Kyren Williams scored two long touchdowns, the second in a 51-yard rush with 6:05 remaining, as the Notre Dame No.12 beat Purdue 27-13 on Saturday for his 26th consecutive home win.
The victory was the 105th in Brian Kelly’s 12-year career at Notre Dame, tying him to Knute Rockne as the most successful coach in school history. The Fighting Irish won their eighth consecutive victory over Purdue and the first since 2014.
Williams, who scored on a fourth and 3 pass game from Jack Coan at the start of the second quarter to give the Irish their first 7-3 lead, finished with 86 yards in 11 carries and two receptions for 47 yards.
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Coan, who has been sacked four times and struggled with his accuracy, completed 15 of 31 for 223 yards and two touchdowns. He connected on a 62-yard yardage to Avery Davis in the third quarter, which gave the Irish a 17-6 lead. Davis led the Irish in receptions with five for 120 yards. Notre Dame also had a pair of field goals by Jonathan Doerer.
The Boilermakers (2-1) outscored the Irish 348-343 with a 291-223 advantage in the air and got their only touchdown on a 2-yard pass from Jack Plummer to Milton Wright in the third quarter.
This reduced the Irish lead to 17-13 in the third quarter. Mitchell Fineran netted a pair of 34-yard hoops for Purdue.
Plummer completed 25 of 36 passes for 187 yards, but left the game after being sacked by Isaiah Foskey of Notre Dame and Myron Tagovailoa-Amosa. He was replaced by Aidan O’Connell, whose assist with 2:32 remaining in the Irish end zone was picked up by safety Kyle Hamilton, the first of the two by Notre Dame in the dying minutes to seal the victory.
Take it away
Purdue: The Boilermakers kept pace with the Irish thanks to Plummer, who entered the game with 73.8% of his passes and 13th nationally in passing efficiency with 183.1. His performance against the Irish didn’t disappoint, but Purdue clearly needed more from his running game which only managed 57 yards on 25 carries.
Notre Dame: While the Irish struggled on offense, their defense, criticized for allowing four games of 60 yards or more in his first two wins, tightened things up somewhat against the Boilermakers. For the third game in a row, linebacker JD Bertrand finished with double-digit tackles with 12, two more than Hamilton, and the Irish recorded three sacks.
Notre Dame, who fell four spots to No.12 in the Associated Press poll after their 32-29 victory over Toledo, will likely stay close to there in the next standings.
Purdue: Boilermakers open Big Ten against visiting Illinois.
Notre Dame: The Irish head to Soldier Field in Chicago next Saturday to play Wisconsin.