With a new week comes a new press conference from Jeff Brohm. This time we are looking back at the victory over Nebraska and looking ahead to the game at Wisconsin where Purdue will try to exorcise the demon of all demons. Purdue has had terrible results against Wisconsin for roughly 20 or so years. It’s been bad. There have been some close games but overall Purdue playing Wisconsin just feels like a guaranteed loss. Can Brohm and company change that this week? Let’s take a look at what the Boilermaker head man had to say.
Starting off as we should talking about Devin Mockobee:
Well, I think that we were aware of Devin for a little while, and then we knew he had committed I believe to Army or Navy. We were still watching film and evaluating and trying to improve the roster, we just kept looking at him. He was very intriguing because he had some really good film.
You know, sometimes you already have running backs committed and not a lot of room and you got to figure out ways, okay, do we want to investigate and see if we can interest this young man to coming and walking on. I believe that we did. There was mutual interest. Brought him and his father up I believe before — I don’t remember when it was. Maybe before or after signing day and convinced him to walk on.
Really he wanted to be here. He’s a competitor. He felt he could come in here and compete and do a good job in a very humble and modest way, so we’re excited about it. We got him here.
We liked what we saw, but still didn’t know for sure that he would be capable of this. I just think he has proven everybody how good of a running back he can be, especially that he continues to work and get better and bigger and stronger.
Really right now he’s going to start the next game. King has been banged up who kind of sucked it up and made himself available this past game.
Kobe Lewis is available as well. We got to continue to work with him and get him better. He’s working very, very hard.
Tyrone Tracy has to continue to be somebody who can do dual things for us.
On AOC’s grand performance:
It was a very good game by him without question. End of last year he had some elite games and put up some gigantic numbers. We definitely thought he played very, very well. Executed the offense. Threw accurate throws. Had great anticipation. Was able to move around a little bit and buy some time a couple times. Of course the fourth down conversion was huge where they kind of peeled a linebacker off with one of our backs and the rest of the line went the other way and had a little lane there and they kind of collisioned some of our crossers.
Luckily he was smart enough to know it’s time to go. I think he was able to make one guy miss and go get some yards. Very efficient. Yes, he played very well, and then of course at the end there were some anticipation throws and some accuracy throws that I don’t think many guys can make.
Let’s talk about the secondary problems:
I think they’re all correctable things. It was kind of a multitude of things. I do think our secondary didn’t respect the deep ball as much as they should. We were playing a little bit too tight, a little bit too flat footed. Didn’t give the proper cushion on numerous routes, not only at corner, but safety as well.
And then there was just a couple busts as well in the back end that hurt us.
So I would hope we can correct that, yes. I think we have experience back there at those positions. Cam Allen, it was not his best game by any meanings. Week before he played very well. He can play much better.
I think he was peeking in the backfield and a little too flat footed. And of course we can always tackle better. There is a multitude of things. Yes, when it happens more than once or twice, there is concerns. We got to fix it.
I think our guys can. They got to believe they can get it done. We got to give them a better chance as coaches and need to be better versus the pass.
How do you fix the secondary?
Well, you got to man up. Got to watch it and analyze it and identify what our players did wrong. Then you got to identify what we coached wrong possibly or what did we put in their head that made them think a certain thing that maybe wasn’t proper. Then you look at the calls and make sure are these the best calls.
So I think it was a magnitude of all of those things, which it normally is. You know, it’s got to be a continued evaluation. We thought we put a better plan together for the end of the game, end of the half. Unfortunately we gave up a draw for a huge gain. Gave up a quarterback scramble for a huge gain. With that, we need a better second layer of defense at linebacker to not allow that to happen.
That was very disappointing once again to allow them this get a field goal with, I don’t know, 35 seconds on the clock. Can’t happen. Has to be fixed. We cannot allow that to happen anymore.
Chris’ [Jefferson] timetable is going to be when he’s ready, so I’m not for sure.
Tee [Denson], you know, we haven’t seen make a whole lot measurable progress, so I wouldn’t at this point count on him for the rest of the year unless we start to see something.
Downing out another week.
Charlie [Jones] is banged up again. Try to get him healthy, see how much he can practice. I do think he’ll play, but we have to take care of him more this week.
OC [Brothers] we’re hopeful to get him back. We haven’t seen him practice so I can’t tell you that, but we’re hopeful we can utilize him this week.
On Wisconsin’s offense and defensive schemes:
Well, I think you’re correct, defensively Coach Leonhard does a great job, always has. Their scheme is tough to go against. They are going to load the box, play combo coverages and mix things up a little bit to bring some linebackers and drop some ends out and do things to mess up your protection, but also get guys in passing lanes, and they’re very good at it. They’ve done it for years and it’s a challenge.
Offensively I think they’ve tried to slightly open up things a little bit and have a little more balance and allow their quarterback to make a few more passes on first and second down. Of course against Northwestern it worked for them. They did a very good job. Had more explosive plays, got the ball in the receiver’s hand, as well as being sound running the ball.
Not a drastic change, but maybe a little more aggressiveness on offense that helped them have a dominate win. I’m sure they’ll build on that.
Where in the world did Andrew Sowinski come from?
Andrew has done a really good job. He’s been here for quite a while. He understands our scheme and system as good as anybody. You can count on him to run the right route at the right depth every single time and give you great effort. He has got good hands.
You know, don’t want to compare him to Jackson Anthrop, but he’s a dependable guy at the receiver position that can do dependable things. We kind of know what his strengths and his weaknesses are, but he’s been reliable.
I think he’s just a guy we trust. We have a lot of the young receivers that have some talent. There is probably one or two we’ve been unfair to by making them play multiple positions because we didn’t know where they would play, and because of it, sometimes there is some mental busts that while they may seem small, during the course of a game they can be costly.
We’ve had that happen a few times. It’s probably half our fault for not isolating them in one position and asking them to do too much; yet we would like for them to learn the whole package as much as they can.
So he just, in that slot position, has a great understanding of what we’re trying to do. In the right spot at the right time, and that’s has vaulted him up to getting quite a bit of playing time.
Getting lots of walk-on contributions, what’s up with that?
Well, we’re fortunate to have all of them and they’ve all played a vital role. Recruiting is not a perfect science. You do your best to get the best players out there, the best players available.
At the same time, you have to recruit the next best crop. I do think recruiting matters at all times. Even when you’re in the recruiting the so-called five and four stars, you got to get guys you think can play that are being overlooked and give them an opportunity.
Without question we look hard at that. We look at it year-round. We are always adding guys before signing day, after signing day in, in the spring, in the summer, all the way up — and I’m not talking transfers. Just talking general guys that are out there that want an opportunity to compete.
We been fortunate to get some guys that came in the program and worked hard and paid their dues and worked and studied and don’t really care whether they’re ranked. It’s all about how you produce on the field, and they’ve done a good job. Without question without those people we wouldn’t be here where we are today.