-- Purdue Football (@BoilerFootball) December 18, 2017
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Tied 7-7 against Indiana with 6:53 left in the second quarter, the Boilermakers started a drive that appeared to stall out at midfield. Facing fourth-and-3, special teams coordinator Tony Levine sent out his punting unit with anything but a punt in mind. As junior Joe Schopper took the snap ...
... he immediately pulled the ball down and faked a pass to tight end Cole Herdman. Taking the trickery even further, Schopper tucked the ball and took off like he was going to run. As he neared the line of scrimmage, he pulled up and lofted a pass over the top of the IU linebackers to sophomore cornerback Mike Little for a 22-yard reception and a crucial first down for Purdue.
So Says Joe
"We'd been working on the play all week and had the look that we wanted. It got called before we went out on the field, and we had a lot of confidence in the play call. The guys up front made perfect blocks and kept the protection solid. I looked to Cole, pump-faked to draw some players to my right, tucked the ball and faked a run to draw the linebackers up, and then dumped the ball off to Mike up the middle who made a great catch and run. I was ecstatic that it worked, but not surprised at all because of the scheme."
What it Meant
The play extended a drive for the Boilermakers that would ultimately result in a 4-yard Jackson Anthrop rushing touchdown and a 14-7 Purdue lead. The Boilermakers would go on to knock off the Hoosiers 31-24 to recapture the Old Oaken Bucket and eventually be selected to play in the Foster Farms Bowl against Arizona on Dec. 27.