Last week was a dud. This week is a doozy. This is the best week of non-conference action with the highlights being four games vs. Pac-12 foes. The only unappetizing clashes: three games vs. the MAC, and two vs. FCS foes. Still, there’s lots to like with UCLA at Nebraska; Wisconsin at Arizona State; Ohio State at Cal; and Illinois vs. Washington in Chicago.
If you’re on Twitter, you can vote in our ongoing series of Big Ten Twitter polls for our weekday TV show #BTNLive weekdays at 6 p.m. ET. On Thursday’s show, our experts discuss this question: Which B1G defense faces the toughest test Saturday? Answer candidates: Illinois, Wisconsin, Ohio State, or Nebraska.
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This is by far the best slate of games of the short 2013 season. The Saturday menu is highlighted by four games vs. Pac-12 schools—Illinois vs. Washington in Chicago; Wisconsin at Arizona State; UCLA at Nebraska; Ohio State at Cal. Purdue also gets its annual crack at Notre Dame, adding more name-brand appeal to the weekend. And we have in-state rivals Iowa-Iowa State clashing.
We had a special treat on Tuesday night’s #BTNLive. Illinois legend and NFL Hall of Famer Dick Butkus joined the show to talk about his playing career, the state of the game today, and much more. Watch our first segment with Butkus that aired on Tuesday’s show here, plus see the other two segments in this post.
All eyes will be on Nebraska this Saturday, as the Cornhuskers welcome UCLA to Lincoln for the biggest game of the weekend. Huskers fans need no reminder of last year’s meeting vs. the Bruins in Pasadena. UCLA won, 36-30, as the Bruins obliterated the Nebraska defense to the tune of 653 yards. It was a sign of things to come.