Purdue (1-0) at (22) Notre Dame (1-0)|
Saturday, September 8, 3:30 p.m. (et)
The Sports Network
By Nicholas DeLorenzo, Associate College Football Editor
GAME NOTES: Hoosier State rivals square off on Saturday afternoon, as the
22nd-ranked Notre Dame Fighting Irish play host to the Purdue Boilermakers.
Purdue's season opener was never in doubt, scoring the game's first 20 points
against FCS opponent Eastern Kentucky and eventually cruising to an easy 48-6
victory. The Boilermakers improved to 74-45-6 all-time in their first game of
the season and they have now won eight straight season openers at home.
They'll try to move to 2-0 for the first time since 2007.
Notre Dame took on Navy in Aviva Stadium in Dublin, Ireland in the first
college football game played in Ireland since 1996 when the same two teams
played in the Emerald Isle Classic. Much like the matchup 16 years ago, the
Irish won in commanding fashion, 50-10. The performance helped make Notre Dame
the newest member of the AP Top-25.
The Irish have won the last four meetings against the Boilermakers to improve
to 55-26-2 in the all-time series. Purdue has not won in South Bend since
The Purdue offense had no issue at all putting up big numbers against the
Eastern Kentucky defense last week, compiling 542 total yards.
With previously declared starter Caleb TerBush suspended one game for
violating team rules, Robert Marve played in his place and threw for a career-
high 295 yards and three touchdowns. Rob Henry (7-of-9, 77 yards) also threw a
touchdown pass. Despite Marve's strong play, head coach Danny Hope plans for
TerBush to return as the starter for Saturday's game.
O.J. Ross led the team in both receptions (eight) and receiving yards (71),
while Antavian Edison (seven rec, 58 yds) and Gary Bush (six rec, 43 yds) also
had nice receiving days. Edison, Bush, Gabe Holmes and Justin Sinz were all on
the receiving end of touchdown passes.
The Purdue rushing attack was effective with 175 yards, paced by Akeem Shavers
with 74 yards on 11 carries. Shavers also ran in an eight-yard touchdown.
The Eastern Kentucky offense proved to be no match for the Boilermaker
defense, which surrendered just 190 yards while holding EKU to a single
"This was huge for our confidence," Coach Danny Hope said of his team's
defensive effort. "We have a chance to be very good on defense. The potential
is there. These were great trial runs for the defense."
Landon Feichter returned an interception 34 yards for a touchdown, the first
pick of his career. Will Lucas also made an interception, to go along with six
Defensive tackle Kawann Short blocked an extra point and a field goal attempt.
He now has six blocked kicks in his career. The All-America candidate also
recorded his first sack of the season to move into 13th place on the program's
career list (13.5).
The Notre Dame offense found the end zone early as often against Navy,
finishing with six touchdowns and 490 yards of total offense (293 rushing).
Making his first start was sophomore quarterback Everett Golson, who was as
efficient as he needed to be in completing 12-of-18 passes for 144 yards, a
touchdown and an interception.
Golson won the starting quarterback job in camp over three other competitors.
Coach Brian Kelly was pleased with his performance.
"He made some good decisions and moved our offense well," Kelly said. "We put
50 points on the board, so that's a pretty good start."
Tight end Tyler Eifert was on the receiving end of a five-yard touchdown
strike from Golson early on in the second quarter.
Navy's defense had no answer for the Irish rushing attack, as Theo Riddick
garnered the most carries out of the backfield (19) and capitalized with 107
yards and two touchdowns. George Atkinson was nearly as effective on just nine
totes, gaining 99 yards while also running in two scores. Robby Toma had only
one carry on the day but it went for a nine-yard touchdown.
Notre Dame's defense was great when it mattered most, holding Navy's
historically strong rushing attack to just 149 yards.
One of the biggest game-changing plays came on a 77-yard fumble return for a
touchdown by Stephon Tuitt with 2:12 left in the first half, putting the Irish
Dan Fox and Bennett Jackson each recorded seven tackles to lead the team.
Manti Te'o had an interception and a fumble recovery, and Prince Shembo, Kona
Schwenke and Tuitt all tallied sacks.
Although both teams' season openers were considered tune-ups to prepare for
the more challenging parts of their respective schedules, both the
Boilermakers and the Fighting Irish appear to be in mid-season form in all
facets of the game. There are plenty of playmakers on both sidelines that can
shift the momentum of this game at a moments notice, but Notre Dame's potent
rushing attack and the home field advantage should be good enough to outlast
Sports Network Predicted Outcome: Notre Dame 35, Purdue 24
09/05 10:37:38 ET