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.
Akeem Hunt turned a short pass into a 63-yard touchdown, and Purdue took another step toward a second consecutive bowl berth with a 20-17 victory at Illinois on Saturday. Hunt’s big play gave the Boilermakers (5-6, 2-5 Big Ten) a 13-3 lead in the third quarter.
The offense led Purdue to 14 third-quarter points, and the Boilermakers now lead 20-10. Purdue threw for 75 yards and ran for 97 yards in the quarter. The Boilermakers expanded their lead to 13-3 thanks to a one-play, 63-yard drive that ended when Robert Marve tossed a 63-yard touchdown to Akeem Hunt.
Illinois’ Nathan Scheelhaase led the offense in the second quarter. He threw for 18 yards and ran for 33 yards, but the Fighting Illini now trail 6-3. Purdue’s Sam McCartney booted two field goals in the quarter.
The teams combined for no points and two turnovers in an ugly first quarter and the game is tied 0-0 at the end of the first quarter.
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.
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.