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Nevada Football: Wolf Pack falter to Purdue on the road

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The Wolf Pack faded away in the second half as they fall to the Purdue Boilermakers on the road by a score of 24-14.

Sandra Dukes-USA TODAY Sports

There is nothing else to say about the Nevada Wolf Pack's 24-14 loss to the Purdue Boilermakers except this: The Wolf Pack blew it and Brian Polian was outcoached by Darrell Hazell.

Yes, you read that correctly.

The Wolf Pack let a 14-10 halftime lead wilt away as they drop one on the road to Purdue and see their record drop to 2-2 for the season.

The action started in the first quarter when the Boilermakers were marching towards a touchdown when Jaden Sawyer picked off a David Blough (21 for 30, 300 yards and two touchdowns and one interception) pass in the redzone giving Nevada the ball at their 39-yard line. The Wolf Pack took advantage of the Purdue turnover when quarterback Tyler Stewart (21 for 27, 217 yards and two touchdowns) connected with Hassan Henderson for a 15-yard touchdown pass to give the Wolf Pack a 7-0 lead early in the game.

On Purdue's next possession, they moved the ball again in the redzone but could only come away with a field goal to cut Nevada's lead to 7-3. After a Wolf Pack punt, the Purdue offense got the ball back but turned the ball over for the second time when Asauni Rufus laid a big hit on running back Markell Thompson which caused the ball to be jarred loose and was recovered by Dameon Baber.

Three plays later, the Wolf Pack capitalized on that Purdue turnover with a six-yard touchdown pass from Stewart to James Butler to give Nevada a 14-3 lead.

Purdue showed signs of life at the end of the half when Blough completed an amazing 48-yard touchdown pass to Bilal Marshall to cut the Wolf Pack lead to 14-10 after thirty minutes of play.

But everything changed for the worst for the Wolf Pack in the second half as the Wolf Pack went without scoring a single point and getting manhandled on offense.

In the second half, the Boilermakers went on a 12 play, 49-yard scoring drive to claim the lead at 17-14 when Markell Jones ran for a five-yard touchdown run. Purdue threatened to score again but they coughed up the ball in the redzone for their fourth turnover of the game as Rufus forced a fumble and Alex Bertrando recovered the ball.

But the Wolf Pack could not convert that turnover into points as the Nevada offense struggled to move the ball against the Boilermaker defense.

With five minutes left in the game and Purdue up 17-14, the Wolf Pack had a chance to tie the game but Brett Zuzo missed the easy 27-yard field goal.  The Boilermakers regained possession of the ball and six plays later, Purdue scored on a 27-yard touchdown pass from Blough to Brycen Hopkins to make it 24-14 and secure the win for the Boilermakers.

Despite the Wolf Pack getting four turnovers on Purdue, the Wolf Pack squandered their first half lead and their offense was nonexistent in the second half making everyone forget about their great performance against Buffalo last week.

The Wolf Pack need to find and maintain some offensive consistency in order for them to have any chance of competing in the Mountain West.

The Wolf Pack return to Reno and will travel to Hawaii to face the Warriors next Saturday night.