WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. - DaVaris Daniels caught two fourth-quarter touchdown passes, including an 82-yarder, to help No. 21 Notre Dame rally for a 31-24 victory over Purdue on Saturday night.
Daniels had career highs of eight catches and 167 yards. Tommy Rees passed for 309 yards and both touchdowns for the Fighting Irish (2-1), who bounced back after their loss to Michigan.
Rob Henry passed for a career-high 256 yards and three touchdowns for the Boilermakers (1-2), who were trying to get the first signature win for new coach Darrell Hazell. Purdue led 17-10 at the end of the third quarter, but Notre Dame scored three touchdowns in the first four minutes of the fourth to take control.
Notre Dame opened the second half with a 10-play, 75-yard drive to tie the score at 10. Cam McDaniel's 1-yard touchdown run followed a 27-yard catch by TJ Jones on the sideline that originally was ruled incomplete but was overturned upon review.
Purdue responded quickly. B.J. Knauf started the possession with a 39-yard kickoff return, then finished it with an 18-yard touchdown reception to give Purdue a 17-10 lead with 6:28 left in the third quarter.
Rees connected with Daniels for a 9-yard touchdown pass with 14:47 remaining to tie the score at 17.
Daniels struck again on the first play of Notre Dame's next possession. Rees found him down the right sideline for an 82-yard score that gave the Irish a 24-17 lead with 12:40 to go.
Bennett Jackson then returned an interception 34 yards to bump Notre Dame's lead to 31-17 with 11:18 remaining.
Purdue, in desperation mode, hung tough. Henry found Justin Sinz in the middle of the end zone for a 9-yard touchdown on a fourth-and-7 with 8:16 remaining.
Amir Carlisle fumbled on a hit by Taylor Richards and Joe Gilliam recovered, giving the Boilermakers a chance, but the Boilermakers didn't score, and the Irish eventually ran out the clock.
Purdue went right down the field to start the game. Akeem Hunt caught three passes for 39 yards on the opening drive, including a 15-yard touchdown reception on a screen pass from Henry.
Purdue would have had a larger lead, but Paul Griggs missed a 27-yard field goal in the closing seconds of the first quarter. He redeemed himself with a 47-yarder to extend Purdue's lead to 10-0 with 10:44 left in the first half.
Notre Dame, hoping to gain some momentum, went for it for fourth-and-4 from the Purdue 39 midway through the second quarter, but Rees' pass fell incomplete.
The Fighting Irish finally got on the board when Kyle Brindza made a 20-yard field goal with 44 seconds left in the half. The Boilermakers led 10-3 at the break.
NOTES: Purdue tight end Gabe Holmes missed the game with a wrist injury. He was the team's leader in receptions and yards. Landon Feichter, a starting safety for the Boilermakers, was out with a broken leg. ... Purdue entered the game with the third-most wins by any school against Notre Dame with 26, trailing only USC and Michigan State. ... Purdue entered the game ranked second nationally in net punting. ... Purdue slot receiver Danny Anthrop played in the first quarter. He had not played this season because of an MCL injury to his left knee. ... Notre Dame running back Amir Carlisle's father, Duane, is the director of sports performance for Purdue. Purdue defensive coordinator Greg Hudson played for Notre Dame.
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