Each Tuesday morning during the Big Ten football season the 12 Big Ten football coaches hold a Big Ten teleconference with reporters from around the country. We post the audio Tuesday afternoon for each segment of the call, and we do this every week. Also @B1Gfootball spotlights a tweet or three from each coach on the call live on Twitter in case you want to follow along online Tuesday mornings.
With another Saturday in the rear-view mirror, it’s time to take the temperature of the Big Ten. It was a tough week for the Leaders Division, with four of its six teams losing. And a new leader emerged in the Legends, as Nebraska continues to move up. Where do all the teams land in my latest Power Rankings? Find out in this post.
Before we turn our attention to Week 10, we need to review how BTN.com fans, Tom Dienhart and yours truly did with our Week 9 predictions. It was a rough week for all involved, as BTN.com fans led the way with a 3-3 record. As a result, BTN.com fans tied Dienhart for the top spot in the season standings, at 54-20. I sit three games behind the pace.
]Illinois defeated Lewis, 79-47, in an exhibition game Saturday night at the Assembly Hall. The Illini jumped out to a 26-4 lead, draining six of their first eight 3-point attempts during the early spree. Illinois’ defense was equally as impressive early on, holding Lewis to 1-of-13 shooting. Eleven Illini entered the scoring column, with three in double figures: D.J. Richardson (12 points), Myke Henry (11) and Sam McLaurin (11).
Every Saturday during the Big Ten football season, BTN.com senior writer Tom Dienhart watches all the action and offers his Snap Reactions. See Dienhart’s immediate thoughts from Northwestern and Indiana’s wins over Iowa and Illinois, respectively, in this post.
Nate Sudfeld came off Indiana’s bench to throw for two touchdowns, and the Hoosiers defense had seven sacks and a pair of key turnovers in a 31-17 win at Illinois on Saturday. The win ended a five-game losing streak for the Hoosiers (3-5, 1-3 Big Ten) that included tight losses to Ohio State, Navy and Michigan State. It also ended an 11-game Big Ten drought that dated to 2010.
Illinois’ Donovonn Young led the offense in the third quarter. He ran for 36 yards and caught one pass for 12 yards, but the margin is still seven, as the Fighting Illini trail 24-17. Indiana added to its advantage when Mitch Ewald drilled a 28-yard field goal, the final play on a four-play, nine-yard drive to give the Hoosiers the lead, 24-14. A fumble recovery by Indiana put the Hoosiers at Illinois’ 20-yard line to open the drive.