Including a fourth career multi-homer game from Cameron Perkins, No. 13 Purdue baseball hit a season-high four home runs en route to defeating Iowa, 11-8, to clinch the Big Ten Conference title outright Thursday. The Boilermakers (41-10, 17-5 Big Ten) won the opening game of every Big Ten series this season. The four long balls were the most by the Boilers since connecting for five in an April 2010 home win against Penn State.
In my last Big Ten football schedule analysis post, I examine Wisconsin, your defending Big Ten champions. What will be the Badgers’ toughest non-conference and conference games? Where does the schedule get really rugged? Go ahead and guess which game I call their “must win” game, then read the rest of this post to what else I picked.
Who will be the best receiver in the Big Ten? It’s a difficult question. The position lost a lot of good talent after last season. How much?
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The Big Ten Conference announced the 2012 All-Big Ten Softball Teams on Wednesday afternoon, and five-time reigning champ Michigan dominated the honors. The Wolverines swept all of the individual laurels, with first baseman Amanda Chidester taking home Player of the Year for the second consecutive season. See all the teams and the superlative winners in this post.
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Next up in my schedule analysis series: Purdue. What will be the Boilermakers’ toughest non-conference and conference games? Where is the schedule seemingly easiest, and then when does it get really rugged? Go ahead and guess which game I call their “must win” game, then read the rest of this post and see what I picked. You can find all of my Big Ten schedule analysis posts here. All of the teams are included except for Wisconsin, which you can look for Thursday.
When you think of Wisconsin, offense usually comes to mind. Big, tough physical lines blocking for a strong running game. But the Wisconsin defense deserves credit for the program’s consecutive Rose Bowl appearances. The Badgers had the Big Ten’s No. 3 defense (316.4 ypg) in 2011 and allowed just 19 points per game (13th in the nation). I talked with co-defensive coordinator Chris Ash—who is in his second as co-coordinator working in concert with Charlie Partridge–to get his breakdown of the Badger defense. See the Q&A in this post.
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