Purdue basketball fans were treated to a surprise musical performance at Friday night’s Tip-off Before Kick-off. The “performer” was Dirk Hunter. Actually, it was Purdue senior D.J. Byrd, in costume, acting as a fake country artist. Byrd pulled off the alias for about four minutes before he took off his shirt and revealed a No. 21 Purdue jersey. He then took off his cowboy hat and wig, and Purdue fans erupted when they noticed it was Byrd. Watch Byrd entertain the crowd at Mackey Arena now
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The “Midnight Madness” event at Michigan State has become an entertainment spectacle each year, and this season was no exception. For Friday night’s event, Michigan State’s coach Tom Izzo makes his latest dramatic entrance after an introduction where his daughter pleads, “This year, you cannot embarrass me.” Let’s hope she’s a fan of “The Avengers.” Watch this video to see how Izzo (with a little help) saves a kidnapped Sparty before landing in Michigan State’s arena to the dulcet tones of Black Sabbath: “I am Iron Man/ Has he lost his mind/ Can he see or is he blind/ Can he walk at all/ Or if he moves will he fall?” Well done, Michigan State. Well done. But does Izzo get to keep the suit? Watch more highlights from Friday’s events at Michigan State, Purdue, and Minnesota.
On tonight’s episode of “The Big Ten Pulse” at 6:30 p.m. ET, Rick Pizzo, Derek Rackley and Tim Doyle discuss Ohio State’s 63-point outburst against Nebraska and why Rackley thinks Ohio State might be capable of even more. Speaking of Ohio State, did you see the viral video of The Ohio State Marching Band from Saturday? We’ve added it in this post below, as well as more details about tonight’s TV show.
From the I-can’t-believe-what-I’m-seeing department, we give you a classic picture of Nebraska football coach Bo Pelini. As a basketball player. In high school. Hello, short shorts! And look, Bo’s smiling!
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Think Nathan Scheelhaase was excited about his first touchdown run since Week 1? Well, the Illinois quarterback did attempt to high-five an official following his second-quarter run Saturday at Wisconsin. To little surprise the ref wanted no part of the high-five. Scheelhaase had reason to be excited, though, as his scoring scamper gave Illinois its first lead, 7-0, since it struck first in a Week 4’s 52-24 home loss to Louisiana Tech.
Hardcore sports fans will show their allegiance on just about anything. That includes caskets. How can we forget this memorable – and creepy – Ohio State one? And thanks to first-year Nebraska men’s basketball coach Tim Miles, we have a Nebraska-themed casket – sans corpse, luckily.
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Nobody gets more excited while calling a game than BTN’s own Gus Johnson. To that point, in the latest Fox Sports commercial, Johnson gets so into the game he’s calling that he explodes. The ad ends with color commentator Charles Davis, covered in Johnson’s, um, guts, saying: “Every Saturday.” More like every game. Football, basketball, soccer, it doesn’t matter.
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It came in a losing effort, but Wisconsin linebacker Chris Borland ‘s tackle on Nebraska’s Rex Burkhead Saturday night may go down as the defensive play of the year. Hyperbole, you say? Yes, we’re only one week into the Big Ten season, but the violent hurdling tackle was that great. And the fact it came against one of the Big Ten’s elite running backs makes it all the better. Do yourself a favor and watch the tackle now. You won’t regret it.
Purdue erupted for 28 second-quarter points against Marshall on Saturday, thanks in large part to the defense’s big-play ability. In the span of 102 seconds, cornerbacks Ricardo Allen and Josh Johnson registered back-to-back interception returns for scores. Allen’s Pick 6 marked the fourth of his career, while Johnson’s was his first. Watch Allen’s latest visit to the end zone now and see Johnson’s in this post.
Kain Colter had a day to remember in Northwestern’s Big Ten opener against Indiana on Saturday. The junior ran for a career-high four touchdowns, to go along with 161 rushing yards and 131 receiving yards – both game highs – as the Wildcats improved to 5-0 with a 44-29 victory. Colter’s scores came on runs of eight, eight, 15 and 22 yards. Watch all four scoring scampers now.
During his press availability after Michigan State’s 23-7 win over Eastern Michigan, Spartans coach Mark Dantonio apparently wanted to keep the questions from reporters moving at fast pace. At one point it was almost like a no-huddle approach as Dantonio punctuated each of his short answers with the phrase, “Next question.” “I’m just loving all these questions,” Dantonio says at one point, “because they’re great ones.” Watch the entire exchange in the video in this post.
