Here’s what is buzzing in Big Ten football circles on this glorious Wednesday, as we barrel toward the first batch of spring games this weekend.
It was only a matter of time before this happened. On Wednesday, Michigan announced it will paint “#GOBLUE” on its field for Saturday’s spring game, which BTN will air live at noon ET and also stream live on BTN2Go. The Twitter hashtag will straddle the the 25-yard line on the northeast and southwest sides of the field. According to the MGoBlue.com release, this is believed to be the second time a hashtag will be on a college field. The other occurrence: Mississippi State painted #HAILSTATE in an end zone last fall against Mississippi. See a picture of the hashtags in this post.
The Big Ten held spring football teleconferences this week, featuring the head coach and a player from all 12 teams. Listen to all the teleconferences in this post and don’t forget that all of our audio can be found in the BTN.com audio archive.
Michigan State is coming off consecutive 11-win seasons. The Spartans won a share of the Big Ten crown in 2010 and captured the Legends Division title in 2011 before falling to Wisconsin in the inaugural Big Ten title game. Some heady accomplishments under Mark Dantonio. But something is missing—a trip to a BCS bowl, which is a destination that Michigan State never has enjoyed. In fact, the Spartans haven’t been to the Rose Bowl since after the 1987 season.
Just four years ago, Brady Hoke was coaching in the MAC at Ball State. Now, he’s leading one of college football’s most storied programs. And Hoke has Michigan on the precipice of big things as he enters his second season in Ann Arbor. Hoke is riding the momentum and mojo of a smashing debut at Michigan in 2011, forging an 11-2 record and second-place finish in the Legends Division. The Wolverines capped the season with a victory over Virginia Tech in the Sugar Bowl.
Tuesday night on “Big Ten Football Report,” Dave Revsine sat down with Nebraska quarterback Taylor Martinez. The rising junior enters his third season as the Huskers’ starting signal-caller, and he and his teammates will showcase their talents in Nebraska’s spring game at 2 p.m. ET on Saturday on both BTN2Go and the Big Ten Digital Network. A season ago, Martinez accounted for 2,963 total yards and 22 touchdowns, although his completion percentage dropped three percent, to 56.3 percent. Watch Martinez’s interview now.
Tuesday night on “Big Ten Football Report,” Dave Revsine sat down with Iowa head coach Kirk Ferentz. For the first time in Ferentz’s 14 years at Iowa, his staff encountered its share of change, including a new offensive coordinator (Greg Davis) and defensive coordinator (Phil Parker). Also, Ferentz’s son, Brian Ferentz, was tabbed to coach the offensive line, among other changes. See the new-look Hawkeyes’ spring practice at noon ET on BTN.com. Until then, watch our interview with Ferentz.