News From Terre Haute, Indiana

August 19, 2013

Purdue picks Henry, not Etling, to start 1st game at QB


Associated Press

WEST LAFAYETTE — A healthy Rob Henry finally has his old job back.

On Sunday, first-year Purdue coach Darrell Hazell tabbed the senior as his starting quarterback. Henry had been battling true freshman Danny Etling and redshirt freshman Austin Appleby for the job.

Henry, elected a captain by his teammates in 2011, outplayed Etling and Appleby in the spring game, and again when the Boilermakers reported for camp earlier this month.

After sitting out his freshman season, Henry played in 11 games in 2010, starting seven after incumbent Robert Marve went down with a season-ending left knee injury.

While the Boilermakers struggled to a 4-8 mark, Henry became the first player at the Cradle of Quarterbacks to lead the Boilermakers in passing and rushing. He completed 86 of 162 passes for 996 yards, with eight touchdowns and seven interceptions, and ran 104 times for 547 yards.

Purdue expected bigger things from Henry in 2011, but one week before the season opener, he tore the ACL in his right knee and missed the entire season.

Last year, he wound up third in a quarterback derby that featured Marve and Caleb TerBush, the quarterback who replaced Henry in 2011 and led the Boilermakers to their first bowl game under coach Danny Hope.

The Boilermakers tried to get the athletic 6-foot-2, 205-pound athlete on the field in other spots. But Henry wound up completing just 21 of 38 passes for 216 yards and three TDs, rushing 38 times for 74 yards and one TD and catching six passes for 65 yards.

Etling appeared to have the best chance of beating Henry.

The 6-foot-2, 218-pounder from Terre Haute, was considered one of the top pro-style quarterbacks in the nation coming out of high school.

He enrolled at Purdue in January, hoping to get a jump on the job.