After Purdue QB switch, ex-starter switches to safety

After Purdue QB switch, ex-starter switches to safety
October 2, 2013, 7:45 pm
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Vinnie Duber

The Purdue quarterback who threw three touchdown passes in Notre Dame's 31-24 win in West Lafayette is no longer starting for the Boilermakers.

In fact, he's moving to safety.

Purdue coach Darrell Hazell named freshman Danny Etling the team's new starting quarterback during its bye week following Etling's sub-in for Rob Henry in last week's game against Northern Illinois. Henry, meanwhile, is shifting from quarterback to the defensive side of the ball, where he'll play safety.

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Purdue was smoked against the Huskies — as it has been in most of its games this season, leading to a disappointing 1-4 start — leading to Hazell's substitution of Henry after the quarterback threw a pair of picks. Etling entered and also threw two interceptions, but it was the 241 yards and two touchdowns that likely led Hazell to the official switch.

"I thought he moved around in the pocket, he created some big offensive plays for us. He threw the ball outside extremely well. Obviously he's got to take care of the ball, as well, too," Hazell said Tuesday. "But you saw there's a little bit of energy with him out there. I thought we were able to get the ball to the wide receivers really for the first time with some consistency outside the hashes on Saturday."

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Henry threw just four touchdown passes in his five games under center for the Boilermakers compared to six interceptions. His lone good game of the season came against Notre Dame, when he threw three touchdown passes.

Notre Dame has Purdue on the schedule each season from now until 2021, so if all goes well for Etling, Hazell and Purdue, the Irish can expect to see plenty of the current freshman in the future.