Nov 25, 2023; West Lafayette, Indiana, USA; Purdue Boilermakers linebacker Nic Scourton (5) reacts after bringing down Indiana Hoosiers quarterback Brendan Sorsby (15) during the second half at Ross-Ade Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Robert Goddin-USA TODAY Sports

Top transfer, Big Ten sacks leader picks Texas A&M

Nic Scourton, the top edge rusher in the NCAA transfer portal, committed to Texas A&M on Thursday.

He posted a photo of himself wearing a No. 7 Aggies jersey to social media to confirm the return to his native Texas.

Scourton, 19, played 25 games over two seasons at Purdue. He led the Big Ten in sacks with 10 and had 15 tackles for loss in 2023.

24Sports listed Scourton as the No. 8 overall player in the portal.

His commitment to Texas A&M and new head coach Mike Elko came one day after Scourton’s official visit to College Station.

Tight end Garrett Miller, Scourton’s teammate with the Boilermakers, transferred to Texas A&M last month.

Adding Scourton to the roster is a big gain for the Aggies, who lost defensive linemen Edgerrin Cooper (NFL draft), Fadil Diggs (transfer to Syracuse) and Walter Nolen (transfer to Ole Miss) since the end of the 2023 season.

–Field Level Media

Nov 25, 2023; West Lafayette, Indiana, USA; Purdue Boilermakers linebacker Nic Scourton (5) reacts after bringing down Indiana Hoosiers quarterback Brendan Sorsby (15) during the second half at Ross-Ade Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Robert Goddin-USA TODAY Sports

Report: Purdue pass-rusher Nic Scourton to transfer

Purdue outside linebacker Nic Scourton, the Big Ten’s leader in sacks this season, is entering the transfer portal, The Athletic reported Tuesday.

The 6-foot-4, 280-pound sophomore from Bryan, Texas, tallied 10 sacks, 15 tackles for loss, 50 tackles and 28 quarterback hits in 11 games for the Boilermakers in 2023.

Scourton, 19, excelled in big games, recording two sacks against Michigan and a sack and a forced fumble versus Ohio State.

Scourton registered two sacks and 22 tackles in 14 games during his first season in West Lafayette, Ind., in 2022.

The former four-star recruit was previously known as Nic Caraway before changing his last name this season to honor his father.

–Field Level Media

Purdue Boilermakers wide receiver Deion Burks (4) reacts after making a catch during the NCAA football game against the Illinois Fighting Illini, Saturday, Sept. 30, 2023, at Ross-Ade Stadium in West Lafayette, Ind. Purdue Boilermakers won 44-19.

Purdue WR Deion Burks transferring to Oklahoma

Standout Purdue wide receiver Deion Burks announced Tuesday he is transferring to Oklahoma.

He led the Boilermakers with 47 catches for 629 yards and seven touchdowns in 12 games in 2023.

“Took me a SEC but it was gone happen SOONER or later,” Burks posted on social media, referencing the Sooners’ move from the Big 12 to the SEC in 2024.

The second-team All-Big Ten selection opened the season with 152 yards and two TDs in a loss to Fresno State.

–Field Level Media

Nov 18, 2023; Evanston, Illinois, USA;  Purdue Boilermakers running back Tyrone Tracy Jr. (3) breaks a tackle by Northwestern Wildcats defensive back Rod Heard II (24) for a touchdown run in the third quarter at Ryan Field. Mandatory Credit: Jamie Sabau-USA TODAY Sports

Bragging rights at stake as Indiana visits Purdue

Bragging rights and the Old Oaken Bucket are at stake on Saturday when Indiana visits in-state rival Purdue in West Lafayette for a Big Ten matchup and season finale.

Both squads enter the game reeling and wanting to head into the offseason with a positive vibe.

Indiana (3-8, 1-7) has won just one time in its last seven games and is coming off a disappointing home loss to Michigan State on Saturday, a game in which the Hoosiers gave up the game-winning touchdown with about a minute remaining and missed a game-tying 49-yard field goal with two seconds left.

