Despite Robert Marve’s effort in opener, Caleb TerBush to remain Purdue starter
by michael osipoff 648-3137 or firstname.lastname@example.org September 4, 2012 11:58PM
FILE - In this Sept. 1, 2012, file photo, Purdue quarterback Robert Marve throws the ball against Eastern Kentucky during an NCAA college football game in West Lafayette, Ind. Purdue coach Danny Hope has another big decision to make. After naming Caleb TerBush the starter, then suspending TerBush before Saturday's season opener, Hope now has to figure out whether to stick with Marve's hot hand or reinsert TerBush as the starter for Notre Dame. (AP Photo/The Journal & Courier, Brent Drinkut, File) MANDATORY CREDIT; NO SALES
The Big Number
1 — The sacks Purdue allowed against Eastern Kentucky — when Robert Marve stumbled untouched. Obviously, Notre Dame’s front seven is going to put a lot more pressure on the Boilermakers.
Beginning this week and continuing for the rest of the season, the Boilermakers will wear a sticker on the back of their helmets to honor the late Neil Armstrong, a 1955 Purdue graduate.
Updated: October 6, 2012 1:58PM
Despite Caleb TerBush’s one-game suspension and Robert Marve’s outstanding performance against FCS member Eastern Kentucky to open the season, nothing has changed with Purdue’s trio of quarterbacks.
TerBush is slated to start for the Boilermakers at Notre Dame on Saturday, with Marve also playing. And No. 3 quarterback Rob Henry also is expected to see time against the No. 22 Irish.
The decision seemed largely based on risk-aversion and limiting potential mistakes, as the Boilermakers try to end a four-game losing streak to the Irish, and win at Notre Dame for the first time since 2004.
“It would be to our best advantage, I believe, to start Caleb this weekend, because I feel like a smooth start at the beginning of the game at South Bend could be very important to our football team,” Purdue coach Danny Hope said on Tuesday. “We’re geared, from an offensive and a defensive and a special teams standpoint, to be able to catch up if we get behind. But that certainly isn’t our first choice on how to start the game. So my gut feeling is that we go in and start Caleb TerBush, and I think that’s in the best interests of our football team.”
On the first play of last season’s game against Notre Dame at Ross-Ade Stadium, TerBush threw an interception that gave the Irish the ball on the Boilermakers’ 35-yard line — “I’m not going to hold it against him,” Hope said — with just 14 seconds elapsed. Ten seconds later, Tommy Rees hit Michael Floyd for a touchdown, as Notre Dame raced out to a 21-0 lead in a 38-10 win.
TerBush finished 10-of-15 for 101 yards and a touchdown with the one interception. Marve went 9-of-22 for 91 yards.
After transferring from Miami and sitting out the required season, Marve made his Purdue debut at Notre Dame in the 2010 season opener. He went 31-of-42 for 220 yards with two interceptions, and ran for a 23-yard touchdown (in the excitement, celebrating with a questionable flip that drew a penalty in a 23-12 loss for the Boilermakers).
TerBush sat out the Boilermakers’ season-opening 48-6 win against Eastern Kentucky for an undisclosed violation of team rules. He apologized to his teammates for the transgression, having watched the game from the equipment room. TerBush has not missed any practice time.
“He outperformed the other quarterbacks hands down throughout the course of camp, and all three quarterbacks did very well,” Hope said. “But he separated himself from the others.
“We’re very glad to get Caleb TerBush back. He was the No. 1 quarterback going into camp, and the No. 1 quarterback going out of camp. He has, I believe, taken his game to another level. He makes very good decisions on the field with the football, and has certainly proven it in the past; last year he went the last 41/2 quarters without throwing a pick. I’m excited about having him back to help us win this Saturday, along with Robert Marve and Rob Henry as well.”
With TerBush sidelined against Eastern Kentucky, Marve, in his first start since he tore his ACL in the fourth game of the 2010 season against Toledo, completed 30-of-38 passes for a career-high 295 yards and three touchdowns, also matching a career high from his days at Miami, with one interception. Henry went 7-of-9 for 77 yards and a late touchdown with one interception.
“We consider it (starting Marve) every day,” Hope said. “That’s why we go out and practice, and compete, and that’s why it’s very important to have open competition. I think Robert played very, very well. I think that if Caleb would have played in the game against that level of competition, he would have played very well too.
“So, obviously, because he (Marve) played well, we certainly consider him as a starter. Again, my gut feeling going in is that we will probably start Caleb this Saturday, just because he has a great knack for managing the offense and avoiding negative plays more so than most of the other quarterbacks that I’ve been around.”
“… Each game is going to be different, each week is going to be different, each week their performances are going to be different. There’s nothing ever etched in stone, obviously, but it may be to our best advantage this weekend to start Caleb TerBush.”