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Monday, April 16, 2012
Purdue spring game recap

By Brian Bennett

There were supposed to be seven Big Ten spring games over the weekend, but we ended up with only six as Nebraska canceled its game because of inclement weather.

Purdue had to switch up its plans as well, moving the Black and Gold game indoors for a scrimmage that was closed to the general public because of heavy rains. Let's take a quick look at what happened as part of our spring game roundup.

You can read coverage of the Boilermakers' scrimmage here, here and here.

Star of the game: Cornerback Normondo Harris, who had a pair of interceptions.

How it went down: The Black team (No. 1 defense) won the game 36-20. The defense came up with five total interceptions, including those two by Harris. That could be read as a bad sign for the offense, but more so it points out a potential strength for the team.

"We have the potential to be outstanding in the secondary this year," said head coach Danny Hope. "We have good speed, tough guys and experience back there."

Robert Marve had the best day of the quarterbacks, completing 14-of-24 passes for 134 yards, according to media reports. Caleb TerBush was 8-of-20 for 109 yards after starting the game 1-of-8. Doug Gentry led all rushers with 91 yards on just six carries. He had a 42- and a 35-yard run. Expected No. 1 back Akeem Shavers was held out of the game for precautionary reasons.

Receiver O.J. Ross hauled in a 46-yard touchdown pass from Marve, but the junior receiver remains off scholarship until his academic status improves.

Don't read terribly much into the results, as Hope said he kept things very basic and vanilla on both sides of the ball, declining to even use quarterback cadences and signals for the offense. There were no blitzes by the defense, and every drive started at the 50 or closer.

Still, Hope said he was happy with the spring in general.

"They had an outstanding offseason, so it was important for them to generate momentum throughout the course of spring practice, and I think we did as a football team," Hope said. "They have an outstanding attitude. I love the work ethic of this football team."