Purdue's Miracle Upset Over Ohio State Belongs to Student with Terminal Cancer

The Purdue Boilermakers had a little more at stake Saturday against the No. 2 ranked Ohio State Buckeyes than just knocking off their Big Ten rival.

Purdue won 49-20 and were inspired to capture the upset of the year in college football by one very special fan — Tyler Trent.

Trent was diagnosed with bone cancer when he was 15 years old. The cancer went into remission in 2015 but returned in 2017. But he decided to enroll at Purdue last fall as a freshman while receiving treatment.

Trent is a huge fan of the Boilermakers’ football team and got a chance to meet head coach Jeff Brohm as well as many of the players.

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Trent had to withdraw from his beloved Purdue last month when he found out his cancer was terminal.

But that didn’t stop him from rooting for his favorite team. Saturday at Ross-Ade Stadium, Trent was in attendance for the game, and he inspired the Boiloermakers’ shocking upset.

He even predicted the upset victory, telling ESPN’s Tom Rinaldi that Purdue would win 24-17. They not only won, they did so in convincing fashion.

Trent was honored in a ceremony before the game. He also received a very special call prior to kickoff from Vice President Mike Pence, according to the Indianapolis Star.

After the game, Trent was brought into the press room to begin the press conference.

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“I’m not entirely sure I’m qualified to make the opening statement but I was just want to say Boiler Up and I’m super happy my prediction came true,” Trent said.

Brohm then talked about what Trent has meant to this team, which is now 4-3 overall and 3-1 in the Big 10.

“The fact that he was so strong to be here and he’s been so strong the last couple months and the last couple years to be going through what he has — he’s an inspiration to all of us,” Brohm said.

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“It really goes to show you what you can do if you put your mind to it and have a great attitude you have a lot of positive energy in you and you want to do something special. I think our players recognize that Tyler has overcome a lot, battled a lot, and he still has that great smile and he still looks tremendous — he’s definitely a Boilermnaker.

“He’s No. 1 in our heart and we appreciate everything he’s done for us and our football team and we’re going to continue to be there for him and we love him very much,” added Brohm.

“Proud to be a Boilermaker. Love you family,” Trent wrote on Twitter just hours after the big win.

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Dave is a lifelong sports fan who has been writing for The Wildcard since 2017. He has been a writer for more than 20 years for a variety of publications.
Dave has been writing about sports for The Wildcard since 2017. He's been a reporter and editor for over 20 years, covering everything from sports to financial news. In addition to writing for The Wildcard, Dave has covered mutual funds for Pensions and Investments, meetings and conventions, money market funds, personal finance, associations, and he currently covers financial regulations and the energy sector for Macallan Communications. He has won awards for both news and sports reporting.
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