Saddled with a 0-4 Big Ten record, Purdue needs to make some changes. And Danny Hope is pulling the trigger on one that many Boilermakers fans wanted to see for a while.
Hope said Sunday night that Robert Marve would replace Caleb TerBush as the starter at quarterback this week when Penn State comes to West Lafayette. TerBush was just 5-for-18 for 49 yards with one touchdown and an interception in Saturday's 44-28 loss at Minnesota. Marve, meanwhile, was 11-for-19 for 97 yards and two touchdowns when he came in during the third quarter, giving the team a little spark, though it was already trailing big.
This will be Marve's first start since the season opener, when TerBush was suspended. Marve tore the ACL in his left knee in Week 2 against Notre Dame but returned to play less than a month later against Michigan.
For the season, Marve has completed 65.2 percent of his passes for 597 yards, with six touchdowns and two interceptions. TerBush has completed 58 percent for 995 yards, with 11 touchdowns and eight interceptions.
Hope insisted there was no quarterback controversy at Purdue.
“It has been a management nightmare from an injury standpoint for the guys to get the reps that they needed,” Hope said. “It’s unfortunate, at times, the media can spin it like it’s a quarterback controversy and our fans embrace that perception, if you will. It’s been competition all along.”
In reality, Purdue needs a lot more than just a quarterback change to turn its season around. But Marve has been a spark plug when he has played, even though he sometimes free-lances too much. In a season that is quickly spiraling away from Hope, he has no reason not to try something different.