Over/Under 6 Wins () vs Purdue Boilermakers ()Date : 08/30/2018
Time : First Game: Northwestern Wildcats @ Purdue Boilermakers 8:00 PM
Location : Ross-Ade Stadium
Pick, Prediction, & Preview:
Over/Under 6 Wins vs Purdue Boilermakers
The Purdue Boilermakers were in search of a program turning point and they have found just that with their new coach Jeff Brohm as he led them to a 6-6 regular season and a win in the Foster Farms Bowl. Before the Brohm era started at Purdue the Boilermakers only made 2 bowl games from 2008-2016 but that is something that will change in West Lafayette as bowl games should become the norm. Brohm came to Purdue as an offensive mastermind as he led Western Kentucky to many high scoring games as well as bowl appearances. Purdue will have to enter 2018 with some questions at the quarterback position as they have 2 guys who are solid but also injury prone. The one spot that may hurt Brohm this season is the defense as he will have to replace most of his starters this season, but there is room for improvement especially in the secondary. Brohm may need his offense to carry the majority of the load this season especially at the beginning of the season as the young Purdue defense could struggle come Big Ten play. Brohm is still feeling out the Big Ten recruiting grounds and given the lack of program success as of recent it has become even harder to lure in some big name guys. Brohm was unsuccessful in having a top Big Ten class this past offseason as he had the 12th ranked recruiting class but he was successful in signing the #1 player out of the state of Kentucky in 4-star WR Rondale Moore.
Over/Under 6 Wins's Latest Performance :
Purdue turned around a 3-9 2016 season to a 6-6 bowl appearance squad in 2017 as Jeff Brohm has this program turning in the right direction, but can the 2nd year coach avoid a sophomore slump and get this team back to another bowl game? Purdue will be missing some major pieces at the wide receiver position but other than that Purdue should be rolling offensively which might be the reason oddsmakers have high hopes and have set the over/under at 6 wins.
Can Purdue Reach Greatness
The hopes of Jeff Brohm and Boilermaker fans is that the program returns to relevancy in the Big Ten West similar to the Drew Brees era but it may be too early to tell if Brohm can extend his win total to 7 or 8 games. Purdue unlike many of the other power 5 schools will see a tough matchup to open the season as they will welcome in Northwestern on 8/30. The non-conference schedule is also no walk in the park for the Boilermakers as they will see Missouri and Boston College, two teams who like Purdue turned around the direction of their program. Most Big Ten teams play in crossover games and Purdue will do just that this year as they will welcome in Ohio State and then travel to Michigan State in the following week, two of the toughest teams in the Big Ten East. If Purdue wants a crack at the top spot in the Big Ten West they will have to beat both Iowa and Wisconsin but luckily for the Boilermakers, they will welcome both teams into town.
Purdue Boilermakers's Latest Performance :
Purdue was fortunate enough to have depth at the quarterback position last year as the injury bug deterred Elijah Sindelar and David Blough but they are both on track to be healthy and take the field come fall which leaves Brohm with a decision to make. David Blough should be the starter as the senior holds the edge on Sindelar in terms of veteran leadership and dual-threat capabilities. Blough only threw for 1103 yards in 2017 but he was way more efficient with the ball as he completed 65% of his passes compared to the 56.8% Sindelar completed. The rushing attack is where Purdue will make their money this year as they host two great backs in Markell Jones and D.J. Knox who both rushed for 500+ yards last season, expect both them to crack that mark once again. Brohm will need some receivers to emerge from fall camp after the departure of their top pass catcher from 2017 in Anthony Mahoungouu (688 yards & 8 TDs). Jackson Anthrop is one of the lone big play guys Purdue returns at the wide receiver spot as the sophomore is coming off a 423-yard season to go along with 5 touchdown catches. Whoever is taking snaps for the Boilermakers should be in good hands as the offensive line will return 4 starters from their 2017 Foster Farms Bowl championship team. The defense should experience some growing pains this season as they will have to replace their tackle leader and TFL leader who both played at the linebacker position. Markus Bailey was forced to play outside linebacker last season to get onto the field but he was solid from that spot as he had 89 tackles and a team-high 7 sacks, expect Bailey to take charge of this defense this year given the fact he is moving back inside to his comfortable spot. On top of Bailey, the secondary will be led by senior safety Jacob Thieneman who is coming off a good season where he led the Boilermakers in interceptions with 2. The defensive line was the strong suit of the Boilermakers last season as they were constantly getting after the QB but this year Brohm will be looking for young guys to step in and perform as they lost a lot of talent to eligibility restraints.
Player To Watch
The Tight End Position
Purdue lost most of their best pass catchers from 2017 to graduation and Brohm will need some young guys to step up at the wide receiver spot but given the success at both the running back and tight end positions, we can see a little more of 22 personal. Brycen Hopkins and Cole Herdman are not your typical blocking tight ends but rather a split out pass catcher and that was apparent last season as they both cracked the 300-yard mark. Hopkins and Herdman are both not great blockers but that is something the Boilermakers will sacrifice for more weapons in their big-play offense. Expect another solid year out of both Hopkins and Herdman.
How Over/Under 6 Wins & Purdue Boilermakers Matchup.
Vegas Odds, Offshore Odds, & Odds ATS:
Over 6 Wins -110
Under 6 Wins -110
In-Depth Analysis of each team:
8/30- Northwestern- W
9/8- Eastern Michigan- W
9/15- Missouri- L
9/22- Boston College- W
9/29- @ Nebraska- L
10/13- @ Illinois- W
10/20- Ohio State- L
10/27- @ Michigan State- L
11/3- Iowa- L
11/10- @ Minnesota- W
11/17- Wisconsin- L
11/24- @ Indiana- L
Overall Record: 5-7
Against The Spread Selection: Under 6 Wins -110
My reason for the pick :
Things were going so great for the Boilermakers in 2017 as they finally felt like they turned the page on what was a low couple of years for this program and although I have the Boilermakers missing out on a bowl game things will still be moving in the right direction. Purdue doesn’t come off as a bowl squad to me as they fail to have many targets to throw at as they lost a ton of talent from last season. Another thing that concerns me is the fact that the Boilermakers will be missing a ton of key pieces on the defensive side of the ball and as we know especially in the Big Ten, defense wins championships. Brohm will have his team fighting and there is no doubt in my mind he will have success for years to come but the Boilermakers will take a step back in year 2 of a lengthy rebuild. Take Purdue to go under the 6 win total as they will fall just short.