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Get to know Michigan’s opponent: Purdue offense is dangerous

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A Boilermaker team to take seriously

NCAA Football: Louisville vs Purdue Jamie Rhodes-USA TODAY Sports

Big Ten football season has finally arrived for the 3-0 Michigan Wolverines. Their first tilt during this pivotal stretch of the season is a road game against a much improved Purdue Boilermakers team.

New head coach Jeff Brohm appears to have made their offense dangerous at times, almost upsetting the Louisville Cardinals, ultimately losing in the final minute 35-28. Since then, the Boilermakers have rattled off two wins in a row, one over Ohio 44-21, and kicked the snot out of Missouri 35-3 last Saturday. Brohm is a good coach and there’s a reason why Jim Harbaugh called him the early favorite for Coach of the Year

Brohm utilizes a pro-style up-tempo offense. Purdue will use tight ends, even two quite a bit of the time. Zone runs will be called, vertical pass plays will be dialed up, and various formations will be used. This is no cookie-cutter rinky-dink offense, it can do damage.

At Western Kentucky in 2016, Brohm’s offense ranked first nationally in scoring, his quarterback threw for over 4,000 yards while his running back rushed for north of 1,600. This type offense is the definition of balanced. While Michigan has a stout defense, this will be their biggest test to date, and if they pass it with flying colors, that bodes well for the bigger tests down the road.

The Purdue defense isn’t as exciting to talk about, they haven’t done a whole lot this year that warrants praise. This could be a coming out party for Wilton Speight. Blitzes have effected some of Speight’s throws this year, but Purdue has had little pass-rush to this point in the season, only recording one sack. They’re ranked 86th in pass yards allowed, so if I was calling the plays, I would get pass-happy a bit on Saturday.

Purdue quarterback David Blough is a gamer and won’t take this challenge lightly. He was battered and bruised against Louisville but kept getting up and punching back. Clutch third down conversions unfolded and he showed what he’s capable of. Beware of the underdog who’s already been bloodied and didn’t mind the pain.

Rankings

Purdue Offensive Ranks

  • Ranked 38th in total offense
  • 32nd passing offense
  • 37th in total points (107)
  • 60th rushing offense
  • 17-42 on third down (40.5%)
  • 5-7 on fourth down (71.4)
  • Ranked 24th in offensive efficiency with a score of 76.0
  • Running back Tario Fuller is averaging 6.1 yards per carry
  • Quarterback David Blough has the third best QB rating in the Big Ten

Purdue Defensive Ranks:

  • 78th in points allowed (59)
  • 64th in rush yards allowed (389)
  • 86th in pass yards allowed (734)
  • Ranked dead last in sacks with one
  • Defensive effieciency score of 83.1 ranked 18th