As he does every Saturday during the Big Ten football season, BTN.com senior writer Tom Dienhart offers his immediate thoughts from the latest Big Ten games. See Dienhart’s Snap Reactions to Nebraska’s impressive victory over Minnesota and Purdue’s narrow win at Illinois in this post.
Saturday was a special day at Memorial Stadium in Lincoln, Neb. Not only was it Senior Day, the game marked the 500th, and final at Memorial Stadium, of Tom Osborne’s career at Nebraska. The former head coach and current athletic director will retire Jan. 1, 2013, and the school honored him and the team’s seniors Saturday. Watch the school’s halftime tribute to Osborne now, plus see the day’s other tributes in this post.
Taylor Martinez threw for 308 yards and two touchdowns to Kenny Bell while becoming No. 16 Nebraska’s all-time passing leader in a 38-14 victory over Minnesota on Saturday. The Cornhuskers (9-2, 6-1), who had to come from behind in the second half in four of its first five Big Ten wins, scored on four of their first six possessions against the Gophers (6-5, 2-5).
Nebraska scored two touchdowns, one on offense and another on defense, to increase its lead to 38-0 over Minnesota after three quarters.
Nebraska stifled Minnesota’s offense, giving up just six total yards in the second quarter, and the Cornhuskers now lead 24-0. Nebraska held the Golden Gophers to negative rushing yardage (-3 yards) in the quarter.
No. 14 Nebraska’s aerial assault is on point, as the Cornhuskers lead 10-0 at the end of the first quarter thanks to 98 passing yards in the quarter. Nebraska’s Kenny Bell caught three passes for 50 yards and one touchdown in the quarter.
Big Ten Field Pass on BTN2Go, our Web-only live camera, returns to Nebraska this Saturday and goes live at 2:30 p.m. ET with an exclusive look at the pregame activities on the field. And this week should be a special one as Nebraska plans a pre-game tribute to the retiring Tom Osborne. Fans are encouraged to be in their seats a half hour prior to the game in order to enjoy all pregame activities, including Senior Day introductions and a special Cornhusker Band performance before the Tunnel Walk.
The focus this week is on Madison, where Ohio State will try to move to 11-0. Wisconsin has a spot in the Big Ten title game sewn up but would like to win a share of the league title. To have a shot, the Badgers must down the Buckeyes.
The Leaders representative in Indy has been decided. Now, over the next two weeks, Nebraska and Michigan will battle it out to see who represents the Legends.
Every week, BTN.com’s Brent Yarina (@BTNBrentYarina) and Tom Dienhart (@BTNTomDienhart) offer their predictions for each Big Ten football game. We also provide a poll for all of the games so fans can vote for their winners.
Week 12 is upon us, and the questions persist for each school. Chief among them this week centers around Wisconsin quarterback Curt Phillips and his ability to pass the football against Ohio State. If Phillips can’t chuck it effectively, the Badgers may have a difficult time beating the Buckeyes. He certainly didn’t need to throw much last week at Indiana. But he likely will vs. Ohio State.
All eyes will be on Madison, Wis., where No. 6 Ohio State plays Wisconsin in a Week 12 that lacks compelling storylines. The Buckeyes are 10-0 and in search of perfection. The last time Ohio State came to Wisconsin, it got drummed, 31-18, in 2010. The Badgers already have the Leaders Division spot in the Big Ten title game sewn up, but a victory over the Buckeyes would be Wisconsin’s most impressive win of the season and give it momentum.