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Indiana began its first possession of the Old Oaken Bucket Game at its own 17-yard line. IU quarterback Richard Lagow dropped back to pass on the first play from scrimmage, looking for a receiver cutting across the middle of the field ...
... Purdue senior linebacker Garrett Hudson, playing in his final game at Ross-Ade Stadium, keyed in on Lagow's eyes and stepped in front of the pass, picking it off at the Indiana 26-yard line. With ball securely in his hands, Hudson fell in behind his teammates and returned the interception 21 yards to the 5-yard line. The turnover was quickly converted into a Jackson Anthrop rushing touchdown on the very next play to give the Boilermakers an early 7-0 lead.
So Says Garrett
"Before the snap, I was really just there taking it all in next to T.J. (McCollum). As I was dropping back, I could feel the receiver right behind me, and Lagow really just threw it right to me. After I caught it, I was just telling myself 'Move your feet and hold on to the ball.' I was so tired when all the adrenaline wore off after I got tackled and all the guys were on me, I just walked back to the sideline and coach (Nick) Holt, Sean (Robinson) and Ja'Whaun (Bentley) hugged me. Hugging Sean and Ja'Whaun was really special to me, knowing all we've been through together."
What it Meant
Starting in place of the injured Bentley, Hudson's pick set an early tone for the contest. Needing a victory to qualify for postseason play, the Boilermakers would go on to knock off the Hoosiers 31-24 and eventually be selected to play in the Foster Farms Bowl against Arizona on Dec. 27.