Rich Barnes-US PRESSWIRE
Here’s a look back at the Saturday that was—along with a few sneak peeks forward—in my weekly top 10. It’s good to be a Nebraska and Michigan fan. Ohio State, too. It’s also not to be bad being a Penn State fan, what with the way Matt McGloin and Allen Robinson are playing.
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As you recover from the excitement of that overtime thriller between Ohio State and Wisconsin, check out the five things I learned on Saturday. Time is running out on teams searching for bowl eligibility. I’m looking at you, Purdue and Michigan State.
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Yahoo! Sports reported Saturday that the Big Ten is in “advanced discussions” with Maryland and Rutgers about joining the Big Ten.
Find out more about: Big Ten expansion
Jeff Hanisch-US PRESSWIRE
It wasn’t easy—nothing in life that is good ever is–but Ohio State’s march to perfection continues. And the Buckeyes have their defense to thank.
As he does every Saturday during the Big Ten football season, BTN.com senior writer Tom Dienhart offers his immediate thoughts from the latest Big Ten games. See Dienhart’s Snap Reactions to Nebraska’s impressive victory over Minnesota and Purdue’s narrow win at Illinois in this post.
Every Saturday during the Big Ten football season, BTN.com senior writer Tom Dienhart watches all the action and offers his immediate thoughts from every game. Read Dienhart’s Snap Reactions to Michigan, Penn State and Northwestern’s wins over Iowa, Indiana and Michigan State, respectively, in this post.
It’s Friday. Game day is near. Time may be running out on your school’s bowl hopes. Or, maybe your school is trying to enhance its bowl prospects with another victory. Ohio State? It has no such concerns, as probation means the Buckeyes can’t play in the Big Ten title game or in a bowl. Still, Ohio State would like to finish unbeaten and faces its toughest test yet at Wisconsin.
You can’t help but notice the clunky brace on Robert Marve’s left knee. It wasn’t there way back in 2007, when Marve was one of the nation’s hottest shots, a can’t-miss prospect from Plant High School in Tampa, Fla. Name a school, any school, and Marve could have gone to it.
The focus this week is on Madison, where Ohio State will try to move to 11-0. Wisconsin has a spot in the Big Ten title game sewn up but would like to win a share of the league title. To have a shot, the Badgers must down the Buckeyes.
If and when Denard Robinson returns from his right elbow injury, who should Michigan start at quarterback? Is it Robinson, or Devin Gardner, the replacement the past two games? The question may seem crazy, considering Robinson’s experience and ability to rack up big statistical days, but Gardner has impressed in two starts.
The Big Ten enhanced its postseason situation with news that the ACC and the Orange Bowl committee will consider a team from the Big Ten to serve as a potential participant in the game beginning with the 2014 season. Of course, the Big Ten already has a spot in the Rose Bowl, giving the Big Ten ties to two prestigious bowls.
No doubt, Braxton Miller is a special player, the fulcrum of the Ohio State attack, the straw that stirs the proverbial drink. When a big play is needed, Miller usually delivers. But ten games into the season, he still is having to carry too big of a load. Read about that and other Big Ten topics in my daily links.
Every week, BTN.com’s Brent Yarina (@BTNBrentYarina) and Tom Dienhart (@BTNTomDienhart) offer their predictions for each Big Ten football game. We also provide a poll for all of the games so fans can vote for their winners.
The season is winding down, but the questions continue to pour in. Questions about the bowl matchups are trending. And some wonder about who will be in the discussion to be Big Ten Coach of the Year. I tackle those questions—and others—in this week’s mailbag.
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Michigan quarterback Denard Robinson has missed the last two games with a right elbow issue. It has been a heck of way for his senior season to come draw to a close. What if he can’t play Saturday on Senior Day? It’s a possibility. See what Nick Baumgardner and Kyle Meinke of MLive.com say about that topic—along with other Big Ten news in my daily links.
The Heisman chase still appears a bit muddled as we enter the home stretch. I think most agree that Kansas State quarterback Collin Klein is the clear leader, but his lead isn’t untouchable. And the spots behind him remain in flux.
Week 12 is upon us, and the questions persist for each school. Chief among them this week centers around Wisconsin quarterback Curt Phillips and his ability to pass the football against Ohio State. If Phillips can’t chuck it effectively, the Badgers may have a difficult time beating the Buckeyes. He certainly didn’t need to throw much last week at Indiana. But he likely will vs. Ohio State.
Are Ohio State and Wisconsin rivals? Apparently so. Sure, Buckeyes-Badgers isn’t on par with Buckeyes-Wolverines. It’s not even close. Still, it’s a rivalry. Check that out and other newsy tidbits in my daily links. The burgeoning Wisconsin-Ohio State feud was fueled the last time the Buckeyes visited Madison in 2010. Ohio State arrived with a No. 1 ranking and left with a 31-18 loss that cost the Buckeyes a shot at playing for the national title.
This much we know: Wisconsin will play either Nebraska or Michigan in the Big Ten title game. All three are coming off wins and figure to land nice bowl slots, regardless of what the matchup ends up being in Indianapolis.
Find out more about: Bowl projections
All eyes will be on Madison, Wis., where No. 6 Ohio State plays Wisconsin in a Week 12 that lacks compelling storylines. The Buckeyes are 10-0 and in search of perfection. The last time Ohio State came to Wisconsin, it got drummed, 31-18, in 2010. The Badgers already have the Leaders Division spot in the Big Ten title game sewn up, but a victory over the Buckeyes would be Wisconsin’s most impressive win of the season and give it momentum.
Lots to digest after a tantalizing weekend of action. Front and center was the Penn State at Nebraska game. The Cornhuskers’ 32-23 triumph kept them in the driver’s seat to win the Legends Division. But Penn State denizens still are miffed that tight end Matt Lehman’s lunge across the end zone was ruled a fumble instead of what would have been a game-changing touchdown. Read about that, and more, in my daily links.
The top of the power rankings didn’t get shaken up, but Wisconsin made a move from No. 6 to No. 4 following its emphatic victory at Indiana that clinched the Leaders Division’s spot in the Big Ten championship game. Where do I have your Big Ten team ranked? Find out in this post.
Find out more about: Power Rankings, Rankings
Lots went on in Week 11. Wisconsin clinched the Leaders Division spot in the Big Ten championship game. Also, Nebraska stayed in control in the Legends, Minnesota became bowl eligible, Purdue’s bowl hopes remained alive, Northwestern’s hopes of getting to the Big Ten title game ended, Indiana’s Rose Bowl dreams got smashed … here’s my Top 10.
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This was one of the top Saturday’s of the season, as the division races came into even sharper focus. In fact, Wisconsin sewed up the Leaders Division bid to the Big Ten title game, while Nebraska remained in control of the Legends with a fourth victory in succession and is a step closer to Indianapolis. Here’s what I learned.
Find out more about: What Tom Learned
Every Saturday, BTN.com senior writer Tom Dienhart offers his thoughts on every Big Ten game. Get Dienhart’s Snap Reactions to Nebraska’s comeback victory over Penn State and Minnesota’s bowl-clinching win at Illinois in this post.