Well, last weekend will be a hard one to top, but today marks the eighth week of Big Ten Football. Unfortunately today's set of games isn't really noteworthy, meaning you may have to turn elsewhere for some enjoyable college football today. But on the bright side, we're less than three weeks away from the basketball season.
Following last Saturday will be hard
Last weekend's set of games was hands down the most enjoyable slate of games in the conference and the afternoon slate was an absolute delight. Both Michigan and Michigan State played a close, hard fought game before probably the craziest ending since Alabama and Auburn's kick six play a few years back. After the game if you flipped over to BTN you would have caught the tail end of the Indiana and Rutgers game, with Indiana blowing a 25 point lead late in the third quarter at home to an embattled Rutgers program. The game reawakened the hot seat discussion for Kevin Wilson and things won't be any easier as the Hoosiers now have to travel to East Lansing to face Michigan State. Unless the Spartans have a letdown game today, it's hard to envision any scenario where Indiana can snag a win. If it makes them feel any better, though, Rutgers is likely set to get blown out in prime time against Ohio State. I know today's national slate of games is a bit so-so, but still...Ohio State and Rutgers in prime time on ABC just seems beyond lackluster.
Will we get any close games today?
That's a serious question. With four teams off today we only have five Big Ten games and it's hard to imagine much excitement today. Maybe a few weeks back Northwestern and Nebraska would have looked solid on paper, but Northwestern has fallen off a cliff the last two weeks and Nebraska is coming off of a road blowout over Minnesota. Heading into Lincoln today it's hard to picture the Wildcats being competitive, especially considering how poorly they handled Iowa and Michigan.
The afternoon games include the previously mention Indiana and Michigan State, Wisconsin at Illinois and Penn State at Maryland. Honestly it'd take a colossal no-show for the Badgers to lose to Illinois, so with Rutgers over matched tonight against Ohio State, that means Penn State and Maryland is the only game that could be competitive in all likelihood. Of course Maryland is coming off of firing their coach (plus a bye week) and their interim coach, Mike Locksley, was horrendous as a head coach at New Mexico. Of course a lot of that has to do with a Lobos program that isn't exactly an easy place to recruit talent to (or win at), so who knows. His first opponent as Terrapin head coach is a Penn State team that likes to go back and forth between lifeless and showing signs of improvement. All in all, though, Penn State's offense is a wreck. It might not matter if Maryland can't actually score the ball, and a low scoring game here is a pretty realistic outcome.
|12:00||ABC, ESPN or ESPN2||Northwestern at Nebraska||Nebraska 31 Northwestern 17|
|3:30||ABC, ESPN or ESPN2||Indiana at Michigan State||Michigan State 38 Indiana 20|
|ABC. ESPN or ESPN2||Penn State at Maryland||Penn State 20 Maryland 13|
|BTN||Wisconsin at Illinois||Wisconsin 38 Illinois 14|
|8:00||ABC||Ohio State at Rutgers||Ohio State 49 Rutgers 21|
Last Weekend's Predictions: 6-0
Current Record: 59-13