Purdue Boilermakers vs Illinois Fighting Illini: Halftime Thoughts


The first quarter was a wild ride with the Illinois Fighting Illini leading the Purdue Boilermakers 14-7.  Both quarterbacks were showing off some amazing passing skills. Illinois’ Wes Lunt was hitting his receivers deep as the Purdue defense couldn’t keep up and Purdue’s Austin Appleby was throwing short, but completed all but one pass in the quarter.

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Here are some highlights from the second quarter:

  • Purdue was stopped at the Illinois 20 yard line, turning the ball over on downs. The offensive play calling has been a bit predictable today.
  • Purdue then stopped the Illini on the Purdue 23, as they also turned the ball over on downs. With the wind blowing pretty hard, the kicking game for both squads has become useless.
  • On their second drive of the quarter, the Boilermakers’ Akeem Hunt broke through the middle of the line and took it to the house for a 54-yard touchdown. It became the longest touchdown play of the year for the Boilers, surpassing the Raheem Mostert 44-yard touchdown run from the first quarter.
  • Akeem Hunt broke the 100-yard rushing mark with six minutes left in the quarter.
  • Appleby started the day 4-for-4 on third down. Illinois ended that streak late in the second quarter, but still an impressive feat for a kid starting in his first ever college game.
  • Purdue’s play calling has been a bit suspect in this game, including pitching it to Keyante Green – their slowest back – on a third and goal situation. The drive ended with a Paul Griggs’ field goal to get the Boilers a 17-14 lead at halftime.

This first half was superb for the Boilermakers, especially Appleby. His calm demeanor and confidence in the pocket is allowing the receivers to get open and setting up the running game for the big plays they are making. All-in-all this has been a completely different Purdue team. Either they are getting better or Illinois is just that bad.

Purdue Halftime Stats

  • Austin Appleby – 10/13, 100 yards, zero touchdowns, zero interception.
  • Akeem Hunt – 19 rushes, 148 yards and a touchdown.
  • Raheem Mostert – 3 rushes, 48 yards and a touchdown
  • 199 total rushing yards
  • 100 total passing yards
  • Zero offensive turnovers
  • Defense has given up 208 total yards – 158 passing and 50 rushing
  • Zero defensive turnovers