Friday links: QB drama, big wins & top tweets

Be sure to tune in tonight for the next installment of “How The Quarterback Turns” at Michigan State, which opens vs. Western Michigan. Andrew Maxwell will start, but Connor Cook will play. And Cook wants to show he’s the guy. Heck—who knows?–all four Spartans quarterbacks may see action, along with a few guys from the stands.

The sooner this thing settles the better. Don’t believe any spin about this “competition” being a good thing for the team. MSU’s dysfunctional offense needs a productive signal-caller who can lead—not a four-man race that drags into October.

Quarterback isn’t the left guard spot. Clarity is needed. Period. End of story.


Nice read by Tom Oates of on Badgers running back James White.

First-year Wisconsin coach Gary Andersen considers White and Melvin Gordon to be equals and says both will get a ton of carries in the offense. But it is White who will make his long-awaited and richly deserved first college start at tailback against UMass on Saturday. And, he deserves to have a big season. There actually was a time when he was ahead of Montee Ball.


Nice to see Nebraska legend Bob Devaney be honored with statue in the new East Stadium plaza. A Tom Osborne-Brooke Berringer statue sits behind North Stadium. I love icons in bronze.


It wasn’t pretty, but it was a win for Minnesota, which rode special teams to a resounding victory vs. UNLV. The offense has lots of room to improve. But, it’s not crazy to think the Golden Gophers could start 5-0. Really. It’s true.


Indiana is equally ecstatic on this Friday morning, coming off a Memorial Stadium record 73 points in a thrashing of Indiana State. No better way to recap than to see and listen to raspy-voiced Kevin Wilson discuss a triumph that has Bloomington atwitter.


Bless Doug Lesmerises’ soul. The Cleveland Plain Dealer scribe checked out an early morning workout by noted Ohio State strength coach/maniac Mickey Marotti. Mariotti may be Ohio State’s most valuable assistant.


The great Bob Flounders of has one more breakdown of the Penn State quarterback situation before Saturday’s kickoff vs. Syracuse.

Who will start? Christian Hackenberg or Tyler Ferguson? I bet Ferguson takes the first snap but that Hackenberg eventually emerges.


Urban Meyer’s insistence that NFL scouts who attend practices not wear blue has miffed some. Meyer’s beef: Blue is, of course, Michigan’s color. But Wolverines boss Brady Hoke doesn’t give a hoot what NFL scouts wear at his practices.

I’m glad one coach is sensible about this.


Andy Staples has published his inaugural top 50 prospects for the 2014 NFL draft. Michigan’s Taylor Lewan is No. 3; Ohio State’s Ryan Shazier is No. 14. Click to see the rest. Good stuff.



My take: Elliott is a special back with power and speed.

My take: This is interesting. I thought it would have been more.

My take: Hasn’t happened since 2004.

My take: Hmmmm.

My take:  All together now: uh-oh.


About Tom Dienhart senior writer Tom Dienhart is a veteran sports journalist who covers Big Ten football and men’s basketball for and BTN TV. Find him on Twitter and Facebook, read all of his work at, and subscribe to his posts via RSS. Also, send questions to his weekly mailbag using the form below and read all of his previous answers in his reader mailbag section.

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reality check on 8/30/2013 @ 4:40pm EDT Said:

I will be looking forward to the look on Beleins aka Dougs face when Maxwell throws two pick sixes tonight, and Doug er Belein Michigan wins by 33 or more easily. Enjoy crying in your beer tonight Douge