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47 Days to Purdue Football: Jeff Marks & Ben Makowski

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STARTING LONG SNAPPER DAY!

NCAA Football: Penn State at Purdue Sandra Dukes-USA TODAY Sports

Starting Long Snapper Day is always a special day around here. Purdue long snappers past and present gather to fete the incumbent. This year is slightly different. First, the starting longsnapper shares his number with another player. Second, our current long snapper has actually caught a pass, making him one of the most accomplished in our history.

Ben Makowski - Sr.

Osceola, IN (Penn HS)

6’2”, 250 pounds

Long Snapper

2018 Projection: Starting Long Snapper

Makowski is the most experienced starter on the entire roster. He was the starter from day 1 as a true freshman in 2015 and has not missed a play since. That is 37 consecutive games at a position of high demand and he has yet to make a mistake. That is perfect on hundreds of field goal attempts, extra points, and punts combined.

Then there is last year:

Before this play I honestly had no earthly idea it was possible for a longsnapper to be an eligible receiver on a play. Apparently it is though. I knew long snapping on punts was more than just the snap. The snapper, since he must be uncovered, often races down the field in coverage too. This can lead to the glory of a tackle or even a recovery of a muffed punt. Catching a pass though? That’s a first.

Oh, he also drew a targeting penalty on the tackle for 15 more yards after the 22 yard catch.

Jeff Marks - Fr.

Mobile, AL (Davidson HS)

6’3”, 265 pounds

Defensive Line

2018 Projection: Contributor on the Defensive Line

Jeff Marks is almost certainly going to play this season. The true freshman enrolled early, has a Big Ten ready body, and we have a desperate need for depth along the defensive line. His early enrollment allowed him to go through spring practice and gain experience in the system. That means he is playing, either at tackle or at end.

Last season he had seven sacks as his high school team reached the Alabama Class 7A playoffs. He was part of a defense that gave up only 10 points per game, so he should be a solid contributor right away.

We’re certainly going to need him.