Just when we thought the Big Ten conference couldn't possibly sink any lower, they came out and put on a collective performance like this past weekend's..AND
TOTALLY MOSTLY REDEEMED ITSELF. Sure, Michigan stuck out as the lone sore spot, but the rest of the conference teams in action stepped up their game and gutted out wins to allow themselves at least a week-long reprieve from the national media with regards to crapping all over the B1G. Anyway, enough blabber from me, let's get to it:
Iowa 24, Pitt 20
While you never want to see players get injured, Iowa starting quarterback Jake Rudock going down ended up being the spark that the Hawkeye offense needed, as backup QB CJ Beathard (sorry to spoil your fun, but it's pronounced BET-herd) brought some life to a listless passing game and coupled with tailback Mark Weisman, led a rally from a 17-7 halftime defiict to eke out the victory in front of tens of thousands of yellow seats at Heinz Field (obligatory #LOLPitt).
Michigan State 73, Eastern Michigan 14
This game can be summarized in one tweet:
Northwestern 24, Western Illinois 7
The good: Northwestern won its first game of the 2014 season.
Purdue 35, Southern Illinois 13
The Boilermakers raced out of the gates to a 25-0 lead by midway through the second quarter and never looked back. At 2-2, Purdue has now doubled its win total from last season. Now, comes the real B1G competition.
Wisconsin 68, Bowling Green 17
Bowling Green did not do the improbable and upset B1G opponents in back-to-back weeks, not even close. In fact, Bowling Green found itself on the wrong side of a record-setting day for Wisconsin football, as the Badgers rushed for a school-record 644 yards on the heels of 253 yards and five touchdowns by Melvin Gordon (he sure plead the FIF, alright). Even better for the Badgers (or more embarrassing for Bowling Green), it only took 13 carries for Gordon to hit those marks.
Maryland 34, Syracuse 20
Maryland may have been outgained 589-369 (including a 370-89 rushing advantage for the 'Cuse), but two very costly turnovers for the Orange and CJ Brown's pair of TD passes (both to guys not named Stefon Diggs) truly set the tone for this contest, as Maryland scored 17 straight points second quarter to blow open a tight game and take a 31-13 halftime lead.
Utah 26, Michigan 10
Michigan remains winless against opponents with a pulse after getting relatively handled by Utah in the Big House. There's several highlights to choose from, including all the anti-Brady Hoke tweets and the rain delay (which led to countless metaphorical jokes about the state of Michigan football), but I'm personally going with Utah punt returner Kaelin Clay's homage to Desmond Howard:
Big Ten Powerhouse Rutgers 31, Navy 24
Paul James was in the midst of tearing it up on the ground for BTPR (7 carries for 96 yards and a touchdown) when he went down with what has now been confirmed as a season-ending ACL tear (get well soon, PJ). In came James Goodwin, who added 104 yards and a touchdown of his own on 26 carries. Gary Nova also didn't turn the ball over, so that's a plus. Navy actually came within six yards of tying this game up late, but the BTPR defense held firm to preserve the victory. BTPR has one final tune-up at home against Tulane next weekend before playing their first non-PSU B1G game against Michigan the following week.
Minnesota 24, San Jose State 7
Minnesota only completed one pass for seven yards. No, seriously...
llinois 42, Texas State 35
Is Illinois the worst 3-1 team ever? My column:
Indiana 31, Missouri 27
As some of you may know, I spent most of this past Saturday hanging out with the fine folks at the SB Nation headquarters in DC to watch the PSU game. After the PSU game was over and I was debating whether to stick around for the last 7-8 minutes of this contest (which was tied at 24 at the time), Luke Zimmerman reminded me that Indiana had plenty of time to blow the game, and thus I left. Stupid Tim.
It was another balanced offensive attack that led the way for the Hoosiers, as Nate Sudfeld threw for 252 yards and a touchdown while Tevin Coleman ran for 132 yards on 19 carries and a touchdown, while D'Angelo Roberts added 65 yards and a pair of TD's on the ground (including the game-winner with 22 seconds left). If this game were played at Indiana, perhaps you would've seen Tom Crean frantically running around, looking for a net of some type to cut down.
Nebraska 41, Miami (FL) 31
First, let's set the mood for this particular recap:
Okay, much better...Ameer Abdullah once again, led the way for Nebraska, racking up 229 yards on 35 carries and a pair of touchdowns. This game was most notable however, for the fact that a pair of fights occurred after untimely interceptions thrown by The U's true freshman QB Brad Kaaya.
Also, this guy's just flat out PISSED. OFF. at Al Golden.