OK, Big Ten Nation: If you could pick one player to take a last-second shot, who would it be? I polled seven Big Ten writers. And, here were their choices. Looks like the guy to pass to is … Michigan’s Nik Stauskas.
Can’t say it was a shock to see the release from Indiana that announced defensive coordinator Doug Mallory and defensive line coach Jon Fabris won’t be back. Wilson had to do something. The Hoosiers defense was an abomination in 2013 and a big reason why the school failed to reach a bowl for the sixth season in a row, as Indiana finished 5-7 overall and 3-5 in the Big Ten.
Joshua S. Kelly
What was speculated is now official: Braxton Miller will return for his senior season. The school issued a statement tonight about Miller’s decision to return to Ohio State.
OK, the mail has been steadily streaming in. That makes sense since there has been a lot going on these days, what with the bowl season, hoops heating up and … oh, yes, Fran McCaffery! Let’s dig in and address the best of your questions and comments.
It looks like Michigan already has hired a new offensive coordinator, as reports indicate Brady Hoke has tabbed Alabama’s Doug Nussmeier. That didn’t take long. Actually, it obviously likely has been in the works for a bit. The chair in deposed coordinator Al Borges’ office is still warm. Heck, pictures of his kids may still be on his desk.
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Meet Al Borges, Michigan’s fall guy for the ultra-disappointing 2013 season.
No Big Ten newcomer has had a bigger impact than Illinois guard Rayvonte Rice, the Big Ten’s leading scorer. And that’s a big reason why the Fighting Illini have been one of the Big Ten’s biggest surprises.
The Spartan Rose Bowl champion football team was recognized at the No. 3 Ohio State at No. 5 Michigan State game last night. And, as you would suspect, the squad was met with a warm reception.
What a barnburner last night at the Breslin Center, as Michigan State had to work overtime to beat Ohio State after blowing a 17-point second-half lead. Give Adreian Payne major props. He didn’t start as he dealt with a foot injury but fought through the pain and discomfort to notch 18 points and six rebounds in 32 minutes. Heroic. And how about that big 3-pointer he hit in the dying moments? So clutch.
It’s not too early to start thinking about the 2014 season, right? Right. Others already are in on the action, with super-early top 25 polls. So, here’s why you should be excited about your team’s prospects for next season. Smiles, everyone!
The grass stains and bruises are still fresh from last night’s BCS title game, a scintillating triumph for Florida State over Auburn that ended the SEC’s seven-season run of dominance. That hasn’t stopped some people from turning the page – and quickly. Mark Schlabach of ESPN.com already has an early, early—and I mean EARLY—2014 Top 25.
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The final polls are out, and Michigan State is No. 3 in the AP and Coaches polls – see the full lists here. The results are really no shock. I think the Spartans could have made a case to be ranked as high as No. 2. But, Auburn got that spot, even though the Tigers lost the BCS championship game to Florida State. Had Auburn been blown out by the Seminoles, Michigan State likely could have secured the No. 2 slot.
The dust has settled on another disappointing postseason for the Big Ten, which went 2-5 in bowl games. The lone victors: Michigan State in the Rose Bowl and Nebraska in the Gator Bowl. Still, there were many noteworthy things. Here’s my Best of the Big Ten Bowls.
One week of Big Ten action is in the books, as Ohio State, Wisconsin and Michigan State continue to lead the way. Illinois is a surprising 2-0 and thinking big, while Michigan has overcome injuries to forge a 2-0 start. Minnesota may be better than expected, while 1-1 Iowa is still formidable after a tough loss at Wisconsin on Sunday.
It’s not even lunchtime, and Iowa already has issued apologies for Fran McCaffrey’s outburst and subsequent ejection from last night’s game at Wisconsin. McCaffery was ejected eight minutes into the second half of the eventual loss after getting hit with back-to-back technical fouls.
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Joshua S. Kelly
The Orange Bowl was billed as a battle of big-time quarterbacks, pitting Braxton Miller vs. Tajh Boyd. It certainly lived up to its billing as a shootout, as Clemson won a wild 40-35 contest that featured four lead changes and 1,003 combined yards. Miller finished with 269 total yards; Boyd had 497 in one of the best games of the postseason.
It’s finally here: My first edition of Big Ten Three-Pointers, my weekly fun and informative look back and forward around the Big Ten hardwood. We offer up scoreboards and other features like BTN Connect daily, of course, but I like to take a concentrated look at the week in one special take. I also have a few notes for you to keep in mind before we dive in.
Time for today’s top Big Ten stories. Let’s start in cold and snowy Wisconsin, where the end to the Badgers’ football season has sent a chill down the spins of many fans. Wisconsin ended the season with consecutive losses to Penn State and South Carolina, as a season with BCS promise melted into a disappointing finish. Does a 9-4 record and bowl loss equal a successful season for Wisconsin?
The New Year is here. And, what better way to kick it off than by answering some of your question in a mail bag. Warning: This is college football bowl-heavy content as fans critique their team’s performances as well as a few of my latest posts.