Friday, October 19, 2012
Preview: Purdue vs. Ohio State - October 20th - Noon - ABC/ESPN2
Who's prepared for another Saturday of disappointment? I'm not usually a pessimist, and maybe I'm just cranky because I've been sick, but I'm bracing myself for a rough game on Saturday. The Boilers travel to Ohio State to face the undefeated Buckeyes at a horrible time when Purdue can't seem to do anything right. The Bucknuts continue to showcase a dominant offense under Braxton Miller, but their defense is in question after narrowly beating Indiana in Bloomington last week.
Why Purdue wins
Sick of two weeks of repeated embarrassment, the Purdue coaching staff actually puts together a game plan that includes four quarters of effort. We know they have the talent to produce offensively, and if Indiana could put up 49 points on the Buckeyes, the Boilers can, too. Maybe the defense can return to their strong early season form and cause the one-man wrecking crew that is Braxton Miller to have a game like Denard Robinson had in South Bend. Don't hold your breath.
Why Ohio State wins
The Buckeyes win because they are a really good football team and far superior coaching. Personally I don't find much to like about Urban Meyer, but he's skilled at his job, and you know Ohio State won't get caught looking past this game (they play at Penn State next weekend). No one seems to be able to stop Braxton Miller, so no matter how many points the opposition can throw up on the board, the Buckeyes simply score more.
Player we're most concerned about since their stock photo may break our TV
First, I'm a little concerned about freshman wide receiver Frank Epitropoulos. I've never heard of him, but anyone who's ballsy enough to show up for picture day stoned is definitely a wildcard to fear.
I'm also disturbed by starting left tackle Jack Mewhort and left guard Andrew Norwell, if only because they would crush me on the field and in a staring contest. I wonder if they get lost in each other's eyes playing side by side everyday.
Ohio State is favored by 18.5 points. Ouch. This week, Erik and I will be betting the original cost of our favorite piece of Purdue apparel.
Growing up a rabid Purdue fan, it's hard to narrow down to one item of clothing that I love the most, and most of the stuff I wear now is pretty generic with less sentimental value. Probably the best stuff I've ever had has since dissolved due to constant wear, but I loved my old "three Pete" t-shirt that commemorated the men's basketball team's three consecutive Big Ten titles from 1994-1996. I'm not sure how much that cost 16 years ago (wow I feel old), so instead let's say my hat I bought at the Rose Bowl in 2001 for about $20.
I continue to have little faith in this team, not because of the players, but because of the decisions made by an arrogant and out of touch coaching staff. I'd really love to be proven wrong. Ohio State 45 - Purdue 21
Because he's a die-hard fan, Erik's favorite piece of Purdue apparel is his Paint Crew t-shirt from the first year of Painter's tenure at Purdue (although I'm partial to the last Gene Pool shirt featuring the famous Gene Keady comb-over on a basketball). He's not risking much on his bold pick though, since the shirt only cost about $12 for Paint Crew members back then.
Since Erik will be at the game, he's picking this one to be considerably closer than most experts. He can't handle witnessing two blowout losses in a row, and neither can his liver. Ohio State 27 - Purdue 16
Three Final Things
1. The Boilers always seem to save their best for Ohio State. Last year Purdue won by three points at home in exciting fashion in overtime (I think I watched that Marve sneak 100 times in a row), and the good guys won by eight points in 2009. However...
2. Purdue hasn't won at Columbus since 1988, and we all remember the 49-0 shellacking in 2010. That's a horrible drought.
3. Boiler Up! (even if you're pessimistic like me)