Nov. 30, 2001

After Thursday’s practice, Irish coach Bob Davie said this team is capable of playing their best game of the year Saturday against the 6-4 Purdue Boilermakers.

“That’s a testimony to these kids,” Davie said. “I’ve been really proud of these players and these coaches.”

Defensive Struggle

Both teams feature very strong defensive fronts. In last year’s game, neither team could consistently run the football. But Davie said that does not necessarily mean this year’s game will be low scoring.

“Everything points that it would be (a low scoring game). Who knows? Points come in a lot of different ways, and it doesn’t always equate to the yardage in a game. A lot of that comes down to special teams and field position. But it does have the ear-markings of being a low scoring game.”

Golden Opportunity

After ten games, the Irish are banged up on both sides of the ball. Saturday’s game may provide a chance for younger players such as Derek Curry to step up and make plays.

“This is a game where you end up playing a lot of nickel and different things, so the opportunities for a linebacker may be limited. But I am kind of anxious to watch Derek. He’s a guy I feel pretty good about,” Davie said.

Not Again

The Irish avoided Thursday’s rain with a rare indoor practice. The rain slowed the Irish offense against Stanford. But with less than thirty-six hours until Saturday’s kickoff, the weather seemed to be the least of Davie’s concerns.

“Somebody said it was supposed to be warm. We’re heading way down south to play this game (laughing), so maybe the weather will be better for us.”