Tuesday, September 04, 2012

Danny Makes The Call

Starting v. UND
Throughout camp, Hope called TerBush the starter for the first game because neither he, nor Marve, had changed position in camp due to the lack of full contact in practice. The inference seemed to be that last year's starter would be the starter because game situations were different...Fair point- they are.

That said, he and his assistants listed the depth chart as an "or" decision...meaning either could start depending on what happened in practice.

So, when TerBush, one of the team captains, was suspended for reasons that most still don't know, Marve was given the keys to the offense last Saturday.  If you're on this site, you've probably already seen the stats that Marve produced...if you don't know, look them up- they were pretty damned good. During his opportunity to prove himself, he played 70% of the snaps v. EKU (with Henry taking the other 30%).

Atop of the extremely-tight depth chart situation, Hope and Nord have both said Marve has a potential to be an NFL quarterback...and they've never uttered those words about TerBush. And while we both know that a great college QB is not necessarily great in the NFL...the games are different.  BUT, saying someone is an NFL talent is typically a compliment.

With all that said, Hope has named TerBush the starter for Saturday.
“It may be that it’s best for us to go into South Bend and make sure we manage the offense really well and that we don’t create any negative plays. If that means Caleb TerBush starts and Marve finishes, so be it. If that means Marve starts and TerBush finishes, so be it“ 
Based on that quote, one would think Marve creates too many negative plays.  Also, Hope and company seem to believe that the defense can win the game in South Bend with an offense that isn't aggressive, but merely just manages the clock and field position, I guess.

On Saturday, Purdue will play an ND squad that just beat the tar out of Navy...based on what I saw Saturday from them, management of the game might not be quite enough.

Versus UND, both TerBush and Marve are 0-1; Marve started the game in SB, TerBush in God's country. So, I guess, since TerBush has never lost in South Bend, Hope thinks he gives Purdue a better chance of winning there (or maybe not losing)...I guess we could say he's undefeated there.  Pretty fuzzy logic, it seems.

There are a couple of things that really confuse me about this whole situation.

Obviously, Hope and Nord's compliments to Marve, yet refusal to start him are odd.  But not that big of a deal.  We're fans of Marve and his style of play...we think his ability to escape the pass rush, move the pocket and still keep his eyes downfield give the offense a chance to do things a TerBush-led offense cannot. Plus, he has a bigger arm than TerBush.  Granted, Marve makes poor decisions from time-to-time...but so did TerBush last season- He gave up costly sacks time and again due to his cautious demeanor, but that doesn't seem to bother Nord and Hope because he doesn't freewheel as much.

The question of the reason for the one-game suspension is also lingering with us.  Hope has allowed players to get arrested and not miss action...so when a guy is suspended for the home opener, my antennae are up as I try to figure out what egregious error he made.

Could TerBush have worn an IU sweatshirt to a film session? Maybe #19 poked fun at Hope's mustache? Perhaps Purdue's starting QB talked badly about Carson Wiggs?  Whatever he did, Hope didn't take it too lightly.  But now, it's been forgotten as TerBush apologized to the team and the coaches for whatever-the-hell-it-was.

Here are facts we do know- TerBush lost a year with the team due to academic ineligibility. That was the year that Marve went down to an ACL and Henry was forced into the starting role...and when Henry's finger was crushed, Robinson played and then started (burning a redshirt). Does Hope think that was important?

He made a mistake, and strived to make it right- got his grades up, got back on the team and all was well.  He started last year after Marve's knee held him back in camp and Henry tore an ACL of his own. He was made a captain by the coaches and the team this season...and officially became a leader of the team.  Then, prior to the first game he did something to get suspended all while engaged in an intense battle to keep his starting QB role. To me, that doesn't sound like a leader...but I only know the parts of the story that Hope and co. allow me to know.

But, I'm not the only one who's making a call based on the info that's in front of me.  And in the wake of what I saw from Marve last week, I have an extremely-difficult time in backing up Hope in this decision.  If nothing else, my expectations for TerBush are now higher...and at the same time, the scrutiny upon the coach from an already-skeptical fanbase will become more pointed if TerBush doesn't deliver mistake-free football.

Marve, TerBush and Henry have all publicly said the right things during the last few seasons- good for them; that has to be hard.  Hope continues to say all three will play, not only Saturday, but throughout the season...because the quarterbacks are 300% better than just one! But, I'd think decisions like this will make it even harder to continuously hold the team line for the three-headed monster of #19, #9 and #15.  I honestly hope they can continue to do so. On top of that, I also hope that TerBush leads Purdue to victory in South Bend...for his coach's sake, he'd better.


BoilerBloodline said...

