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Purdue Connecticut Fbrocthompsonootball

Wide receiver Broc Thompson, who transferred from Marshall to Purdue, caught seven passes for 217 yards and two touchdowns in the Boilermakers' 48-45 overtime win over Tennessee in the Music City Bowl last Tuesday.

Welcome to “Second Guess” Tuesday.

Here are the first opinions of 2022.

  • Broc Thompson was the “X receiver” Marshall University lacked during the 2021 season.

Was he ever.

After spending his first two collegiate seasons playing for the Thundering Herd, Thompson, a native of Indianapolis, transferred to Purdue so he could be closer to his younger brother who is battling cancer.

But the 6-foot-3, 190-pound junior didn’t get a chance to prove just how talented he is until Thompson exploded during Purdue’s 48-45 overtime win over Tennessee in the Music City Bowl last Thursday.

What did he do? A better question is what didn’t Thompson do? Besides, catching seven passes for 217 yards and two touchdowns, Thompson was selected as MVP of the bowl game.

No wide receiver in Purdue history has accumulated that much receiving yardage in a bowl game.

Not bad for a guy who anticipates having surgery on both knees during the off-season.

“I’m not going to lie,” Thompson told a Nashville newspaper after the game. “I don’t know how I finished the game. God is the reason that I finished the game.”

That’s the same sort of character Thompson displayed when he played at Marshall.

“Right away he was a good leader,” said Jeff Brohm, Purdue head coach.

“I think all the receivers will tell you that. He’s a great leader, he’s unselfish. He played some. And then to go through all he did and still to have a great attitude and continue to work hard and be available ...

“Really, he wasn’t able to practice at all and when he did it was as slight as we could do to kind of keep him fresh. To play with all those injuries is a credit to what he’s all about — just a true representation of an unselfish, a great teammate.”

Even in absentia, Thompson still is making Marshall proud.

  • Bob Huggins couldn’t help himself.

After enduring a highly frustrating 74-59 loss to Texas on Saturday, West Virginia University’s veteran head basketball coach had to take a shot at somebody.

The Longhorns’ crowd of 12,864 in the Frank Erwin Center (capacity 17,900) became an unwitting target.

“This is one of the easiest places to play because they don’t bring people in here,” Huggins was quoted by Chris Anderson of EerSports. “Go to K-State. Go to KU. Go to Oklahoma State. That’s hard. You can’t hear coaches yelling things out. You can’t hear your teammates … here, you can hear conversations in the stands almost … the whole thing to me is mental.”

  • Kudos to WVU football stars Dante Stills and Josh Chandler-Semedo.

While leading receiver Winston Wright Jr. and defensive back Jackie Matthews chose to enter the transfer portal and leave the Mountaineers, that duo stood tall and chose to return to the Mountaineers for their so-called “COVID” year. That is huge for WVU because both Stills and Chandler-Semedo are team leaders and carry a lot of weight with their teammates.

Just look at what Stills and Chandler-Semedo did last season. Stills, a defensive tackle, had 36 tackles with 15 tackles for loss including seven sacks. Chandler-Semedo led WVU in tackles with 110 with 5.5 tackles for loss including 1.5 sacks, two interceptions, three pass breakups, six quarterback hurries and two forced fumbles.

The return of Stills and Chandler-Semedo couldn’t have been better news for beleaguered head coach Neal Brown.