We know that Jeff Brohm is well known for his offense, but what about the defense, especially under new defensive coordinator Bob Diaco? It turns out Purdue can defend the option really well. The Boilers sacked the Air Force quarterback Donald Hammond III nine times and held the Falcons to 81 yards of total offense in a dominant 56-0 win.
Lorenzo Neal was an absolute monster defensively in this game. He finished with 6 tackles, five for loss, and had four of those sacks as he regularly ripped through the right guard to cause havoc. Anthony Watts had three tackles for loss and a sack, while Branson Deen had three sacks. Ironically, the only member of the starting offensive line without a sack was George Karlaftis, but only because he tackled the QB for officially no gain on one play. It was a completely dominant display up front.
Offensively Purdue had a few hiccups. Jackson Anthrop dropped a sure touchdown pass on 4th and goal from the one. Purdue had its first drive stall out and end in a Zac Collins punt. Overall though the Boilers spread the wealth. Jack Plummer was 18 of 23 for 290 yards and four touchdowns, He connected with David Bell for two scores, including a beautiful 52 yard score where Bell corralled a jump ball, had two defenders hit each other, and raced the rest of the way for a score. He finished with five catches for 88 yards and 2 touchdowns.
Plummer’s other favorite target was, of course, Rondale Moore. The superstar had six receptions for 98 yards and a score, just doing what he does. His best play was when Plummer found him on a crossing pattern and he took off for 40+.
The other offensive stars, because there were a lot of them, were Payne Durham with 3 catches for 27 yards and a score, Milton Wright with 3 catches for 69 (nice) yards, and King Doerue, who was incredibly versatile. He rushed for 87 yards and two touchdowns and caught two passes for 14 yards.
With such a big lead there was plenty of time to get the second string some run, and Aidan O’Connell was able to go 7 of 8 for 68 yards and a 20 yard TD to Amad Anderson Jr. Tyrek Murphy also rushed for 41 yards and his first collegiate touchdown.
As I said, this was a dominant effort all across the board. Purdue outgained the Falcons by almost 500 yards and it is difficult to shut the computer out on the All-American level. The defensive line was an absolute menace.
Next up is Boston College, and I will be speeding these up a bit to get it done before real football starts in October. Expect that early next week.