Jeff Brohm is heading to Louisville. That much we know. Everything else is up in the air.
Short Term Implications
Purdue is in the unenviable position of filling their coaching vacancy during peak transfer portal and recruiting season. Director of Athletics Mike Bobinski must move quickly to fill the position before the roster is decimated by transfers and recruiting class defections. Other programs see Purdue as a wounded animal, and will have no qualms moving in for the kill.
Purdue losing key players to Louisville is also something that must be considered. Brohm’s offense was a key factor for many offensive players signing with The Boilermakers. There is nothing stopping them from moving with him to Louisville. The quarterback position, in particular, is of concern. Louisville needs a replacement for Malik Cunningham, and Brady Allen could be that quarterback. Purdue needs to have a coach in place, preferably within the next week, to recruit the current roster. I don’t expect much attrition on the defensive side (from the current roster), but the offense could be gutted without a swift and exciting hire to offer an alternative to Jeff Brohm and Louisville.
Hopefully the current players listen to former Boilermaker Jason King.
Want all the current Boilers to know that my choice to stay at Purdue through coaching changes was the best decision I made in my life. In the NFL and especially life after football, PURDUE is respected. #Boilermakers— Jason King (@Jason72King) December 7, 2022
Recruiting is a concern. Fortunately for the Boilermakers, this is a defense heavy class and I anticipate the new coaching staff (whoever they may be) having a decent shot at retaining most of that talent, especially if key members of the defensive staff remain in West Lafayette.
Out of all the coaches on the staff, retaining Mark Hagen should be top priority if Purdue wants to keep their defensive line heavy class together. Guaranteeing him a spot on the next staff is a tricky proposition, but his national reputation and ties to the area could make that less awkward. I assume that whoever Purdue hires (if it isn’t Hagen himself) would have no qualms keeping Mark on board, assuming (and its a big assumption) he wants to stay.
Then there is Purdue’s impending date with LSU. I’m not going to lie. Things don’t look great on this front. What should be a reward for a hard fought season now becomes an after thought.
I’m sure Purdue will play in the game, but I have no clue if they’ll be able to field anything close to a full roster. Even if guys like Aidan O’Connell, Charlie Jones, and Cory Trice (all seniors with NFL aspirations) decide to play in the game, I can’t imagine bowl prep going smoothly. Whatever remains of the coaching staff will have one eye on the practice field and another eye on the college coaching equivalent of Indeed.
If you’ve already purchased your tickets to the Citrus Bowl, enjoy the experience, cheer on the players, hope for the best, but expect the worst. LSU is looking to prove a point. I’m not sure blowing out a coachless Purdue squad proves anything, but that won’t stop them from pouring it on the Boilermakers if they have the opportunity. The Bayou Bengals consider themselves National Championship contenders in the 2023 season, and that campaign kicks off on January 2nd.
Mike Bobinski has his hands full. I’m sure he has a “break in case of emergency” coaching candidate list. I doubt he emerges from his office until he finds a new coach, but if you happen to see him around town, maybe buy him a coffee, he’s not going to get much sleep over the (hopefully) next few days.
Note: I’ll cover long term implications next.