Drew Brees hired as interim assistant coach at Purdue for Citrus Bowl vs. LSU


Former Boilermaker QB also able to recruit due to NCAA waiver

The Purdue Boilermakers badly needed something to be excited about going into the Citrus Bowl. The LSU Tigers are the benefactors of a stripped-down team, which is ironic because LSU was that team in last year’s Texas Bowl against Kansas State when they had fewer than 40 scholarship players on the roster.

That excitement for the Boilermakers comes in the form of Drew Brees, the most notable Purdue alum in NFL history. As assistant coach, he won’t be able to work with QB Aidan O’Connell, who is among several players to opt out of the game, but Brees is going to help with the transition to new head coach Ryan Walters after Jeff Brohm finally returned to Louisville where he thrived as a player.


Brees is also allowed to recruit during this period, so we’ll see if that provides any lift on the QB depth chart for Purdue moving forward.

Drew Brees coaching Purdue

Brees played 20 years in the NFL after getting drafted in the second round of the 2001 NFL Draft out of Purdue. The Dallas, Texas native had a 90/45 TD/INT ratio in 45 games at Purdue and still leads the program in all-time passing yards with 11,792. He remains the program leader in passing touchdowns as well and holds the single-season record with 39 during his 1998 season.

O’Connell leaves having thrown for 9,219 yards with 65 touchdown passes as he prepares for the NFL Draft. Austin Burton, who was 24-of-32 for 199 yards with a 3/1 TD/INT ratio will get the start in the game, where Purdue is a 14-point underdog, at least for now.

This will be the first coaching experience for the 45-year-old Brees and maybe that will be his chosen career path after leaving NBC Sports back in May.

Citrus Bowl: Purdue vs. LSU

With all of Purdue’s opt outs for the NFL Draft and transfer portal, not to mention an interim head coach with Brohm deciding to go to Louisville with UCLA and USC coming to the Big Ten West soon, the Boilermakers have gone from +6.5 out to +14 for the game. Some books have even gone to +14.5, as they’re just begging somebody to take the underdog.

Offensive coordinator Brian Brohm is the interim, as defensive coordinator Ron English also left for Louisville. We’ll have more on this game as it gets closer.

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