Latest Tom Dienhart News

Schedule analysis: Michigan eyes fast start this fall

Devin Funchess

Michigan Spring Game Highlights

Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports

Michigan’s 2013 football slate sets up for a fast start. In fact, it’s not crazy to think Michigan could be 6-1 or maybe even 7-0 as it travels Michigan State to begin a run of five November games that shape up to be as tough as any team’s in the nation. It’s nice to have heavies like Notre Dame, Nebraska and Ohio State all coming to Ann Arbor. The November menu features the Wolverines three toughest Legends competitors in a row: at MSU; Nebraska; at Northwestern.

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Today's web links: Buckeyes' bold words in SI.com

Andrew Weber-US PRESSWIRE

Except for the guy living under a rock—you know who you are—we all have heard 1,000,001 times that the SEC has won the last seven national titles. Bravo! It is an awesome feat. If a Big Ten team is gonna end the skein, it figures to be Ohio State, says Stewart Mandel of SI.com as I present Friday’s edition of my weekday Big Ten links.

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Schedule analysis: Iowa bowl bid? Tough road ahead

Iowa's Kirk Ferentz

Iowa Spring Game Highlights

Iowa may be hard-pressed to get bowl eligible coming off a disappointing 4-8 season, the program’s worst since 2000. Keep an eye on the trip to Minnesota on Sept. 28 in the Big Ten opener. This game figures to set the tone. Iowa beat the Golden Gophers and claimed Floyd of Rosedale last season but has lost the last two games in Minneapolis. These are two teams trying to climb over each other in the loaded Legends Division. Iowa’s cross-over games also have gotten appreciably more difficult, as the Hawkeyes have picked up Ohio State and Wisconsin—arguably the two best teams in the Leaders Division.

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Big Ten teams strengthen football schedules

Andrew Weber-US PRESSWIRE

The Big Ten has said that it wants schools to beef up their non-conference schedules. Well, so far, so good. Michigan is the latest school to add a marquee non-conference foe. Today, the school announced a home-and-home series with Virginia Tech in 2020 and 2021. The schools have met just one time, with the Wolverines beating the Hokies, 23-20, in the Sugar Bowl after the 2011 season.

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Who sits atop Dienhart's spring rankings?

Tyvis Powell & Kato Mitchell

Ohio State Spring Game Highlights

Greg Bartram-USA TODAY Sports

Spring football is over and the offseason is officially here. Let’s all let loose with a collective sigh. Now we have to wait until the night of Thursday, August 29, for the first Big Ten game when UNLV plays at Minnesota. There are lots of barbecues, cannon balls into the swimming pool, croquet, Wiffle Ball and Jarts between now and then.

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Today's links: Football predictions rolling in

Greg Bartram-US PRESSWIRE

Who doesn’t love predictions? We all do. Well, the great Andrew Logue of the Des Moines Register ranks the Big Ten teams. He has Iowa No. 10, ahead of No. 11 Purdue and No. 12 Illinois. Who is No. 1? Do you really have to ask? Logue has Michigan No. 2 ahead of Nebraska. This is just wrong. No love for Northwestern.

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Schedule analysis: Rough road slate awaits Hoosiers

October 20, 2012;Annapolis, MD, USA; Indiana Hoosiers head coach Kevin Wilson (right) talks to the referee during the game against the Navy Midshipmen at Navy Marine Corps Memorial Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Evan Habeeb-US PRESSWIRE.Credit: US PRESSWIRE

Indiana Spring Game Highlights

Kevin Wilson is making strides as he enters his third season in Bloomington in search of his first winning record with what should be a strong offense. But the schedule is tough. IU has one of the toughest Big Ten road slates possible—Michigan State; Michigan; Wisconsin; Ohio State. Lord have mercy!

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Dienhart: Frazier finally lands in Hall of Fame

Tommie Frazier

Tommie Frazier Hall of Fame Press Conference

Finally, Tommie Frazier is in the College Football Hall of Fame. Better late than never, right? The Nebraska quarterback’s enshrinement was long overdue, as he was one of four players from Big Ten schools who were announced as inductees into the College Football Hall of Fame by the National Football Foundation today.

