Halftime Analysis: Purdue 10, Wisconsin 3

Halftime Analysis: Purdue 10, Wisconsin 3

Football

Halftime Analysis: Purdue 10, Wisconsin 3

Purdue tailback D.J. Knox’s 18-yard touchdown reception late in the second quarter was the only touchdown in a defensive slugfest, as the Boilermakers lead Wisconsin, 10-3, at halftime at Ross-Ade Stadium.

Entering the weekend No. 2 in the Big Ten in passing (311.8 ypg) and No. 5 in scoring (31.1 ppg), Purdue (5-5, 4-3 Big Ten) has been pressured by Wisconsin’s defensive front (a pair of sacks) and hurt itself with an untimely turnover, fumbling the ball out of Wisconsin’s end zone to give the Badgers a touchback.

Wisconsin (6-4, 4-3) has been hampered by, well, it’s usual problems.

Undermanned with quarterback Alex Hornibrook (head), right tackle David Edwards (arm) and tailback Taiwan Deal (leg) not making the trip, Wisconsin showed flashes of balance on its first drive, which included a career-long 32-yard completion from Jack Coan to A.J. Taylor.

Per usual, however, self-inflicted errors cost UW points and waste prime field position. Facing a third-and-1, Jon Dietzen flinched on the Purdue 10-yard line. Following a five-yard penalty and a pass completion well short of the first-down marker, Rafael Gaglianone missed a 30-yard field goal wide left.

UW started its next drive on its own 49 but lost a yard in three plays thanks in part to a false start on right guard Beau Benzschawel. UW has been penalized six times for 65 yards, including three pass interference penalties by its three cornerbacks.

Wisconsin had a chance in the final minutes of the half to tie the score, but a 9-yard sack on second down and Coan overthrowing a wide-open Jake Ferguson in the end zone ended the threat. Gaglianone hit a 29-yard field goal to salvage the drive. Coan went 7-for-10 for 59 yards in the first half.

But with Purdue burning a couple timeouts while on defense, quarterback David Blough had enough time to get the Boilermakers into field goal range to push the lead back to seven.

Wisconsin tailback Jonathan Taylor has 74 yards on 19 carries, while the Badgers have totaled 165 yards of offense.

The Badgers will receive the kickoff in the second half.

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