Latest Tom's Take News

Dienhart: Here's a look back at Illinois' 2015 season

Nov 7, 2015; West Lafayette, IN, USA; Illinois Fighting Illini running back Josh Ferguson (6) runs with the ball against the Purdue Boilermakers at Ross Ade Stadium. Illinois defeated Purdue 48-20. Mandatory Credit: Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports

Josh Ferguson takes screen pass for TD at Purdue

Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports

Illinois’ season took a bizarre twist before the first kickoff, as Tim Beckman was fired a week before the opener amid allegations he had mistreated players. The school quickly turned to sage offensive coordinator Bill Cubit, who did a good job keeping the program on track.

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Tom Dienhart offers early take on Michigan State-Alabama matchup

Nick Saban & Mark Dantonio

LJ Scott reaches for the game-winning TD

USA TODAY Sports

I thought Michigan State would jump from No. 5 to No. 3 after it toppled unbeaten Iowa in the Big Ten title game on Saturday night in Indianapolis. And, the College Football Playoff committee did just that, setting up a meeting with No. 2 Alabama in the Cotton Bowl in a national semifinal game.

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Dienhart: Doubters have no choice but to hail Michigan State

Dec 5, 2015; Indianapolis, IN, USA; Michigan State Spartans head coach Mark Dantonio reacts after the game against the Iowa Hawkeyes in the Big Ten Conference football championship at Lucas Oil Stadium. Michigan State won 16-13.  Mandatory Credit: Aaron Doster-USA TODAY Sports

Watch our Michigan State-Iowa highlight

Aaron Doster-USA TODAY Sports

It seemed America had forgotten Michigan State had won 11 or more games four times in five years. It seemed pundits blanked out on the fact the Spartans won Big Ten crowns in 2010 and 2013. It seemed experts forgot about the Rose and Cotton Bowl triumphs for this program.

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Dienhart: So much to like about this Big Ten title game matchup

Big Ten title game

Iowa players join hands to pick up Heroes Trophy

BTN

The Big Ten title game matchup is set: Iowa vs. Michigan State. The stakes: A spot in the second annual College Football Playoff. The surprising and undefeated Hawkeyes are making their first appearance, while the Spartans are preparing for their third title game in the event’s five seasons.

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Tom's Take: Week 11 honors, grades, stock reports & numbers

FB MINN at IOWA 11-14-2015 BTN Game 2(2)_1 mov Still002 (2)

Floyd of Rosedale is heading to Iowa City

No big shocks this Saturday in the Big Ten, as Ohio State and Iowa remained unbeaten. Nebraska won two games in a row for the first time, while Michigan State got back on track, Michigan won the wildest Big Ten game of 2015 and Northwestern pushed its winning streak to three.

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Dienhart: It all boils down to the last two games for Ohio State

Nov 14, 2015; Champaign, IL, USA; Ohio State Buckeyes running back Ezekiel Elliott (15) hold up the Illibuck trophy after the game at Memorial Stadium. Ohio State defats Illinois 28-3. Mandatory Credit: Mike DiNovo-USA TODAY Sports

Watch our Ohio State-Illinois highlight

Another week, another win for Ohio State. That’s 23 in row for the Buckeyes and 30 in succession vs. Big Ten teams in regular-season games. This time, Illinois was the object in between Ohio State and its lofty goals, falling 28-3 to a Buckeyes squad that was just too good and too talented. Sorry, Illini.

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Taking a quick look at Big Ten East vs. Big Ten West matchups

Oct 31, 2015; Iowa City, IA, USA; The Maryland Terrapins face off against the Iowa Hawkeyes line of scrimmage during the second half at Kinnick Stadium. Iowa won 31-15.  Mandatory Credit: Jeffrey Becker-USA TODAY Sports

Jeff Long discusses Iowa's CFP ranking

Jeffrey Becker-USA TODAY Sports

Last Saturday was a big one for the Big Ten West, a division that often is maligned and perceived to be less-than when compared to an East division that features power/elite programs like Ohio State, Michigan, Michigan State and Penn State.

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Your updated look at the Big Ten division scenarios

Nov 7, 2015; Bloomington, IN, USA; Iowa Hawkeyes running back LeShun Daniels Jr. (29) celebrates a touchdown with his team during the second half of the game at Memorial Stadium. The Hawkeyes defeated the Hoosiers 35-27. Mandatory Credit: Marc Lebryk-USA TODAY Sports

Gerry DiNardo praises perfect Hawkeyes

Marc Lebryk-USA TODAY Sports

There are three weeks left in the season, and both Big Ten division races remain up for grabs. But know this: Iowa is in firm control in the West. In the East, Ohio State is in the driver’s seat. Both are unbeaten, the last perfect teams in the Big Ten.

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