Pat Fitzgerald is all for helping out good a cause, so it was no shock to see him taking pies to the face during a recent Pi Beta Phi fundraiser. For just $2, anyone could smash a pie in the football coach’s face, with all proceeds going to children’s literacy.
Four Big Ten teams are ranked in SportingNews.com’s Preseason Top 25, headlined by No. 9 Ohio State. Reigning Big Ten and Rose Bowl champ Michigan State comes in at No. 12, while Nebraska (No. 17) and Wisconsin (No. 19) round out the Big Ten contingent. For the curious minds, Oklahoma is the site’s No. 1 team.
Go to an MLB game, and you’re almost guaranteed to see at least one bat break into multiple pieces. A college game? Not so much. It happened, though, in Friday night’s Michigan-Iowa Big Ten tourney game. Making the super-rare event all the more impressive, Jackson Glines got an RBI single to center on the swing. Watch the play and see a picture of the bat in this post.
A steal of home is always exciting. It’s even better when the baserunner makes a ridiculous slide to avoid the tag. We saw that happen in the nightcap of the Big Ten tourney Friday night, when Iowa’s Jake Yacinich was the lead runner on a double steal attempt. Michigan, on what looked like a designed play, threw down to second and had the shortstop cut it off and toss home. The Wolverines had Yacinich dead to rights. That’s when he decided to leave his feet and dive around the tag.
The Indiana baseball team has made a habit of standing behind Tracy Smith during each and every one of his recent BTN in-game interviews. The videobombing has been silly and serious, you name it. Well, for Thursday night’s scheduled fifth-inning interview vs. Michigan, Smith decided to take a page out of Blake Griffin’s book.
Minnesota was eliminated from the Big Ten baseball tourney Thursday afternoon, and that’s bad news for fans of entertaining dugout fun. In case you missed it late Wednesday night, Minnesota freshman pitcher Cody Campbell hijacked coach John Anderson’s BTN dugout interview by getting a fake tattoo drawn on his right arm in the background of the shot. In Thursday’s loss to Iowa, Campbell and his wild beard stole the show.
It’s Super Regional time for softball, and three Big Ten teams are one best-of-3 series away from advancing to the Women’s College World Series in Oklahoma City. Michigan and Nebraska open Super regional action Thursday night, at No. 8 Florida State and No. 2 Alabama, respectively. Minnesota, making its Super Regional debut, opens Saturday night at No. 1 Oregon.
This is impressive: the Big Ten accounted for 60 percent of the 2013-14 NBA All-Rookie First Team, announced Thursday. Orlando’s Victor Oladipo (Indiana), the runner-up for NBA Rookie of the Year, Utah’s Trey Burke (Michigan) and New York’s Tim Hardaway Jr. (Michigan) made the team, along with Brooklyn’s Mason Plumlee (Duke) and Philadelphia’s Michael Carter-Williams (Syracuse).
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Indiana enjoys videobombing head coach Tracy Smith’s BTN dugout interviews. They did it during the season-ending series vs. Minnesota, and they did it in their Big Ten tourney opener Wednesday vs. Iowa, Smith’s first in-game interview since being named Big Ten Coach of the Year. Watch the Hoosiers look very serious behind Smith in this post.
The Big Ten’s best football player? It has to be Braxton Miller, the two-time reigning Big Ten Offensive Player of the Year, right? Right. The Lincoln Journal Star’s Brian Christopherson is no fool, and he recently ranked the dual-threat quarterback No. 1 in his gallery of the Big Ten’s top 10 football players.
Find out more about: Braxton Miller
Union talks have put Northwestern in the news the last few months. The school didn’t expect it and it didn’t want it. In an effort to show its student-athletes are just that – student-athletes – the school posted an Instagram video that features WR Tony Jones spinning a football and then a book while wearing team gear. Jones then tosses the book in the air, spins and catches a work bag while donning a suit.
Northwestern’s Chris Collins proved he can coach against the nation’s elite in his first season as a head coach. That’s great and all, but what kind of singer is he? It’s a random question, yes, but Collins had the honor of singing “Take Me Out to the Ballgame” on Sunday at Wrigley Field. So many Chicago personalities have butchered the song and embarrassed themselves. Not Collins. The second-year coach nailed his rendition.
