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Kentucky ousts Big Ten champ Purdue, 6-3

No. 14 Purdue baseball got off to a good start with two runs in the first inning Sunday, but another rally by the opposition was the difference in a 6-3 loss to Kentucky that eliminated the Boilers from the NCAA Gary Regional. It was a memorable season for Purdue (45-14), which won the Big Ten title for the first time since 1909, claimed its first Big Ten tourney crown, qualified for the NCAA tourney for the first time since 1987 and hosted an NCAA Regional for the first time en route to setting a program record for wins.

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Mailbag: Are Buckeyes worthy of all the praise?

You have questions, and I have answers. With the calendar turning to June, the focus is on football, as you can see from the questions below. Answering these queries got me thinking: Are Michigan State and Ohio State the best teams in the Big Ten? Find out in this post. Also, have you checked out my 2012 weekly schedule analysis series, which just reached Week 13 yesterday, or my archive of Big Ten rankings?

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Breedlove, Boilers fall against Kent State

(AP) Ryan Bores scattered nine hits in his first career complete game, and Jimmy Rider drove in three runs as Kent State extended its winning streak to 19 with 7-3 win over top-seeded Purdue. The Golden Flashes (43-17), who have the nation’s longest active streak, will play in a NCAA regional final for the second consecutive year. Bores (9-2) saved a pitching staff that worked through 21 innings in a 7-6 victory over Kentucky on Friday night. Rider — the career hits leader for Kent State and Mid-American Conference — had three more to give him 349.

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Look ahead to 2012 season: Best of Week 13

We’ve reached the end of the road with my super-early schedule analysis for every week of the 2012 college football season. The last week of the Big Ten Football season is, more times than not, dominanted by one thing: Michigan vs. Ohio State.

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Purdue drops Valparaiso, 7-2

No. 14 Purdue baseball scored all seven of its runs with two outs and Joe Haase earned his program-record 11th win of the season with seven innings of one-run ball, leading the Boilermakers to a 7-2 win against Valparaiso Friday evening on the opening night of the NCAA Tournament. Purdue (45-12) will play Kent State Saturday at 8 p.m. ET at U.S. Steel Yard ballpark. The Golden Flashes outlasted Kentucky, 7-6, in a 21-inning marathon Friday, a game that ranks as the second longest in NCAA Division I Tournament history.  That game will air on BTN and BTN2Go.com. Read more at Purduesports.com and track the entire tournament at NCAA.com.

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Unit Rankings: 2012 Big Ten Running Backs

When Montee Ball opted to return for his senior season, he solidified Wisconsin as a Big Ten favorite and himself as a Heisman Trophy front-runner. Ball also cemented the Badgers’ status as having the Big Ten’s top collection of running backs. And perhaps the best collection in the nation. Here is how I rate the Big Ten running back units, which are a strong collection of talent with 12 of last season’s top 14 rushers back.

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