Next up in my schedule analysis series: Purdue. What will be the Boilermakers’ toughest non-conference and conference games? Where is the schedule seemingly easiest, and then when does it get really rugged? Go ahead and guess which game I call their “must win” game, then read the rest of this post and see what I picked. You can find all of my Big Ten schedule analysis posts here. All of the teams are included except for Wisconsin, which you can look for Thursday.
We are talking playoffs today. That’s correct, Jim Mora … playoffs. An honest-to-goodness playoff. Feel free to rub your eyes and shake your head.
When you think of Wisconsin, offense usually comes to mind. Big, tough physical lines blocking for a strong running game. But the Wisconsin defense deserves credit for the program’s consecutive Rose Bowl appearances. The Badgers had the Big Ten’s No. 3 defense (316.4 ypg) in 2011 and allowed just 19 points per game (13th in the nation). I talked with co-defensive coordinator Chris Ash—who is in his second as co-coordinator working in concert with Charlie Partridge–to get his breakdown of the Badger defense. See the Q&A in this post.
The outcry came about a nanosecond after the 2012 College Football Hall of Fame inductees were announced: How come Nebraska quarterback Tommie Frazier didn’t get elected? I wish I had an answer. But, alas, I don’t. It remains a mystery of the universe—and a Titanic miscarriage of justice. I am a member of the National Football Foundation, and thus a voter for the Hall. And Frazier gets the nod from me. The guy, without a doubt, is the greatest quarterback in the history of one of America’s greatest college football programs.
Would you turn down a possible six-figure salary? Former Ohio State linebacker Andrew Sweat is doing just that. Sweat, who had a chance to make the Cleveland Browns roster as an undrafted rookie, recently announced he will give up football to attend law school. The linebacker referenced concussion symptoms for his decision and tweeted “Health trumps football any day.” As a senior in 2011, Sweat tallied 72 tackles, five tackles for loss, one interception and one forced fumble.
The 17-member 2012 College Football Hall of Fame class was announced Tuesday, and former Purdue running back Otis Armstrong was the lone Big Ten product inducted. That being the case, there were several glaring omissions, highlighted by Nebraska’s Tommie Frazier and Ohio State’s Orlando Pace. Both snubs sparked quite a reaction on Twitter, and rightfully so. Frazier went 33-2 and won two national titles and four Big 12 championships, while Pace is one of the most dominant offensive lineman of all time. See the tweets in this post.
Former Purdue running back Otis Armstrong was one of 14 players inducted into the 2012 College Football Hall of Fame class. Armstrong shined for the Boilermakers from 1970-72, running for 3,315 yards and 17 touchdowns, to go along with 389 yards and five touchdowns through the air. Armstrong still holds the Purdue record for rushing attempts (670) and ranks second in career rushing yards. See the entire 2012 Hall of Fame class in this post.