The Ohio State Buckeyes (6-3, 3-2 Big Ten) will travel to face the Purdue Boilermakers (4-5, 2-3) this weekend in a conference game with potential Big Ten Conference Championship implications.
With all the hoopla surrounding Penn State right now, the Nittany Lions are not a shoe-in to maintain their lead in the Leaders division. Both the Buckeyes and Boilermakers need to stay focused coming into this game.
Where: Ross-Ade Stadium (Indiana)
When: 12:00 p.m. EST on Nov. 12, 2011
Watch: Big Ten Network
Listen: Purdue Sports Network
Betting Line: Ohio State -7.5, according to SportsBook
Ohio State comes in riding three-straight wins, two of which came against ranked opponents. Purdue has lost two-straight games after starting the season 2-1 in conference play.
A win by the Boilermakers would tie up the two teams at 3-3 in the Big Ten, and only allow each team to tie the Nittany Lions at best in the Leaders division.
Who Might Not Play for Ohio State (According to College Injury Report)
Jordan Hall is the only new Buckeye on the injury report. He’s listed as doubtful with an ankle injury. Without playing last week against Indiana, Hall is third on the team with 330 rushing yards.
Who Might Not Play for Purdue (According to College Injury Report)
The Boilermakers have no new injuries to report.
BCS/Top 25 Implications
With their impressive play of late, the Buckeyes received 50 votes in the AP Top 25 Poll, which was the second most by any team not in the Top 25. A win over Purdue and a couple losses toward the bottom of the rankings could push Ohio State into the prestigious rankings.
Purdue, however, is more than a week away from finding themselves in the Top 25.
What They’re Saying
Ohio State interim coach Luke Fickell knows the struggles of his team when the road leads the Buckeyes to Purdue’s stadium.
"We've been pretty successful here in the last 10 years, as much as any program in the country. We're 2-2 over there (at Purdue) in the last 10 years. If that's not enough to open your eyes and make sure you understand ..."
Purdue head coach Danny Hope wants to see the Boilermakers stop their slide on Saturday.
"Anytime you get beat bad a couple of weeks in a row, you have to make sure things don't start slipping from a confidence standpoint. Right now is when it will sneak up on you, if you're not careful."
Ohio State Player to Watch
The senior linebacker leads the team in tackles with 66. He also has an interception, a forced fumble and five tackles for losses.
The Buckeyes defense is 14th in the nation in points against with 18.1
Purdue Player to Watch
TerBush, a junior, took over as the starter this season after barely seeing the field in his first two seasons. He’s never thrown more than two TDs in a game, but he’ll have to throw two for the Boilermakers to come out on top.
Key Matchup: Purdue rushing attack vs. Ohio State linebackers
Sweat needs to anchor his defense against the Purdue ground game. The Boilermakers have two backs averaging exactly 4.6 yards per contest, so the Buckeyes have two guys to plan for this weekend.
Ohio State 20, Purdue 9