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Schedule analysis: Very big year for Illini

Illinois' Donovonn Young

Donovan Young Scores First for the Blue Team

This is a big year for Illinois’ Tim Beckman, who shook up his staff after debuting with a 2-10 overall record and going 0-8 in the Big Ten. The schedule is built for a nice start, as six of the first seven contests are home games—including a tilt in Chicago. But it’s November that could make or break the Fighting Illini. Yes, three of the five games are on the road—but three games are winnable: at Indiana; at Purdue; vs. Northwestern. And Illinois needs to cash in if it hopes to play in a bowl.

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Web links: MSU tips, PSU plans & more

Is there a harder working writer than Mike Griffith of MLive.com? Of course not. Today, the Spartans writing machine has four talking points on Michigan State. Please read if you wanna impress your friends at the barber shop. Learn this stuff, and you’ll wow and impress your friends. The tips about the quarterbacks are pure gold, Jerry. I’ve also got more Big Ten links in today’s post.

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Q&A: Is this Pat Narduzzi's best D? 'It could be'

Texas Christian vs Michigan State

Pat Narduzzi Film Session

Matt Kartozian-USA TODAY Sports

It’s good to be Pat Narduzzi. The Michigan State defensive coordinator has it rolling right now, pushing the buttons on what was the Big Ten’s best defense last season (274.4 ypg) and No. 4 in the nation. In fact, it was the second season in a row the Spartans paced the Big Ten in defense.

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Reader mail: Fans still buzzing over Big Ten divisions

Brady Hoke

Jim Delany on B1G Conference News

Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports

What to do on a cold, wet May day? How about answering some reader mail. Lots of nice emails this week, including a bunch of good questions on the Big Ten Conference’s announcement to have new football divisions in 2014. Remember that you can always email me on this page, or find me on Twitter (@BTNTomDienhart). Keep those cards and letters coming, America! And be safe out there.

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Today's links: O'Brien on roster challenge

Bill O'Brien

Penn State Spring Game Highlights

Penn State’s roster will be limited to 65 scholarship players — other schools are allowed 85 — for four years beginning in 2014. Here’s how Bill O’Brien plans to cope. “This is really a six-year sanction,” Bill O’Brien said during a caravan stop. “We have until 2014 to get down to 65 scholarships. We’re at 65 in 2014, 2015, 2016 and 2017, and we’re already at 65, probably, in August of 2013. So it’s not just a four-year sanction.”

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Dienhart: 25 things I learned this Spring

Allen Robinson

Michigan Spring Game Highlights

Matthew O'Haren-USA TODAY Sports

The Big Ten put a bow on spring practice last Saturday, but many questions still loom as the schools enter the offseason.

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NBA mock drafts: Where will these Big Ten stars go?

Cody Zeller

The Journey: Big Ten Basketball- Jared Sullinger and Trey Burke

Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports

April 28 was the deadline for underclassmen to enter the NBA Draft, so the draft pool is now set. The big day comes June 27, but before that comes the draft lottery on May 21.

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A look at Big Ten prospects in 2014 NFL Draft

The 2013 NFL draft wasn’t kind to the Big Ten. Just 22 players were selected—the fewest since 1994. Just one pick came in the first round, as the selection of Wisconsin center Travis Frederick No. 31 overall by the Cowboys was considered to be a massive reach by anyone with Internet access and a mock draft. But, fear not: The 2014 NFL draft should be much more fruitful for the Big Ten. Check out this way, way, WAY early mock draft from SI.com.

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Dienhart: My 2013 All-Big Ten Spring Team

Devin Gardner

Seven-Year-Old Jack Hoffman Runs For Touchdown

Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports

The Big Ten put a wrap on spring football last weekend, with Iowa and Minnesota playing the final spring games in the conference. Now, the long offseason begins. But, honestly, this is when players get better—not from September to December.

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