Johnson talks Boilermakers

Jovon Johnson talked at length about preparing for the Purdue offense, specifically Brandon Kirsch and Dorien Bryant. Read what he had to say in this premium interview.

Q: (On Purdue WR Dorien Bryant)

Jovon Johnson: He's a great receiver, he's small, but at the same time the kid makes plays. He's a tremendous athlete.

Q: Coach was saying it's hard to simulate this type of speed in practice. Is that going to be an issue?

Johnson: Oh yeah, definitely. When you've got a guy who's as fast as he is, it's hard to simulate guys like that in practice because you don't really see guys like that on a scout team. If they were like that, they wouldn't be on the scout team. He's a special player and he does great things, it's going to be a challenge for us.

Q: What about Kirsch, as a quarterback, do you have to read him a little differently?

Johnson: Kirsch does a lot of different things, you know. He's probably one of the better quarterbacks that we've played so far. It's going to be a challenge for us to play against him in the spread offense. At the same time, every team that we play against this year runs basically the same offense. It's going to be a challenge for us. It's nothing that we haven't seen before.

Q: What kind of special challenges does the spread offense present that other types of offenses don't?

Johnson: It's just that they put more receivers on the field and spread you out. It gives more openings in a zone defense when they have five wide or four wide. It's complicated to play against, but at the same time, it takes everybody underneath to help the guys over top to be successful against it.

Q: Coach was saying that Illinois might have been a good preparation to go into Purdue and what they have, would you agree?

Johnson: I'd agree that Illinois and what they provided for us is going to be very essential to what we're going to see this week and also Ohio State did basically the same things. They both gave us an experiment of what it's going to be like throughout the season and playing against teams with spread offenses.

Q: Their defense ranks last in pass defense. DO you think they're a bit underrated for their defense?

Johnson: I'm not sure, I don't really watch the other team's defenses, so I don't really pay attention to it. Hopefully our offense can go out and play to the best of their ability and be successful against that. I don't look at the statistics, I don't know much about it.

Q: If you were to say the difference between the 3rd ranked pass defense and the last ranked pass defense, what do you think the two teams are doing differently?

Johnson: It's just the margin of error is so small. Everybody in the conference is so evenly matched that you can be third in the conference but also not be too far behind and be last. I don't know what they do, but I know that we're going to compete and we're going to compete like we know how. I think going into the season with 2 experienced corners really helped out a team that's secondary is young. I don't know what their secondary is like, but at the same time, I'm sure they're not any worse than what we are.

Q: So stats really don't mean a whole lot at this juncture?

Johnson: Right now at this point in the season, stats don't mean a whole lot, because things can change over the next couple months of the season.

Q: Do you see the way they came back against Notre Dame in the 2nd half? What does that say about their offense and their ability to come back?

Johnson: A team like Notre Dame who has a lot of talent and a lot of character, that's just a great program. To see Purdue to come back the way they did, it just shows they can put up points fast. You can't let teams like that hurt you, when teams put up points like that, so fast, it gives their offense the opportunity to win ball games, it's going to be a challenge.

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