Purdue football can’t knock out Penn State in season-opening loss

LAFAYETTE WEST – The big takeaway image from Thursday’s heartbreak 35-31 loss to Penn State is important to keep in mind.

However, the short-term feeling is one of anger, disappointment, and a missed opportunity. This loss stings for a variety of reasons and look no further than the closing seconds of the first half and the final two minutes of the fourth quarter when the Nittany Lions split from the Boilermakers.

That’s 21 points in a short period. That was the difference.

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Purdue showed their potential as a strong team, overcoming adversity, penalties and sloppy tackles to be able to knock out one of the country’s top programs on the national stage and earn the label of serious contender for the Big Ten West.

Instead, the Boilermakers left Ross-Ade Stadium knowing they were a good team, but failed to wrap up the game that could have propelled their season to new heights.

Whether it’s the battle cry to run the ball in the fourth quarter with a three-point lead or stay aggressive in the passing game, it’s about closing the deal.

Purdue Boilermaker fans react after the Penn State Nittany Lions scored a touchdown in the final minutes of the game during the NCAA football game against the Purdue Boilermaker, Thursday, Sept. 1, 2022, at Ross-Ade Stadium in West Lafayette , Ind.  Penn State won 35-31

It doesn’t matter how Purdue achieves the desired end result as long as it does. On Thursday, that didn’t happen due to the inability to make one more play, win one more first down and avoid one last missed tackle.

“We had this one right where we wanted it with a chance to seal the game with another first down and it’s game over,” Purdue coach Jeff Brohm said. “We couldn’t get that. That’s what stings. I am proud of the fight. We fought in the second half and we didn’t give up. We had a chance.

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