Purdue is trying to win for its embattled coach.
Iowa is vying to curb a tailspin that's threatening to keep it out of a bowl game.
Neither the Boilermakers nor the Hawkeyes figured there would be so much at stake for a game that means so little in the Big Ten standings.
Purdue (3-6, 0-5) and Iowa (4-5, 2-3) have combined to lose eight straight league games heading into Saturday's showdown in Iowa City. The Boilers have fallen apart after a 3-1 start that included a narrow loss at national title contender Notre Dame.
The Hawkeyes have dropped their last three games, including a 24-21 defeat at Indiana that gave the Hoosiers their first back-to-back league victories in five years.
''We've had some ugly losses, and that's tough as far as your momentum goes for your team and your season,'' said Purdue coach Danny Hope, whose job status has been questioned in the wake of a disappointing season. ''There's been some struggles, and they have been a result of injuries and not performin...