Bragging rights and the Old Oaken Bucket are at stake on Saturday when Indiana visits in-state rival Purdue in West Lafayette for a Big Ten matchup and season finale.
Both squads enter the game reeling and wanting to head into the offseason with a positive vibe.
Indiana (3-8, 1-7) has won just one time in its last seven games and is coming off a disappointing home loss to Michigan State on Saturday, a game in which the Hoosiers gave up the game-winning touchdown with about a minute remaining and missed a game-tying 49-yard field goal with two seconds left.
Indiana hopes to also reverse recent dominance in the rivalry by Purdue. The Boilermakers have won four of the last five games against the Hoosiers.
Indiana coach Tom Allen said it will be a different wrinkle preparing for Purdue with first-year head coach Ryan Walters at the helm.
“They’re running the ball really well lately,” Allen said of Purdue. “Last two games in a row they’ve been over 300 yards rushing, which is very impressive. They’ve got two talented running backs, and their O-line is being very effective in what they’re doing. They’ve made adjustments throughout the season.”
The Boilermakers (3-8, 2-6) enter the game having lost five of their last six, the latest being a 23-15 defeat at Northwestern on Saturday.
Tyrone Tracy Jr. was Purdue’s leading rusher last week, with 160 yards on 16 carries against the Wildcats.
“They have a lot of length on the outside,” Walters said of Indiana. “Then they have a speedy slot/running back. I think they do a good job of utilizing the personnel and getting into formations that are unique within that personnel grouping. Their run game and pass game complement each other, so you have to have your eyes in the right spot all the time.”
Hoosiers quarterback Brendan Sorsby threw for 192 yards and two touchdowns against the Spartans last week.
Purdue won last year’s game against Indiana in Bloomington, 30-16.
–Field Level Media
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