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Northwestern vs. Purdue predictions

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We’re feeling good this week.

NCAA Football: Purdue at Northwestern Caylor Arnold-USA TODAY Sports

Zach Pereles

Northwestern 35, Purdue 21

The Boilermakers are yet to put together a full 60 minutes of football, and a lot of that is just due to a lack of competitive depth and overall skill. David Blough might throw for 350 yards, but he’ll turn it over twice, and the Purdue defense has no response to Austin Carr. He’ll have a big day, Justin Jackson, John Moten IV and Clayton Thorson combine for over 200 yards on the ground, and the Wildcats win going away.

Josh Burton

Northwestern 30, Purdue 10

Ohio State and Wisconsin are top-flight opponents, and Northwestern hung with both the Buckeyes and the Badgers. Fortunately for the Wildcats, Purdue is a significant step down from those foes, and the Boilermakers are struggling through another lost season, especially on defense. Northwestern, both through the air and on the ground, should be able to put up a lot of points on Saturday, and while David Blough and Co. make up a good offense, the Wildcats easily have the advantage on both sides of the ball.

Rob Schaefer

Northwestern 27, Purdue 7

They made it through the gauntlet, albeit not unscathed. Hard-fought losses to Ohio State and Wisconsin are nothing to scoff at, and it’s reasonable to expect Northwestern will get back on track against lowly Purdue. Thorson shakes off a rough first half to lead the visitors to a relatively one-sided victory to get NU back in the win column.

Tristan Jung (Random Number Generator)

Purdue 18, Northwestern 42

It appears that the random number generator does not look kindly to Purdue. Clayton Thorson will throw for six touchdowns and Purdue will only gain 18 points thanks to six field goals. I find it strange that the random number generator has predicted so many Northwestern victories. Such is the variance of life.

Will Ragatz

Northwestern 45, Purdue 24

Purdue’s defense is nonexistent. It’s given up 50 points to Maryland, 49 to Iowa and 62 to Penn State. In our Purdue preview episode of Pound the Talk, I predicted that Justin Jackson will rush for over 200 yards, and I’m sticking to that. The Ballcarrier is going to be fed early and often and have a huge day. Throw in the usual Austin Carr 100 yards and a touchdown and several other scores from Thorson and I think Northwestern gets close to 50 points. Blough and the Boilermakers will put up some points and keep it close for a while, but the Wildcats and their superior talent and coaching will pull away.

Sam Brief

Northwestern 38, Purdue 21

Expect Justin Jackson to run all over a bottom-of-the-barrel Purdue run defense. Purdue can and will score on Northwestern’s secondary via David Blough, but they won’t be able to keep up with Northwestern’s offense. After Ohio State and Wisconsin in back-to-back weeks, the Wildcats win easily against what closely resembles a football program in Purdue.

Henry DaMour

Northwestern 35, Purdue 20

The Wildcats are coming off a tough loss to a very good Wisconsin team and will play with lots of confidence against a Purdue team they expect to trample. Purdue has shown brief flashes of competency offensively, but the defense always betrays them. This week will be no different. Clayton Thorson will air it out a couple of times, hitting Nagel and Dickerson for sizable gains to diversify the passing attack, and Justin Jackson will handily provide a second dimension to the offense.

Caleb Friedman

Northwestern 31, Purdue 20

This game could be a lot closer than many people think, but at the end of the day, Northwestern’s superior talent will win out. Purdue’s quarterback David Blough will sling the ball around, and he’ll probably have some success against Northwestern’s cornerbacks. The thing is, the Wildcats will benefit from how one-dimensional Purdue’s offense is. Northwestern’s offense, though, will absolutely shred the Boilermaker defense. Justin Jackson will get back to way he was playing in October, and the offense will control the clock en route to a decently close, but comfortable win.

Ian McCafferty

Northwestern 42, Purdue 28

I think this will be a somewhat close game, but simply because both of these teams can put up points. Northwestern’s offense struggled last week against a top 10 defense, but this week it gets to go up against the 112th best defense in the nation according to S&P+. There are 111 teams with a better defense than Purdue, and it shows. The Boilermakers will get shredded by Clayton Thorson and Austin Carr, but the depleted Northwestern secondary will let David Blough make some plays. Northwestern will be able to coast to an easy victory, but Purdue will put up some numbers.

Josh Rosenblat

Northwestern 31, Purdue 28

Northwestern’s favored by 13.5 points on the road at Purdue. Take the Boilermakers. I almost picked them out-right this week. Northwestern played poorly against Wisconsin a week ago and may not be able to escape West Lafayette with a win if they play that way again. So something’s got to change, especially in the run game.