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Gold and Black Illustrated, Vol 27, Digital 1

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GOLD AND BLACK ILLUSTRATED VOLUME 27, ISSUE 1 26 2016 Training Camp Overview BY STACY CLARDIE S ome days, the defense looked dominant, getting overwhelming pressure with its front or flying around in the secondary to disrupt passes. Others, the offense shredded the defense, delivering passes into tight windows and snagging balls over the top of cornerbacks and bullying open holes in the run game. Perhaps it was the best-case scenario for Purdue com- ing out of training camp: Its units, both working under new coordinators and in new systems, showed positive signs. But that also meant both units showed there's still plenty of work to do before the season opener Sept. 3 against Eastern Kentucky. "It's been kind of an up-and-down fall, like it was in the spring," defensive coordinator Ross Els said during the last week of camp. "Some days we win, more days (the offense) wins, but we're showing some signs of being a pretty decent defense." At least Els' group seemed more settled by the end of camp. In the beginning, even after spending the spring and summer learning the new system, players still were strug- gling a bit to grasp the extensive package. They knew that by the season, it'd get pared down based on the opponent. But in camp, all the coverages, all the pressures, all the assignments and all the groupings had to get re-installed. As camp progressed, Els noticed the defense doing a better job of adjusting to the offense's formations, a key in his defense. Purdue will make its defensive calls based on personnel — if the offense has three receivers, it'll be in nickel; if it has four, it'll be in dime — but that's not the end of the responsibility. Based on the offense's formation, the defense must make checks. "One defensive call can't stop everything — there's no way — so we have to adjust to what we're seeing," Els said. "They're getting better at that. They're communi- Work In Progress Tom Campbell Darrell Hazell thought Purdue made strides in camp in understanding the new schemes, which allowed both units to play faster. Faster play in camp in Purdue's new schemes

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