Indiana hopes to also reverse recent dominance in the rivalry by Purdue. The Boilermakers have won four of the last five games against the Hoosiers.

Indiana coach Tom Allen said it will be a different wrinkle preparing for Purdue with first-year head coach Ryan Walters at the helm.

“They’re running the ball really well lately,” Allen said of Purdue. “Last two games in a row they’ve been over 300 yards rushing, which is very impressive. They’ve got two talented running backs, and their O-line is being very effective in what they’re doing. They’ve made adjustments throughout the season.”

The Boilermakers (3-8, 2-6) enter the game having lost five of their last six, the latest being a 23-15 defeat at Northwestern on Saturday.

Tyrone Tracy Jr. was Purdue’s leading rusher last week, with 160 yards on 16 carries against the Wildcats.

“They have a lot of length on the outside,” Walters said of Indiana. “Then they have a speedy slot/running back. I think they do a good job of utilizing the personnel and getting into formations that are unique within that personnel grouping. Their run game and pass game complement each other, so you have to have your eyes in the right spot all the time.”

Hoosiers quarterback Brendan Sorsby threw for 192 yards and two touchdowns against the Spartans last week.

Purdue won last year’s game against Indiana in Bloomington, 30-16.

–Field Level Media

Nov 11, 2023; Madison, Wisconsin, USA;  Northwestern Wildcats quarterback Ben Bryant (2) rushes with the football during the second quarter against the Wisconsin Badgers at Camp Randall Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports

Northwestern meets Purdue, bids to continue home magic

After ending a 14-game losing streak in true road games last week, Northwestern will try to close a strong home season in Evanston, Ill., against Purdue on Saturday.

The Wildcats (5-5, 3-4 Big Ten) can become bowl eligible by doing something they haven’t all season: winning consecutive games.

Northwestern is coming off a 24-10 road victory against Wisconsin that featured the return of quarterback Ben Bryant, who had missed the previous four games with an upper-body injury. Bryant was 18-for-26 passing for 195 yards and two touchdowns and also ran for a score.

“What I saw was a young man that didn’t miss a beat,” Wildcats interim coach David Braun said. “Even when he was injured and coming back from injury, staying locked in, staying focused and knew that his opportunity was going to come at some point and he was going to be great.”

The Wildcats are 4-1 at Ryan Field in Evanston this season.

Purdue (3-7, 2-5), meanwhile, stopped a four-game losing streak with a 49-30 rout of visiting Minnesota on Nov. 11.

Boilermakers quarterback Hudson Card tied his career best with three touchdown passes while throwing for 251 yards — exceeding the two totals from the two previous games combined.

Still, it was the ground game that really got things going, as Devin Mockobee (153 yards) and Tyrone Tracy Jr. (122) became the first Purdue duo to top 100 yards rushing in the same game since 2018.

Mockobee and Tracy combined for three scores, while Card added a rushing touchdown. Not bad for an attack operating behind an offensive line playing with NAIA transfer Ben Farrell and usual interior lineman Josh Kaltenberger at tackle.

Purdue set season highs for points, total yards (604) and touchdowns (seven).

“I always believed in the plan schematically week to week, and I just think we were able to execute that plan on Saturday,” Boilermakers coach Ryan Walters said.

Purdue carries a two-game series winning streak into the game and boasts a 53-33-1 edge against Northwestern all-time.

–Field Level Media

Michigan Wolverines running back Blake Corum (2) scores a touchdown against the Purdue Boilermakers during the first half at Michigan Stadium, Saturday, Nov. 4, 2023.

No. 3 Michigan mauls Purdue, 41-13

J.J. McCarthy threw for 335 yards to lead No. 3 Michigan to a 41-13 home win over Purdue in a Big Ten affair on Saturday.

Roman Wilson caught nine passes for 143 yards and Blake Corum rushed for three touchdowns for Michigan (9-0, 6-0 Big Ten). McCarthy finished 24-of-37 passing.

