116 3rd St SE
Cedar Rapids, Iowa 52401
Here’s a closer look at Purdue’s 24-7 win over No. 2 Iowa on Saturday at Kinnick Stadium.
Which Aidan O’Connell-to-David Bell pass do you want to pick? Let’s go with this one. Or these two, actually.
There was still some hope for Iowa early in the fourth quarter. The Hawkeyes were down 17-7, but still somehow sort of hanging around.
Purdue began a drive near midfield, at the Iowa 46, to be specific. The Boilermarkers converted on a third-and-15 play due to a pass interference call on Iowa’s Jestin Jacobs.
Then on third-and-16 from the Iowa 45, O’Connell threw a perfect pass over the middle that was over Iowa’s linebackers and in front of its safeties to Bell for 23 yards and a first down.
Two plays later, on second-and-9 from the Hawkeyes 21, Bell — on the right side — began a route that started out as a slant but ended as a fade.
O’Connell’s throw to the right corner of the end zone was perfect again, over cornerback Matt Hankins and into Bell’s hands. Touchdown Purdue, a 24-7 lead and ... ballgame.
By the numbers
4: Interceptions thrown by Iowa quarterback Spencer Petras in this game.
7: Third consecutive game game Iowa has trailed by this margin at halftime.
35: Catches by Purdue’s David Bell in the three games he has played against Iowa.
458: Receiving yards Bell has obtained in his three games against Iowa.
Boilering up again
Purdue has a history of beating second-ranked teams in the country. A long one.
The Boilermakers’ win here was the school’s ninth as an unranked team against No. 2. No other school has done that as much, not even close.
The next-best total is four. Purdue’s previous win over a second-ranked team came Oct. 21, 2018, a 49-20 beatdown of Ohio State in West Lafayette.
Purdue quarterbacks continue to light up Iowa
Iowa’s defensive reputation is well known, yet Purdue continues to be its kryptonite.
Quarterback Aidan O’Connell was superb here, going 30-for-40 passing for 375 yards and two touchdowns. That’s a quarterback rating of 170.3, by the way.
In last season’s opener, O’Connell was 31 of 50 for 282 yards and three TDs. Purdue won, 24-20.
“He’s just got an uncanny ability to be calm and poised,” Purdue Coach Jeff Brohm told ABC immediately after the game. “He can throw the football. He has no fear when he throws it, and he’s very accurate. He’s a strong Christian, he cares about his teammates, he does everything the right way, he’s the exact example of a student-athlete that you’d want to have. I’m very proud of him.”
In the 2019 game between these teams, which Iowa won, 26-20, Purdue QB Jack Plummer threw for 327 yards and two touchdowns. David Blough threw for 333 yards and four TDs in Purdue’s 38-36 win in 2018, with Elijah Sindelar throwing three TD passes in Purdue’s 24-15 win at Kinnick Stadium in 2017.
Of course, Bell has been omnipresent in three of these games, but it hasn’t only been just him.
This and that
— Running back Ivory Kelly-Martin scored Iowa’s lone touchdown, on a 3-yard run in the second quarter. That was his first TD sine Nov. 3, 2018 ... against Purdue.
— The Big Ten became just the second conference to have five of its teams ranked in the top 10 this week. Iowa was second, Ohio State sixth, Penn State seventh, Michigan eighth and Michigan State 10th. The only other league to accomplish that feat is the SEC, which has done it 23 times.
— True freshman Keagan Johnson got the start in this game for Iowa at wide receiver and caught a 38-yard pass (more of a short-ish catch and longer run) from Petras on the very first play. Johnson had one other catch in the game for 12 yards.
Starting cornerback Riley Moss is out at least a couple of weeks with a leg injury incurred while diving for an interception in last week’s win over Penn State. Terry Roberts got the start in his place at right corner.
Iowa’s other starting cornerback, Matt Hankins, left the game in the second quarter with an apparent shoulder injury. He went to the locker room but returned to the field and game. Jermari Harris took his place during his absence.
Offensive lineman Cody Ince and tight end Luke Lachey did not play with unspecified injuries. Iowa’s starting line was Connor Colby, Mason Richman, Tyler Linderbaum, Kyler Schott and Jack Plumb.
Iowa has no game this coming week, a welcomed bye. Then it’s a short road trip to Madison to face Wisconsin on Oct. 30 (11 a.m. kickoff). The Badgers were 2-3 going into their home non-conference game Saturday night against Army.
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