The Purdue Boilermakers are essentially playing for pride at this point in the season, and the Iowa Hawkeyes are fighting for their bowl lives. Not exactly what either team had in mind coming into the 2012 campaign. The Hawkeyes have dropped three straight contests, and after starting 3-1, the Boilermakers have now lost five straight games.
Purdue head coach Danny Hope may be out of a job at the end of the year if the Boilermakers can’t pull off a miracle and win out. To make matters worse, Purdue will be without their offensive coordinator Saturday, as Gary Nord has been in a hospital since Wednesday with a back injury. Hope and wide receivers coach Patrick Higgins will combine to make the play calls.
The Hawkeyes major troubles this season have been on the offensive side of the ball. The team is only averaging 20 points per contest. Iowa quarterback James Vandenberg has had a terrible year and has just four touchdown passes to show for his troubles. The one bright spot for the team was running back Mark Weisman, who got off to a great start to the season. However, he has been forced to sit out Iowa’s last three games with injuries.
The only thing going for the Hawkeyes is that Purdue’s defense has been awful. They are giving up nearly 38 points per game, which ranks second last in the conference.
The loser of this game would essentially be eliminated from bowl competition, and the winner would still have a faint hope. Somebody has to win it right?
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