Purdue coach Darrell Hazell on playing Indiana Saturday in Old Oaken Bucket Game:
Q. Indiana has been very explosive offensively for most of the season. What is it about their offense that makes them so explosive?
COACH HAZELL: Well, they’re doing this no‑huddle offense where they’re always getting themselves into great plays. Every single snap, they look to the sideline, they’re waiting for the play from the sideline. They’re probably running 95 percent of plays that are good looks that they’re running against.
If you watch their players, the quarterback does an excellent job of getting the ball out of his hands. He doesn’t take too many shots. I think they’ve got two very solid running backs who make people miss and are strong runners.
But they’re a very efficient offense.
Q. In your case offensively the last three weeks, I know you’re not where you want to be yet, but you’re showing signs of improvement. Talk about that. You will be going against a defense that has shown some vulnerability.
COACH HAZELL: Yeah, I really do think we’re getting better offensively even though we really came up with 14 points, especially off of four turnovers. But you watch the development and the maturity of Danny Etling each week. I thought he did a good job of taking care of the ball, throwing the ball away last week. I thought he was very accurate with the ball.
We have to be able to hit some of those big plays. One of the critical plays in last week’s game was that crossing route down inside the red zone. We got to make that play and it’s potentially a different football game.
Q. To win this game, what are the keys you have to do to win on Saturday?
COACH HAZELL: I think when you get into these big‑time rivalry games, I told the staff that less is more this week. It’s not about all these great schemes that you diagnose. It’s about getting our guys to know exactly what they’re supposed to do, getting them to play as fast and as hard as they possibly can play.
I think those are the keys to the victory. Obviously, you got to have such things against this coverage, that offensive play. It’s about playing fast, not making mistakes, handling the ebb and flows of the football game.
Q. Coach, I know you’ve got that clock up there in your hallway. Talk about what’s going through your mind as the clock has ticked down and the Indiana game approaches.
COACH HAZELL: It’s a constant reminder of how important this game is to our football program. There’s a countdown clock that we’ve installed probably after the second or third week that we got here. It’s finally down to those last couple days, last couple hours and minutes.
We want our players to understand that this is more than just a game.