Michigan further solidified its status as the Rose Bowl front-runner in the Big Ten with a third win in a row. This time, the Wolverines dumped Michigan State, 12-10, ending the Spartans’ four-game winning skein in the series.
With Week 8 behind us, it’s time for my latest Big Ten Player Rankings. Again, I’m doing these a little different this year. Whereas I used to rank the top 10 players – a practice that was tough due to all the talent on both sides of the ball – I’ll rank the top six offensive and defensive players each week.
Rick Osentoski-US PRESSWIRE
Two new Big Ten helmets were introduced to the college football world in Week 8 action Saturday. There was Michigan State’s HydroChrome lid and Northwestern’s matte black shell. Here’s a running gallery, in chronological order, of the new helmets we’ve seen so far during the 2012 season.
This is the Wisconsin we all expected at the beginning of the season. The last three games, the Badgers have outscored foes 107-41 and outgained them 1,485 yards to 781. Those offensive line troubles are ancient history and the defense has played well all season long. Where do the surging Badgers land on my latest Power Rankings? See my Week 9 Power Rankings in this post.
Before we turn our attention to Week 9, we need to review how BTN.com fans, Tom Dienhart and yours truly did with our Week 8 predictions. Everyone involved went 4-2, meaning Dienhart remains on top, one game ahead of BTN.com fans.
Taylor Martinez threw for 342 yards and three touchdowns and Nebraska rallied to beat Northwestern 29-28 on Saturday. The Cornhuskers (5-2, 2-1 Big Ten) rallied from 12 down in the fourth, taking a one-point lead when Martinez hit Ben Cotton with a 7-yard pass with just over 2 minutes left, and hung on when a 53-yard field goal attempt by Northwestern’s Jeff Budzien barely missed wide right with 1:10 remaining.
Thanks to a mean rushing attack, Northwestern now leads 23-16. The Wildcats rushed for 98 yards in the third quarter. The Wildcats expanded their lead to 21-10 thanks to a four-play, 93-yard drive that ended when Venric Mark ripped off an 80-yard touchdown run.