Heading to a bowl for the first time in his three years at Purdue, Danny Hope will have to do without the services of his top running back in the postseason game.
Hope confirmed Sunday night that Ralph Bolden suffered a torn ACL in a Nov. 26 win over Indiana and, obviously, will not play in the Dec. 27 Little Caesars Pizza Bowl against Western Michigan. Bolden’s 674 yards rushing are far and away the leading total for the Boilermakers.
This is the third torn ACL Bolden has endured, with the first coming his senior year of high school and the second suffered during spring practice that ended up costing him the entire 2010 season.
Hope will likely take the RB-by-committee approach to replacing Bolden for the bowl game.
“We haven’t relied on one featured player throughout the course of the season,” Hope said. “It can be any one player on any given play. I don’t think it’s going to be as major of a setback if Ralph had been carrying the ball 35 times a game.”
Akeem Shavers, second on the team with 370 yards, is expected to get the start