Purdue (2-7, 1-5) lost for the fourth straight time.

Michigan’s defense dominated throughout the night, limiting Purdue to six first downs and less than 200 yards of total offense before Purdue put together four first downs and a 75-yard drive in the final minutes when the outcome was already decided.

Michigan scored on its first possession of the game, going 76 yards in six plays and taking a 7-0 lead with 10:30 to go in the first quarter on a 2-yard touchdown run by Corum.

Corum then scored on a 3-yard touchdown run with 6:05 left in the first to finish off a 7-play, 67-yard drive and give Michigan a 14-0 lead.

James Turner hit a pair of field goals, the latter to give Michigan a 20-0 lead in the second quarter. Purdue cut its deficit to 20-6 on two field goals by Ben Freehill, the second of which came with 29 seconds left until halftime.

With 3:12 to go in the third quarter, the Wolverines took a 27-6 lead on a 44-yard touchdown run by Semaj Morgan.

Corum then scored his third touchdown of the game, this time from 3 yards out to give Michigan a 34-6 lead with 14:18 remaining.

Michigan made it 41-6 with 4:30 left on a 1-yard touchdown run by Donovan Edwards before Purdue scored its first touchdown with 18 seconds remaining on a 24-yard touchdown pass from Hudson Card to Deion Burks. Card finished 12-for-28 for 144 yards, the TD pass and an interception.

The Boilermakers were 1 of 14 on third-down conversions, while Michigan was 7 of 14.

–Field Level Media

Michigan's J.J. McCarthy looks to throw against Michigan State during the first quarter on Saturday, Oct. 21, 2023, at Spartan Stadium in East Lansing.

No. 3 Michigan ignoring distractions, focused on Purdue

Michigan heads into November undefeated and at No. 3 in the first College Football Playoff rankings, which were released on Tuesday.

Yet virtually all the talk regarding the program in the last couple of weeks has been about coach Jim Harbaugh and his staff.

The program is embroiled in a signal-stealing scandal, centering around low-level staffer Connor Stalions, as the coaches prepare for Saturday’s Big Ten game against Purdue at Ann Arbor, Mich.

Harbaugh, who was originally going to be suspended for the first four games this season for allegedly making false statements to the NCAA during its investigation into potential recruiting violations, tried to sidestep the latest controversy.

“We’re in an onward mode,” Harbaugh said. “It’s a one-track mind that I’m modeling, and I see it throughout the program.”

Harbaugh added that the players aren’t dwelling on anything but reaching their ultimate goal of winning a national title.

“Their apparent focus is always the task at hand. Win the next game, get prepared, practice and then go execute,” he said. “They’re in a battle rhythm in that sense. That includes every team you play.”

On paper, the Boilermakers (2-6, 1-4 Big Ten) shouldn’t present much of an obstacle for the Wolverines (8-0, 5-0). They’re saddled with a three-game skid, including a 31-14 road loss to Nebraska last weekend.

The Cornhuskers held Purdue scoreless until the fourth quarter. Boilermakers starting quarterback Hudson Card, who threw a touchdown pass, was limited to 100 passing yards and tossed two interceptions.

Purdue’s running game averaged 3.3 yards per carry. One of the Boilermakers’ touchdowns came on a fumble return.

Purdue has scored 20 points or less in five of its last six games. Now, it faces a defense that hasn’t given up more than 10 points all season.

“If you got an answer how to crack it, let me know,” Purdue coach Ryan Walters said. “There have been a lot of people struggling this year. I think what’s unique about Michigan in its entirety as a program is, yes, they have really good players. They also have a really good scheme on offense, defense and special teams. So they pose problems and try to take away what you’re good at.”

Naturally, some people believe the Wolverines defense had an unfair advantage by knowing some of the opposition’s play-calling. Walters indicated his staff is “very aware of what the allegations are out there” and “we’ll plan accordingly.”

