With the NFL Wild Card weekend complete, it’s time to take a look at how Big Ten names fared in Saturday and Sunday’s playoff games. Former Ohio State linebacker Ryan Shazier highlighted the participants, registering 13 tackles and two forced fumbles, including the one that led to Pittsburgh’s dramatic game-winning drive in the final seconds. Other notable performances: Whitney Mercilus (Illinois) recorded eight tackles and three sacks in Houston’s loss to Kansas City, Fitz Toussaint (Michigan) totaled 118 yards in Pittsburgh’s aforementioned victory, Cliff Avril (Purdue) notched five tackles and three sacks in Seattle’s comeback win at Minnesota, and Trae
It was alumni day Saturday at the Wisconsin men’s basketball game. [ MORE: Remember this? Sam Dekker’s mom tweets picture of son mowing yard ] Former Wisconsin star and current Houston Rockets forward Sam Dekker learned this via text message from his mother, who said that Dekker should be at the Kohl Center. He would have been had he not entered the 2015 NBA Draft following his junior season, one that saw the Badgers make their second consecutive Final Four run, ending with a loss to Duke in the national final. The message also included a funny jab, with Dekker’s
It was another highly successful season for former Big Ten stars in the NFL. [ MORE: Big Ten names on NFL playoff teams ] None were more impressive than San Francisco LB NaVorro Bowman (Penn State), Cleveland T Joe Thomas (Wisconsin), Houston DE J.J Watt (Wisconsin) and Baltimore G Marshal Yanda (Iowa), all of who made the 2015 All-Pro Team, released Friday. Bowman racked up a career-high and NFL-best 154 tackles, Thomas played every snap for the ninth time in as many seasons, Watt, the reigning AP Defensive Player of the Year, registered an NFL-leading 17.5 sacks, and Yanda allowed just
The NFL playoffs are set, and former Big Ten standouts litter the 12 teams’ active rosters. A total of 80 players find themselves on active rosters, paced by Ohio State (14), and every Big Ten team has at least one representative. To be clear, the number does not include players currently on injured reserve or Maryland, Nebraska and Rutgers players who played before the schools entered the Big Ten. See the team-by-team breakdown below. ILLINOIS (4) Jeff Allen, OL, Kansas City Chiefs Whitney Mercilus, DE, Houston Texans Pierre Thomas, RB, Washington Redskins Tavon Wilson, DB, New England Patriots INDIANA (1)
Tom Brady knows how to win football games, and he also knows how to make a child’s dream come true. [ MORE: Like this post? Visit our full Gone Viral section! ] The former Michigan quarterback and eventual NFL Hall of Famer gave an 8-year-old cancer patient a Christmas gift she won’t soon forget. Brady, in a video from inside the New England locker room, invited Hailey, who recently was diagnosed with leukemia for the second time, to visit him in Foxborough. Hailey’s parents accepted the invitation, and the photos from the encounter are something special. Watch Brady’s invitation in
Ten former Big Ten players, not including ex-Nebraska punter Sam Koch (2001-05), were named to the 2016 NFL Pro Bowl, it was announced Tuesday night. [ MORE: Get all of our Big Ten pros coverage ] Former Michigan cornerback Charles Woodson, who recently announced he will retire at season’s end, will make his ninth Pro Bowl appearance to highlight the Big Ten names. Wisconsin paces the conference with four players, including all-world defensive end J.J. Watt and white-hot quarterback Russell Wilson. The Pro Bowl is at 7 p.m. ET Sunday, January 31, 2016 at Aloha Stadium in Honolulu, Hawaii. See
No NFL quarterback, past or present, has had a five-game span more impressive than former Wisconsin star and current Seattle Seahawks stud Russell Wilson. [ MORE: ‘You like that’ chants growing louder for Kirk Cousins ] Look at these numbers: 74 percent (110-of-148), 1,420 yards, 19 touchdowns and zero interceptions. That’s an average of 284 yards and 3.8 touchdowns through the air, once again, all without a single interception. He’s also made an impact on the ground during the last handful of games (147 yards, 1 TD). Wilson is no stranger to compiling ridiculous numbers; in fact, in 2011, his
Charles Woodson's return to Oakland began with hundreds of fans gathering at the team's facility urging him to come back. The second stint will come to an end following an emotional farewell at the Oakland Coliseum.
It’s a great time to be a Michigan State fan. [ MORE: Get all of our Big Ten pros coverage ] The men’s basketball team is No. 1 in the nation, the football team is the No. 3 seed in the second annual College Football Playoff, and Kirk Cousins and Draymond Green, two of the school’s most accomplished recent standouts, are getting it done in the NFL and NBA, respectively. Cousins completed 22 of 28 passes for 319 yards and four touchdowns, to go along with a highlight-reel scoring scamper, in a 35-25 victory vs. Buffalo on Sunday afternoon, the
Week 14 in the NFL was a roaring success for several former Big Ten football players. Relive the top individual performances inside.