At this point, I am FED UP with THE Danny Hope shenanigan's. The great coaches make the difficult decisions and move forward. It seems to me that Danny Hope makes NONE. These ridiculous coaching decisions feel so personal after 38 years of being a Boilermaker. I feel as if every B10 coach is secretly snickering at the circus Hope and his minions have created. I mean, if the QB is chosen on "how the week of practice goes"...then how in the hell can he name Terdbush the starter on Monday? And...if you have 3 QB's that you will use, WHY would you announce who is starting at all? Let alone 5 days before kickoff, so Notre Dame can now game plan? There's nothing like a coach basically telling the other team that "we will be playing NOT TO LOSE on Saturday". JUDAS PRIEST this QWUAK has GOT TO GO!!!

B-Kizzle said...

I am absolutely convinced that Marve said or did something in the past year or so to really piss Hope off. Seriously. Nord came out and said that had he not gotten injured, Marve had first-round talent. Whether that translates to a first-round work ethic, we will never know. Then again, Terbush practically failed out of an OLS major, so... Anyway, I digress.

Even though the defenses between EKU and ND won't even be remotely comparable, if Terbush plays the majority of the game and doesn't go at least 65% with at least 2 TDs and no more than 1 interception, I don't see how the entire fanbase (minus Terbush's family) isn't calling for Danny's head. I won't be, because I like stability, but there needs to be some sort of outside pressure on the coaching staff to come clean on what is really going on. It's too bad the local media is so soft on Hope. If I had a press pass, the first question I ask would be, "Do you HONESTLY think that Caleb Terbush gives you the best chance to win, or does Robert Marve just really tick you off?"

Very rarely does such an unpopular decision get swept under the rug and ignored like this, and frankly, I demand answers. Just tell us why. I just want to know why. Give us 3 minutes of interview time and explain to us IN DETAIL what it is about Terbush that makes him a better QB? We can't watch practice, so it's Hope's job to keep us informed about important things such as this. I don't want to fight him on this issue; I want him to convince me that he is making the right decision. I want stand behind him, but I can't until he makes me believe in him. As of right now, he's failing.

Also, in concurrence with BoilerBloodline, why would you give any hint as to who is starting against ND? Forcing them to watch two sets of film can only help our cause. Ugh. Dumb.

jbrunner said...

There seems to be a lot of pointless hatred and vitriol directed at TerBush right now...and frankly I don't get it.

boilerdowd said...

Jackson- You might want to go back and re-read the post and the comments. I re-read everything and don't read hatred at all. Hell, I don't even read hatred toward Hope...But this decision will put pressure on both. Big players play big in big games- this is an opportunity to prove himself. I think competitors thrive on that; maybe Hope sees that in practice and wants to show the world!!

Jumpndunk42 said...

new theory: terbush wasx "suspended" soi that the domers cant scout him, lol

J Money said...

I imagine Jackson meant from others... not us. And on that subject, I do feel badly for Caleb because he doesn't deserve nastiness. If he's asked to start, he starts and it's most certainly not his call. We don't DISLIKE Caleb at all -- the guy answered the call last year and filled in with almost zero college experience. We haven't forgotten that.

Shawn said...

Putting my gold colored glasses on, I keep hoping that this means Terbush has made tremendous strides in his throwing ability in the off-season.

Taking off those glasses, I see Hope's comment about avoiding negative plays. Navy's whole offense is about avoiding negative plays. That did not work out well against the Irish. Our defense will do more to slow them down, but we're going to need 30 points to beat them.

Purdue Matt said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
zlionsfan said...

I don't think that what Hope is doing is putting any of these kids in a position to succeed. Even if it were an advantage to have two or three QBs that are "equivalent", I don't think it really helps them to tell them that no matter what they do, they aren't going to get more than one-half or one-third of the snaps, respectively.

It did look like Hope preferred Marve to Henry on Saturday, so maybe now it's just a two-QB rotation ... but I agree about the whole suspension deal. I'm not sure what a captain can do that merits a one-game suspension one week and then the starting role early the next. I would think that either the incident was bad enough that TerBush would have to work his way back into a starting role, or that it would be minor enough that it wouldn't merit a full-game suspension.

Right now, I feel like Marve has earned the starting role and should be given the chance to play his way into or out of it. CTB is going to be in a tough position, I'm afraid: barring a great start (which would be wonderful to see, but how long has it been since a Purdue QB lit up Notre Dame's defense? 2009? And not in a win since Orton in 2004.), TerBush is going to get more blame than he deserves, especially if Marve comes in and plays well in the snaps he gets. Think of last year, when CTB's performance was better in the ND game ... and even though you can't simply extrapolate his stats, some people will, and it'll be hard to refute their arguments.

Maybe Burke is putting Hope in this position; maybe he's questioning Hope's decision-making and putting him in an awkward position. Even so, I would think Hope would be better off just making decisions he thinks are best - if that's not good enough for Burke, so be it. I don't think either Hope or the QBs are learning anything from Hope's unwillingness to pick one and go with him.

boilerdowd said...

