Andrew Weber- US PRESSWIRE
There was an iconic Hail Mary pass, a brand new championship game, a new school in the club, Legends and Leaders, a smashing debut by a coach, a touchdown machine named “Ball,” and a sordid off-field scandal the likes we never have seen in the history of college sports. Welcome to Big Ten football 2011.
Wednesday night brought a slew of closer-than-expected games for Big Ten teams. Most were able to escape without deflating losses, but the way they played may tell us more than the final result. Let’s dive right in.
When BTN.com readers come to my BTN.com mailbag page to send their questions and comments, they may think I don’t read them all. But I do, and I answer the best ones each week. This time around many of you wondered when Ohio State will hear from the NCAA, why was Michigan picked for a BCS bowl and Michigan State wasn’t, if the Big Ten title game is a conference game or a non-conference game, and how I decided my Heisman vote order.
The Big Ten says it will review the child sex-abuse scandal at Penn State and reserve the right to sanction the school depending on what it finds. This would be in addition to NCAA looking into possible rules violations.
It was a struggle for the Big Ten on Wednesday night. The conference eked out several wins against inferior opponents, including Illinois over St. Bonaventure (box), Nebraska over Florida Gulf Coast (recap) and Purdue over Western Carolina (recap), while Penn State lost to Lafayette (recap). There were a couple drama-free games, though, as Wisconsin drilled Green Bay (recap) and Michigan State blew away CCSU (recap). Catch up on all the action on our Big Ten scoreboard.
It’s been a quiet week so far in Big Ten land, but we did get two interesting games last night. Let’s review the light slate, as well as a couple noteworthy performers to this point of the season.