Rick Osentoski-US PRESSWIRE
Stop. Lift your head and look around. Take a moment to drink in what we are about to witness. This will be the first meeting between Ohio State coach Urban Meyer and Michigan coach Brady Hoke. And it’s the beginning of what I think will be a golden age for this All-American rivalry.
You can’t help but notice the clunky brace on Robert Marve’s left knee. It wasn’t there way back in 2007, when Marve was one of the nation’s hottest shots, a can’t-miss prospect from Plant High School in Tampa, Fla. Name a school, any school, and Marve could have gone to it.
Jerry Schultheiss-US PRESSWIRE
Please excuse Indiana if it doesn’t know how to react to the all the fuss around its home game with Wisconsin this Saturday.
Big Ten Coordinator of Football Officials Bill Carollo remembers the hit. Whoever saw that hit will never forget it. The collision that took place between Michigan safety Daydrion Taylor and Penn State’s Bob Stephenson back in 1997 resonates today. “And you know what?” says Carollo. “Back then, it was a legal hit. But today, it would be a penalty.”
Evan Habeeb-US PRESSWIRE
The story of the 2012 Penn State team just keeps getting more interesting … and improbable. Back in August, no one was authoring this script. No one saw the Nittany Lions becoming a Big Ten star with a 5-2 overall record and 3-0 Big Ten mark with Ohio State rolling into State College, Pa., on the last Saturday of October.
The season is halfway over. There have been surprises. There have been disappointments. The second half of the season is thick with storylines: Who will win the rugged Legends Division? Can Ohio State finish unbeaten? Can Buckeye quarterback Braxton Miller win the Heisman? Buckle up. It’s going to be a fun ride over the next month and a half.
The time is now for Michigan State. There is a sense of urgency around this week’s visit from Iowa. In fact, the game almost has a “must-win” aura about it. The Spartans are 4-2 overall and 1-1 in the Big Ten. After this game with the Hawkeyes, Michigan State will embark on its most arduous phase of the season, playing at Michigan and at Wisconsin before coming home to play Nebraska and Northwestern.
Michigan is coming to Purdue to play a big football game (4 p.m. ET, BTN/BTN2Go). Saturdays like this aren’t commonplace in West Lafayette, Ind. Big basketball games? They happen almost every winter in this hamlet tucked just off I-65 an hour north of Indianapolis and two hours south of Chicago. But big football games? They have been sparse in the last, oh, generation. So, pardon the natives if they aren’t accustomed to the fuss of a big football Saturday.
Raise your hand if you’re positively sick and tired of hearing all of the negativity about the Big Ten? I’m not saying the criticism isn’t deserved, because it is, and in the end it’s the football teams that can do the most about it. The Big Ten is 6-9 combined against schools from Automatic Qualifying conferences and Notre Dame, and Northwestern provided three of those wins.