Last week on Step Into My Office, our Mike Hall sat down with Nebraska coach Bo Pelini. At 10 p.m. ET Thursday on BTN, Hall takes you behind the scenes with Illinois head coach Ron Zook. Hall, who can be found on Twitter, @BTNMikeHall, filed a couple bonus Web-only video clips from his visit to Champaign. He also wrote a little about what it was like to hang with Zook, whose 2-0 Illini team hosts No. 18 Arizona State at 7 p.m. Saturday on BTN.
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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.
BTN’s Samantha Goldwasser brings you Thursday afternoon’s Big Ten Blast video update. What is the Big Ten Blast? Find out right now. In this afternoon’s update we have news on Minnesota coach Jerry Kill, who has not yet returned to the team following a seizure on the sideline at the end of the Gophers’ last game.
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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.
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Week 3 hasn’t even kicked off, so any Heisman Trophy talk this early in the season is pure speculation. But with Denard Robinson’s signature moment on national television last week against Notre Dame, is the Michigan quarterback in the discussion? And if so, can he stay in the race throughout the season? Those are just a couple of the topics “Big Ten Football & Beyond” addressed Wednesday night on BTN. Watch now as Teddy Greenstein talks about Robinson.
Ohio State is getting stronger and deeper just in time for its battle at Miami (FL) on Saturday night. On Tuesday, the NCAA reinstated three Buckeyes players who were suspended for taking envelopes with $200 cash from a university booster at a charity event earlier this year. So for the first time this season, Luke Fickell and the Buckeyes will have tailback Jordan Hall, cornerback Travis Howard and safety Corey Brown in uniform. Read the full AP story.
Tuesday night on “The Next Level,” Rick Pizzo, Jon Jansen and Brandon Williams interviewed Nebraska standout linebacker Lavonte David. A junior college transfer a year ago, David tallied a Nebraska-record 152 tackles last season to put himself on the NFL radar. But what about his size? At 6-1 and 225 pounds, NFL scouts reportedly question whether he can be an NFL linebacker. What does Davis think about that? “Personally, I think my size can perform at the next level,” he told our crew. Watch the entire interview now.