Andrew Weber-US PRESSWIRE
Ohio State- 26
Another exciting chapter was added to "The Game" this week, as Ohio State capped off an undefeated season. The game was a back-and-forth affair much of the afternoon, and appeared destined for another shootout. Ohio State's defense had its hands full with Denard Robinson lining up throughout the backfield, and Carlos Hyde ran roughshed over the Wolverines. Both defenses clamped down in the second half, but Michigan could not overcome a steady flow of turnovers and poor field position. Braxton Miller had one of his most efficient games of the season, going 14 of 18 for a touchdown and no interceptions. Interestingly enough, the same fans who grumbled about the Buckeyes not being eligible to play in the postseason following an undefeated season gave Jim Tressel a standing ovation in a pre-game ceremony honoring the 2002 squad.
Iowa's defense gave a tremendous effort, but once again the Hawkeyes were doomed by an incompetent offense. Iowa had a chance for a go-ahead touchdown in the waning seconds, but all hopes for an upset disappeared as James Vandenberg threw his second interception of the day. Nebraska will meet the 3rd-place team in the Leaders Division in the Big Ten Championship Game on Saturday, while the Hawkeyes will have a long offseason to figure out what went wrong with the 2012 season.
Illinois capped off an incredibly awful season in appropriate fashion by being utterly dominated by its in-state rival. Venric Mark rushed for 127 yards and Kain Colter threw for three touchdowns on only nine attempts. The win for Northwestern basically guarantees that the Wildcats will be playing on New Years Day, while Illinois fans likely begin their countdown until the next coaching search.
Michigan State- 26
Le'Veon Bell helped the Spartans become bowl-eligible with a 266-yard performance. Sadly, Jerry Kill had to miss the second half after suffering a seizure. He was able to return home to his family later Saturday evening after being properly monitored by medical professionals. Both teams finish 6-6 and will represent the Big Ten in bowl games.
The Battle for the Old Oaken Bucket appeared to be an old-fashioned shootout with the advantage going to the team with the last possession. However, Purdue managed to pull away with a fourth-quarter scoring frenzy to sink the Hoosiers. The win put the Boilermakers at 6-6 and sends them off to the postseason.
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