only one thing going for Purdue going into this game: Purdue hasn't lost a football game played indoors since 2005 (KEEP THE ROOF CLOSED!). Granted, it's only a 3 game winning streak right now (2 bowl games in Detroit and beating Minnesota in the Inflatable Play Pin (aka the Metrodome) in 2007), but it's still something. Either way, Purdue is screwed this weekend if it plays the way it has since 2013 (Granted, that 2013 team did not give up the lead against ND until collapsing in the 4th quarter). Basically, we have two options for Saturday that we have seen in the last 3 years: either we bow out early like the 2011 game, or Purdue puts up a fight until losing it in the 4th quarter, like 2012 and 2013. Sadly, I think it will be the former. I think Etling should stay as starter mainly because the season is still young and throwing Appleby in now against a Top 15 team might do more harm than good at the moment. Ultimately, Purdue gives up big plays and makes costly mistakes early, and ND coasts to a victory after the half. Purdue 6, Notre Dame 31
So it has come to this. I mapped the route from my house to Lucas Oil Stadium and it is 4.2 miles. If I could walk as the crow flies it is probably closer. I could climb onto my roof and see the stadium. I am very likely NOT attending a game so close. Over the summer finances were tight and the ridiculous prices put out by Notre Dame were a deterrent. Now, with a new job and a little disposable income I am still loathe to drop $120 apiece on a secondary market ticket. Why? I don't want to spend that amount to see us get killed, which is the most likely scenario.
And that is exactly what would happen if I went tomorrow night. I have a HORRIBLE record seeing Purdue in venues for the first time away from Ross-Ade. Only three times has Purdue won when I have seen them in a venue for the first time: at Cincinnati in 2001, at Northwestern in 2006, and in the Little Caesar's Bowl in 2011. Most of the time Purdue gets absolutely crushed (at Michigan in 2007, at Wisconsin in 2009, and at Minnesota in 2012) when I see them somewhere new. I have a record of 3-11-1 the first time I see Purdue in a venue (yes, my first game at Ross-Ade was a tie in 1987).
So, by staying home I am at least giving us a small chance. I could see sitting on my couch around 10:30pm Saturday regretting that I didn't get to see this upset in person, while I could also see myself filing out of Lucas Oil at 10:30 wondering why I wasted the money to go. At least the purchased beer in my fridge is free.
A LOT has to go right for Purdue to have a chance, and judging by what I saw last week, that includes multiple cases of dysentery suffered by Notre Dame starters (and reserves for that matter). We're likely going to lose, and lose by a lot. Notre Dame 45, Purdue 13