Finally, that was the 2021 team I’ve been waiting to see.
Brohm creatively schemed around roster limitations on offense and found a way to throw the ball to the one guy the other team didn’t want him to throw the ball to. The red zone issues, while not completely remedied (that would require a better offensive line), didn’t sink the team. The defense was stout, slowed the run game and turned Iowa over when they were forced to pass the ball. The Spoilermakers made their triumphant return to the national stage and saved us from the horror of an undefeated Iowa. Problem is, I’m kinda tired of the Spoliermakers role. This team, when clicking, is better than that.
Now it’s time to do it again on Saturday. Wisconsin is not good y’all. They have an inefficient, one dimensional offense that struggles to put the ball in the end zone (14 total touchdowns puts them in the bottom 20 of all FBS teams). They’ve been smoked by every legit opponent they’ve faced this year and their quarterback can’t stop throwing the ball to the other team. Their defense is good, but tends to run out of gas in the 4th quarter because their offense is so incredibly bad. They’re basically a carbon copy of the Iowa team Brohm and the boys neatly dispatched last weekend. Purdue may be a slight underdog, but they should win this game.
This is part of what frustrates me about Purdue under Jeff Brohm. I have no idea if we’re going to see the Purdue team that dominated #2 Iowa or if we’re going to see the Purdue team that found a way to lose to Minnesota. Is he going to break out the Cerberus offense again, or was that a fleeting moment of brilliance? We’ve seen Purdue get red hot under Brohm before (end of the 2017 season, start of the 2018 Big10 season), but we’ve also seen them follow up a big win with an equally crushing loss (2018 vs Michigan St after the Ohio State win, 2018 vs Minnesota after the Iowa win). It’s time to get hot again.
If Purdue wins the games they should win down the stretch (Wisconsin, Nebraska, Northwestern, Indiana) they finish the season with 8 wins and are playing for 9 in a bowl game. This is a Travis Miller preseason fever dream, but all Purdue needs to do in order to make it happen is knock off 4 bad offenses over the next 6 weeks. Sure, beating either Ohio State or Michigan State would be great, but winning the games Purdue should win gives them their first 8 win season since 2007. If they manage to win a bowl game, it would be their first 9 win season since 2003.
The next two games are crucial for the Boilermakers. Knock off Wisconsin and Nebraska, and they’ve got a great season cooking. Come up short, and the same questions that have plagued the Brohm era of Purdue football bubble back to the surface. If he’s going to get over the hump and win 8 games, there is no better time than now. It’s not every year you regularly have the best player on defense (G.K.) and the best player on offense (Bell) on any given Saturday. Brohm must cash in on Purdue’s amazing 2019 class, otherwise, I’m not sure he’ll land another class the caliber of the 2019 class during his time at Purdue. If they finish strong in 2021, the 2023 class could be on par (minus G.K. at the top) with 2019. It’s already off to a hot start with a 4* quarterback headlining. I’d love to see Mark Hagan recruit for Purdue with an 8 win season in his back pocket.
Every time I get excited about Purdue football, I get a cold bucket of suck dumped on my head, and yet, here I am, getting excited about Purdue yet again. Let’s take care of business this week against the Badgers.