Find out more about: Chris Collins, Gone Viral
It’s mid-May, so why not consider some ridiculously super-early bowl projections? That’s what CBSSports.com and BTN contributor Jerry Palm decided to do. Palm released his bowl projections Friday, and he has Ohio State in the inaugural College Football Playoff, playing reigning national champ Florida State. In all, Palm forecasts seven Big Ten bowl teams. See his projections in this post.
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Thirty Big Ten players were selected in the 2014 NFL Draft, including a quartet in the first round, headlined by Michigan’s Taylor Lewan. The players have visited their new teams and picked out their new numbers. See which number the Big Ten NFL rookies will wear this season in this post.
Find out more about: Big Ten Pros, NFL Draft
Nowadays, if teams aren’t routinely improving their facilities, they’re falling behind other teams. Ohio State fans will be happy to know the Buckeyes are doing everything to stay ahead of the game. Thursday, the Buckeyes unveiled their new football turf; Friday, it was the renderings of its new “state-of-the-art” locker room, which includes a “waterwall.”
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What’s the strangest, most ridiculous question you’ve been asked on a job interview? Former Michigan star and 2014 Big Ten Player of the Year Nik Stauskas was asked a laughable one while meeting with a future employer at the NBA draft combine. Let’s just say, the Minnesota Timberwolves were interested in Stauskas’ rudimentary math skills. See the question in this post.
Find out more about: Gone Viral, Nik Stauskas
Here’s a safe prediction: Penn State football fans will be eying the Beaver Stadium scoreboard far more often this fall. That’s because the team is adding a new LED scoreboard, part of a $10 million project, that is expected to be ready for the season opener. The video board also includes a ridiculously large Nittany Lion logo that includes LED lights. See a picture of it in this post.
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Sometimes, rivalries take a backseat to reality. That was evident at the Cincinnati-Ohio State baseball game Tuesday, as the Bearcats added No. 11 patches to the right sleeve of their jersey. The patch honors Ohio State freshman pitcher Zach Farmer, who was diagnosed with myeloid leukemia late last month and will miss the rest of the season. See a picture of the patch in this post.
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The Big Ten’s four first-round NFL draft picks all visited their new teams Friday. Taylor Lewan, Ryan Shazier, Darqueze Dennard and Bradley Roby visited with team brass, toured team facilities and met the media. Get a look at the players’ first trips to their new homes in this post.
The first round of the NFL draft was Thursday night, so, to little surprise, the 2015 mock drafts have hit the internet. Lostlettermen.com posted its 2015 NFL Draft Big Board, and the site pegs five Big Ten players for the first round. Defensive ends Randy Gregory (Nebraska) and Shilique Calhoun (Michigan State) headline the Big Ten at No. 4 and No. 7, respectively.
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College football fans need not be reminded of Jadeveon Clowney’s helmet-dislodging hit on Michigan’s Vincent Smith in the 2013 Outback Bowl. People still talk about the hit – even Michigan fullback Joe Kerridge’s mother. You see, after Taylor Lewan was drafted No. 11 in the NFL draft on Thursday night, Kerridge’s mom texted Joe.
Find out more about: Gone Viral, NFL Draft
While everyone is focused on the NFL draft, SI.com’s Zac Ellis is thinking about the Heisman Trophy. Yes, in early May. Ellis released his post-spring 2014 Heisman Watch on Monday, and he spotlights a handful of Big Ten stars. Ohio State QB Braxton Miller and Wisconsin RB Melvin Gordon pace the Big Ten candidates as “The Frontrunners.” See all five players Ellis lists in the Heisman equation in this post.
When Maryland held its spring game last month, the ACC logo was fading on the turf at Byrd Stadium. With the calendar flipped to May and the school set to become an official Big Ten member on July 1, the team decided it was time to get rid of the old logo and add the required B1G logo. See a shot of Byrd Stadium in this post.
Find out more about: Maryland