And for three quarters, it certainly looked as if, despite the wind and decent defense by the Wildcats, Purdue was going to get their Big 10 and bowl elegibility hopes back on track. As it was, the Cats were out passed, out 1st downed and lost the time of possession battle.There are also some player interviews coming later....
All they did was play bend, don't break defense, score the last TD and hang on for the win. Yes, it was another end of the game win at home as the Wildcats get back to .500 (4-4 [3-2]).
Here's NU Coach Randy Walker's comments to Ted Albrecht after the game:
Asked about the final drive and coming back to find a way to score...
It was a tough day. I told the team before the game, I use a phrase all the time, there's an ebb and flow in football. I said, "Fellas, if there's ever going to be a day with some ebb and flow, the conditions out there present that. There's going to be some good and bad, there's going to be some tough sledding, it just is"Talk about the brilliant performance by the Defense today
You had that wind blowing all over the place, you know what its like, every hole into the wind, you know with that driver in your hand, and its tough.
But we hung in there, it was just as tough for them, both teams have to deal with that today. Its just going to be a matter of staying focussed until the 15th round and hope we've got a chance.
They're really coming around. I felt good about them the last couple of weeks. Sometimes it doesn't show up in the block score, but I really think we have some good things going on right now. We've got some guys back doing their best.It was also a courageous effort by the Offense - especially the last drive
Loren Howard was clearly at his best today, and a week better. He's in midseason form. Some of that disappointment we had early we had with some guys being out, nicked up, we're getting those guys back and they're playing their best football.
Again, our back was to the wall. There was no turning back - we had to make some plays.This game was one of ups and downs
I didn't feel like it was there all day, it only takes one bad play on a day like today to really put you behind the chains. Its just tough to make up and as you saw with them, that's one of the best offenses in the country out there [Purdue].
It was just a tough day, but we finally put it together, .... I finally realized after the game, I don't know, If I knew how to do it, I'd do it in the first quarter but we just got on a little hot streak, made some plays and there we go.
Especially after that first drive. We got pinned in and lost contain, safety didn't do a good job, all of sudden, now its out of the gate. I saw it develop and I said Oh no, its out of the gate. Fortunately we held them out, and held them to a field goal. and that's pretty darn good.Has Coach Walker ever had a more dramatic kicking game?
It was kinda like one of those days I expected . I just really expected us to be really all over the place. It was going to be wild because of that wind out there, its going to blow that ball around and do some crazy things.
Its almost, and I told the kickers before the game, "Listen, don't get hung up on the outcome. Worry about the process, get the ball in, trust it - it isn't going to be perfect out there today, guys, so don't worry about the outcome."4 and 4 is a good place to be...
We had a couple of stinkers out there, but by and large we had some good ones when we needed it and I just wanted the kickers to stay in the game and I'm really proud of the way Ryan Pederson responded - again he's kicking into that wind - its tough then it went behind us and he put some nails on it.
We just tried to hang in there, play with some poise, get to the 15th round and take our chances..
There's no secret to what we had to do today. I never said it, I don't think the kids needed to hear it, but we all knew we all had to come to this game, we had to come play our best. Get it together, both sides of the ball and our kicking game when we needed it, and found a way to get it - the game we needed to get.Its good to see you back on the sidelines and out of the Hospital...
They did a great job with me - the doctors and Evanston-Northwestern Hospital. I'm thrilled to be here, if these guys keep doing this to me, I may not have too many games left.
Hopefully we'll do a little bit better job with it but I'm doing great. Its a great way to win.
the WGN Post Game Show
with Dave Eanet & Ted Albrecht
and may have been edited for clarity
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