The Purdue Boilermakers are entering Week 4 of the college football season with a 1-2 record. They fell at home to Virginia Tech last Saturday by a final score of 51-24, which forced head coach Darrell Hazell to make a change at the quarterback position. Freshman David Blough will take over for Austin Appleby and there is a lot of excitement surrounding him heading into his first career college start.
Blough has received comparisons to former Boilermakers superstar quarterback Drew Brees, which would help reignite the Purdue football program.
Hazell discussed the decision to make the switch from Appleby to Blough. He made it clear that the coaching staff has believed that Blough could be a major playmaker from the very beginning of the season even before they decided to start Appleby in Week 1.
“He’s the guy we’ve always said that he could create and keep the play extended and keeps his eyes down the field and make the throws that we need him to make,” Hazell said. “It was a close competition as you know, but we went with Austin and we need to make the decision to go a different way right now.”
Appleby ended up throwing for 669 yards, five touchdowns and six interceptions throughout the first three games of the season.
Those numbers simply weren’t the type of stats that Purdue was hoping to see from Appleby. If he had been able to take care of the football better, this decision likely wouldn’t have been made this early in the season.
That being said, Blough simply has to come into the game and make smart plays this week.
As a young quarterback, there are going to be early game jitters to start his college career for the Boilermakers. He simply needs to focus on making the easy pass and taking what the defense gives him rather than forcing passes down the field.
Purdue does have a very solid ground game between D.J. Knock and Markell Jones, which will help Blough get his career started off on a good foot.
Blough may not be the most intimidating physical presence at 6-foot-1 and 202 pounds, but that is a very similar size to what Brees was with the Boilermakers. He does have a much stronger and more accurate arm that Appleby, which will give him the chance to put up much bigger performances in the offense that Purdue is running.
Expect to see Blough come through with a big game in his first start. Bowling Green isn’t a pushover opponent, but the Boilermakers’ offense should be able to move the football effectively against the Falcons’ defense.
Blough is going to be a huge part of the Purdue offensive game plan and will be asked to make quite a few big throws throughout the course of the game.
*Featured Photo (above) credit to USA TODAY Sports