Nebraska running back Rex Burkhead returned for the first time Saturday since he hurt his left knee in the team’s season-opening win over Southern Miss. Wearing a bulky brace on the knee, Burkhead started and looked great in the early going. The senior ran for 79 yards on his first three carries, including a highlight-reel 61-yard scoring scamper. Watch the touchdown run now.
How about that? We’re still days away from the Michigan-Notre Dame game, and Wolverine fans already have hit up Notre Dame Stadium. Thanks to @stephenjnesbitt, we have visual proof of it. Evidently, Michigan fans placed a blue “Beat the Irish” banner on the stadium, facing Touchdown Jesus.
By now, everyone is familiar with the “Call Me Maybe” craze. It’s run its course, many would argue, so members of the Northwestern women’s basketball team recently took a stab at a spoof of another Carly Rae Jepsen hit. The song of choice was “Good Time,” and the team filmed the video while in Italy this summer. Watch the YouTube video in this post.
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“#BTNLive” went on a rather entertaining tangent Tuesday night. It all started during our interview with Nebraska’s Ameer Abdullah, when BTN analyst Howard Griffith asked the running back about the haircut he’s rocking in his Huskers.com player profile. The dreadlocks are no more, clearly.
Mike Carter-US PRESSWIRE
Hurdling defenders sure seems like the latest craze. And if the first three weeks of the season is any indication, few do it better than Michigan State’s Le’Veon Bell. The Spartan star first showed off his track and field skills in Week 1, when he hurdled Boise State’s Jeremy Ioane. On Saturday night, Bell made another would-be tackler look foolish, this time hurdling Notre Dame’s Zeke Motta.
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What does $220 million buy you these days? If you’re Northwestern, it gets you a new state-of-the-art lakefront athletic facility. Northwestern announced Saturday that the Board of Trustees approved a plan to build the major athletics-recreation complex that also includes a 1,200 car parking garage.
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Big Ten players were responsible for several terrific plays during Week 1 action. Who can forget Devin Smith’s remarkable one-handed touchdown grab or Le’Veon Bell’s ridiculous run where he hurdled a would-be Boise State tackler? Those are just two of the many highlights the Big Ten put on during its 10-2 opening week. See my top 10 plays, plus a memorable official call, in this post. Also, if you like highlights, make your own reel with our video mashup, presented by La Quinta.
Nebraska quarterback Taylor Martinez never threw more than two touchdowns in any game last season. In Saturday afternoon’s season opener against Southern Miss, the oft-criticized junior doubled that number with four scoring strikes. It was a career day for Martinez, who tied a career-high with five touchdown passes – also did it as a freshman against Oklahoma State – and set personal records for completions (26), completion percentage (76.5 percent) and yards (349). Watch all of Martinez’s scoring strikes now.
Braxton Miller is still a work in progress as a passer. But there is absolutely nothing wrong with his running. Miller showcased his ground skills throughout Saturday’s season opener against Miami (OH), and at no point were they more apparent than on his 65-yard scoring scamper to open the third quarter. Miller ran past defenders, and then used a strong stutter-step to get his way past the last couple of defenders and into the end zone to give Ohio State a 28-3 lead.
Pardon the hyperbole, but there may not be a better catch all season long than the one Ohio State’s Devin Smith made in Saturday’s season opener against Miami (OH) at Ohio Stadium. Early in the second quarter, with Ohio State trailing Miami (OH), Smith gave the Buckeyes the lead with an incredible one-handed touchdown grab. Watch Smith use nothing but his right hand to bring down Braxton Miller’s 23-yard touchdown pass right now.
As promised, Ohio State rolled out a new tradition called “Quick Cals.” What are those? At works: 23 minutes before every home kickoff, in the south end zone, the Buckeye players will do fast, upbeat pregame exercises while facing the students. And the students can participate. Watch the video to see their first one this Saturday morning.
Friday night’s game between Michigan State and Boise State featured its share of Did You See This? moments. None, perhaps, were bigger than the couple of unforgettable plays from the first quarter. The first one occurred when Michigan State’s Darqueze Dennard and a Boise State receiver accidentally knocked down a trio of Bronco cheerleaders on the sideline following an incomplete pass that took the players outside the white lines. It was a lot like a game of Dominoes, and we’re happy to report no one was hurt in the process.
The 2012 NFL season kicks off Wednesday night, which means it’s time to look back at some of the best plays Big Ten products made during the exhibition season. Watch all the highlights, via links to NFL.com, in this post. And with opening day just around the corner, teams are currently making final cuts. Unfortunately, the list includes several Big Ten names.
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The last thing we need is another reason to get excited about Michigan’s season-opening test against reigning national champ Alabama on Saturday. But we have it, and it comes in the form of a terrific pump-up YouTube video. Watch the full video in this post.