Big Ten Review: Week Nine

Bret, being told to BIEL WITH IT. (Photo by Kirk Irwin/Getty Images)

The final month of the Big Ten is going to be entertaining, as there are multi-team races for both divisions, and every team has weaknesses that can be exploited. Penn State's managed to give itself a nice cushion in the P1G, but may need every bit of it considering their final three opponents. The CGRN division, well, that's just a mess with three teams sitting at 3-1 in conference.

Game of the Week

Wisconsin Badgers 6-2 (2-2) @ Ohio St. Buckeyes 5-3 (2-2)
Final Score: OSU 33 - Wisky 29

Perhaps Wisconsin should practice late game situations a bit more, because that's the second straight week Bucky's lost on a late long touchdown pass.

The game was fairly tight all the way through, but the fourth quarter provided nearly as much fireworks as the first three quarters combined. It was a relatively quiet day for the Badgers on the ground, as Montee Ball ended the game with only 85 yards, but Russell Wilson had another great day throwing the ball, going 20-32 for 253 yards, 3 touchdowns and no interceptions. The Badger defense couldn't hold up its end of the bargain though, as they let Devin Smith get loose behind the secondary, and let Braxton Miller break out of the pocket and find him. Poor execution on the edges doomed Wisconsin to their second straight heartbreaker.

Ohio State Player of the Game: Boom Herron, who went for 160 yards on 33 rushes.
Wisconsin Player of the Game: #AllRussellWilsonEverything

The Rest

Iowa Hawkeyes 5-3 (2-2) @ Minnesota Golden Gophers 2-6 (1-3)
Final Score: Goldy 22 - Iowa 21

Floyd of Rosedale gets to stay in the Twin Cities for another year after the Gophers pulled the upset on Iowa. QB MarQueis Gray scored the go ahead touchdown with just under three minutes left in the game to give the Gophers their second straight win over Iowa.

Iowa squandered a great day from Marcus Coker, who ran for 252 yards and two touchdowns. The Hawkeyes also missed two field goals.

Minnesota Player of the Game: MarQueis Gray, who went 11-17 for 193 yards and a touchdown, as well as 62 yards and a touchdown on the ground
Iowa Player of the Game: Marcus Coker.

Michigan St. Spartans 6-2 (3-1) @ Nebraska Cornhuskers 7-1 (3-1)
Final Score: Nebraska 24 - Sparty 3

I thought that Michigan State had what it took to win a big game on the road, in a tough environment, the week after an emotional last second win. In other news, I'm an idiot.

Nebraska played their best game of the season this week by pounding the Spartans into submission and never letting their offense find its footing. Kirk Cousins was off all game, and neither Le'Veon Bell or Edwin Baker could get much steam going on the ground. On the other side of the ball, Rex Burkhead dominated, as he accounted for all three Husker touchdowns.

Nebraska Player of the Game: Rex Burkhead, who rushed for 130 yards and two touchdowns, and caught another.
Michigan State Player of the Game: Le'Veon Bell averaged 4.8 yards/carry, but only received 11 carries due to the Spartans falling behind.

Purdue Boilermakers 4-4 (2-2) @ Michigan Wolverines 7-1 (3-1)
Final Score: Michigan 36 - Purdue 14

Purdue jumped out to an early 7-0 lead on Michigan. Then the Wolverines scored 36 straight points before giving up a garbage time touchdown. Purdue killed themselves by only going 3-13 on third down. This game was not pretty. The Michigan offense finally featured someone other than Denard Robinson, as running back Fitzgerald Toussaint went for 170 yards on 20 carries for a pair of scores.

Michigan Player of the Game: Toussaint.
Purdue Player of the Game: Caleb TurBush, who went 9-13 for 156 yards and a TD before being pulled for Robert Marve for no reason. Hooray, QB platoons!

Northwestern Wildcats 3-5 (1-4) @ Indiana Hoosiers 1-8 (0-5)
Final Score: jNWU 59 - Indiana 38

Holy offense. Northwestern did whatever it wanted against Indiana, and it turns out "whatever they wanted" was just score a whole bunch of touchdowns. Dan Persa threw for 261 yards and three touchdowns before getting pulled in the second half, and Kain Colter then proceeded to throw for another two touchdowns. Mix in another three rushing touchdowns on the ground, and you have the perfect recipe for a beating whose scoreline doesn't fully convey how one sided it was. Indiana never had any hope of getting back in this game.

Northwestern Player of the Game: Drake Dunsmore, who caught seven passes for 112 yards and FOUR touchdowns.
Indiana Player of the Game: Tre Roberson, who threw for 169 yards, a touchdown and an interception, and ran for 121 yards and a touchdown.

 

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