Purdue held off Florida Atlantic 28-26 Saturday at West Lafayette, Ind., behind Austin Burton’s three touchdown passes and Dylan Downing’s 113 yards on 15 rushes.
Downing became the first Purdue rusher this season to eclipse 100 yards.
Burton, making his first career start with the Boilermakers, completed 21 of 29 pass attempts for 166 yards.
Florida Atlantic (2-3) drove to its 46-yard line with 55 seconds left.
On a fourth-and-1 play, quarterback N’Kosi Perry tried a sneak and fumbled the ball, which was recovered by Purdue’s Sanoussi Pur Kane.
The Owls could have tied the game with 5:21 remaining but a trick play was thwarted on the two-point conversion attempt when receiver LaJohntay Wester took an end-around handoff and tried a pass that was intercepted by Cam Allen in the end zone.
That play occurred after Florida Atlantic drove 75 yards in seven plays, capped by Perry’s 5-yard touchdown pass to Wester.
Perry completed 18 of 30 passes in the game for 230 yards with three touchdowns and an interception. He also rushed for 93 yards on 13 carries.
Wester had nine receptions for 90 yards with three touchdowns.
Purdue (2-2) trailed 13-7 in the second quarter before Burton threw his second touchdown of the game, a 12-yard strike to Chris Jones with 18 seconds left before halftime.
Jones finished with nine catches for 59 yards and two touchdowns.
The Boilermakers scored another touchdown on their first possession of the second half to take a 21-13 lead with 10:49 left in the third quarter.
Downing scored that touchdown on a 2-yard run.
After the Owls cut the lead to 21-20 on Perry’s 16-yard touchdown pass to Wester, Purdue answered with a 4-yard touchdown strike from Burton to TJ Sheffield with 8:01 remaining.
Florida Atlantic outgained Purdue 419-354 in total yards and limited the Boilermakers to 3-of-12 on third-down conversion attempts.
–Field Level Media