I would call today rock bottom, but it seems as if Purdue football is hellbent on hitting a rock bottom, then breaking out the earth moving equipment and working hard at digging an even deeper hole. That is probably what you could describe today as:
- Purdue gave up 34 points to one of the worst offenses in America.
- Purdue gave up 41 unanswered points after taking an early 6-0 lead.
- Purdue's offense moved from "missionary position" to "15-year-old conservative Christian boy touching his first boob" with a 6-0 lead. In fact, "Texas judge" is the only level of conservative above that.
- Purdue has now given up a combined 92 points at home to Virginia Tech and Minnesota, two teams with absolutely hideous offenses.
- Once again, Purdue looked completely an utterly surprised at the most basic of playcalls. For example, when Shannon Brooks scored on a 71 yard TD run in the first minute of the second half it was a clinic in how to not tackle a runner. Minnesota ran a play that gained a maximum of five yards the entire first half. With poor angles, botched tackles, and general apathy Purdue show what you need to do to give up a 71 yard run when a runner simply WANTS to be tackled, but the defense refuses to do so.
- Purdue pulled a Danny Hope by scoring on its opening drive, then hoping it would hold up the entire game. For awhile it even looked like it would work, but not to be undone, Purdue did everything possible to hand Minnesota a touchdown with a fumbled punt, a stop that was followed by an interception, and a touchdown. Once Purdue handed this touchdown hat Minnesota wanted no business in getting, the game was essentially over. Purdue fell behind 10-6 and it felt like an insurmountable lead.
- Purdue had 275 yards of total offense. 75 game on the opening drive, and the vast majority of the remaining 200came well after the result was decided.
- Purdue gave up its 4th defensive touchdown!
- Minnesota had no passing game at all. It was blatantly obvious not only that they would run, but obvious which direction they were going to run on most plays. Still, Purdue refused to stopt hem after the first quarter.
- Shannon Brooks had 115 yards rushing on 20 carries FOR HIS CAREER before today. He had 176 yards on 17 carries today, including the big run mentioned above that was, again, film on how to not tackle a running back.
- Minnesota did not score at all last week.
- Minnesota scored only 10 points 3 weeks ago against Kent State, the previous team led by our current coach that reached its height of the past four decades under our current coach, then went back to its status as "one of the worst teams at the FBS level."
- Players recruited by our current coach but coached by someone else for three years did better than players recruited and coached by our current coach. Also, the Kent State game against Minnesota was in Minneapolis. Today we were in West Lafayette.
- Minnesota had not cracked 30 points in a game this season before today.
What else can you say or do? This was a systematic failure in every aspect of the game of football. Purdue had a very winnable game at home, got an early lead, and as soon as Paul Griggs' extra point went off the left upright of the south end zone it was as if everyone on Purdue's sideline completely deflated. There was never a sign of fight from the offense after that. The defense at least kept up the charade for a quarter and a half.
From this point forward Hammer & Rails is going to use the phrase "contractually obligated" when it comes to football. I say that because SB Nation asks that we write about football since it gets a ton of traffic. Every writer here knows Purdue basketball does more traffic for us, but for six more games we have to cover Purdue football.
I am sorry for this.
I am sorry because there are no answers in sight. It is clear that the current coaching staff is completely and utterly overwhelmed to handle even the simplest of FBS level teams such as Minnesota that has a terrible offense with a good defense. It is clear, and has been for awhile, that Morgan Burke does not care as long as bottom lines are met. As we have seen, Purdue football can be garbage, but Morgan Burke can get a raise and a promotion even if the two "money" sports of football and men's basketball finish dead last in the Big Ten and football, which is clearly and obviously a moneymaker for any Power 5 conference program, has a historically awful season.
Mitch Daniels does not care about football as long as the Big Ten checks balance the books.
The Board of Trustees does not care as long as the Big Ten checks balance the books.
Folks, it will not get better. Purdue is so bad it cannot recruit. There is not a commitment from the university as a whole to make football better. Morgan Burke's hands are tied because he can only spend so much, which is still the lowest amount of the 14 Big Ten schools on athletics as a whole (and this is with giving millions back to Purdue University for the privilege of having sports teams, something no one else has to deal with). The coaching staff is inept and cannot beat
bad (Ed. Note: I should have said depleted instead of bad, as Minnesota was missing 11 starters and/or backups due to injuries. Never write when emotional) , half-dimensional teams like Minnesota. The problems with Purdue football go beyond the coaching staff. The entire university has betrayed the hard-working players on the field busting their asses to make things better.
It will not get better until there is a complete change of culture, and, for good measure, one of our best players in Ja'Whaun Bentley tore his ACL as the cherry on top of this turd sundae.
Basketball is our saving grace and it is 34 days away.