The Exponent sat down with Indiana Rivals reporter D.J. Fezler about the Old Oaken Bucket game happening Saturday in Ross-Ade Stadium.
What do you expect from IU considering it will be in a bowl game already? Will it rest any players or will we see a full-go Hoosier team?
I expect a full effort from IU to reclaim the Old Oaken Bucket. An eight-win season — the final coming over Purdue — would be the exclamation point to an already historic season.
What players do you think will shine for the Hoosiers? For Purdue?
Should the Hoosiers get wide receiver Whop Philyor back from injury, he’ll be the team’s go-to target on offense. As for Purdue, David Bell has stepped up in an incredible way since Rondale Moore’s injury. The Boilermakers’ potent passing attack should continue to stretch the field against a poor Hoosier secondary.
What do you think has made this team so much better this year?
The addition of offensive coordinator Kalen DeBoer has made all the difference for the Hoosiers. His system has helped push them toward the top of the Big Ten in passing yards, which has contributed to most of the team’s wins this season.
Will the fact that this is an away game for the Hoosiers impact their play?
Actually, I believe it will help. Many players have voiced excitement for away games this season.
Aidan O’Connell, is Purdue’s third-string quarterback. With little film to go off of, how will IU prepare and go against the passing attack?
IU head coach Tom Allen and defensive coordinator Kane Wommack will surely look back at Purdue’s offensive scheme as a whole and compare it to the limited film on O’Connell. Should the Boilermakers start the game with a different plan of attack, the defense will have to make adjustments.
Final score prediction?
Injuries have certainly derailed Purdue this season, but if IU can’t win one-on-one matchups, the game could turn into a shootout. However, I think the Hoosiers come away with a win to cap off their regular season. Final score: IU 34, Purdue 27.