4 storylines for the Old Oaken Bucket Game

1. Getting tougher in the red zone
In the two games since the bye week, Indiana’s defense is locking down opponents inside the red zone. Across 14 combined red zone trips by Maryland and Michigan, IU held both teams to a total of three touchdowns. On the other side, Purdue’s offense has been strong inside the red zone against Big Ten competition. The Boilermakers have produced 20 touchdowns in 30 red zone opportunities.

2. Rondale Moore is the player to watch
The electric freshman receiver has been at the top of every opponent’s game plan each week this season. Moore posted his ninth game of the season with 100-plus all-purpose yards against Wisconsin (174) last weekend. He is currently third nationally in all-purpose yards per game (172.2), second in the Football Bowl Subdivision in receptions per game (8.3) and is second in the Big Ten in receiving yards (1,023) and receiving yards per game (93.0).

3. Stuck in the mud
Purdue’s backfield hasn’t done much across the past month. In the last four games, the Boilers have rushed for 100 yards only once. They’ve averaged only 81.7 yards in that span, during which Purdue has managed merely one victory. Purdue had a good day on the ground in last year’s Old Oaken Bucket Game. Senior running back Markell Jones gashed the Hoosiers in last year’s meeting, producing 217 yards on 31 carries.

4. Attacking through the air
Both teams can expect to see favorable matchups in the passing game. On the flip side, neither defense has generated much of a pass rush. Purdue quarterback David Blough has thrown for over 300 yards in a game six times this season, while Indiana quarterback Peyton Ramsey has led a more aggressive IU offense that, in recent weeks, has made deep throws more of a staple of the attack. Purdue and IU both have two of the Big Ten’s most porous pass defenses during conference play. The Boilers are allowing 264 yards per game to league teams, while the Hoosiers are allowing 271 passing yards per game to conference foes.