Matt's still seething, I see. I was pretty lit up when I heard this as well- Do us a favor and re-post your comments, please. A curse word is OK, but we don't want to have that on here; I have a six year old who reads the site over my shoulder; I don't want him to be reading that. I'll give you some time before I take the comment down. Thanks.

BoilerWhat said...

How did Rex Ryan hack Purdue Matt's account? We'll take all the celebrity fans we can get I guess.

We really didn't need another chapter in the QB controversy this week. The team needs to focus on coming back from its embarrassing effort last year.

MrAnonymous said...

There's got to be something else going on, and we are just not privy to the information...

The whole situation is just too bizarre for that not to be the case...

That, or the coach of a B1G university is an utter and complete buffoon. I prefer to think the former to the latter.

B-Kizzle said...

I don't necessarily HATE CTB. He started every game in a 7 win season, and you can't take that away from him. That being said, to be the starter, he needs to prove to us that he has significantly improved and deserves it. I, along with many other fans on here, are simply skeptical that, even with a lot of hard work, his skill level has surpassed Marve's. I never thought Marve was given a fair chance last year, and his performance yesterday (albeit against an FCS school) outweighed anything I ever saw from Terbush last season. I want our team to have the best chance at winning, so if he does start, I truly hope he is even better than Marve. I'm just not convinced yet that he will be.

CalTravelGuy said...

Sometimes we are all guilty of talking too much about our skilled positions. Overall size, strength and speed almost always wins football games. Notre Dame is much better and will win regardless of which QB that Danny Hope decides to play. ND by 3 touchdowns this Saturday... I'd love it if I were wrong.

jbrunner said...

J was right on...I didn't mean from you guys at all. It sounds like you're frustrated with the system and that's completely understandable. I'm referencing the fans in the H&R comments (and the Knucklehead Boards I'd imagine) who have thrown an inexperienced quarterback under the bus time and again.

He needs a chance to prove that he's grown, matured, and "taken his game to another level" as Coach Hope puts it. We'll find out on Saturday I suppose.

boilerdowd said...

I honestly hope he has, Jackson- Thanks for the explanation...We don't like people making personal attacks on players unless they're detrimental to the team...even then, the name calling is no bueno.

Mark said...

Probability says ND wins.

If probability becomes reality, CTB and Danny Hope will not be well received by the fanbase unless they win 8-9 games.

I feel like Hope is going 'all in' with CTB. More than anything, his job is on the line.

I hope for Boilernation that the gamble works. If not, then we face 3-5 years of another cheaply hired coach by Morgan Burke.

Don't get me wrong, I think Hope has potential, but I'm afraid that this is such a big gamble he won't last.

Mommatried said...

I haven't seen enough to change a thing about the way I feel about the program...and every year I want to start with a fresh start and a clean slate...but blocked kicks, kicks out of bounds on kickoff, blocked pats...this team is not any more prepared for success now then it was last year or any other year even with injuries. The fan base is alienated...see attendance records if you disagree. As I see it, Hope addresses the world with the same chip MJB has on his shoulder...and neither guys seem very likable. A problem when a large part of your job is making sure of just that. The goals/ outline plan the AD has for the athletic dept as a whole are not bad ones...but connecting with the fan base and winning football obviously are not priorities. And it is damned annoying.

zlionsfan said...

and the thing is that if you are not any good at connecting with the fan base, and not any good at building a thriving football program, then the plan you have for the entire department is significantly more difficult to achieve.

Schools like Michigan and Texas succeed in a number of sports partly because they bring in a truckload of cash from football every year. It's much easier to hire a solid softball coach or upgrade a track facility or what have you if football can throw you a few million and not even blink. Purdue isn't ever going to reach those levels (basketball, unfortunately, can't bring in nearly as much cash), but that doesn't excuse Burke's approach that's basically "you are all idiots, bow before my master plan". There are probably more than a few alumni out there who'd be happy to write a five- or six-figure check on occasion if they didn't have to hand it to a pompous jerk.

BoilerBloodline said...

My "theory" on the Terbush suspension is he voiced his opinion on the QB rotation in front of teammates and coaches. Publicly all three QB's have been diplomatic in their approach, but It's not too difficult to believe that each of them has voiced their frustrations behind the scenes and I think it may have reached a boiling point with Terbush. In turn, it landed him a suspension.

CaryNW87 said...


I hope that's not the case. If it is, then Coach Hope is rewarding Ter Bush with the starting role after punishing him for complaining about not being THE starter. Not a very strong message...

I suppose I need to be fair to CTB and see what he can do. All I know is, Marve and the offense looked awfully sharp from Section 113.