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Gold and Black Illustrated, Vol 27, Digital 5

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GOLD AND BLACK ILLUSTRATED VOLUME 27, ISSUE 5 14 BY STACY CLARDIE SClardie@GoldandBlack.com O n Day 1, Nick Holt lined up Purdue's defense in an odd front, a four- down look and a Bear front with six players on the line, including linebackers. And that was just the begin- ning. Every single one of the 15 spring practices included addi- tional installs, more fronts, more coverages, more blitz packages, and though players said it took time to learn the new scheme — their third in three years — there were pieces of it they loved. Like how on one play, line- backer Danny Ezechukwu would be teetering on the line of scrim- mage, primed to come in a flurry off the edge to pressure the quar- terback. And on another, Ezechukwu would be standing on one edge, Antoine Miles on the other, sand- wiching a pair of defensive tack- spring football overview DEFENSE OFFERS REASON TO BE 'ENCOURAGED' Unit stands out in spring, while offense is work in progress les with their hands down, to offer a dif- ferent look. And, then, maybe Ezechukwu would blitz. Or maybe he would drop into coverage. Or maybe Miles would blitz. Or maybe he would drop into coverage. Or maybe they both would rush the passer. Or on another, linebacker Markus Bai- ley would blister the A gap, racing past the center and guard to get in quarterback David Blough's face. In one practice this spring, Bailey did just that on back-to-back "sacks" — quarterbacks weren't actually Tom Campbell Moved to the inside, Gelen Robinson consistently was in Purdue's backfield this spring, a trend for not just the linemen but also the linebackers as Nick Holt revealed an aggres- sive, multiple defense.

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