Tom Dienhart, BTN.com Senior Writer, October 13, 2015
Let?s keep priming the pump for the Michigan State at Michigan game. Mlive.com takes a look at the most recent matchups when both teams were ranked.
As you certainly know, both teams are currently ranked. This should be so much fun Saturday.
More Michigan: It is incredible to think that Wolverines' odds to win the national title are now 10:1, fourth best in the nation.
The only teams with better odds than Michigan at the moment are Ohio State (5-2), Baylor (5-1) and LSU (8-1). Remember: The Wolverines finished 5-7 last season.
In case you forgot, the three-game suspension for Kyle Flood is over. But, questions loom for Rutgers.
No doubt, having Flood back on the sideline will help RU. But his program remains under scrutiny with a law firm hired by the school investigating some matters. Stay tuned.
Ladies and gentlemen: Bret Bielema, the gift that keeps on giving.
Ben Jones of StateCollege.com thinks Penn State?s win over Indiana is more important than you think. And, he?s correct.
Jones says the Nittany Lions looked like a team that is improving. It doesn't matter that Indiana is a middle-of-the-pack team that played without its starting quarterback and running back. Penn State walked on to the field, and for the first time all season took care of business like you might expect the Nittany Lions to.
"This is a sport that you work extremely hard year round and then only get a handful of opportunities, not like baseball and basketball, so yea that creates some challenges," James Franklin said earlier this week. "That's not going to change so we just have to embrace the model that we have right now. And we're going to notice the changes that we see. We'll leave practice and go up and dinners will be waiting for us and we'll watch the tape for three hours and go through every single drill and every single play. And we're going to notice progress that may or may not show up on a Saturday."
"But the more that it shows up on a Sunday through Friday the more it will start showing up on Saturday's."
Next up: A trip to Ohio State, which has all of its QBs healthy.
Is Rutgers? trip to Indiana a must-win game?
Keith Sargeant of NJ.com says a loss to Indiana this week and Rutgers faces the likelihood of being eliminated from bowl contention before it even hosts Nebraska in mid-November. Defeat Indiana and the final three-game stretch - home versus Nebraska (2-4), at Army (1-5) and home versus Maryland (2-4) - will have meaning regardless of how ugly Ohio State, Wisconsin and Michigan turn out to be.
By the way: This game also may be a must-win for Indiana if its hopes to reach a bowl.
Few writers provide analysis as well as Sam McKewon of Omaha.com. And, he takes a look at the pass defense numbers for Nebraska. It?s not good.
McKewon says there?s one number that aptly summarizes where the Huskers sit: 13-43. There are 16 Power Five conference defenses giving up more than 400 yards per game this season. Their record against all the other Power Five teams is 13-43. Nebraska is giving up 443.8 yards per game. Nebraska is 0-3 against Power Five teams. Nebraska?s defense - celebrated by players before the season as simpler and more user-friendly - is ranked last nationally in passing yards allowed per game. What?s it all mean? The 2015 season is slipping away from the Huskers.
Tough loss for Northwestern at Michigan, as the Wildcats saw how limited their offense can be. So, it?s time do something. Things have become too predictable.
Kevin Trahan of InsideNU.com says that at some point, you have to take risks to win. Doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results is just as "risky," in that it turns almost every game into a close, coin-flip game, and that's ultimately hurting the Wildcats, even in great defensive performances.
Speaking of Northwestern ? Even with that ugly loss at Michigan, NU still has a shot in the West.
Saturday exposed some of Northwestern's shortcomings, and confirmed that this team has its limitations. It has a firm ceiling that prevents it from reaching to the lofty heights at which Michigan resided Saturday. But that doesn't mean Northwestern's first five games of 2015 were flukes. In fact, the opposite is true. Those games offer a much larger sample size than Saturday. There's a far greater chance that Saturday's depressing performance is the fluke, the exception to the rule.
We shall see: Iowa visits Evanston next.
Since Purdue is struggling mightily on the gridiron, let?s look at Boiler hoops! Things are looking good on the hardwood. Stud freshman Caleb Swanigan is impressing. That is terrific news for Matt Painter?s crew.
If Swanigan is a good as advertised, Purdue may be a sleeper.
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