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Rob Henry surprised with a solid outing against Notre Dame
This first part of the game was a pleasant surprise. The Boilermakers came out strong and jumped out to a 10-0 lead on Notre Dame.
The defense looked sharp in the first half, holding the Irish to only three points, and the offense looked competent, although they wouldn’t really start rolling until the second half, when the Purdue defense started to break.
The Boilermakers, who came into the contest as three-touchdown underdogs, were in the game the entire way and were in control a majority of the time.
That alone was a surprise, since Purdue struggled mightily with an FCS school just a week prior to the game.
Then, the unpleasant surprise came swiftly and violently.
The Irish scored three touchdowns in less than four minutes during the fourth quarter to, ultimately, put the game out of the reach.
With the Boilermakers making all the right plays up to that point, it seemed as if they were destined to win.
While some fans may point out the game to be a moral victory, Hazell doesn’t believe in them.
“We’re in the business of winning,” Hazell said, according to JCOnline.
Another surprise that came out of the game was the performance of senior quarterback Rob Henry. He had been consistently inconsistent in the two games before the Notre Dame matchup, and it seemed as if, when the competition became even tougher, that he would continue to play poorly.
However, he answered with 256 yards and three touchdowns on 25-of-40 passing.
That was good enough to silence the calls for Henry to be benched in favor of Danny Etling or Austin Appleby, at least for another week.
But for Hazell, the signal-caller still has some work to do.
"He played pretty well,” Hazell said, according to Yahoo! Sports. “He got us in and out of the huddle really fast. I thought he made good decisions with the football throwing it away, but we need for him to continue to get better."