The 2012 NCAA men’s basketball title game participants were determined Saturday night, and it will be Kentucky vs. Kansas. Here at BTN.com, we’ve reached the finals of our 2012 Big Ten football uniform bracket. The matchup: No. 1 Michigan vs. No. 5 Iowa. Who’s going to be the winner? It’s up to you, so cast your vote in this post. See the previous matchups: Semis | Quarters | First round.
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It is four bowls in a row and counting for Pat Fitzgerald and Northwestern. But something is missing: A bowl victory. Fitzgerald is 0-4 in the postseason; Northwestern. But Fitzgerald presses on, coming off his first losing season (6-7) since his 4-8 debut in 2006. And his Wildcats have issues to address this spring. Chief among those is improving a defense that ranked 11th in the Big Ten overall (407.7 ypg), 12th vs. the pass (230.4 ypg) and 10th against the run (177.3 ypg). The offense also has work to do with Dan Persa gone under center. I caught up with Fitzgerald as he was in the midst of spring drills.
The Big Ten Network will televise Michigan’s spring football game live at noon ET on Saturday, April 14. It will also stream live on BTN2Go. Matt Shepard and former Michigan offensive tackle Jon Jansen will call the game and Lisa Byington will report from the sideline. BTN also will have highlights and analysis from that day’s Big Ten spring games at 9:30 p.m. ET on the B1G Tonight Spring Football Edition with Dave Revsine, Gerry DiNardo and Howard Griffith.
It’s not Friday the 13th, but it probably feels like it at Iowa, where another running back (Jordan Canzeri) has gone down with injury. Is the position cursed in Iowa City? Mike Hlas of the Cedar Rapids Gazette scoffs at that notion. Still, you have to wonder … Marcus Coker … Mik’ail McCall … Adam Robinson … Jewel Hampton … Brandon Wegher … all gone earlier or hurt since Shonn Greene’s huge 2008 season. Hmmm. Just sayin’.
There’s no shortage of newsworthy Big Ten items right now, what with Ohio State headed to the Final Four in New Orleans, spring practice in full swing and ex-Maryland QB Danny O’Brien deciding to commit to Wisconsin over Penn State, among other schools.
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Here’s a look at some of the happenings on Big Ten gridirons, as the fallout from Danny O’Brien’s decision to attend Wisconsin continues. Poor Penn State.
As far as debuts go, Brady Hoke’s was a hit at Michigan. Hoke sauntered into Ann Arbor and ripped off a stunning 11-2 mark, finishing second in the Legends Division and capping the remarkable season with a triumph over Virginia Tech in the Sugar Bowl. It almost made memories of the mercurial three-season Rich Rodriguez tenure vanish. Almost. Now, the question begs: What will Hoke do for an encore? I talked to three top writers who cover Big Blue to gather their thoughts on Michigan’s to-do list this spring.
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