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Saturday, November 27, 2010
Indiana outlasts Purdue to hoist Bucket

By Adam Rittenberg

The game resembled so many others for Indiana, but this time, the Hoosiers found a way to end up on top.

After tying the score late in regulation, Indiana outlasted Purdue 34-31 in overtime behind the bionic arm of quarterback Ben Chappell. The senior passed for 330 yards and three touchdowns to break Indiana's single-season passing record of 3,043 yards held by Kellen Lewis. Chappell spread the ball around well as three receivers recorded eight or more catches, including three touchdown grabs by star Tandon Doss.

Indiana won in West Lafayette for the first time since 1996 and ended a 12-game Big Ten road losing streak.

The big question: Will today's win be enough to save coach Bill Lynch?

Today certainly was a great moment for Lynch, who has come close to leading Indiana to so many more Big Ten wins. The Hoosiers finish the season just one win shy of their second bowl appearance in four years. If Damarlo Belcher comes down with the ball against Iowa on Nov. 6, you never know how things turn out.

On the flip side, Lynch's record in Big Ten play remains very poor, and Indiana loses Chappell and several other key players. While Indiana is off to a fast start on 2011 recruiting, this wouldn't be the worst time to make a change.

It's a tough call for AD Fred Glass. But today is one to raise the Old Oaken Bucket and celebrate.

Purdue finishes a hard-luck season at 4-8 after blowing fourth quarter leads in consecutive games. Quarterback Rob Henry made strides late in the season but the Boilers couldn't stop Chappell when it mattered.

The injuries this season certainly are a valid excuse, but Danny Hope needs better results in 2011.