After finishing ninth in total defense in the Big Ten last season, the Purdue defense is a bit of a mystery this year even though they return ten starters.
The Boilermakers have a new system on defense, as new coordinator Tim Tibesar arrives in West Lafayette after coaching in the Canadian Football League for the Montreal Alouettes.
We don’t know what the defense will look like as Purdue closed all of its spring practices. What we do know is the defense will be a 4-3 with All-Big Ten defensive tackle Kawann Short and second-team All-Big Ten cornerback Ricardo Allen leading the veteran group.
Allen recently explained during Big Ten media day what to expect from the defense: “I think everybody will notice our defense is much faster. The defense is much simpler, and I feel like a simple defense is a fast defense.”
Coach Danny Hope made a smart hire bringing in the former CFL defensive coordinator. In 2011, the Alouettes finished the regular season as the CFL’s top-rated run defense, giving up 92.4 yards per game.
Coming from the CFL, where most offenses operate under the spread, Tibesar has been brought to Purdue to help counter spread attacks in the Big Ten. He’ll be able to help the Boilermakers solid cover corners and give the linebacking core a lot of tips when dropping in to coverage.
With the depth and experience – most notably on the defensive line and secondary, Tibesar will have the pieces to improve a talented group.
Just what Purdue needs to go along with what Hope called his most “talented group ever” on offense.
Will Wilson is a writer for Rant Sports covering College Football and the Big Ten Conference.