Brian Spurlock-US PRESSWIRE
No better way to get caught up with your daily Big Ten news fix than by surfing my daily links. And there’s no better way to start than by you checking out The Roundup with Lee Barfknecht of the Omaha World-News. Not familiar with it? It’s a chat where Lee hits all the hot topics. And you’re gonna want his opinion. The guy is good. Really good.
Andrew Weber-US PRESSWIRE
Brace Hemmelgarn-USA TODAY Sports
Time to mix some hoops and basketball in my daily links. But this item on expansion caught my eye. Wisconsin athletic director Barry Alvarez said that recent Big Ten expansion that added Rutgers and Maryland was done to keep Penn State happy.
What a week in the Big Ten! Purdue hires a coach. Wisconsin sees a coach bolt. The Silver Football is handed out. At least the Big Ten didn’t expand this week. But that didn’t stop the discussion about future growth.
It’s true: There is other Big Ten news NOT involving Bret Bielema shocking the hemisphere by ditching Wisconsin for Arkansas (Arkansas?!). I have some below in my daily links. Really. The headliner: Purdue took the wraps off a new era with a press conference to announce the hiring of … ta-dah! … Darrell Hazell as head coach.
Tuesday’s shocking announcement that Bret Bielema was leaving Wisconsin for Arkansas dominates today’s daily links as writers examine why he left and what it means. Plus, Purdue hired a coach and Minnesota lost a quarterback. Read it all in my daily links.
The Heisman Trophy announced the finalist for the greatest individual trophy in sports: Texas A&M’s Johnny Manziel, Notre Dame’s Manti Te’o, Kansas State’s Collin Klein, and … that’s it. No Braxton Miller. Read about that and other top Big Ten grid news in my daily links.
There is no rest for Penn State coaches, who in addition to recruiting prep players also must fight to retain their current players, who can transfer to other schools without penalty up until the start of training camp next August. Read about that and other Big Ten grid news in my daily links.
News of the Big Ten title game percolates, with kickoff set for 8:17 pm ET on Saturday in Indianapolis. One of the interesting stories is Wisconsin quarterback Curt Phillips, a fifth-year senior who will be making just his fourth career start. Read about that—and other conference grid news—in my daily links.
The good news for Michigan? The Wolverines are going to their second bowl in a row. The bad news? It’s not a BCS bowl. And a big reason why is because of uneven offensive line and tailback play. Oh, and Brady Hoke says there will be no quick fixes to either area. Read about that and other football news in my daily links.
Illinois A.D. Mike Thomas had heard enough speculation about the future of Tim Beckman. So, Thomas squashed it by saying Beckman will be back for a second season. Read about that and other Big Ten grid news in my daily links.
While watching the announcement of the All-Big Ten teams last night, you may have noticed that just three Buckeyes were named to the coaches first-team. And none of them was quarterback Braxton Miller. Nebraska’s Taylor Martinez got that honor at signal-caller. But Miller was picked as the league’s quarterback of the year. Do you follow?
Suffice it to say, 2012 wasn’t a banner year for Iowa. The 4-8 Hawkeyes are coming off the program’s worst season since 2000 and are riding a six-game losing skein. There will be no bowl for the first time since 2007. So, Iowa now points to winter conditioning and prep work for 2013. What’s next? Read about that and other juicy items in my daily links.
Two days, two new teams. It has been that kind of week for the Big Ten—an historic week, really. Maryland came aboard on Monday … Rutgers took its turn yesterday, swelling the Big Ten ranks to 14 schools. I’m checking my emails every five minutes for the next press conference alert … none yet. Stay tuned. See what the Big Ten’s leading pundits had to say about the monolithic conference’s newest bouncing bundle of joy—Rutgers—in my daily links.
Expansion is the buzz around Big Ten media outlets, with the league officially announcing that Maryland will be joining the conference in 2014 and Rutgers to announce that it is following suit today at a 2 p.m. ET press conference. Tom Shatel of the Omaha World-Herald says the moves by the Big Ten show that power and money once again have trumped traditions. He’s exactly right. I just wonder why this is a shock to anyone. See what Shatel has to say here and check out other league news in my daily links.
It’s Friday. Game day is near. Time may be running out on your school’s bowl hopes. Or, maybe your school is trying to enhance its bowl prospects with another victory. Ohio State? It has no such concerns, as probation means the Buckeyes can’t play in the Big Ten title game or in a bowl. Still, Ohio State would like to finish unbeaten and faces its toughest test yet at Wisconsin.
No doubt, Braxton Miller is a special player, the fulcrum of the Ohio State attack, the straw that stirs the proverbial drink. When a big play is needed, Miller usually delivers. But ten games into the season, he still is having to carry too big of a load. Read about that and other Big Ten topics in my daily links.
Michigan quarterback Denard Robinson has missed the last two games with a right elbow issue. It has been a heck of way for his senior season to come draw to a close. What if he can’t play Saturday on Senior Day? It’s a possibility. See what Nick Baumgardner and Kyle Meinke of MLive.com say about that topic—along with other Big Ten news in my daily links.
Are Ohio State and Wisconsin rivals? Apparently so. Sure, Buckeyes-Badgers isn’t on par with Buckeyes-Wolverines. It’s not even close. Still, it’s a rivalry. Check that out and other newsy tidbits in my daily links. The burgeoning Wisconsin-Ohio State feud was fueled the last time the Buckeyes visited Madison in 2010. Ohio State arrived with a No. 1 ranking and left with a 31-18 loss that cost the Buckeyes a shot at playing for the national title.
Lots to digest after a tantalizing weekend of action. Front and center was the Penn State at Nebraska game. The Cornhuskers’ 32-23 triumph kept them in the driver’s seat to win the Legends Division. But Penn State denizens still are miffed that tight end Matt Lehman’s lunge across the end zone was ruled a fumble instead of what would have been a game-changing touchdown. Read about that, and more, in my daily links.
Looking for a way to unwind from the dizzying amount of election coverage? You have come to the right place. Sink your teeth into this barrage of Big Ten football news. If your favorite person lost an election last night, they can take a cue from Iowa coach Kirk Ferentz, who is handling some tough times with great decorum and aplomb.
Happy Election Day, Big Ten denizens! But before you get out and vote—if you haven’t already—read these Big Ten links. Fittingly, they begin with a big decision that has to be made at Wisconsin. See what I just did there? Big. Decision. It’s Election Day. OK, forget it and read on.