Walters’ defense will have to prepare for Michigan’s balanced attack led by quarterback J.J. McCarthy and running back Blake Corum.

McCarthy passed for a season-high 287 yards and four touchdowns in Michigan’s 49-0 pummeling of in-state rival Michigan State on Oct. 21. The Wolverines had last weekend off.

“Very talented. Can make every throw,” Walters said of McCarthy. “Can get you out of trouble with his legs on the ground. I think that’s where he’s grown this season. Last year he had some questionable decisions at times and tried to make hero plays at times that kind of got them in trouble offensively. You don’t see him making those mistakes this season.”

Corum has piled up 13 rushing touchdowns to go with 605 yards on the ground.

Harbaugh said his team is ready to go after the bye week.

“I think our depth and the health of the team is pretty high right now,” he said. “Couldn’t ask for much better going into this stretch in November.”

–Field Level Media

Oct 28, 2023; Lincoln, Nebraska, USA; Nebraska Cornhuskers quarterback Heinrich Haarberg (10) passes against the Purdue Boilermakers during the second quarter at Memorial Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Dylan Widger-USA TODAY Sports

Nebraska survives 4 fumbles to beat Purdue, 31-14

Heinrich Haarberg threw two touchdown passes and Nebraska overcame four lost fumbles to win its third straight, beating Purdue 31-14 in a Big Ten Conference game on Saturday afternoon in Lincoln, Neb.

The Cornhuskers (5-3, 3-2 Big Ten) have outscored their opponents 68-30 points during the win streak, moving a victory away from being bowl eligible for the first time since 2016.

Haarberg threw for 122 yards and two TDs on 6-of-11 passing but only had 22 rushing yards on 19 attempts. Emmett Johnson led the ground charge, rushing for 76 yards on 13 carries, including a 28-yard TD run with 3:54 to go in the fourth quarter.

Purdue (2-6, 1-4) trailed 24-0 in the fourth before getting on the scoreboard, turning a pair of fumble recoveries into points. Hudson Card hit Jayden Dixon-Neal for a 29-yard TD pass with 9:09 left, then Kydran Jenkins returned a fumble 55 yards for a score with 6:24 remaining.

The last of those fumbles came when Nebraska quarterback Jeff Sims, who came in for Haarberg after he fumbled on the previous drive, lost the ball on a fourth-and-1 run.

Up 14-0 at the half, Nebraska upped it to a 21-point lead early in the third when Elijah Jeudy blocked a Purdue field-goal attempt and Quinton Newsome returned it 68 yards for a score. It was the Cornhuskers’ first blocked field goal for a TD since 2014.

A career-long 55-yard field goal by Tristan Alvano made it 24-0 with 12:23 remaining.

After managing minus-8 yards on its first two drives, Nebraska went 87 yards in 15 plays and ate up nearly nine minutes of clock to take a 7-0 lead on a 1-yard Thomas Fidone II catch from Haarberg early in the second quarter. Following an interception by Tommi Hill, Haarberg found Jaylen Lloyd for a 73-yard TD pass.

Purdue finished with 195 yards, its fewest in more than four seasons, with Card completing only 16 of 32 passes for 100 yards, with a TD and two interceptions.

–Field Level Media

Oct 14, 2023; West Lafayette, Indiana, USA;  Ohio State Buckeyes wide receiver Marvin Harrison Jr. (18) catches a pass for a touchdown against Purdue Boilermakers defensive back Markevious Brown (1) during the first half at Ross-Ade Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Robert Goddin-USA TODAY Sports

No. 3 Ohio State easily takes care of Purdue

Kyle McCord passed for 276 yards and three touchdowns and Marvin Harrison Jr. had 105 receiving yards and a score as No. 3 Ohio State downed Purdue 41-7 in West Lafayette, Ind., on Saturday.

McCord completed 16 of 28, with Harrison making six catches while Cade Stover caught TDs of 4 and 14 yards for the Buckeyes (6-0, 3-0 Big Ten).

