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Two traditional powers square off for a second season in a row in the postseason. And each will do so without the quarterbacks they began the season with. Nebraska’s Taylor Martinez has been shelved with a variety of ailments—shoulder, hip, abdomen, ankle–missing eight of the last nine games. Aaron Murray’s season was wrecked by a knee injury suffered vs. Kentucky on November 23.
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USA Today has its All-American Team out. So, let’s start daily links there. Ohio State linebacker Ryan Shazier and Michigan State cornerback Darqueze Dennard are the lone first-team choices from the Big Ten. Funny, wasn’t Wisconsin linebacker the Big Ten Defensive Player of the Year? Borland was on the second team with Michigan State defensive end Shilique Calhoun, Michigan offensive tackle Taylor Lewan and Northwestern kicker Jeff Budzien. Lewan? Really? He was one of the 10 best offensive linemen in America this season? Talk amongst yourself.
Wisconsin guard Traevon Jackson threw down a dunk that will be the talk of the town in Madison, Wis., this week. The Badgers’ junior point guard drove to the hoop and exploded for a thunderous left-handed dunk, posterizing the Milwaukee defender.
It was a perfect night for the Big Ten in men’s hoops action. Penn State kicked off the night with an impressive 68-59 win over Duquesne, while both Ohio State and Wisconsin kept their undefeated seasons alive with convincing wins. The Buckeyes cruised to an 86-48 victory over Bryant and the Badgers topped Milwaukee, 78-52.
One college football blue blood in Michigan faces a recent upstart in Kansas State. This is intriguing. Even better: These teams never have met. For Michigan, this is a chance to get a bad taste out of its mouth for a 2013 season that has been, well, a disappointment.
Two Big Ten men’s basketball teams remain unblemished: Wisconsin (11-0) and Ohio State (9-0). Both recorded another win Wednesday night, and both have a good shot to enter Big Ten play unscathed.