The Purdue Mystery

Written October 18th, 2012 by Tim Shoemaker

There are some things in sports that just don’t make sense. Purdue beating Ohio State in football is one of those things.

But don’t tell the Boilermakers (3-3, 0-2) that. Two of the last three times these teams have met, Purdue has come away with the victory.

Last year’s gut-wrenching 26-23 overtime loss to the Boilermakers sent the Buckeyes into a tailspin to finish the year as it was OSU’s first of four consecutive losses to close out the 2011 campaign.

Ohio State was 6-3 heading into the Purdue game a season ago. But Robert Marve’s 1-yard touchdown run on a quarterback sneak sent OSU into that downward spiral that saw the Buckeyes finish 6-7.

On paper, it seems every year that talent favors Ohio State in this matchup. This seems to be the case again this season. The Buckeyes have NFL talent at multiple positions, while Purdue may only have one or two NFL-caliber players on its roster.

To put it mildly, the Boilermakers are struggling. Back in week two, Purdue lost by only a field goal in South Bend to Notre Dame. Even though they suffered a loss, the Boilermakers gained some confidence from that game. Purdue then went on to win its next two contests against Eastern Michigan and Marshall, respectively.

The Boilermakers were sitting at 3-1 and, with Ohio State and Penn State ineligible, seemed at the time like they could represent the Leaders Division in the B1G Championship Game.

Then the wheels fell off of the Boilermakers’ train.

Purdue was blown out at home by both Michigan (44-13) and Wisconsin (38-14).

The Buckeyes haven’t exactly been putting on a clinic either, especially defensively. But, they have yet to suffer a loss after seven games.

Ohio State seems to have the advantage again. But, one of my favorite cliches in all of sports is “that’s why they play the game.”

Ohio State should have no problem with Purdue this weekend, but you can never be certain in this wacky sports world.

And I feel like I’ve been saying this a lot this year, but there’s one huge difference with this Ohio State team and the ones of previous years.

Urban. Meyer.

Comment On Article