Hudson Card was 13 for 32 for 126 yards and a TD and Devin Mockobee ran for 110 yards on 18 carries the Boilermakers (2-5, 1-3 Big Ten).

Ohio State made sure early there would be no repeat of its last trip to Purdue in 2018 when the unranked Boilermakers stunned the No. 2 Buckeyes 49-20.

This time, the Buckeyes jumped to a 20-0 halftime lead then squandered another scoring opportunity when backup quarterback Devin Brown was hit at the goal line on a keeper. Purdue’s Kydran Jenkins recovered the fumble for a touchback.

Ohio State went ahead 6-0 five minutes into the first quarter with a 14-yard touchdown reception by Harrison, who made three catches for 63 yards on the drive.

Brown, who replaced McCord in some short-yardage situations, ran for a 2-yard TD to make it 13-0 and McCord connected with Stover for a 4-yard score with 6:02 left in the second quarter.

In the waning moments of the first half, Purdue had a first-and-goal from the 1 but a holding penalty and a sack forced a 39-yard field goal try that Julio Macias missed with two seconds left.

He also missed from 46 yards in the first half and 27 in the third quarter.

The Buckeyes entered the game missing already missing several players to injury: leading rusher TreVeyon Williams, third-string back Miyan Williams and standout receiver Emeka Egbuka. Second-string running back Chip Trayanum left with an injury early in the second quarter.

Dallan Hayden (76 yards, 11 carries) made it 27-0 early in the third quarter with a 1-yard run.

The Boilermakers got on the board 30 seconds into the fourth quarter on Card’s 1-yard toss to Deion Burks to make it 34-7.

–Field Level Media

Oct 7, 2023; Iowa City, Iowa, USA; Iowa Hawkeyes running back Kaleb Johnson (2) runs the ball as Purdue Boilermakers defensive lineman Mo Omonode (92) pursues during the first quarter at Kinnick Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jeffrey Becker-USA TODAY Sports

Kaleb Johnson rushes for 134 yards as Iowa downs Purdue

Kaleb Johnson rushed for 134 yards and a touchdown on 17 carries to lead Iowa to a 20-14 win over Purdue in Iowa City, Iowa, on Saturday.

Leshon Williams rushed for 74 yards on 13 carries to flank Johnson for the Hawkeyes (5-1, 2-1 Big Ten).

Making his first career start, Iowa quarterback Deacon Hill completed just 6 of 21 passes for 110 yards with one touchdown and an interception.

Hudson Card went 25-of-40 passing for 247 yards, a touchdown and two interceptions for Purdue (2-4, 1-2).

Iowa held a 20-7 lead in the fourth quarter, but Purdue cut it to 20-14 with 2:54 left in the game on a 2-yard touchdown run by Devin Mockobee, which finished off a six-play, 74-yard drive.

Purdue then forced a punt and got the ball back at its 25-yard line with two minutes remaining, but the drive ended on downs following a sack, a 7-yard completion and two incompletions.

Iowa opened the scoring with 10:24 remaining in the first quarter, taking a 7-0 lead on a 67-yard touchdown run by Johnson.

The Hawkeyes had a golden opportunity later in the quarter when Cooper DeJean intercepted a pass from Card and returned it 43 yards to the Purdue 5-yard line.

But the hosts went backwards and had to settle for a 27-yard field goal by Drew Stevens that gave them a 10-0 lead with 14:57 left in the second quarter.

The Boilermakers shaved Iowa’s lead to 10-7 with 40 seconds remaining in the second quarter on a 43-yard touchdown pass from Card to TJ Sheffield.

Early in the third quarter, Iowa put together a nine-play, 75-yard drive and went up 13-7 on a 23-yard field goal by Stevens.

The Hawkeyes then created some breathing room early in the fourth, taking a 20-7 lead with 14:24 remaining thanks to a 22-yard touchdown pass from Hill to Erick All.

–Field Level Media