(Saturday, October 10th)
Final Score: Minnesota 35, Purdue 20
Minneapolis, MN (Sports Network) - DeLeon Eskridge had two rushing touchdowns for the Minnesota Golden Gophers, who notched a 35-20 win over the Purdue Boilermakers in Big Ten action at TCF Bank Stadium.
It was a forgettable day under center for Gophers (4-2, 2-1 Big Ten) quarterback Adam Weber, who was 5-of-9 for 74 yards passing and two interceptions. He was also sacked three times. But the Gophers' ground game piled up 207 yards and four touchdowns to get the win.
Purdue (1-5, 0-2) quarterback Joey Elliott was 25-of-47 for 299 yards, two touchdowns and two interceptions. Keith Smith finished with seven catches for 126 yards and a touchdown in the loss.
The Boilermakers' opening possession covered 68 yards in 14 plays, but the drive stalled and they had to settle for three points on a 43-yard field goal by Carson Wiggs.
Purdue extended its lead to 10-0 when Elliott found Aaron Valentin for a three-yard touchdown pass at the 4:32 mark of the first quarter.
Minnesota cut the deficit to 10-7 on a one-yard touchdown run by Eskridge, which capped an eight-play, 84-yard drive.
On the ensuing possession, Elliott was intercepted by Lee Campbell, who returned it all the way down to the Purdue 2. Two plays later, Eskridge had his second rushing touchdown of the day to put Minnesota on top.
The Boilermakers got three points back on their next offensive series, as Wiggs connected on a 40-yard field goal to make it a 14-13 game with 1:40 remaining in the first half.
The Boilermakers went three-and-out on the opening drive of the second half, but Chris Summers' punt traveled just seven yards. Weber made them pay with a two-yard touchdown plunge, which was set up by a 28-yard run by Kevin Whaley.
Purdue's Keith Carlos fumbled the ensuing kickoff, which set up an eventual one-yard touchdown run by Whaley to give Minnesota a 28-13 lead.
On Purdue's next possession, Wiggs had a field-goal attempt blocked, and Minnesota's Traye Simmons scooped up the ball and returned it 47 yards to pay dirt.
The Boilermakers trimmed the deficit to 35-20 on a 61-yard pass from Elliott to Smith with just under 13 minutes to play, but that was all they could muster the rest of the way.
Campbell was the defensive star for Minnesota, as he came up with an interception and blocked the third-quarter field goal, both of which set up touchdowns for the Golden Gophers.
10/10 16:12:22 ET