Wednesday night’s Motor City Bowl featured two NFL hopeful quarterbacks, a pair of high-powered offenses, a bevy of talented playmakers, and plenty of gutsy play-calling.
It had everything—including last-second drama.
Purdue finished the year with eight wins, and two were against the 8-6 MAC Champion Central Michigan Chippewas.
Their other wins, you ask?
Toledo, Eastern Illinois, Notre Dame, Minnesota, Iowa, and Northwestern.
As for CMU—not to hate on the MAC, but the Chippewas were nothing more than doormats against any quality regular-season opponent.
CMU was blown out 52-7 by Kansas, 45-22 by Purdue (back in September), 70-14 by Clemson, and 44-14 by North Dakota State.
But that’s why college football is so great: Two average teams meeting for the second time this season were playing in a not-so-anticipated game, but some extremely talented amateur athletes showed up and put on a dazzling show that any football fan would have loved.
Purdue's Curtis Painter racked up 546 passing yards, three touchdowns, and completions to seven different Boilermaker receivers. One of Painter’s favorite targets, tight end Dustin Keller, hauled in seven passes for 150 yards, and showed the country why he'll soon be playing on Sundays.
On the other side of the ball, CMU's Dan LeFevour was just as good, tallying 296 yards in the air and another 114 on the ground. His favorite receiver, Bryan Anderson, rolled up 129 receiving yards—including a sweet 49-yard TD score.
With those kind of stats, who cares about defense?
When these two teams met in September, no one outside of Indiana or Michigan took notice. But throw in a cheesy trophy, tack on a trite Motor City Bowl moniker, give the kids an ESPN audience—and all of a sudden you get 99 points, over 1,000 yards of offense, and a game-winning field goal as time expired.
It just doesn’t get any better than that.
And stay tuned, college football fans—we still have 25 games to go.