After years of stability under Kirk Ferentz, the Iowa coaching staff has undergone a big transformation. How big? For the first time since taking the job in 1999, Ferentz will have new coordinators. Defensive coordinator Norm Parker retired, while offensive coordinator Ken O’Keefe left to take a job with the Miami Dolphins. Ferentz promoted defensive backs coach Phil Parker to run the defense. But Ferentz went outside the Iowa family when it came time to find an offensive coordinator and hired Greg Davis.
Just like clockwork, your daily Big Ten football links are here. Some interesting stuff, including talk of Penn State perhaps being a sleeper and a look at Phil Steele’s All-Big Ten grid teams. Life is good, people.
Big Ten regular-season champ and No. 1 seed Purdue nipped heated rival and No. 2 Indiana, 6-5, in the 2012 Big Ten Baseball Tournament on Saturday night (recap). The tournament crown marks Purdue’s first in school history. With the win, the Boilers earn the Big Ten’s automatic berth to the NCAA tourney. Check out the BTN TV schedule to see what’s coming up, including re-airs of the games. Online, we posted video highlights and interviews. Relive the entire tournament here.
No. 6 Ohio State plated nine runs in the final two innings to defeat No. 3 Penn State, 12-5, on the opening day of the Big Ten tournament Wednesday at Huntington Park. The Buckeyes, who move to 32-25 on the season, take on top-seeded and 18th-ranked Purdue at 7:05 p.m. ET Thursday. David Corna and Patrick Porter both drove in four runs, while Corna and Brad Holberg each had three hits. Brett McKinney threw 4 2/3 scoreless innings out of the bullpen to earn the victory. Read more at OhioStateBuckeyes.com and follow @OhioState_BASE on Twitter.
Senior co-captain Tony Bucciferro allowed just two runs and struck out five in eight innings to lead the Michigan State baseball team past Nebraska, 10-9, in the first round of the Big Ten Tournament Wednesday afternoon at Huntington Park. Michigan State (36-19) collected 17 hits and appeared to have the game in hand with a 10-2 lead going into the bottom of the ninth inning, but Nebraska (34-22) rallied for seven runs in its final at-bat. Read more at MSUSpartans.com and follow @statebaseball on Twitter.
Each week of the college football season offers a variety of games for fans to watch. I’m taking a super-early look at each week of the Big Ten season as a way to preview the 2012 campaign. Find my Week 3 schedule analysis in this post and watch our feature on Michigan State’s memorable 2010 win over Notre Dame now. Here’s my Week 1 and Week 2 posts, too, if you missed them.
Michigan State had already allowed seven runs in the bottom of the ninth inning in the opening game of the 2012 Big Ten Baseball Tournament on Wednesday, and with the tying run on third base, second basemen Ryan Jones bailed out the Spartans. On what looked like the game-tying hit, Jones climbed the ladder and robbed his counterpart, Nebraska second baseman Pat Kelly, of an RBI hit. The terrific catch sealed Michigan State’s 10-9 victory and put it into the winner’s bracket. The Spartans entered the inning leading 10-2. Watch the play now.