2013 Purdue Spring Football Analysis
Purdue Boilermakers 2013 ...
Head Coach: Karl Dorrell
Why To Be Excited: Darrell Hazell is a great get. Many had him pegged for bigger jobs after his terrific season at Kent State, but he was snapped up by Purdue and there’s a renewed enthusiasm. With eight starters back on defense and seven returning on offense, there’s enough veteran talent to come up with a good spring without having to start from scratch in several areas. This might have been a bowl team last season, but now it’s time to start closing a few of the tighter battles after having Notre Dame in trouble and Ohio State on the ropes. Hazell could be the difference.
8/31 at Cincinnati
9/7 Indiana State
9/14 Notre Dame
9/21 at Wisconsin
9/28 Northern Illinois
10/5 OPEN DATE
10/19 at Michigan State
10/26 OPEN DATE
11/2 Ohio State
11/16 at Penn State
11/30 at Indiana
Why To Be Grouchy: There’s still a ton of work to do on the offensive consistency. Seven starters return, and that doesn’t include veteran Rob Henry, who’ll be in a battle for the starting quarterback job. However, the speed at the skill positions didn’t translate into big plays, and a hit-or-miss season from the line was the reason for way too many fizzles. The Boilermakers only scored more than 28 points once over the final nine games – beating Indiana 56-35 – and it was almost never physical. Hazell is going to have to change that.
What Needs Working On: The pass rush has to be better and has to come on a regular basis. It’s no coincidence that the Boilermakers were ripped up in games when the defensive front didn’t get behind the line. There weren’t any sacks generated against Michigan, Wisconsin, Minnesota or Indiana, and there was only one against Penn State. Meanwhile, the secondary struggled without the steady help. The three picks against the Hoosiers were the only interceptions in the last six games. Considering Hazell’s Kent State team lived off of turnover margin, generating big defensive plays will be a focus.
Non-Conference Games: at Cincinnati, Indiana State, Notre Dame, Northern Illinois
Games Against The Legends: Iowa, at Michigan State, Nebraska
Realistic Best Case Record: 7-5
Worst Case Record: 1-11
Likely Finish: 3-9
Pre-Preseason Projected Wins: Indiana State, Northern Illinois, Iowa
Pre-Preseason Projected Losses: at Cincinnati, Notre Dame, at Wisconsin, Nebraska, at Michigan state, Ohio State, at Penn State, Illinois, at Indiana
Schedule Analysis: Where are the wins going to come from? Purdue might not be that bad under new head man Darrell Hazell, but Indiana State might be the only sure-thing win. The non-conference schedule isn’t going to be fun with a trip to Cincinnati to face Tommy Tuberville’s club in the opener, and after the layup against ISU comes a visit from Notre Dame to kick off a run of three straight games against teams that played in the BCS last season going to Wisconsin the following week with Northern Illinois to follow.
After a week off, the Boilermakers get two rough games against the Legends with Nebraska coming in for a visit and a trip to Michigan State to follow. If that wasn’t rough enough, Ohio State is next. The rest of November might not be that bad with Iowa, Illinois and the road game at Indiana all winnable, but the season could be made or broken by a trip to Penn State.
Team Concerns For 2013: New head coach Karl Dorrell has to work a few miracles out of a team that has some nice pieces, but isn't good enough overall to be a true threat for the Big Ten title. The defensive front loses Kawann Short in the interior, but it gets most of the starters back - now it has to stop someone's running game. The Boilermakers had the second-worst defense in the Big Ten and had way too many problems against anyone who could run the ball. The punt return game was awful averaging a non-existent 3.16 yards per pop.
The 2013 Class Is Heavy On ... Defensive line. Two years ago Danny Hope went big on beefing up the defensive front. New head coach
Darrell Hazell is getting an even bigger haul for the front wall with eight prospects coming in - but don't expect an immediate impact. Tackles Antoine Miles and Johnny Daniels need time to get bigger for the interior, while Danny Ezechukwu out of Georgia has the potential to be a pass rushing terror down the line. The
offense isn't being ignored with running backs Keyante Green and David Yancey to pack a 1-2 punch by 2016.
2012 CFN Recruiting Ranking:
61. That Class Was Heavy On ... After years of mostly going after the defensive side, the coaching staff is trying to improve the offense. Danny Hope has a few nice quarterback prospects about to sign on, while the receiving corps is loaded with as many good options as the program has had in several years. Tight end will be the strength with Ryan Morris and JUCO transfer Greg Latta good enough to play right away. Ryan Watson is a terrific guard prospect and a huge get for down the road, while JUCO transfer Devin Smith is expected to see time at tackle now.
2011 CFN Recruiting Ranking: 74. That Class Was Heavy On ... Defensive linemen. The skill positions got some instant depth with JUCO transfer Akeem Shavers at running back and JUCO transfer tight end Sterling Carter, and Akeem Hunt ill be the team’s star back in the near future. Defensively, the success of recent Boilermaker linemen helped get Robert Kugler, the star of the class and a dangerous pass rushing prospect, while Randy Gregory could be a good one with time in the weight room. 315-pound Michael Rouse will someday be the anchor of the defensive front.
2010 CFN Recruiting Ranking: 48. That Class Was
Heavy On ... Defensive backs.
Head coach Danny Hope went big on the defensive
linemen last year, and this year he came up with a
big class of defensive backs signing seven including
Ricardo Allen, a good corner who might be too good
to keep on the bench as a freshman. Out of all the
defensive backs brought in, only one true safety,
E.J. Johnson, was signed. It's Purdue, so the
offense is never going to be ignored and Hope
brought in QB Sean Robinson, a big, athletic passer,
and a good receiver in O.J. Ross.
2009 CFN Recruiting Ranking: 64. That Class Was
Heavy On ... defensive linemen. Purdue hasn’t stopped anyone’s running game in a few years, and now it’s time to give it a try. That’s not to say there haven’t been good linemen flowing through the program, but most of the stars have been pass rushers. JUCO transfer Kris Cooke should be an instant upgrade for the interior, while Eric McDaniel and Brandon Taylor will be the foundation for future defenses. Xavier Melton and Cody Davis aren’t bad tackle prospects, either.