Following a meltdown loss in their opening game last week, the Purdue football team returned home to Ross-Ade Stadium Saturday and registered not just a win, but the highest reported attendance for an opening game since 2008.
Just more than 50,000 people saw the Boilers beat Vanderbilt 42-24, though the game still left unanswered questions for Coach Jeff Brohm's team, primarily in the rushing game.
Quarterback Elijah Sindelar had a career day, throwing for 500 yards and recording 5 total touchdowns (4 pass, 1 rush). He became the first Purdue quarterback to throw for 400+ yards in back-to-back games since Drew Brees.
Sophomore wideout Rondale Moore continued to better his own already impressive career highs, with 13 catches for 220 yards (both personal bests) and one touchdown. Moore moved into fourth all-time on the team's list of games with at least 100 receiving yards -- after just 15 games played.
The defense was able to hold star Vanderbilt running back Ke'Shawn Vaughn to just 56 yards on the ground, but the Purdue defense struggled to put the Commodores away in the fourth quarter.
And still, it wasn't the biggest problem the Boilermakers had. A nearly non-existent ground attack totaled just 31 yards rushing, forcing Sindelar to pass the ball 52 times. When asked about it following the game, head coach Jeff Brohm said, "The running game is nowhere near where we want it to be right now."
Vanderbilt did themselves few favors as they struggled to overcome a double digit deficit in the second half. The team was penalized 13 times for 100 yards -- on multiple occasions, those penalties gave life to Purdue drives that had stalled. Quarterback Neal Riley led the Commodores with 378 passing yards and two touchdowns.
With this win Purdue is now 1-1 on the season. The Boilermakers play again at home next week -- a Saturday night game against the TCU Hornfrogs. Kickoff is set for at 7:30 p.m.