WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. (AP) -- Curtis Painter passed for 243 yards
and two touchdowns to help Purdue beat Minnesota 27-21 on Saturday.
Running back Jaycen Taylor gained 110 total yards and scored
twice and Dustin Keller had six catches for 119 yards for the
Boilermakers (4-0, 1-0 Big Ten), who will take a seven-game winning
streak into next week's game at Notre Dame.
Both teams finished with 421 yards.
Purdue led 10-7 at halftime and opened the third quarter with a
10-play, 80-yard touchdown drive. Taylor scored on a 14-yard run to
extend Purdue's lead to 17-7.
On Minnesota's next possession, Purdue's Anthony Spencer sacked
Cupito, forced a fumble and recovered it. That led to Chris
Summers' 36-yard field goal that extended Purdue's lead to 20-7
with 4:35 left in the third quarter.
Minnesota drove to the Purdue 1 before linebacker George Hall
stopped Pinnix on third-and-goal. On the last play of the third
quarter, Cupito executed a perfect fake handoff to his running back
before connecting with tight end Matt Spaeth for a 1-yard touchdown
pass that cut Purdue's lead to 20-14.
The Boilermakers responded with a 93-yard touchdown drive.
Taylor scored his second touchdown on an 18-yard pass from Painter
to increase Purdue's lead to 27-14.
For the second time in the game, Cupito threw a touchdown pass
on a fourth-and-goal. This time, he found Logan Payne for a 3-yard
touchdown pass that cut Purdue's lead to 27-21 with 6:21 to play.
Minnesota stopped Purdue and got the ball back, but defensive
tackle Alex Magee sacked Cupito at the Minnesota 37 to force a
punt. Purdue appeared to have a first down at the Minnesota 33 on a
run by Painter, but the call was overturned. On fourth-and-1, Kory
Sheets ran 5 yards and Purdue ran out the clock.
Minnesota opened the game with a scoring drive that took nearly
seven minutes. A 1-yard touchdown run by fullback Justin Valentine
capped a 16-play, 83-yard drive and put the Golden Gophers up 7-0.
Purdue's defense stopped Minnesota's early momentum. On a
third-and-3 from the Minnesota 45, running back Jay Thomas was
awarded a first down, but Purdue coach Joe Tiller challenged the
spot and the call was reversed. The result forced Minnesota to punt
on the last play of the first quarter. Minnesota went scoreless the
rest of the half.
Magee blocked a Minnesota field-goal attempt with 3:57 left in
the second quarter and the Boilermakers recovered at the Gophers'
42. Three plays later, Painter found Dorien Bryant on a 27-yard
touchdown pass that put the Boilermakers up 10-7.
Minnesota drove to the Purdue 4 in the final minute of the first
half, but cornerback David Pender tipped a Cupito pass and Hall
intercepted it in the end zone with 22 seconds left.