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Staff Predictions: Narrow victory consensus pick

Joe Meixell | Thursday, September 24, 2009

Bill Brink, Managing Editor

Purdue and Notre Dame are in similar situations heading into tomorrow’s game. Notre Dame’s run defense has struggled, especially when in the nickel formation, so expect Ralph Bolden to take advantage of that. Joey Elliott has more interceptions than touchdowns, so he could struggle against Notre Dame’s secondary. Jimmy Clausen played well after hurting his toe against Michigan State – he won’t drop off this week. Armando Allen keeps it up against Purdue’s defense, which is worse against the run than the pass, ranked 102nd in the nation. Big-legged kicker Carson Wiggs could keep it close, but Notre Dame wins this one.

Final Score:?Notre?Dame 35, Purdue 31

Michael Bryan, Associate Sports Editor

This one looks like it will be a shootout in West Lafayette, and the Boilermakers should be pumped up for the night game. The Irish offense will have to adjust to the loss of Michael Floyd and need someone to step up from the group of Robby Parris, Duval Kamara and Shaquelle Evans.?Armando Allen should notch his third straight 100-yard rushing game, but Ralph Bolden might out-rush him. Notre Dame needs to get some push out at all out of its front four and better tackling from the front seven in order to win comfortably, which seems unlikely. The game plan should be similar to Michigan State’s in that the Irish defense should stack the box to defend the run and be vulnerable to the pass.

Final Score:?Notre?Dame 41, Purdue 34

Matt Gamber, Sports Editor

This is another game in which the?Irish have an obvious advantage in talent, and yet another one in which I can see?Notre Dame letting its opponent hang around. Until the?Irish defense can consistently stop decent offenses, Notre Dame will struggle to put teams away and post impressive blowout wins. The offense will miss Floyd, but unless Clausen and Allen are severely limited by their injuries, the Irish should put up points on a shoddy Purdue defense. Unfortunately, the Boilermakers should do the same, so this one will be closer than some think. It won’t take a late interception, but Irish fans won’t be able to fully exhale until late in the fourth quarter as Notre Dame gets out of West Lafayette with a victory.

Final Score:?Notre?Dame 28, Purdue 20

Sam Werner, Associate Sports Editor

This one won’t be close, right? I mean, Purdue lost to Northern Illinois last week. Even without Michael Floyd, Purdue just won’t be able to keep up with the Irish. Right? Well, not so fast. Michigan State lost to Central Michigan two weeks ago, and the Spartans were a wide-open receiver away from walking out of Notre Dame Stadium with a win last week. That being said, Notre Dame will win this game. Armando Allen had a career day against the Boilermakers last year, and he’ll do it again Saturday. Notre Dame will use their newfound running game to wear down the Purdue defense, and the other receivers (as well as Kyle Rudolph) will step up enough for Clausen to be as effective as he’s been all season.

Final Score:?Notre?Dame 32, Purdue 21

Celebrity Pick

Vince Vaughn, Actor & Irish Fan

I’m not much of a handicapper as far as predicting scores, but I’ll definitely be rooting for the Irish against Purdue. I’ve got a lot of confidence in them; I think they’ve got great stuff ahead. I really like Coach Weis, I?think he’s really a talented coach and genuine guy.