A year and a half into the rebuild of Purdue’s football program Jeff Brohm is a dead-even 9-9. He has already matched his predecessor’s win total and that is without the benefit of a single FCS win. Of the nine losses, five are by a total of 11 points (Rutgers, Nebraska, Northwestern 2018, Eastern Michigan, and Missouri), and that is a testament to a greatly improved offense. Here is where Purdue stacks up nationally through five games:
Total Offense (Yards) – 13th
Purdue is definitely moving the football under Brohm. So far the Boilers have amassed 2,450 yards of total offense. Hawaii leads this category at 2,975, but they have already played six games to Purdue’s five. The usual suspects are up here as well, including Texas Tech, Oklahoma State, Oregon, Clemson, Ohio State, and Alabama.
Total Offense (Yards Per Game) – 19th
Purdue’s average comes out to 490 yards per game. Right now we’re gaining about twice as many yards per game through the air vs. on the ground, but much of that is due to how well David Blough has played over the last three games. Against Eastern Michigan Purdue only had 135 yards passing. Against Northwestern we had only 270. Blough’s improved play has done wonders for the total offense.
Passing Yards – 9th
So far Purdue has thrown for 1,601 yards between Blough and Elijah Sindelar. Sindelar had a good yardage half against Northwestern, but was mostly ineffective against Eastern Michigan. Blough has been bombing away and nearly went for 600 against Missouri.
Passing Yards Per Game – 15th
Purdue is averaging a healthy 320.2 yards per game, and that is even with the dismal 135 against EMU. That is an outlier, but it is evened out somewhat by the Missouri game. If you look at the last three games Purdue jumps to 399 yards per game. That would trail only Washington State and Texas Tech. There is still room for improvement too given the number of drops in Lincoln last Saturday. Purdue has also thrown just one interception since the first half against Northwestern.
Rushing Yards – 62nd
The good news is that Purdue is not one-dimensional. DJ Knox and Markell Jones have done a great job on the ground and Blough has been good at knowing went to scamper for key first downs. Purdue has 849 yards rushing, which is more than it had in the entire 2013 season (805) when it finished 125th nationally out of 126 teams.
Rushing Yards Per Game – 76th
Purdue is at 169.8 yards per game, but again, there are outliers. We were over 300 yards against Eastern Michigan with a pair of 100 yard rushers. We had 202 against Northwestern with 76 coming on a single play. That has us around 100 yards a game in the other three games. This number could go up as Illinois is not good against the run (243.5 yards per game).
Points Per Game – 65th
Here we are tied with Akron at 31 points per game. This is the result of a lot of points left on the field. The red zone offense has improved to 51% at 21 of 24, but we have nine field goals compared to 12 touchdowns once we get there. We’ve also had turnovers and missed field goals in that 20-40 yard line zone that were costly. This particular area is where the Eastern Michigan game was lost. Converting field goals into touchdowns against Missouri were also a difference.
Rondale Moore – We all know Moore is the team leader in a ton of categories, but he is performing very well nationally. He is fifth in the country with 41 receptions, 16th with 457 yards, and 4th with 895 all-purpose yards. These marks all lead the Big Ten as well. He is averaging 179 all-purpose yards per game and is a threat to score pretty much every time he touches the ball.
David Blough – Despite trading the job with Sindelar for two weeks Blough is 17th nationally with 1,318 passing yards. He is 29th in yards per game at 263.6, 47th at 12.8 yards per completion, and 30th in passing efficiency with a rating of 155.5. Again, these numbers are skewed mostly because of the first two games. He has been excellent in the last three with 1,196 yards, a completion percentage over 65%, 7 touchdowns, 1 interception, and 29 yards rushing with a pair of TDs.
Spencer Evans – Evans is trending well with nine made field goals, good for 4th in the nation.