Just three weeks from today we get to kickoff the season with real fans in the stands (hopefully. Wear a damn mask and get vaccinated). That means two players at #21.
Sanoussi Kane - So.
Harlem, NY (Blair Academy)
6’, 210 pounds
2021 Projection: Potential starter
Call me optimistic, but I think Purdue has more depth in the defensive backfield that many suggest. Cam Allen, Jalen Graham, and Marvin Grant are all solid players, and Kane is an experienced sophomore that played in all six games last year as a true freshman. He only had three tackles, but the three-star freshman out of New York made great strides in order to see the field immediately.
At minimum, Kane will provide depth at safety and be in the rotation as part of a relatively young, but experienced secondary. At max, he becomes a starter and plays a larger role. As usuals he key to success int he secondary will hinge on having a real, live pass rush so opposing quarterbacks do not have a geological epoch in which to throw.
Andrew Hobson - Fr. (RS)
Indianapolis, IN (Hamilton SE HS)
6’1”, 210 pounds
2021 Projection: Reserve
Walk-on quarterbacks are always interesting. A lot of the time they end up running the scout team for four years and they might get a courtesy snap or two in a live game in a blowout as a thank you. Every once in a while you get an Aidan O’Connell who exceeds all expectations and becomes a major contributor. You also can have an absolute disaster scenario where they have to come in even for a snap or two because no one else is available. I am thinking a guy by the name of Chris Bennett at Michigan State in 2008 or Aaron Banks against Indiana in 2015.
Hobson leans likely more towards the “absolute disaster” scenario if he were to play in 2021. There are four scholarship quarterbacks ahead of him (Jack Plummer, O’Connel, Austin Burton, and Michael Alaimo) and even walk-on Jack Albers has a modest amount of college playing time with a year at Dayton. Hobson did throw for 2,063 yards and 16 TDs against 7 picks in his senior season of high school in 2019, so he has some talent with smaller schools that looked at him. Unfortunately, if he gets any playing time in an actual game this season things have likely gone very, very badly for Purdue.