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.
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.
Find out more about: Teleconferences
Every week during the college football season, Brent Yarina posts his latest Big Ten Power Rankings. Week 3 saw the Big Ten go 9-3, including Illinois’ 17-14 victory over No. 18 Arizona State. As for the power rankings, they are not meant to mimic the Big Ten standings. What fun would that be? They aren’t scientific, either. They’re simply Brent’s thoughts on where each Big Ten team stands after its latest game and entering its next contest. Agree? Disagree? Tweet @BTNBrentYarina.
Find out more about: Power Rankings
Every week during the fall, BTN.com web editor and blogger Brent Yarina recaps the week that was in Big Ten football. Each recap includes Brent’s superlative winners and the best stats, quotes and tweets, among other things, from around the Big Ten that particular week. Have a worthy stat, quote or tweet that you think should make the recap? Tweet it to @BTNBrentYarina. Watch BTN’s interview with Purdue basketball standout Robbie Hummel now.
Find out more about: #B1G Honors
(AP) Trent Steelman scored three touchdowns for the second straight week, including the game-winner on a 1-yard plunge with 2:49 remaining, and Army beat Northwestern 21-14 on Saturday. Steelman also scored on runs of 1 and 17 yards, and the swarming Army defense turned up the pressure in the second half. Malcolm Brown had a 23-yard gain on a pitch right for Army (1-2), Raymond Maples added a 17-yard run off a great fake in the middle of the line, and Scott Williams had a 17-yard run around the left side to key the game-winning drive. Read the full AP recap, check out the box score and see our Big Ten scoreboard.
Find out more about: Rapid Recaps
I wouldn’t necessarily have thought this going into the season, but the game that excites me the most on the Big Ten slate this weekend is Illinois’ game with Arizona State. Obviously, Ohio State–Miami and Michigan State–Notre Dame are generating more national buzz. But Gerry, Howard and I thought the Illini were a legitimate contender in the Leaders Division when we watched them in the pre-season and this is our first opportunity to see if we’re right.
As discussed here last Wednesday, the Week 2 schedule was a lot more challenging than what the Big Ten faced in the opening week. As a result, the Big Ten struggled to a 7-5 record, one week after going 10-2. Well, the Week 3 schedule has a few more tough tests, with dates against Pittsburgh, Notre Dame, Arizona State and Miami (Fla.). BTN will air five games Saturday, including Illinois hosting No. 18 Arizona State at 7 p.m. ET. Use our GameFinder to find your BTN game. Watch our latest Big Ten Blast now and check out Brent Yarina’s Week 3 Preview inside.
Find out more about: Weekly B1G Previews