Tom Dienhart, Senior Writer, April 16, 2015

Penn State?s Blue-White game is this weekend. has three position battles to watch.

Me? I?ll be watching the offensive line. just like most everyone else. According to Greg Pickel of, if the season started today, it is likely Penn State's offensive line would consist of Andrew Nelson and Paris Palmer at the tackles, Brian Gaia and Brendan Mahon at the guards, and Angelo Mangiro at center. QB Christian Hackenberg was sacked 44 times last year. That can?t happen again.

The game airs on BTN/BTN2Go – here's the link to watch live.


This is a bit eye-brow raising: Iowa DE Drew Ott said he was surprised that QB Jake Rudock left for Michigan, saying ?I thought he had a little more fight in him.? Hmmmm. I wonder what Rudock thinks of this? And his new Michigan teammates?


Sad news from Rutgers: Lord Nelson, the horse that once was flagged for a penalty at Giants Stadium, has died. says that way back in October of 1994, Rutgers faced Army at Giants Stadium. After scoring a touchdown, Rutgers went up 16-14, but here's what happened before the PAT, according to the New York Times:

"Rutgers missed the extra point because of one of its mascots, a horse. Exuberant over what turned out to be the winning touchdown, the rider swept onto the field and rode down the sidelines. That cost the Scarlet Knights 15 yards for unsportsmanlike conduct, and the kicker, Eddie Duborg, had to try his conversion from 35 yards out. He missed."

We need more fun stuff like this Giants Stadium event to happen.


Ohio State has its spring game this Saturday. Yes, all eyes have been on the quarterbacks. But, what about the all-important offensive line?

We won?t see much of the unit that?s likely to be out there this fall on Saturday, says Bill Landis of Left tackle Taylor Decker and right guard Pat Elflein are members of the 2,000-rep club, meaning they're getting a break from most full-contact team drills as they look to preserve their bodies for another season. Center Jacoby Boren is out this spring as he comes back from offseason surgery. Left guard Billy Price was at center with the first-team offensive line in the little bit of practice time we've seen this spring, but he'll slide back over once Boren returns for fall camp.


From the annals of the bizarre, I bring you ex-Michigan LB Dhani Jones, who says he?s in favor of not having players wear helmets in the name of safety. It?s not a revolutionary concept, but it always catches my eye.

In an op-ed piece in the Washington Post, Jones says the removal of hard shell helmets would force players to learn how to play with their hands and shoulders, and would create an environment where the head is not used in basic blocking and tackling. Football sans helmets ? could it really happen? Nah.


OK, Sparty: Here are some photos from Michigan State spring practice. This should satisfy for your hunger for some Spartan football-for at least five minutes.


You can never talk about Wisconsin football without talking about the offensive line. The current group is a work-in-progress. But, you know it will come together and be massive and awesome.

The unit has three new starters. Jason Galloway of says right tackle Hayden Biegel, right guard Michael Deiter and left guard Ray Ball have taken over first-team reps for the departed Rob Havenstein, Kyle Costigan and Dallas Lewallen.


Hey, Aaron White is gonna be a father, everyone! Congrats! Baby girl is coming in August. Aaron needs to get a job.


Indiana RB Tevin Coleman had a pretty good pro day. Now, is he a first-round pick?

The Hoosiers haven't had a first-round pick for 20 years, a drought exceeded by only Iowa State (41 years) and Duke (27) among major college programs.

"It's one of the goals that I want to achieve," Coleman said. "That's why I came out here and gave my all, gave it my best."

I hope Coleman can slip into the first-round, but I doubt it. Teams just don?t typically select running backs that highly anymore.


About Tom Dienhart senior writer Tom Dienhart is a veteran sports journalist who covers Big Ten football and men's basketball for and BTN TV. Find him on Twitter and Facebook, read all of his work at, and subscribe to his posts via RSS. Also, send questions to his weekly mailbag using the form below and read all of his previous answers in his reader mailbag section.

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