Three and Out: Purdue’s win vs. Michigan State

Purdue's Aidan O'Connell

Aidan O’Connell threw for a career-high 536 yards and three scores (Chad Krockover)

PDF: Purdue-Michigan State stats

We’re calling it Three And Out this year, because it’s three things and then we’re out.

Today, Purdue’s 40-21 win vs. No. 5 Michigan State, the Boilermakers’ second top-five win of the season. That last happened in 1960.

Aidan O’Connell threw for a career-high 536 yards and three scores, and David Bell torched another high-level opponent, to the tune of 11 catches for 217 yards and a TD. Mitchell Fineran made four short field goals, shaking off his struggles of late to make big kicks in a big game.

The Boilermakers never trailed, and put the game away late in the fourth quarter with a red-zone stand by the defense.


After struggling so badly at times this season, Purdue’s offense is alive and well, amidst two straight really strong games.

Today, Aidan O’Connell was razor sharp under center and David Bell was his usual elite self, but Jeff Brohm has done a masterful job lately reversing the fortunes of a unit that was Purdue’s glaring weakness just a few weeks back.

He’s had all the answers lately, in the running game, in the red zone, on third down, all of it.

It helps when your quarterback plays at a high level, and O’Connell sure did today.


Michigan State’s only third-quarter points came off a short field following an untimely Purdue turnover.

Otherwise, following a first half in which the Spartans made a bunch of big plays, Brad Lambert’s defense again seemed to really figure things out in time for a critical second half.


Purdue Ied 21-7 late in the first half, but allowed a late touchdown in the first and a quick touchdown in the second, and so 30 minutes of football In which you were the better team was totally canceled out.

The Boilermakers responded in a big way thereafter, speaking volumes about their collective mettle and preparedness.

This wasn’t a shocking result if you watched the game. Purdue was the better team, same as it was at Iowa.

Purdue’s now bowl-eligible, but positioned to think even bigger after its second marquee win of this memorable season.

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