Notre Dame Football Schedule 2024: 5 Things to Know About Purdue, September 14

It's a short road trip for Notre Dame in Week 3. What do Notre Dame fans need to know about Purdue?
Notre Dame defensive lineman Isaiah Foskey (7) tackles Purdue quarterback Jack Plummer (13) during the fourth quarter of an NCAA football game, Saturday, Sept. 18, 2021 at Notre Dame Stadium in South Bend. Nikos Frazier / Journal & Courier
Notre Dame defensive lineman Isaiah Foskey (7) tackles Purdue quarterback Jack Plummer (13) during the fourth quarter of an NCAA football game, Saturday, Sept. 18, 2021 at Notre Dame Stadium in South Bend. Nikos Frazier / Journal & Courier / Nikos Frazier / Journal & Courier

Notre Dame at Purdue, September 14

It's a two hour ride down the road from South Bend to West Lafayette, but it's still a road game against a Big Ten team - and Notre Dame can't take it for granted.

The Irish start the season with a huge national showdown at Texas A&M, and then don't leave Indiana for six weeks with five home games around the Week 3 date at Purdue.

Notre Dame has won eight straight in the series - 57-25-2 all-time - and ten of the last 12. Keep it all going, and with Miami University, Louisville, Stanford, at Georgia Tech, and Navy (in East Rutherford) up next, there's a shot to go on a huge run of wins.

But Purdue will be more dangerous after a 4-8 season. They'll crank up the passing game, and this could be a signature moment in the second season for head coach Ryan Walters.

The five things you need to know about Purdue, Irish fans, are ...

5. Purdue has a strong offensive line

It's not like the Irish defensive front can't hold its own against just about anyone, but Purdue has enough talent on the line to take over in spots. The addition of DJ Wingfield (New Mexico) and Corey Stewart (Ball State) make an already good situation better. Gus Hartwig is one of the best centers Notre Dame will face.

The D line has to get some pressure into the backfield because ...

4. Notre Dame has to keep Hudson Card from completing passes

Purdue needs to maintain control of the game by dominating on third downs and managing the clock effectively. That's all on veteran QB Hudson Card, who needs to find his rhythm with accurate midrange throws.

While the passing game has the potential to be dangerous, it doesn't require Card to take unnecessary risks. Consistency and precision are key.

Last season, Purdue went 0-5 when their quarterbacks failed to complete at least 60% of their passes. By connecting on the makeable throws and avoiding costly errors, Card take over for stretches. Do that, and the strong Boilermaker running backs should be even more effective.

3. Purdue has defensive backs to worry about

The Purdue secondary has to make more big plays, but it should have a dangerous starting five that could rise up and rock if the Notre Dame passing game is off.

Dillon Thieneman is one of the better safeties the Irish will face all year. He led the team with 106 stops and came up with six interceptions, but he's not alone.

Markevious Brown is a solid corner, transfer cornerback Nyland Green (Georgia), and safety Kydrich Breedlove (Colorado) make an already promising situation better, but ...

2. Riley Leonard and the Notre Dame passing game should roll

Here's the bad news. Notre Dame has to deal with All-America candidate Nic Scourton in Week 1 against Texas A&M.

Here's the good news. Scourton was a terror for the Purdue defensive front last season, and now he's obviously gone.

The pass rush won't be as good without its star, Notre Dame should be able to run early, and the passing attack should click despite the talent in the Boilermaker secondary.

Purdue gave up 225 yards or more in eight games last season. New year, new personnel on both sides, but Irish QB Riley Leonard should be effective.

1. Stop the Purdue running game, and all else should be fine

Again, there are plenty of changes for both teams, and there should be several twists and turns by Week 3. However, to continue with the earlier theme about completing midrange throws, Purdue has to control the game with the ground attack.

Last year the Boilermakers couldn't do much when they couldn't grind. They went 0-5 when running for fewer than 125 yards, and went 4-2 when they did more. It was mostly hit-or-miss, and those five losses mostly came against a few defensive powerhouses on the slate - Michigan, Iowa, Ohio State - but Notre Dame has the personnel to hold up.

Notre Dame vs Purdue Prediction: Early Summer
Purdue should be pesky.

Overall the team should be better, and the starting 22 have the personnel to hang around for a while, the defense will start to buckle in the second half.

The Boilermaker offense has to be balanced, own the clock, and be in control throughout, but that will be Notre Dame after a rocky start. It won't be anything pretty, but it'll be a win over a Big Ten team.

Notre Dame 34, Purdue 17
- Full Purdue Preview & Breakdown
- Week 1: Texas A&M 5 Things to Know
- Week 2: NIU 5 Things To Know


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Pete Fiutak

PETE FIUTAK