As BTN’s Rick Pizzo says, “Hockey! Hockey! Hockey!” For Minnesota, during the 2011-12 athletic year, it was all about the school’s success on the ice. The women’s team won the national title, its first since 2005, with a victory over rival Wisconsin in the championship game, while the men advanced to the Frozen Four, also its first since 2005, losing to eventual national champ Boston College in the semifinals. The two teams combined to go 62-19-3, with the women carding an impressive 34-5-2 ledger.
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Northwestern announced Monday the commitment of defensive back Quinn Evans, a 2012 Stanford graduate who will pursue a master’s degree and be eligible to compete in the 2012 season. A valuable contributor on special teams as well as at cornerback for the Cardinal, Evans will provide depth in Northwestern’s secondary.
Big Ten defensive backfields are loaded with talent, including cornerbacks like Michigan State’s Johnny Adams, Iowa’s Micah Hyde and Purdue’s Ricardo Allen, along with safeties like Ohio State’s C.J. Barnett, Michigan State’s Isaiah Lewis and Michigan’s Jordan Kovacs. And some of the units figure to rank among the best in the nation, including those at Ohio State, Michigan State and Nebraska.
We’re approaching the middle of June, so preseason Heisman Trophy candidates are being bandied about. Of course, right? One writer, Yahoo! Sports’ Mike Huguenin, has a pair of Big Ten stars ranked in the top 3 of his preseason top 10 list. Any guesses on the players? That’s right, Wisconsin’s Montee Ball and Michigan’s Denard Robinson.
On Friday, BTN.com senior writer Tom Dienhart and BTN.com web editor Brent Yarina hit email to debate the 2012 Big Ten rushing TDs leader, the fifth in our series of Big Ten statistical predictions. Next up: Receiving yards. Who will lead the Big Ten in 2012? See Tom and Brent’s email thread in this post.
Here’s a safe assumption: Any time “The Victors” is played in Columbus, Ohio, it will be met with a cascade of boos. Chad Smith, the drummer for Red Hot Chili Peppers, realized this in a concert earlier this month at Value City Arena. Smith, wearing a Michigan hat, belted out the Michigan Fight Song and – surprise, surprise – was booed off the stage. Watch the YouTube video in this post.
Feeling blue? Perk up! I’ve linked to all of the best Big Ten football stories. See, life isn’t so bad.