The No. 9 Golden Gophers controlled the first set against the No. 3 Fighting Illini, but Illinois ended up winning the match 3-2 (20-25, 25-18, 25-22, 20-25, 15-10).
Tonight on BTN Live: What’s the reaction to Luke Fickell’s move to Braxton Miller? We’ll assess the Big Ten’s overall performance thru three weeks and play your “ReJoice Mail.” Also, should the Wolverines and Huskers be concerned this week? Which one-loss team will still be standing as a contender at season’s end? Come vote in our polls, tweet to our show @BTNLive, comment on the post, and send us an email.
I said at the beginning of last week’s Numbers that the Illinois game excited me the most of any one on the Week 3 slate, and the Illini did not disappoint. Their 17-14 win over then-No. 18 Arizona State turned the nation on to something Howard, Gerry and I believed when we saw them in the pre-season: The Illini are for real. The numbers I gave last week were related to their offense, but the real story of the game was the “D.” So that’s where we’ll begin this week.
Get ready to be excited. The last full week of nonconference football is Saturday, and that means more competitive, entertaining and meaningful games are on the horizon. Week 4 also gives us the Big Ten’s first open weeks, with Northwestern and Purdue both off this weekend. BTN will air five Week 4 games, including Michigan hosting San Diego State, Brady Hoke’s old team, at noon ET. Use our GameFinder to find your BTN game, hear your coach’s latest teleconference, and track all of Saturday’s action on our Big Ten scoreboard.
The Big Ten held the weekly teleconference with the 12 football coaches and the media this morning, and @B1GFootball from the Big Ten Conference office tweeted the event live as always. Get a taste of each coach’s Tuesday phone call with the media via selected tweets, or listen to each entire call on your own. We post these calls every week.
On last week’s on Step Into My Office, our Mike Hall sat down with Illinois coach Ron Zook and the week before that it was Nebraska coach Bo Pelini. At 10 p.m. ET Thursday on BTN, Hall takes you behind the scenes with Minnesota head coach Jerry Kill. Hall, who can be found on Twitter, @BTNMikeHall, filed a few bonus Web-only video clips from his visit to Minneapolis. He also wrote a little about what it was like to hang with Kill, whose 1-2 Gophers host North Dakota State at 7 p.m. ET Saturday on BTN.
Seeking their first Big Ten win of the season Minnesota Gophers quarterback Adam Weber connected with wideout Ernie Wheelwright seven times for 116 yards and three touchdowns in Evanston against the Wildcats. Get the full list of this season’s of upcoming Greatest Games right here.