Purdue, Auburn meet for 1st time in Music City Bowl
Music City Bowl: Purdue (6-6) vs. Auburn (7-5) at Nashville, Tennessee, Friday, 1:30 p.m. EST (ESPN)
Line: Auburn by 3 1/2
Series Record: First meeting.
WHAT’S AT STAKE
Purdue can win a second straight bowl game and finish with a winning record under coach Jeff Brohm. Auburn can notch a bowl victory for the Southeastern Conference, even if it’s not the bowl the Tigers expected after playing for — and losing — the SEC title a year ago. Auburn has lost its last two bowl games.
Purdue QB David Blough has Purdue ranked 10th nationally averaging 317.8 yards passing per game. Auburn is 58th nationally defending the pass but 26th holding opponents to a 55.2 completion percentage.
PLAYERS TO WATCH
Purdue: WR Rondale Moore. The freshman All-American led the nation with 103 catches, the second-best total by a Big Ten player. Moore also led the Big Ten with 1,164 yard receiving and 12 touchdowns.
Auburn: QB Jarrett Stidham. The 6-foot-3, 215-pound junior already has declared he’s leaving early for the NFL draft. Stidham has thrown for 2,421 yards this season, a dip from the 3,158 yards he threw for last season.
FACTS & FIGURES
First meeting between these teams. ... Auburn is 10-8-2 against current members of Big Ten and 8-5 in bowl games. Purdue is 2-5 all-time vs. SEC. ... Purdue is in second bowl in as many seasons under coach Jeff Brohm. ... Purdue is looking for a second straight bowl victory to finish 7-6. ... Purdue has played in Nashville only once before, losing to Vanderbilt 26-0 in 1942. ... Purdue lost its first three games this season and has won six of last nine. Boilermakers routed then-No. 2 Ohio State (49-20) and then-No. 23 Boston College (30-13) and edged then-No. 19 Iowa (38-36). ... Purdue had first winning Big Ten slate since 2006 with its highest finish in Big Ten West since league went to divisions in 2013 tying for second. ... Auburn making its sixth straight and 43rd bowl appearance all-time with 23-17-2 record. ... New Auburn OC Kenny Dillingham will be working from coaches’ booth. ... Senior WR Ryan Davis has 173 career catches as Auburn’s career receptions leader. ... Auburn has allowed TD on 32.4 percent of opponents’ trips inside of Tigers 20, second-best in nation. ... Auburn ranked 18th nationally in scoring defense, allowing 19.6 points per game.