Finally, a bowl game where two teams played like there was nothing to lose — except the game, of course.
After a hit-or-miss first week in the bowl season, the Little Caesars Pizza Bowl provided plenty of fireworks on offense and special teams to more than make up for it in a 37-32 win by Purdue over Western Michigan.
Western Michigan jumped out to an early lead when a flea flicker from quarterback Alex Carder to All-American receiver Jordan White went for a 50-yard touchdown. A fake PAT put the Broncos up 8-0 on the Boilermakers. Other than that, however, the first quarters was filled with turnovers, and that’s about it.
It’s the second quarter when things got exciting.
Following another Western Michigan touchdown, Purdue return specialist Raheem Mostert took the ensuing kickoff 99 yards to the house to bring the Boilermakers within five. On that ensuring kickoff, Purdue tried their second onside kick of the half… and converted their second onside kick of the half.
That would lead to a Reggie Pegram touchdown. For as exciting as the second quarter was, Purdue began to take control with a 27-15 halftime score.
Purdue never trailed after that, but it wasn’t until the Boilermakers took the victory formation that the game was really over. That’s thanks in part to 10 combined turnovers. Six by WMU and four by Purdue. Both teams finish with a 7-6 record on the season.