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Post-Bowl Game Announcement Presser

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Coach Brohm, Jacob Thieneman, D.J. Knox, and David Blough were made available

NCAA Football: Purdue at Indiana Trevor Ruszkowski-USA TODAY Sports

With the announcement that Purdue will head to the Music City Bowl on December 28th players and coaches were made available to the media to discuss the upcoming game against Auburn as well as take a look back at the season.

Coach on the decision to stay at Purdue and turn down Louisville:

Well, I think any time you talk about your alma mater, a school that you played at, a place that you live, I know a lot of family and friend that are there. That’s what makes it difficult.

So without question, there were things to it that made it extremely hard, but you know, I did what I did, I think you guys know for all the right reasons, and I’m excited to move forward.

Blough discussed how he found about that Coach was staying:

Just like all the guys, news broke to us at dinner and we’re obviously excited where Purdue has gone the last two years and what Coach Brohm has in store for the future.

For all the guys, it’s a big deal for us. We understand the commitment by the athletic department and that’s a great credit to our administration. We’re happy for the guys because we know with Coach Brohm at the helm where the program can go, and you know, make it a standard for Purdue to be going back to Bowl games and hopefully playing on Championship Saturday that we saw yesterday mand we know those things are possible with Coach Brohm at the helm.

You know, the guys are excited. We were obviously following the stuff just like you guys were, and it was fun for us to see, and know that he’s committed to us as we are. That was never in question, but we’re glad Coach Brohm is a Boilermaker, we really are.

Knox discussed the same thing:

I was actually on my way from home on my way to dinner. One of my friends called me and was like, “Hey, you know Coach Brohm is staying, right?”

I was like, “Yeah, Bro, I had no doubt in my mind.” (Laughter) I’m like, “Come on, man.” Like the things he’s done around here, turning the program around and getting guys excited and getting the fans and the community, everybody involved, back into football.

I just don’t see that, in my mind, I didn’t see that changing any time soon. I mean, it wasn’t a surprise to me. And you know, Coach Brohm loves it around here.

Coach has jokes about if a bowl win can propel you into the next season:

Well, I used to, but we went 0-3 this year (Laughter). I don’t think that always is the case.

Coach on his philosophy of the 15 available bowl practices:

We will not use all of them. We did not use all of them last year. I think it’s important that we keep somewhat the same schedule we had last year, which means I wants our guys to have a break.

I want our guys to get away from it a little bit. I want our guys to work on their schoolwork and try to, you know, finish as strong as they can in the classroom. I want us to let our bodies and mind heal a little bit, while at the same time, we’re getting some workouts in in the weight room and conditioning.

And then we’ll get back out on the practice field starting this Friday, but even then, it won’t be an every day thing. We’re going to make sure that we are smart with it. They have finals coming up the week after. We’re on the road quite a bit recruiting, as well. We want to make sure we finish that off.

We’ll utilize the time that we need to get us prepared. We’ll utilize the time we need to prepare the young guys for the future which I think we’ll do a more thorough job this year than last year, ante the thing up a little bit and increase the intensity of that. That will be fun. But you know, we’ve got to get to the game as healthy as we can but also prepared and also fresh.

Thieneman provided an update on his health:

I do plan on playing. I’m very optimistic about my ability to play in the Bowl game. There’s a lot that’s gag to happen between now and then, the next three and a half weeks in the recovery process as I rehab my shoulder and get my weight back up.

But I am optimistic about my ability to play in the Bowl game.

Coach Brohm provides an injury update on Grant Hermanns:

We’re actually optimistic that he can make it back for the game. We’ll see how the next couple weeks progress. We’ll try to get him back on the practice field, but I definitely think there’s a chance.

In more injury news Coach discussed how the team will prepare with Neal out for the Bowl game:

Well, we’re going to have to evaluate where we’re at. There could be, you know, more than one person out for the game that we’ve got to see exactly where we’re at and we’re going to be thin there, without question.

Probably going to be playing some guys that haven’t played a whole lot this year, so that is concerning and we’ve got to make sure that we figure out who is going to be able to play and get him quality reps throughout the next month and may have to be creative in what we’re doing to continue to attack and make plays. But we’ve got some concerns there.

ALL THE INJURY NEWS!!! This time on Sindelar and the possibility of a medical redshirt:

Well, we’re looking into a lot of options and I don’t want to tell you something when I don’t know for sure, but that is a good question, if that helps. (Laughter).

Finally, Coach and Blough provided their initial thoughts on playing Auburn:

HEAD COACH JEFF BROHM: Well, for me, it’s an historical, traditional powerhouse football team in the SEC right there with Alabama. Way back in my days, Iron Bowl was a great match-up and you never knew who was going to win.

Obviously Alabama has taken a step that not many others have, but Auburn is a very talented football team. They are going to recruit the south and get a lot of great athletes, which they have.

You know, they have a lot of talent. They play tough competition every week and this is a tremendous challenge and opportunity for us because I think it’s a very, very talented, high-quality team that we’re going to have to do a lot of things right to give us a chance to come out of there with a win.

DAVID BLOUGH: Yeah, and for me, I’d agree. Watching the Iron Bowls over the past and things like that, when you think of the SEC, you think Alabama/Auburn. You think some of those schools, and even this year, they have beaten some good teams. They beat the Pac 12 champ in Washington. They beat Texas A&M. They had a close loss to LSU. There’s some great football played down there.

Obviously you think as a quarterback, you think, well, what’s the defense going to give you and you think of a stout defensive line and you think of defensive linemen in the NFL every year. You think of tight man-to-man coverage.

You know, that’s an exciting challenge I think that awaits our offense and our team, and we’re looking forward to it. I know the guys are excited, just kind of gauging the pulse when the news was being broke this afternoon.