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Gold and Black Illustrated, Vol 27, Digital 5

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Page 36 of 87

GOLD AND BLACK ILLUSTRATED VOLUME 27, ISSUE 5 37 It might be one spot where the Boilermakers have an ad- vantage, considering what Purdue lacks on the perime- ter. There, it's rebuilding, trying to replace its top four receivers from a year ago, a process that will continue into training camp. Maybe Brohm can make up for that deficit by putting the tight ends in better positions, playing Herdman and Hopkins together frequently to create stress on a defense. "You try to get them matched up on a linebacker you hope is not as athletic or fast as they are," Levine said. "And then, based on plays we have where we think vs. a certain coverage, a player will come open, we can insert them into that position. They'll be heavily involved in our offense in terms of catching the football. "When you talk about mismatches, they give the quar- terback a big target and really give the quarterback more room for error. Those are two young men where if he can throw the ball in their vicinity, they've shown us an abil- ity to go make the catch." Now, the tight ends will have to do so on Saturdays. Perhaps there's pressure to execute, considering the Boilermakers have few other proven playmakers. "I think pressure is the right word," Hopkins said. "I think there's pressure on us this year to come in and pro- duce a lot. That's all over the field. But there are other players who are going to have to step up because we can't do it all by ourselves. … But Coach Brohm and Coach Levine, they've stressed it a lot, that we're a big part of the offense. It doesn't really make me nervous. It just really excites me, Cole and I will get the opportunity to show what we can do." j

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