David Bell took a reverse for 9 yards that turned out to be the game winning touchdown for Purdue. The drive starting on their 18 yard line with 4 minutes left in the game it would be backup quarterback Aidan O’Connell’s turn to lead Purdue. He would do just that, leading a Purdue’s game winning drive going 82 yards down the field. This drive would eat up 3:13 and gave them the lead 31-27 with 1 minute remaining in the game.
Although Purdue lead at halftime it was an uphill battle to get there as Nebraska offense controlled the ball until that huge final drive by Plummer and the Boilermaker offense. Just as Purdue offense started making plays so did its defense to change the momentum and score of this game.
Purdue started on Nebraska’s 4 yard line with 4 minutes left in the first half. They went on a 96 yards 12 plays drive to close out the half making it 14-10 Purdue’s lead. This game changing drive was done with a mixture of long and short passes by quarterback Jake Plummer. Plummer looked poised and comfortable leading the Boilermakers down the field, ending with a 16 yard touchdown pass to tight end Payne Durham.
Jake Plummer would leave the game early for Purdue after having a monster impact on the game going 25/34 for 242 yards, 2 TD passes, 12 carries for 71 yards, and a rushing touchdown. O’Connell went 6/7 for 62 yards, Doerue had 15 carries for 71 yards and the game winning touchdown. While tight end Brycen Hopkins had 8 receptions for 97 yards and Milton Wright had 4 catches for 69 yards for the Boilermaker offense.
Head Coach Jeff Brohm appreciated the hard work and determination of his team and is proud of the come from behind win stating “In practice we try to coach them up but in games we have to let them play.” Coach Brohm also stated “the defense kept us in the ball game early on, holding them in the redzone several times.”
Later in the first quarter the Cornhuskers came up with an interception by their big defensive lineman D. Daniels at Purdue’s 20 yard line, the big man rumbled for 18 yards down to the 2 yard line. The Boilermakers held Nebraska to a field goal, making the score 10-0 Nebraska’s lead with 2 minutes left in the first quarter. Nebraska offense was rolling until a huge interception by Cory Trice as Purdue’s defense came up with the much needed red zone stop.
Nebraska’s punt team did their job by jamming the Boilermakers on their own 4 yard line. That’s when Purdue went on a masterful drive taking the lead going into halftime 14-10. Plummer tallied almost 200 total yards in the first half with 58 on the ground and 133 through the air and 2 passing touchdowns.
Nebraska threatened Purdue while going on a 72 yard drive which consisted of 11 plays and one 4th down conversion but was held to only 3 points chipping into Purdue’s lead making it 14-13. You hate to give up points but have to be proud of the defense for standing strong in the red zone.
The defense would have its share of game changers as well with LB Ben Holt totaling 10 tackles, Jalen Graham rounding up 8 tackle, and Cory Trice making a game changing interception that changed the momentum and outcome of the game.
The Boilermakers would start their first drive of the 4th quarter trailing by 3, on their own 20 yard line. Jake Plummer would open up the drive throwing the ball making a 15 yard completion to David Bell giving them another 1st down. Plummer would face another 3rd and 5 after a holding penalty called back a 1st down run, but they converted again on a 17 yard pass to Hopkins for the first down. Doerue would go on to make another huge run of 17 yard, followed by another 14 yard scramble bye Plummer that would leave him injured on the play.
It would be up to backup quarterback O’Connell to end this drive and the game for the Boilermakers after the injury. He would start the drive on Nebraska’s 11 yard line with 8 minutes left in the game. It would be King Doerue who would make the go ahead touchdown run, right up the gut for 7 yards taking the lead back once again 24-20.
Martinez and the Cornhuskers would march down the field after a 42 yard pass completion putting them deep in Purdue territory. Nebraska’s 4 yard touchdown run by Martinez gave them the lead 27-24 with 4:21 left in the game.
The Boilermaker defense would seal the game on 4th and 3, when defensive end Derrick Barnes broke up a pass and gave Purdue the ball and game with 26 seconds left. This would end up being a complete team win as the Boilermakers offense and defense rolled over the Cornhuskers 31-27.