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  11/12/22 - QB Aidan OConnellrSr/2023, Purdue

  Aidan O'Connell passed for 237 yards and three scores, two to Payne Durham, and Purdue beat No. 21 Illinois 31-24 on Saturday to turn the Big Ten West race into a muddled mess. The win gives the Boilermakers (6-4, 4-3 Big Ten) a crucial head-to-head tiebreaker over the Illini (7-3, 4-3 Big Ten), who were firmly in control until losing their last two games. The Boilermakers finish the season with favorable matchups against Northwestern and at Indiana. Iowa, Wisconsin and Minnesota are still alive in the division, too, entering Saturday with 3-3 records. The Badgers and Hawkeyes were playing each other. Purdue scored on three-straight drives to take a 28-21 lead on Durham's 13-yard touchdown reception with 13:13 left, finishing a drive that was aided by three Illinois penalties.

The Boilermakers gave O'Connell plenty of time and excellent protection all day, holding a highly rated Illinois defense zero sacks while getting to DeVito twice, including a costly 17-yard sack that took the wind out of an Illinois drive in the second half. O'Connell completed 25 of 40 attempts and threw one interception. Devin Mockobee added 106 yards and a touchdown on 28 carries. DeVito struggled against pressure and threw his first interception since a Sept. 10 win over Virginia. He completed 18 of 32 passes for 201 yards and a score. Purdue also became the first team to hold Illinois star Chase Brown to fewer than 100 rushing yards this season. The nation's leader in rushing yards also appeared to suffer a leg injury late in the game, when he had to be helped off the field. - Purdue/AP College Football

rSr/2023 QB Aidan OConnellPurdue
News Source: Purdue/AP College Football

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