The Bowling Green Falcons complete one of the most arduous non-conference schedules in the country on Saturday when they invade Ross-Ade Stadium in West Lafayette, Ind. and play the Purdue Boilermakers. BGSU has won both previous meetings with Purdue. The Falcons won 17-14 in West Lafayette on September 16, 1972. They repeated the feat by downing the #16 Boilermakers 27-26 on September 6, 2003. That year's Purdue team would go on to finish tied with Ohio State for second place in the Big Ten and rose to as high as #10 in the polls.
Both teams arrive at this game with 1-2 records, and both face conference openers on the road following this game. The winner will be 2-2, have momentum going into conference play and be in solid position to qualify for a bowl. The loser will be 1-3 and in serious trouble.
QUICK GAME INFO
Game date and time: Saturday, September 26th at 12:00 p.m. ET (11:00 a.m. CT)
Location: Ross-Ade Stadium in West Lafayette, Ind.
Television: Big Ten Network (Chris Denari and Stanley Jackson)
(Use the BTN GameFinder to determine which games will be broadcast in your area.)
Streaming: You can stream the game live through the BTN2GO website or the BTN2GO mobile app.
Radio: You can listen to the Falcon Radio Network (Todd Walker and John Gibson) on 99.1-FM WFRO (Fremont), 106.5 FM/1470 AM WLRQ (Toledo) and other stations in the northern Ohio area. You can also stream the game live through BGSUFalcons.com
Live Stats: You can keep track of the game live through the CBSSports.com GameTracker live stats site..
Odds: The Bowling Green Falcons opened as a 1.5 point underdog, but the line has moved significantly in their favor. They are currently listed as a 5 or 5.5 point favorite with an over/under for the game between 74 and 75 points, depending on the outlet. (Info courtesy of Oddsshark.com)
PLAYERS TO WATCH
Matt Johnson (QB, BGSU) -- You'd never know Johnson missed a season with a hip injury by watching him play now. He's the first Bowling Green QB with three straight 400-yard games and is ahead of the pace set by B.J. Symons when he set the NCAA record for single-season passing yards in 2003. He can pick you apart in the short game or throw deep balls all day long. Which will Purdue choose to defend?
Roger Lewis (WR, BGSU) -- Lewis, a true sophomore, has been unreal over his past two games. He leads the NCAA in receiving yards and is the first player in Falcons' history to have back-to-back games with 200 yards through the air. Last week, he had three touchdown receptions of 62 yards or more, including a 94-yarder. Purdue must slow him down.
Zach Colvin (DT, BGSU) -- Teams have run the ball effectively against the Falcons, to the tune of 236.7 yards per game and 5.1 yards per rush. Memphis was able to control the clock in the second half of their win against the Falcons, and one can assume Purdue will do much of the same, especially with a new quarterback at the helm. Colvin and his mates on the defensive line need to have a good game.
David Blough (QB, Purdue) -- Blough, a redshirt freshman, supplants former starter Austin Appleby. He's 3-for-8 with 11 yards passing so far this season. Blough (6-1, 202) is a much smaller quarterback than Appleby and will seek to extend plays with his legs. BGSU found defensive success against a Maryland team experiencing quarterback troubles, so they'll look to replicate that against the rookie here.
Markell Jones (RB, Purdue) -- Jones is the Boiilermakers' leading rusher with 229 yards. He's averaging 7.2 yards per carry and has three touchdowns. With BGSU's offense in high gear and Purdue trotting out a new signal caller, it's vital for Jones to have a big game and chew up clock. If he can, they can keep the Falcon offense on the bench.
Antoine Miles (DE, Purdue) -- Miles leads Purdue with four sacks in three games, and he needs to help Purdue's secondary here by producing pressure on Matt Johnson. Johnson has been sacked 11 times already, and if Miles can disrupt the passing game, it will help immensely.
Bowling Green is actually undefeated against three Big Ten schools. Aside from Purdue, the Falcons also hold a spotless mark against the Northwestern Wildcats and Maryland Terrapins. BGSU defeated Northwestern in November 2001 and then again in the 2003 Motor City Bowl. They also defeated Maryland in their first-ever meeting just two weeks ago.