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The Old Oaken Bucket Game Preview: Indiana Hoosiers vs. Purdue Boilermakers

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NCAA Football: Indiana at Michigan Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports

Who, When, Where: For the one hundred and nineteenth time, Indiana and Purdue meet on the gridiron. For the ninety-second time, the Old Oaken Bucket is at stake for the winner. Kickoff is noon Saturday in Bloomington on ESPNU. The coverage team consists of Anish Shroff and Ahmad Brooks. The Hoosiers are seeking to hold the Bucket for four consecutive years for the first time since 1944-1947, and are looking to make it to a second straight bowl game for the first time since the early 1990s.

Big Men on Campus: Both Marcus Oliver and Tegray Scales recorded double digit tackle games against Michigan, doubling that of Heisman “candidate” Jabrill Peppers. There wasn’t a whole lot of notable performances from the offense, but shout out to Camion Patrick on scoring just his second collegiate touchdown and giving Indiana hope for about a half.

babaoreally’s Purdue take: Purdue limps once again into the Bucket Game, where they will most likely be torn to bits by an OK Indiana team. Since Darrell Hazell was fired, the Boilermakers have been hanging in games for a quarter of a half before losing by thirty or more. It will be Gerard Parker's last game as interim coach. The most interesting thing about this game from a Purdue viewpoint is that the new coach will be probably be announced after another embarrassing defeat to IU.

How This Game Will Go During Basketball Season: Indiana and Purdue face off twice in the month of February, with the 9th being an IU home game, while the 28th is in West Lafayette. Both games should be hotly contested, and a home-and-home split is probably a likely scenario here. It would be fairly shocking for either school to get swept, and both teams losing their home games would be entertaining if not entirely logical.

Prediction: It’s an end of season rivalry game, so while on the surface you’ve got a 3-8 team playing a 5-6 team, it could very easily be a tightly contested game where the winner ends up being the team that got a timely break closest to the end of the game. Of course, if Indiana gets both sides of the ball working properly, and Purdue doesn’t match their intensity, this could easily be a 56-36 type of game again, or even an Indiana blowout. I fully expect this game to fall within the range of a Purdue cover, and will be happily surprised if it doesn’t. Give me Indiana to retain the Bucket and go bowling on a 31-21 final.

Coming Up Next: Either a bowl game, or prep for the 2017 season. If it’s the former, you’ll see a preview here; if it’s the latter, you might not see much of me until then.