Tom Dienhart, BTN.com Senior Writer, November 24, 2015
It?s Ohio State-Michigan week. And, it doesn?t get much better. Well, I guess it could be, if this was a winner-takes-all battle for the East Division title. Alas, it isn?t, since the Buckeyes lost last week at home to Michigan State. Still, the first Harbaugh vs. Meyer clash should be memorable.
Would there be any fallout from Ezekiel Elliott?s harsh critique of his coaching staff after the Buckeyes? loss to the Spartans? Nope. Urban Meyer says all is hunky-dory.
"It was a very isolated incident, we have a three-year bank on Zeke," Meyer said. "I couldn't disagree with his comments, he should have gotten the ball more. But that's not the place (to make those comments). He knows that. Have you ever see an emotional athlete or coach, go? It happens. I'm not saying it's not true, but that's not the place for it."
So, with Elliott?s Heisman hopes toast, how does what was a muddled race look like now? Who will win it? It could Alabama?s Derrick Henry?s to lose.
Big game for Iowa on Friday, as the Hawkeyes play at Nebraska. Iowa needs to win to stay unbeaten on track for a likely playoff berth. Can the Hawkeyes leave Lincoln with a win? The great Lee Barfknecht of Omaha.com thinks the Iowa defense is looking fatigued.
A key batch of statistics hints at some late-season wear and tear. Let?s look at the Hawkeyes? first eight games in a group and the last three:
» Yards per game allowed: First eight: 286.3; Last three: 415.3.
» Points per game allowed: First eight: 15.3; Last three: 27.3.
» Rushing touchdowns allowed: First eight: one; Last three: six.
The last three Iowa games have been against Indiana (407 yards, 27 points), Minnesota (434 and 35) and Purdue (405 and 20). The Hoosiers have moved the ball well all season, but the other two hardly are offensive juggernauts.
Jordan Lomax = Bob Sanders in an Iowa secondary that may be the most physical ever under Kirk Ferentz? Interesting.
?Coach (Phil) Parker and Coach (Seth) Wallace, they love the physicality of safeties,? Lomax said. ?That?s the mentality they like bringing to our defense, that we?re a very physical defense. They harp on us each week to continue to keep hitting harder and harder.?
It is Bucket week! Watch Indiana coach Kevin Wilson discuss the battle with Purdue. A win will send the Hoosiers to a bowl for the first time since 2007.
The struggles of the Penn State offense are well-documented. That has led some to wonder if perhaps James Franklin will alter his staff.
Ben Jones of StateCollege.com lays it all out. He thinks Franklin has a problem. Slowly but surely the glitz and glamour is wearing off. Slowly but surely fans are less and less interested in the allegedly bright future and more interested in seeing things headed that direction. Franklin isn't losing the fan base but he's learning that he can't take them for granted.
It has been a dreary season for Rutgers, which has gone to bowls in nine of the last 10 seasons. But, the Scarlet Knights will be home these holidays. But, here is some good news: stud DE Darius Hamilton says he will be back in 2016.
When it was announced on Sept. 27 that Hamilton would miss the rest of the season with a knee injury, the defensive tackle said that he planned to return to Rutgers for his final season of eligibility. But Hamilton also emphasized that embattled coach Kyle Flood was "the only guy I want to play for."
Two months later, Hamilton remains as committed to Rutgers and Flood.
"I look forward to coming back and playing with this team and playing for these coaches and having a great year," Hamilton said on Monday as Rutgers prepares for Saturday's regular season finale against Maryland.
This was pretty cool: Illinois? Bill Cubit wore an orange blazer a la Lou Henson at his presser on Monday.
Henson was inducted into the National Collegiate Basketball Hall of Fame in Kansas City, Missouri, on Friday.
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