Purdue will skip a spring game this year as the Boilermakers are in the middle of a $45.5 million Phase I renovation of Ross-Ade Stadium.

Instead, the end of spring practice for the players and first-year coach Ryan Walters will be April 22. Because of limited space, the practice will be closed to the general public. Only student-athlete families and Purdue football alumni can attend.

Walters, a former Illinois defensive coordinator, in his early vision for the program said he would foster Purdue’s reputation as a Cradle of Quarterbacks and a Den of Defensive Ends. As for Purdue’s style, Walters said he expects to build a program that scores in bunches, stops the run and routinely harasses opposing quarterbacks.

Walters’ hire was different from Purdue’s traditional practice of hiring offensive-minded coaches. He’s the first defensive coach to be hired at Purdue since Leon Burtnett in 1982.

Walters is trying to continue the foundation built by Jeff Brohm before he left for Louisville. The Boilers went 8-5 last season, and that followed a 9-4 record 2 years ago.