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December 31, 2012

Cowboys' defense prepares for Purdue's three quarterback attack

DALLAS, Texas — The seasons had by Oklahoma State University and Purdue University aren’t too different.

The glaring similarity is at quarterback.

It’s been well-known of the success OSU had in Big 12 play with three quarterbacks each winning a league contest. The Boilermakers, too, have gone through the season with a three-headed rotation at the quarterback position — though it was due to both injuries and inconsistencies.

“It’s important that our players know who’s in the game, but at the same time you can’t lean too hard in any one direction because their top two guys both run and they both pass,” OSU defensive coordinator Bill Young said.

Purdue’s starting quarterback, Robert Marve, took over for Caleb TerBush midway through the season. Marve helped propel Purdue down the stretch to become bowl eligible — doing so with his left knee lacking an ACL.

For Young, it’s no real surprise to see Marve having success at Purdue. After all, Young and Marve have already crossed paths before this Jan. 1 bowl.

In Young’s only year at the University of Miami, Marve started in 11 games as a freshman for the Hurricane, before transferring to the university in Columbia City, Ind.

“I just remember him being such a competitor — and he was only a freshman at the time,” Young said. “He ended up starting early and then got hurt. But I thought he was a heck of a player and knew he was going to have a heck of a college career.”

Young felt so highly of Marve that when he came to Oklahoma State to become the defensive coordinator for his alma mater, he suggested to Mike Gundy of pursuing the young quarterback.

“When I first got here and he was transferring, I tried to talk us into recruiting him,” Young said. “But at the time, we didn’t have a slot open. But he was a free agent at the time, if you will, and I really liked a lot of things about him.”

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